Back to blog basics for a moment.

The reason for this blog came from a casual conversation with my Mom about the decline in manufacturing here in the good ol' USA. While it's hard to avoid imported products particularly China but there are many reasons to buy local wherever local is to you. These could include living more simply by having less stuff, better for the planet by using less energy for transport and yes, humanitarian reasons.


By no means was this blog established to bash China and certainly not the Chinese people. But I do ask my gentle readers to read the labels and to seek local (wherever on the planet local is to you) alternatives. If you can't find any you might ask yourself as the woman in the article did; Do I really need this?


For my next kitchen.

If you watch the DIY network you know the design principle of: pick three objects you love then find tones, color and materials that compliment them. When I remodeled my condo I had a selection of handmade Mexican tiles I'd found at a local import store. http://www.ttazteca.com/ 

Each tile was the perfect design to bring the outside in. The owner travels south each year to visit craftspeople in Mexico. He even looked for themes I wanted like kitchen implements, more of the sun and moon imagery, squash and melon image tiles etc.

So just match them, right? It took forever to find Travertine tile to match the size, texture and tone. By the time I found some I was beyond caring about their country of origin. I was just happy to find tile that complimented them.

But had I known about this I may have bought direct from them. 


Oh well, next kitchen. That's how we learn. 


Sonoma wine country

I meant to focus the blog exclusively on durable goods made here. Remind me to get back to that. Food's not a durable especially in my household if delicious. Here is something I love made lovingly by hand in Sonoma county.

When you think of Sonoma jack cheese it's normally the large company, the cheese factory which depending on where my gentle readership is you see in stores. They are good but when in Sonoma go off the plaza to find:

Vella's offers a variety of seasonal cheeses even depending on what the happy cows are eating. My favorite is their dry jack which rivals the finest parmesan cheeses. Serve it slivered over salad, in baked goods, with fresh fruit or on top of pasta. All Vella's cheeses are grand but this is our family favorite for casual meals to parties. 

If you can't get to Sonoma they can ship to you. If you're in the wine country step awaaaay from the plaza and stroll over to Vella's.