In the middle of afternoons of persimmon cookie making or when we were out of avocados, mom would run to the local grocery store. She would return 20 minutes later with the magical missing ingredients, a local paper and a copper-foil scrap that was once…a Rolo wrapper. Years later she admitted that those moments were her time to inhale a package of Rolos and drive as fast as she wanted and for once, be free of questions about why the sky was blue or fighting from the backseat of the car, or the tossing of sugary treats onto the grocery store conveyor belt before she could order them put back on the shelves.

I don’t have children. I don’t pretend to have children, even though Winston sure acts like a child sometimes. I have no idea what it might be like to have a grown husband-child in addition to two youngsters. But, in my own way I needed a moment. This morning was supposed to be a typical 20-something brunch full of mimosas and chatter about why women are better than men. But instead, I went out for Rolos.

And on my way to find that foil tube of caramel-filled goodness, I sang at the top of my lungs to my favorite artists. And I zipped through the Pacheco Pass, cutting through the fog and shifting between neutral and overdrive. Yielding to 5th-wheels and having insects smatter my windshield, “Say’s You” carried me into a diner in a roadside town where my family was waiting to share a birthday meal.

It was full of love and light. There was a compassion that enveloped me, and a little boy with an infectious chuckle. I am so proud to be part of that group of hardworking, sweet, loving people. I found every reason to delay my return home. Stopping by Casa de Fruita for champagne and a garlic roaster – the perfect combination of sophisticated domestication and the poor priorities and sass one might expect from a 20-something. I took the long way to the outlets. I stopped for groceries on my way back into town.

And then, for the first time in almost two months, I spent the afternoon dancing around my kitchen. Turkey tacos with homemade tortillas, corn salsa, tomato and chili quinoa and jalepeno spiced black beans from scratch. Turkey sliders with sweet potato chips and cinnamon rolls for the office tomorrow. Garbanzo beans are cooking as we speak for those moments that only hummus can answer to.

I’ll never know if my mom felt this way about her trips to the market, but my rolos sure tasted sweet today.
Welcome 28.



It’s finally here. My favorite month of the year. 
While followed closely by September and then by November, Autumn never fails to take my breath away with each striking sunset and the never ending thrill of the crunch as another leaf falls victim to my boot. 

Scarves, tea, bundling up, and the coziness that comes with our instinctual sense that its time to prepare for winter make me feel safe. But the sunsets…the sunsets give me such joy.

Striking yellows that melt into the most piercing of magentas as the sky melts down towards the darkness of the earth; they’re so captivating. So naturally, weekends like this one are gold in my book. Hours of elongated painted skies that return day after day, and are just as pretty when the sun peeks over the hills in the morning. 

The opportunity to wake up in the foothills everyday became less of a task and more of a treasure with each sunburst. Waking up to peace, quiet and a few weathered roosters was quite joyful. Harvesting a garden, fixing a fence, playing with the dogs, taking a nap; all of those things were marvelous and fulfilling by themselves, and then there were the sunrises and sunsets. 

I’m waiting somewhat patiently for life’s next sunrise, and I’m beginning to find a similar anxiety that I experience when a photo can’t capture the dimensions of the sky. I can’t pin life down, which means I can’t manipulate it, control it, or have the answers to the questions I think I should be able to recite from memory. 

So during my favorite month and my favorite season, I’m going to do my best to let that anxiety go. To have faith in the strength of my intellect and my will, and to enjoy the memories that will inevitably be made.  Made during my next trip to watch my sweet little one marry her love, made on the ferris wheel with my favorite four year old, and drinking wine outside my favorite Half Moon Bay pumpkin patch. Made during the run down Hwy 1 at Ocean Beach for the last three miles of the Nike Women’s Marathon, and made more of during Homecoming, Founder’s Day, and the three other fundraisers I’m hosting before the month closes. 

My heart knows that I can’t will those snapshots to archive in 3D, and that I’ll find my next steps sooner than later but not before the perfect moment in time. So, it’s time to enjoy October. 

*Also, I made cranberry-sweetened mixed fruit granola this weekend, some amazing gingerbread bars (with homegrown zucchini), and some pretty okay zucchini-quinoa lasagne with last week’s homemade tomato sauce. Oh, and there was some amazing biscotti too!