Wednesday, April 27, 2011

My Go-To Smile

If you know me, or followed the Brooklyn Tart or Rav Woman's fledgling site, you'll know that last year I fell madly in love with a rascally four-legged pitbull named Sammy.

It ended in heartbreak. But Sammy is still the love of my life, and whenever life gets ridiculous and I need a smile, he's my go-to man.

It's my little secret.

Are you ready for it?

I picture Sammy on rollerskates. The old-school quads. The ones you stumbled around in at the rink while searching for a partner during "ladies choice" while Bon Jovi blasted to low lights and a disco ball. I picture him trying to navigate on four rollerskates, which I can scarcely imagine since he could hardly manage on his own feet. And then I smile.

Then I try hard not to laugh. I'm usually at a place where it's very awkward to laugh to yourself, like the DMV or in the waiting line at the bank.

But honestly, it works every time.

Corny? Yes. Does it work? Yes! I encourage everyone to create their own go-to smile.

And if you need something to give you a lift, you can always think of a clumsy guy like Sammy on rollerskates.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Elusive Easter Bunny

Guess what I found when I came home Saturday night?

Looks like the Easter bunny came to visit this year.

It was actually the beautiful work of my friend Brookelynn. She's truly talented, no? Thanks for making me smile.

Hope you all had a lovely Easter with family and friends.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Home Again

What is it about climbing the steps to your house that brings comfort like nothing else?

I've been gone for almost a week, and what a crazy couple weeks its been. Multiple visitors, a new job and gearing up for a ladies trip to Vegas have left me feeling so grateful for my full life, but also a bit worn out.

Last night I finally got home after working a full day while feeling sick from no sleep the night before because of massive flight delays. As soon as that key hit the door, none of it mattered- even getting robbed of my window seat by a guy who didn't even open the shade to enjoy the view. All that mattered was my favorite mug for tea was clean. The bed was unmade, but it was there waiting for me to slither into it. I think it was just as comfy as a made bed.

I'm less than glamorous this morning while I nurse plugged up ears, a weird sunburn on the backs of my legs and try to bring myself back to working order. The house is chilly, a little messy, but oh so quiet.

There's no where else I'd rather be. I may even have to return to my hermit-y ways, at least for a few days. Stay tuned for more on Vegas.

What's your favorite thing about home?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Two Turkeys, One Shot, and a Couple of Food Heroes

I don't know how I found myself in the backyard plucking turkeys with the Girl Hunter yesterday, but there I was. Sometimes a girl just has to pinch herself.

If you haven't heard of the Girl Hunter, Georgia Pellegrini, then check out her site here before reading on. Her awesomeness speaks for itself. I sent her off with Bear and one of his buddies to hunt turkeys before the season ends. A couple hours later, they came back with two birds scored from one shot out of this lady's smokin' barrel.

I even got to hold one.

I'm not a hunter myself, but I love the self-sufficient philosophy of food foraging in a mass production world. I also love hearing about a badass woman leaving the corporate world to pursue hunting and the preservation of slow food traditions. She's been busy working on her second book, The Girl Hunter, exploring hunting across the country. It comes out this fall! Her first book, Food Heroes, showcases 16 food artisans and the crafts they're fighting to preserve. It's a finalist for the IACP awards in June!

Now, let the cleaning begin.

First, the feathers need to be removed. Pulling them out in small bits works best and keeps the skin from tearing.

Then the heads must be removed.

Then cut the wings and tail at the joint.

Next comes gutting, or field dressing, as the pros call it. This looks like it takes some practice, but all those innards should come out together in a bunch.

At the top half, remove the crop, or half-digested food from the turkey's chest cavity.

Rinse the carcass thoroughly. And your hands, if you like. Voila! Ready to brine, cure, or roast. We took it a step further and broke it down.

And Georgia kept it classy from start to finish. It's not many women who can gut a turkey and still look fresh. She ignored the blood on her fresh manicure for an upcoming event in LA. I told her they'd understand and swatted at the flies buzzing around my head.

And that was how I met my favorite food hero.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Broin' Down in High Winds

Yesterday I got to hang out with two of my favorite dudes.

And my favorite sister-in-law.

We had a yen for the Pacific, and braved the fierce Bodega Bay winds. We grinned in the face of 20 mph wind gusts ...

... posed for a few pics ...

... and then searched for the perfect fish tank rock. Mine was a sparkly green one, but was a couple hundred pounds overweight.

My father helped me identify some native plants, which I then promptly forgot.

If you've never been to Goat Rock, it really is that beautiful, even on a gusty day.

But boy, was it windy! Here's the hair to prove it:

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Broin' Down

It's time I introduce you to some of my family.

I have never been more of a family gal than now. I lived on my own on the other side of the country for five years and since returning to California, have an entirely new appreciation of having relatives close by.

Last night I got four of my closest right in my own cozy cabin. Here is my godmother, father, brother and his beautiful wife. I don't get many opportunities to see my bro in my own digs, so the past day with him was euphoric.

We had a gorgeous dinner at Underwood in Graton. I wanted to show my fam where the locals go. The entrees were the only thing that finally quieted our rowdy bunch.

This included roasted beet salad and flatbread ...

... while I quickly devoured my Catalan fish stew.

On our way out, we met the world's tiniest dog.

And now I'm dreaming of barbie doll-sized sweater patterns I want to knit her.

To all the little sisters out there with a pesky big brother or two: one day you'll realize how lucky you are to have them.