The Pursuit of Life

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Month: September 2015

The Pursuit of Delish: Homemade Meatballs and Tomato Sauce

If you have a baby, I will make you meatballs.  I don’t know much about newborn babies or advice to give when my friends bring home their tiny little bundles of joy (it sounds like people are over-adviced anyways!), but I know how to cook and it seems to me that new mamas and papas don’t have much time for cooking in the first few weeks.  So a home cooked meal is about the best I can do to help welcome all the new bambinos home.  And many there are!  Friends, neighbors, co-workers, family members – everyone’s joining the club and having babies and it makes me so happy to watch our friends turn into parents.  Being Auntie Jackie is about the best thing in the world.



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The Pursuit of Style: Boat Coverup

The end of summer and beginning of fall are the perfect time to stock up on finds for any upcoming beach or warm weather holidays, or if you happen to be lucky enough to live in a place that is summertime all year long!  I have had my eye on this coverup for ages and then it went on sale recently so I snatched it up.  It’s made of terrycloth and has a tie back, perfect for a cooler morning out on the boat or lounging by the ocean for happy hour at sunset!

Bon Voyage! 


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The Pursuit of a Good Book: The Girl on the Train

Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.

Frederick Douglass

I love to read.  It is my favorite activity and has been for as long as I can remember.  I love books of all genres – fiction, nonfiction – as long as it’s well written and covers an interesting topic, I’m in love.  I have found that personal recommendations are the best way to form a reading list and pick up a new book.  There are certain friends in my life who without fail recommend wonderful reads and so when they mention that they enjoyed a particular book, I immediately go find it.  On the other hand, I have sometimes been seriously let down by books that I picked up simply because they were on the NYT Bestseller List or recommended on the Amazon Kindle list of bestsellers (ahem, 50 Shades).  I have definitely learned that just because a book is on display at the bookstore does not mean you’ll love it.  Or like it. Or even want to finish it.

So when I’ve read a book that I love, I tell everyone about it – whether they want to hear it or not – I just can’t help myself.  And so on here the blog I’ll be sharing from time to time some thoughts on books that I’ve read recently or not so recently, and perhaps these personal recommendations will be of use to you.

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The Pursuit of Balance: Slow it down


This one is a hard one for me, because I have never been able to figure out how to balance things in life.  I am a person who dives head first into something when I’ve made my mind up to do it, and usually I end up overdoing it – whatever it is – and as a result I live in a pretty constant state of stretching myself too thin and feeling tired.  Really tired.  All the time.  I think it is something that most of us do.  We live in a world that is uber connected and uber busy.  Information is thrown at us from all directions – email, social media, television, car radio, phone, tablet, and now even our watches (!) – and with all of this information and knowledge and connectivity, we find it increasingly difficult to disconnect, to give ourselves time to breath and recharge and relax and balance the things that we want to do for ourselves with the things that we need to do.  At least this is my experience, and the experience of most people that I know, particularly our friends in the Bay Area.  But the point of this blog is to figure out how to live with intention, to find purpose and take active steps to achieve those purposes and not to let life pass us by.

As I sit with a coffee on a Saturday morning writing this post, I am feeling guilty that I am not (A) working (the ultimate guilt trip in my life), (B) hiking the beautiful headlands in Marin, (C) doing laundry, (D) taking the furbaby to the park, (E) brunching with friends, or (F) you name it – don’t our to do lists always go on for pages?  And then I get stressed because I am feeling guilty and anxious and you can see how the cycle continues.

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The Pursuit of Delish: Cheesemaking

I love cheese.  If you have met me for 5 minutes, you probably know this about me.  It is my favorite food by far.  Which is sad for the waistline, but hey, we all have our demons.  I run so I can eat cheese.  Another thing you may not know about me (but probably do) is that I like to do things myself – to figure things out.  So when I love a food, I want to learn to make it and then make it my own.  I love macarons with a passion usually reserved for fluffy puppies and squishy babies. And so I learned to make them (recipe to come in a future post!).

And so. I love cheese and decided I would learn how to make it.  And then I talked about it for months and months and never made the time to learn, because that’s pretty standard for my jam-packed, overly scheduled life; a problem that I am working on.  Thankfully I have the most thoughtful husband who listens to my rants about the things I love and the dreams I have and so for our anniversary last year he surprised me with a cheesemaking class!  Making my dreams come true one day at a time, that man. We went to a cooking class at Cavallo Point, a historic hotel tucked just under the Golden Gate Bridge north of San Francisco in Marin, which has the most breathtaking views of the city, is in restored historic buildings of Fort Baker, an old Army post, and also happens to have amazing cooking classes – who knew?!

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The Pursuit of Wanderlust: Crater Lake, Oregon Part 2

Part 2 of Crater Lake, Oregon – a quick Fourth of July trip to a beautiful national park.  Saturday we again hiked down to the lake and hopped on the boat to take us to Wizard Island!  A few of us hiked to the crater at the top of Wizard Island, while the rest of us hiked to the other side of the island for some fly fishing, a newly acquired (and quite tricky) hobby of ours. We caught rainbow trout and brown trout.


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The Pursuit of Wanderlust: Crater Lake, Oregon Part 1

I love the 4th of July in America.  It almost always means great weather, good food outdoors, and happy people celebrating the good things about being an American – freedom, opportunity and a beautiful land.  Fireworks and hot dogs, lemonade and picnics, beaches and flags waving, for me it i s a holiday of laughter, sunshine and delicious treats.

This year R and I drove up to Crater Lake, Oregon, with some of our friends who live in our building in San Francisco.  We have a strange/amazing Melrose Place-thing going on in our building – we have become very close friends with several of our neighbor couples, which makes socializing with awesome friends as easy as strolling down the hallway.  So, 3 of these couply-friends joined us in Crater Lake for the 4th.  We drove up Thursday night after work and stayed in Ashland, Oregon, a quick pit stop to break up the long drive to the national park.  Unbeknownst to me, Ashland is quite the destination – a quaint, all American little town (perfect for the 4th holiday!) known for its Shakespeare performances in the summertime.  We didn’t have enough time for Richard the Third, but we were able to pop into a couple of the little books shops on Main Street and of course the Ashland Fly Shop.  R loves fishing and I love books, so it had to be done.

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