We’ve been unplugged a bit (digital vacation).

More beach walks, better gardening tending (my black thumb might be turning green), and even some chess. Jesse and I are still not quite our usual routine of making, reading, and writing, but we remain a bit hermetic: building layers within.

Oh, and it was Ellery’s birthday on top of the new addition to the Truby family, Jesse’s job transition, and connecting with Chelsea before she goes to Italy with our book!

Ellery’s first birthday…made me nostalgic for William, Emery, the Schober family too. I’ve been lucky to help nurture some lovely families and beautiful children over the years.

Over dinner, we talked about beauty. Mostly, of the ways I’ve been pushing Rasa (through writing at least) to start articulating internal beauty, beauty that comes from feeling good. It’s been a little hypocritical since I’m just starting to feel good here and take better care of myself. It took awhile–the move really interfered with self care. The book being finished helps, the books that are in progress (and happily looking for publishing homes) help too.

Chelsea Cossu and I made a little book. It’s on its way to Italy to look for a home…bon voyage little book.

Beauty in California is different. The Pacific has a different look/feel; the whole place does too. All the ideas about beauty that were handed down to Jesse are distinctly Midwest: friends, family, and bread baking. My own are East Coast (and maybe more troubled): success, tradition, and innovation (see the troubles?). On the West Coast there’s more talk about a whole kind of beauty, but we do wonder about what’s been handed down to us and how we want to start (as a family) approaching well living.

My sister and I remembered, more recently, our Aunt and Uncle and seeing them as “role models.” They are, to me, classic “South Buffalo”: the porch is open, visible (not hiding in the backyard or behind a fence) and everyone’s invited over. If it’s the weekend, they’re sitting around with beers and a ball to toss around. This isn’t how we grew up, but when we visited it felt casual, easy, and like wandering without having to leave. Sure, it’s not the perfect self care picture (there was lots of beer and chips), but my Aunt also said, “I’m happy to have all the smile lines around my eyes and lips. It means I laughed. It means I was smiling.” Both my sister and I remembered her saying that, and it has to have been at least ten years ago. That’s a real impression to make.

I found the cream I want to use for the truffles, it makes the most perfect ganache. I made vegan chocolate pudding this week and wish I took a photo of how creamy the texture was, but I ate it as quickly as I made it. I used A Cozy Kitchen’s Recipe for Mexican Chocolate Tofu Pudding, but I didn’t use the honey, I used my new favorite sweetener: Jerusalem Artichoke Syrup. This is the best!

So drinking chocolates, chocolate pudding, and truffles are things I’m feeling good about pursuing still, but I’d love to find a chocolate technique class or a really great book. When I was baking at the bakery, I learned that I’m a tactile learner and I really do best making mistakes and figuring out why. This makes me pretty adept at quality control, but also pretty wasteful sometimes.

Still, so afraid to take this leap.



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