• Gift Basket Season

    December 5, 2013

    It’s gift basket (box) season at Pipelette, evidenced by confetti-like shredded red and cream-colored paper scattered about, cello wrap and ribbon, and reindeer-festooned boxes. I am streamlining my kitchen to efficiently bake and package hundreds of sweet and savory treats. The first round went out earlier this week, and I am preparing for round...

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    Stuffed Chiles

    October 29, 2013

    As I look out my office window, one grand tree (an oak?) is leafless, stripped bare and ready to bear winter. To its left, golden and green leaves hold tight to their limbs of an elm, and to the right, in my yard, a red/burnished orange leafed-tree, which I gather is a sugar maple,...

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    October 7, 2013

    I love fall, and love it more this year as it signals a snowy winter ahead. My first in many years. As the weather starts to turn (and it has been turning hesitantly this season), my thoughts turn to pumpkins — and candy corn. Three weeks of blissful Indian summer days turned into gray...

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    Cold Tomato Soup with Crab Salad

    September 12, 2013

    I need to add a postscript to my July blog post. I also pump my own gas! And pay sales tax! And we have moved into our house. I have my kitchen gadgets at the ready and have been playing the game of “what’s in the box?” unwrapping all my treasured items. I didn’t...

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    July 27, 2013

    I am now officially an East Coaster. I am covered in bug bites. I pay tolls! I swim in the ocean. I am now the ‘slow’ driver. And my skin looks great with a cloak of humidity. A beautiful, craggy coastline that begs to be explored, abundant sunshine, lots of eateries, and a no...

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    Balancing Act

    May 28, 2013

    Balance is my muse and mantra this spring. Bringing myself to center when I find myself careening off to one side of the seesaw has become a daily practice. Moving house, regardless of distance, puts the most serene of us on the seesaw, and switching up coasts adds an extra frisson of ‘off kilter’...

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    Hazelnut Cream

    April 13, 2013

    That’s homemade Nutella to you and me. I saw this recipe and had to try it. As I ready myself and my daughter to take leave of Portland, Oregon, and start a new chapter in the coastal town of Portland, Maine, I am well-aware of the food landscape I am leaving behind. Besides Pinot...

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    Tropical Lentil Salad

    March 6, 2013

    Lentils may conjure up dull soups and austere diets. But don’t let that deter you. I made a delicious lentil salad the other night that gracefully bridged the gap between winter and summer. I was looking for a meal that was grounding and nourishing yet I am also craving some lighter flavors of a...

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    Rose Syrup

    February 15, 2013

    I am a lover of Valentine’s Day — unashamedly so. Bring on the conversation hearts, chocolate in all its forms, sweetly worded cards, flowers, dinner reservations and fixings for a home-cooked meal. This year marked the first year that my daughter opted out of sharing Valentine’s cards with her middle-school classmates. I was sad...

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    January 18, 2013

    I am reading Gretchen Rubin’s Happier at Home, her follow-up to The Happiness Project (which I did not read). It’s a good read. She lays out practical and useful strategies for increasing your present level of contentedness. What attracts me to her book is her personal and gently methodical approach to upping her contentedness...

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