cooking

Ready to Party?

November 16, 2017
Dinner for 3

Tennyson may be right that “In the Spring a young man’s [and woman’s] fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love”[1]; but in my stage of life, fall too often turns my mind to thoughts of loss. The shortened days depress me. While I thought nothing of going out after dark with Lev, nine autumns later I am still uncomfortably surprised by the darkness when I …

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Hope for the Holidays

October 20, 2017
Christmas decor

…or would today’s blog be more appropriately titled, “Help! It’s the Holidays”? When Holiday promotions start showing up in the stores, when the days grow shorter, when daylight savings time ends, I am again reminded that I am approaching the time of year when I struggle to find joy. If you have experienced loss in the past year, if the Holidays this year will be …

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English Gardens in South Texas?

May 11, 2017
garden

Last week for the first time I was on Nantucket off-season—to celebrate daffodils, one of the first signs of spring on the island. While South Texas is already experiencing summer, with the temperature occasionally reaching 90 and spring flowers past their prime, Nantucket is at the very beginning of springtime, with bulbs and fruit trees and forsythia in full bloom. I will return at the …

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Home Alone at Dinnertime

September 29, 2016
flounder with vegetables

Being home alone still seems new to me, but I am approaching my eighth Christmas without Lev. While I did not choose this lifestyle, I have grown accustomed to it. In those early years as a widow, I couldn’t stand the solitude so I swung between filling the house with people and escaping. I am still seeking the right balance of home alone, home with …

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Friends: An Unexpected Loss

April 21, 2016
with friends in Nantucket

The Social Aspect of Grief Ours had been a social world of couples, and our friends and acquaintances called within a month or two after Lev’s death to invite me out to dinner. Sometimes, these turned out to be one-time obligatory gestures. Just as we had not thought to mix singles and couples in our social life, not all of our old friends continued to …

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Solace or Sinkhole?

March 31, 2016
Nantucket church steeple

Part 2: The spiritual aspect of grief I was so smugly sure last week that I was prepared for Easter. I had taken precautions to avoid sinkholes, inviting family and friends to a big meal after church and spending the preceding days decorating my house and table, planning my menu and cooking. All of that was good; and in the end, the day was good. …

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Two Very Different Dressings + Gravy

November 8, 2015

Yvonne’s Traditional Cornbread Dressing Yvonne York was my housekeeper for almost 15 years. We watched each other’s children grow up, marry and have babies. We buried our husbands. We shared the same heritage, she from Mobile and I from New Orleans–our Baptist faith, our politics and our cooking. And in the process, we formed a deep and abiding friendship that continues to this day. A …

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Challenges of Healthy Cooking

October 10, 2015

Eating three healthy meals a day–five if you count snacks–when you live alone is a challenge. It requires time for planning, shopping, prep, cooking and cleanup. And fresh vegetables cost money. I can’t buy small enough quantities for one person for one meal, so I am stuck with either eating leftovers or throwing food away. So much easier to eat peanut butter and crackers when I don’t go …

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Adapting Sri Lankan Cooking Methods

August 30, 2015

As a widow, cooking for one, I have surprised myself in resorting to techniques I learned in Sri Lanka. In late December 2005, one year after Sri Lanka was struck by a tsunami, I went with a small construction team from my church to help build a new village for those whose homes had been swept away. We were to live on the site, and …

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