Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Monday, January 30, 2012

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Mom's Birthday

Aggles, Mom, me in 2008: Our last Christmas together (Clare's beautiful cabin)

Subject: Italian Cream Cake
From: Linda
Date: January 29, 2012 12:07:56 PM PST
To: Aggles

Aggle, today is Mom's birthday. Are you making Italian cream cake? Or are you still eating that cranberry pie?

What are you doing?

Speaking of Mom kinds-of-things: Aggle, you know when I told you about those Pond's face wipes? The lavender ones are HORRIBLE. But the citrus/cucumber ones are still great.

Subject: Re: Italian Cream Cake
From: Aggles
Date: January 29, 2012 4:37:26 PM PST
To: Linda

To celebrate Mom's birthday I went to the big RV show and thought about re-doing the Grand Western Tour.  Only this time it would be done right 'cuz I'd do it in an RV and not stupid tent camping!  Hahahahahaha!

Italian Cream Cake sounds wonderful. Maybe I should make that tomorrow while I ogle the RV brochures.

Noted about the lavender face wipes - this is important camping information.

I love your blog watercolor.  Thought it odd that someone (I forget who) asked if it were tangible or digital - then you said it was DIGITAL!  Oh my - digital watercoloring. What will they think of next?

How are you?


(One time Aggles and Mom went on a cross-country camping trip together. Can you imagine?)

Saturday, January 28, 2012

5:49 p.m.

5:49:21 p.m.   I'm lagging behind again.

5:49:50 p.m.   Is that Peter and Carmen down the beach? Yes! We miss Anne.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Talk, Walk

Sal was in town for the MacWorld Conference. Gina, to visit Baby Henry (and us).

We ordered and ordered. We laughed and spilled things. After squeezing out the door we headed straight to Peet's where Gina thrust scones and marble cake upon us. Later I tried to stand upright and walk, but kept falling behind.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

A Slew of Dragons

Anne Marguerite Herbst    Golden Dragon    2012
In the mail:

And online (Mari's site!)

mischief mari's cookies

Monday, January 23, 2012

Year of the Dragon

I made these cookies and you can too if you step over here.

Today begins 10 days of gluttony in San Francisco, as families and businesses gather to celebrate Lunar New Year. Given that it's the year of the dragon, lobster (whose Chinese name translates literally as "dragon shrimp") will probably be on most menus, as will steamed fish, noodles, hair moss, and other symbolic foods ... 

-from SF Weekly, which lists ten banquet menus you can print out take to the restaurant to use as a translation guide to make sure you don't order the hair moss.

p.s. I know. That's no dragon. That's a yellow-spotted triceratops.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

My Wish List

I found this through SWISSMISS:
OSTRICH offers a micro environment in which to take a warm and comfortable power nap at ease. It is neither a pillow nor a cushion, nor a bed, nor a garment, but a bit of each at the same time. Its soothing cave-like interior shelters and isolates your head and hands (mind, senses and body) for a few minutes, without needing to leave your desk. 

I was so excited about Ostrich that I sent the photos to Aggles right away. Aggles, in turn, shot this (below) right back at me, from her own wish list. Enthralled, I called Tom in to see it. He pointed out that the sandwich holder would fit right inside the ostrich. So now I have two things on my wish list. What's on your wish list?

from Geekosystem

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Baby Drool

My new publisher sent me some stickers for New Year's. To me, a gift like this a sign that we have a good understanding.

First I stuck two of the stickers on the back of my laptop, and set the laptop on the table above a yogurt drip. Baby Drool, I called it. But then one thing led to another and look what happened next:

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Cold and Hot

This has been the coldest winter I can remember since we moved here 12 years ago. The past few evenings we've walked on the Coastal Trail, which is much more protected from the wind than the beach is. This recipe for chili has saved us! I know what you're thinking: Why would I ever try a recipe from Linda's blog? Because it's actually Tom's recipe––by that I mean that he made it, and it's great.

p.s. He probably doubled this recipe, and added a square of unsweetened chocolate.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Adventures in Reading

I bought this beautiful book at Kinokuniya. This morning when I woke up, I "read" it before I got out of bed. Being that it's in Japanese, I got the meaning from the illustrations and I was enchanted.

Later this afternoon I was looking at the book again and realized it had page numbers. It was then that I realized I had "read" the book backwards. I had read it from left to right, but the book actually started at the back and read toward the front. So tomorrow I'll "read" it again and let you know how it is.

I have a book called A VISIT FROM THE GOON SQUAD by Jennifer Egan. I let it go for months because I never got engaged in it. Last night at dinner I ran out of things to read so I picked it up again.

I read chapter 8, which is nothing less than a work of art (La Doll, her party, her ideas for the General. Her daughter Lulu). Then Chapter 9, Where Jules interviews Kitty. Fantastic. Is it all over now or will the magic continue through chapters 10, 11, 12, and 13? Don't tell me.

But do tell me your latest adventure in reading.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Where's Linda?

Can you find her? She's lost in her favorite bookstore, Kinokuniya, in Japantown.
Gina spotted her right away somehow or another.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Found in the Sand

p.s. A great little pleasure: This evening when I got home, I found a fresh loaf of bread on the counter that Tom had bought for me from a little Italian grocery store. I was famished and it was exactly what was called for. A gesture like this means something from a person who can't eat wheat himself. I tore into it and splashed a little bit of cold white wine into a glass. Bread + wine = divine.

