Some critics claim that everything is autobiographical. That’s a thought I keep at the back of my mind and try on for size when I’m reading, looking or listening. And as online sensibilities and trends keep moving the markers on the borderline between what is public and what is private, I’m advocating for permission to just hang in the gray area.

Perhaps it is time to introduce a new mark up language, one that tags for personal content in the world of blog postings (which can range from TMI to statements of disembodied detachment.) So if the personal isn’t your thing, here’s a warning tag: Move on. This one isn’t for you. Another warning tag: Children will be mentioned. Mine.


My sons Bryce and Clayton joined forces once again to pull off another unforgettable gastronomic extravaganza, this one held in our friend Lesli’s garden to celebrate their father’s birthday on July 4th. Cooking for 30 guests, the 6 hour food flight left us searching for words. Like extreme sports enthusiasts, Bryce and Clayton want to make food that takes you out of your mundane party expectations. So this kind of epicurian exploration has become our family’s variation of the passion that drives our friend Mei, purveyor of “food porn” photography, to stalk the best restaurant offerings and leave you in a state of craving and awe. (See for yourself on her blog, Family Styles.)

The finest in food prep—Mona, Diana, Barrie

The following menu, intended to be a more “managed” undertaking than the 11 course feast from last Christmas (which you can read about here) was still complex enough to require a full squad of willing sous chefs.

1. Antipasto
Grilled peppers, vidalia onions, turnips, summer squash, zucchini, sweet potatoes, fennel, asparagus, bitter greens, baby green onions, half sour pickles, buffalo mozzarella, rosemary garlic bread

2. Smoked bluefish pate served with a variety of crisps

3. Mediterranean pesto orzo salad with cherry tomatoes, greek feta, olives, artichoke hearts and jalapenos

4. Herbed crabcake sliders with wasabi mayonnaise and tartar sauce, served with Gus’ half sour pickle slices on potato rolls

5. Clams and mussels steamed in onions and wine, with drawn butter

6. Organic greens salad with pomegranate dressing

7. Mushroom medley (portobello, white cap, trumpet and shitake) with handmade spicy chorizo sausage

8. Chicken “Across the World”: Jamaican jerk tenders, Spicy sambal, and smoky BBQ, served on an herb slaw—sliced basil, grilled green onions, cucumbers, lemon grass and herbs

9. Assorted desserts

(Drinks served with a variety of home made simple syrups including agave, ginger, orange mint, jalapeno, cantaloupe, watermelon)


The day’s highlights didn’t stop after this slow served, savory feast: While the fireworks filled the skies over Boston, my son Clate and his long time best pal Mona became engaged. These two people, so well suited for each other, deserve the best life has to offer. We are thrilled to have her as a part of our family.

It’s clear that Mona is a perfect fit.