Forecast: Soup and Chocolate

First snowstorm of the late 2015 – 2016 season for the east coast. Even though they are not calling it a blizzard – it may as well be the storyline. “Snow storms”  now refer to anything over 3” anymore and are named like aquaintances. Yesterday (Tuesday) started a run on shovels, rock-salt, ice-go, bread, milk, chips, cookies and marshmallows even though the snow/precipitation will not fall until Saturday.

It was more than “kind of a chaotic week,” so I too marched myself off to the supermarket and pet food stores. On my list: dog food and treats; chicken and fixings to make soup for my body and emotional well-being; greens for healing body and spirit; salsa for some pizzazz; chocolate for my heart and taste buds and 10 yellow rosebuds for my spirit and sense of whimsy. Out of the entire list if I had to buy just one thing in event of a storm – it would be the rosebuds. So, I guess I’m just as crazy as anyone else shopping ahead for “necessities” in the event of a few flurries or more.


the yellow heart of escarole sweeter in the pot next to roses


Uncoiled Knots

I feel so sad. The day uncoiled its knots,
but in the end there was no deliciousness
to savour. I tried to fill in with an elderberry
cocktail and a walk with the dog. The cat
got a good petting, but there was no
dessert mail waiting for me. No special
text wondering how I was doing or just
a reminder that I am an object of desire
and time is our only gatekeeper. Not a
one who begs to flirt with me in a red
dress or freshen my drink. Even though
the day uncoiled its knots I feel so sad.



Rest Stop Rejuvenate

I went to a rockin’ open mic last night at Rest Stop Rejuvenate (RSR), an intimate and charming listening room, with a tiny stage and a big creative sound!  RSR is a recovery-friendly and audience participatory/supportive venue. For a small donation, you get to enjoy three to four hours of local artists (i.e. regular folk by day)  playing and jamming their hearts out along with coffee, tea and cookies. Last night was special, although I seem to say that about almost every open mic at RSR lately. The talent is off the charts repeatedly. We were treated to acapella song, guitar, mandolin, keyboard, harp, udu and djembe drums, steel pedal guitar, a mix of electronic music (by cell phone) and spoken word, slam poetry, personal poetry, reading of a Robert Frost poem from memory and more. The age demographic ran from early twenties to late sixties and the creative mix from cover songs to improv original work. It was an absolutely amazing night with a heartfelt tribute to the late great David Bowie. The energy and sense of community is truly built and felt through hugs, music, poetry and artistry. It’s so much more than an open mic – it’s a modern family with all its lovely, quirky, colorful and supportive appeal every third Saturday night of the month.





IMG_4081 IMG_4089 IMG_4122 IMG_4126 IMG_3997

Name That Cake

I love food, and I love words. I especially love food that marries well with words that I love. Just stumbled upon a recipe for “Clementine Cake.”  Even though I’m not a huge cake eater, and my favorite is still my mom’s rich Devil’s Food Chocolate Cake – I enjoy the alliteration of c-s in the name. And I once tagged a car of mine – Clementine. A bonus, when I checked the recipe, is that the cake is made with almond flour which is delicious and gluten-free! A disadvantage is that you need to simmer the clementines for two hours (?!?) So in reality, I will probably file the recipe and enjoy the flavor of the name ingredients.


chocolate icing on my fingers mixing in tangerine




LOVE this. I love profanity when it’s function is  for colorful emotional character and spirit. I don’t use or like profanity when it signals degradation or threats. I grew up with a cast of extended family characters (maternal as well as paternal) who used to cuss liberally and with great glee in front of “the children” exposing us early on to dramatic wordplay in all its iridescent brilliance, while at  same time teaching us that it was not okay to repeat it anywhere else outside of this stage. Much attention was paid to our learning to honor and respect our elders and others, and that irreverent swearing was not acceptable. In other words “do what we say – not what we do.” And we all turned out okay – I would say even better for it as adults. Later on there were times when I became an aunt and role model for the next generation – that I would sneak in a word or two when mothers’ backs were turned and with a wink – share an expletive. We all giggled and understood that it was “our secret.” I think that something is lost today in the rigid socially correct refusal to acknowledge our foibles in a harmless and safe environment. That something may be coming back though in the form of “WTF.”


Uncle Willie’s words splash across the table spilling our soup






Driving Home

Tonight as I turned into my driveway, I was surprised to find myself home so quickly. My car morphed into one of the self-steering autos that everyone is talking about. When I first read about these “the-future-is-now” vehicles, I shook my head in disbelief, and yet…


sun and clouds
how often I rely solely
on muscle memory



A New Moon in Capricorn

Once again, just following my intuitive self, I stopped by a local arboretum on the way home from the dentist to walk some old pathways and visit some old friends – trees and grasses in their winter finery. It was sunny but very cold and breezy. The wind cut through my jeans and numbed my limbs. My upper body was scarfed and warm. I stumbled upon an area that I was not familiar with behind the old estate mansion and formal gardens. And there hidden amongst the trees was a labyrinth! Just what I was looking for without even knowing it. A welcoming sign advised a slow pace leaving behind old woes inward bound and setting new intentions on the outward loop. This coincided nicely with the new moon’s energy and my own spirit. The setting was perfect – round stones directing the flow at the top of a knoll overlooking brilliant sunshine on the aged wisdom-keepers of the woods – towering oaks and beeches conversing and fluttering their lantern-like leaves the entire time. The timing was perfect – there wasn’t another person in sight. I followed the instructions like a good Capricorn, paused with an inward breath, and released as I walked. There is a lot for me to let go including a need to know exactly what lies ahead. The labyrinth necklaces around and even though I saw where I would end up – I could not vision beyond a bit of winding ground in front of me. It actually frightened me a little, because I was no longer in control and not sure I was even doing this simple task right. I had to follow the path and surrender the known to the unknown on a very basic yet metaphorical walk. In spite of the fact that I knew the ending – I could not see it laid out fully in front of me and had to take one-step-at-a-time. As is often the case at times like this, my magical child emerges, looks up in wonder and says “of course.”

I’ve known of labyrinths and their use throughout history for prayer and quiet contemplation, but I never really experienced one until today. How simple and brilliant!

What a joy! What a gift! What a great public garden!

IMG_4118 IMG_4121