Food on plates, y’all

We ate.

And ate and ate.

Then ate some more.


It was absurd. We took eating to an artform.


No, really. One day…just because it was there…we snarfed Mondrian cake.


When we went to Tartine, I got a Morning Bun, just as I was told to do. Then, just because it was there, I got a cup of seasonal bread pudding. Take a closer look at that action…


I’d never guess that I’d voluntarily eat a sardine but when Chez Panisse touts a prix fixe… That night it was bucatini with sardines, pine nuts and all sorts of goodies I can’t remember.




Truthfully, some of our foods were on jackets and sweaters….not just plates.



And sometimes food only needed fingers.


Paper plates and raw seafood, y’all.


Of course I had to visit Bi-Rite Creamery.


And we ate food in bowls. This was, maybe, the best breakfast I’ve ever had. Ever. In my life. And I’m a fat kid. Who works in the restaurant world. Just. Saying.





Mushroom marshmallow

Chocolate lavender macaron

Chocolate & vanilla "adult" variety

So…yeah. You get the point. I’ll stop now.

If I had a million years

…I could get caught up on all the blog posts in my head.

Last month we opened a new restaurant, which is always an intense time in the home office. Then right after it launched my daughter had a birthday. Then the day after that we got on a plane for a 10 day vacation to one of our most favorite places in the world doing all of our most favorite things in the world. On day 2 I got a phone call that my most favorite person in the world had passed away after a long, full life with the exception of several years of dementia and sharply declining physical and mental health. Services won’t be for 6 more weeks so…power through! Wine country then the city and in the middle of that I read two books and averaged 5 miles a day (as opposed to the 50 feet to which we are accustomed) of walking in San Francisco. Oh! And we tasted well over 100 different wines. We also attended two concerts and spent an obscene amount of money and calories that WERE WORTH EVERY MORSEL AND CENT. Someone remind me of this in December when Santa fills our stockings with coal.

My brain. It is FULL of stories. Full of tears. I haven’t the slightest idea of where to begin. Life has been like that all year. I don’t know where to begin because so much is constantly coming at My Thinker for processing. Y’all…there are all these stories about buying the house I haven’t told!  Concerts I’ve been to! Pastries I’ve eaten! Pinteresting things I’ve made! ALL OF THE PHOTOS! Memories to share and, mostly, document before they fade.

* * *

I do want to tell you briefly about this book. It is likely responsible for pushing me past this writer’s block of having TOO MUCH to say. And wanting to say my things at a million miles an hour without eloquence. Imperfectly.

Go read this. Then loan it to a friend. Or buy it for a friend. Chances are, he or she will want to mark it up and highlight it and spill coffee on it and sleep with it under their pillow. Here’s one of her TED talks, if you want a hint of what she writes about…

2012 TED Talk

I also read this:

…which was just pure joy, especially if you have a certain sense of humor. Jenny Lawson is in the category of what I call, “Me in my head.” I can’t wait for several women I love to get their hands on this. It made my 5+ hour plane ride feel like 30 minutes. I wish Jenny Lawson would write a book for every time I need to fly 2,000 miles. I’m sure she’d do that, right?

Food on trees is my new favorite thing

We are on day 4 of 10 of our vacation and the thing I can’t seem to get enough of is food on trees. I know that Oklahoma has lots of peaches and a few apples, but it’s far more exciting to see GRAPEFRUITS hanging on a branch. Or lemons. Or POMEGRANATES. Sorry to scream fruit.


Y’all (when you see me use that word, know that it means I’m about to channel my inner hick), I made Clayton pull the car over into a person’s private residential driveway so I could go lay my eyes on what I was certain was a citrus grove of some sort. The ground was covered in fallen fruit but upon inspection the trees were loaded with something that looked really foreign and not citrusy. I picked one off the ground, turned it around in my hand and picked at a crack in what seemed to be a husk. Gasp! It was this!

I just picked that. I am nerding out.

Walnuts, y’all! In a tree! On the side of the highway!

Last night I jumped a fence to determine what a certain tree was fruiting (persimmon) and as I was crawling back over Clayton noticed a fig tree right next to it. JUST SITTING THERE. I’m a fruit thief of the highest order! It was a bit of a theme for the Napa leg of our trip.


Found an orange tree…..stole oranges!

Found an apple tree….stole apples!

Found an olive tree….stole nothing. I’ve already learned that lesson.

Today’s another traveling/settling day as we transition to the chaos of San Francisco. Hoping to figure out a way to get Napa Valley photos from my antique Canon Rebel to Flickr so I can share the good stuff.

Austin City Limits Music Festival

You didn't get to Heaven but you made it close

We arrived for this Life List item on Thursday and have been putting in 16 hour days ever since. I’ve overloaded my iPhone’s battery for two days in a row attempting to tweet, Instagram and FB all my experiences and thoughts. Austin City Limits Music Festival is an overwhelming experience, as most music festivals probably are. 70,000 people a day, about 7 stages rotating from 11 am to 10 pm, mostly half simultaneously at any given moment. I’ve never seen what 70,000 people look like and I’m not convinced I ever want to again… There. Are. People. Everywhere. But I’m glad I’m here.

I’ve discovered some excellent music and gotten to hear some old favorites live and in person.

Highlights from Friday were:

Brandi Carlile! #aclcase @CaseMate Ray.






(Brandi Carlile and Ray LaMontagne)

And after my phone died: The Cave Singers, Santigold, Bright Eyes and Coldplay.

Highlights from Saturday will have to wait. Sleep becons.