The more I look at the woman up there, the more it looks like she's eating bread too fast to chew it properly.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Some Kind of Wonderful

If you're an artist or an illustrator and work on the computer, do you know about kuler? It's a helpful way to choose colors, especially if you find yourself choosing the same colors over and over and over and over and over.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Happiness is a Warm Green Vest

A warm green vest that matches your hair.

I love my new vest. It's very soft and light. I found it at Nordstrom Rack this weekend while Tom was looking for a microwave oven at Home Despot.

I wear it all the time and even sleep with it at night. (I put it on top of the comforter so I can feel it when I wake up.)

p.s. I'm making oatmeal on the stove because we weren't able to find a microwave oven we liked.

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Friday, January 06, 2012


For show & tell, Anne brought the painting she finished this week.

Today was the best day of the year. At lunchtime, Anne went with me to Lucille's. Two kindred spirits finally met.

Lucille made her famous butternut squash soup, and I brought a few cans of Sofia over. We celebrated my book contracts which came today.

Anne and Peter had been to the flower market early this morning and shared armloads with Lucille and me. There are gardenias in every room of the house, and two big bouquets.

A jog on the beach, a beautiful sunset, and many drunken emails and phone calls and texts exchanged between me and my swell bookies.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Wednesday, January 04, 2012


Today Tom comes back from Chino's and there's this girl sitting in a van using her computer. Tom sees the computer and stops short. "Don't go away. I have to go get my wife so she can see your computer. She'll go crazy. She loves to stick stuff all over everything." He yells up at me, I run down the steps ... and here I am admiring Lydia's rhinestone-encrusted Mac. You should see her cel phone.

5:17 p.m.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Coded Message: Happy New Year?

detail from Coded Message: Invisible Ink copyright © Sonia King 2011

What do you think it says? To see the whole message you must go here!

I met Sonia a year and a half ago and have never gotten over it. On New Years Day I jumped at the chance to return to her home to see her and to meet some of her friends. Gina drove, so I didn't have to worry about getting lost or our car window exploding like it did right before Sonia's party last year.

Sonia and Gina

You won't believe this. I even got to meet Sonia's mom, Sherri King. I had just seen some mosaics that Sherri had made on Sonia's website. There was one in particular that I was crazy about, called Marrakesh, so I told her how much I liked that one. She smiled and said, "Go into the bedroom and look right by the bed." She pointed around the corner. I went in and found the light switch. Guess what was sitting right by the bed? That very mosaic (shown below).

Marrakesh by Sherri King / Sherri in the studio (photos from Sonia's site).

Fudge Fitness

From: Katy
Date: December 31, 2011 3:00:00 PM PST
Subject: 20almost here12
To: Linda


It's almost the New Year, it almost is. What are we to do? Sit back and watch it arrive, or go to bed early and let it arrive in the dark, with our eyes closed. I'm going to take the sleepy early route.

The other day a strange food thing happened, and since you're interested in food, you might need to know about this. In a Chinese restaurant, where I've been before, but where I go less than I used to because I like the Mexican place better, and because they always rush me at the Chinese place (Magic Wok), with What to drink? or What soup? even before I can take off my coat or sit down. I was welcomed, shown to a booth, smiled at by the usually speedy waitress. I was cold, I wanted hot tea and hot and sour soup. The waitress still hadn't spoken to me. Eventually she came out with something for the man in the booth facing mine. He was reading the Steve Jobs book and wore a big orange T on his shirt. She was carrying more than his order. She approached my table, Hot tea? You like hot tea? (Yes please) Hot and sour soup, you like hot and sour soup? (Yes, thank you.) And both were placed in front of me. I had ordered nothing but got exactly what I wanted. Linda, what happened? Please tell me. She did take my order for chicken in garlic sauce, at least she didn't go that far with mind reading magic. How did she know? She has never ever behaved in this way. I liked it, and I was dumbfounded, under her spell. I was not rational, I was unable to ask her how she just happened to have exactly what I wanted on her tray. Should I return to the Magic Wok on another day, as an experiment, to see what happens? Will you go with me? I may need a witness.

I hope all is well by you all. Happy New Year, with plenty of magic to go around.



From: Linda
Date: December 31, 2011 4:09:34 PM PST
Subject: Re: 20almost here12
To: Katy

I love your Magic Wok story. Yes, you should go back. To me it sounds like the waitress has decided that she knows you. How nice. We don't have a magical place like that here yet, and it's been 12 years.

I'm tard, Katy, rilly tard. I may not be able to do anything tonight. I had an egg sandwich for breakfast (real eggs) on good white bread toast with butter and a little onion. No lettuce because Tom had not come back from the farmers' market. But it was good, rilly good. But jesus, that was 6 hours ago! I had not had lunch and just now I had many many many salty pretzels and many cheese slices and several glassees of wine, and a big scoop of peanut butter and some raisins and walnuts for health.

Now how will I ever do my situps or go for a walk? It won't be possible I'm afraid. I'm reading a book called Blueprint for Building Better Girls by Elissa Schappell. On my phone at night in bed. Last night I fell asleep to it. I've started getting that reading bug again--a lot of it's because of Lucille who loaned me The Corrections.

Sigh, sigh, sigh, I'm going to go lie down.

We had our New Years last night with Anne and Peter at the Cliff House Bar. An old Swing jazz band played. A & P treated us to a bottle of bubbly stuff and a cheese plate.

Wish we lived a little closer.


From: Katy
Date: January 1, 2012 7:16:35 AM PST
Subject: 20card12
To: Linda

Food card for you, combined with health concerns and issues. But truly, it looks like a mafia front to me. Happy New Year. Eat everything.