The five little things that made my week…

Purple kohlrabi

1. The Sputnik has landed! (Kohlrabi definitely come from a different world, don’t you think?)


March 7 2014      25 comments     Linda Ly

I started a new garden bed last fall, and I didn’t dig a thing. It actually would’ve been pretty challenging to dig anything, as I started the new bed in an old bathtub. In my backyard! Four months later, the first plants seeded are finally thriving, thanks to the longer days.

The no-dig vegetable garden

I inherited this vintage, enameled-steel clawfoot tub from the previous owners after I moved into my house a few years ago. They had it propped up under the feijoa tree on a stack of stones, and for many summers it was our repurposed party cooler, filled to the brim with ice and stuffed with cases of beer. But having the tub sit empty the rest of the year seemed silly, especially since we weren’t using it as an actual tub to wash anything in the garden.


March 5 2014      55 comments     Linda Ly

Rare rainy day

We’ve had torrential rain for the last four days. It was utterly awesome. And not just because the rain was desperately needed in our drought, but because it gave me an excuse to make a fire every day and drink hot cider, the kind of wintery things I adore but don’t get to do that often (especially this year, with our bizarre 75°F winter).

Living in a place with year-round balmy weather sometimes gives me sun guilt. It might sound like an oh, boo-hoo type of thing to say, but it’s a real thing… like a reverse cabin fever. It happens when the days are so calm and clear, you’re guilted into spending all of your time outside instead of inside, vegging on the couch, when that’s all you actually feel like doing.


March 3 2014      22 comments     Linda Ly
En La Casa

Weeds in the garlic bed

I love the rain. And one of the reasons I love the rain is because at some point during the day, when there’s a break in the clouds and we have a brief moment of stillness, I run out to the yard for a quick round of weeding.

Weeds between the desert plants


It seems that as soon as the days start getting longer, the weeds start emerging en masse, appearing everywhere from the cracks in my patio to the bed of desert plants. They’ll even pop up from the mulch of shredded bark and the river stones that line my walkway. I usually leave them until the garden gets drenched, either from the hose or the heavens.


February 28 2014      20 comments     Linda Ly
Gallinas   Jardín

Kayak camping on the East Fork Carson River

The record-setting drought in California has been big news lately — at least on the west coast, where it was recently announced that Central Valley farmers will get no water this year from the federal government, and a Gold Rush ghost town hidden underwater since 1955 has resurfaced at the bottom of Folsom Lake.

Most of our rivers depend on snowpack in the Sierra, and the lack of precip this winter not only hurts the state of agribusiness in the rest of the country, it also means no fishing, mediocre skiing, and maybe kayaking (if we’re lucky) in the spring. We might get a week or two of whitewater if we watch the river flows closely, compared to the four-month window we normally get in a good season, and it’ll be a toss-up whether one of our favorite rivers will be running at all this year.


February 26 2014      12 comments     Linda Ly
Aventuras   Viajes

New West KnifeWorks handcrafted knife

Ever since I inked the deal on my first book, I’ve been turning my kitchen upside-down every week, cramming the fridge and stuffing the pantry silly with a superabundance of vegs and herbs. It goes without saying that I spend a lot of time breaking down all that food on my massive butcher block with an arsenal of knives à la Dexter.

I own a lot of knives, mostly German and Japanese blades from a cleaver to a santoku, but one of the recent standouts is a new knife I received from a company called New West KnifeWorks — and they’re based right here in the USA.


February 24 2014      193 comments     Linda Ly
Diversión   En La Cocina

The five little things that made my week…

Tomato seedlings

1. The smell of tomato leaves on my hands. Always makes me think of summer, even though June is still a ways away.


February 21 2014      25 comments     Linda Ly