36. New Beginning Brioche

Still aglow from my Valentine’s Day, I jetted off that weekend to visit my cousin and her new baby in San Francisco. Though we’re all rooted on the East Coast, three of my closest cousins somehow landed in California. It seemed I was the only one in the midwest.. How they all got there was…

35. Vexing Valentine Cookies

I emerged from my pile of pillows and blankets only to find a messy apartment. I still had a handle of Jameson sitting on top of my refrigerator — three-quarters full. I’ll quit when I’m finished with that, I reasoned. But I didn’t want to have another drink. I didn’t want to have another hangover….

34. Terror Pie

I opened my email to discover joy on Monday. In it: a lively missive from Bea, my Australian wayfaring friend who made a two-year pit stop in Columbus to get her PhD. She had a special request for me. She wanted me to cater a fundraising event for her non-profit that provides therapy to children…

33. Bumbling Cheesecake

With unwarranted enthusiasm, Lena and Bryan extended an invitation to me and Marty for dinner and cards. Having a romantic interest that my friends actually liked was a bit of a struggle for me to find. Marty was definitely someone I could bring around and socialize with. If I had to look into the future,…

32. Challenging Chili Verde

I was no longer wasted.. And I wasted no time moving on. Dwelling on a failed relationship would only lead to drinking over it so I quickly started laying the groundwork for a successful one: I made plans with Marty. He suggested we meet at Club Foot, the same bar where I went with Niall….

31. Remedial Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup

This was the week we decided to get input from the kids about what they want to eat. It was criticism I asked for, but it was still nerve racking to send out a survey. We had to bribe them with cookies to get them fill it out. On Friday, they all came back. I…

30. Sensitive Cinnamon Rolls

“Hello, beautiful woman,” he welcomed me. “You look so tired,” I said. “Yeah. I’ve been napping, working and napping.” I took the booze and cigarettes and set them down on the counter in the kitchen. Noah followed me into the kitchen and poured us two whiskeys. He swaddled me with his limbs as we collapsed…

29. Restorative Ramen

  It was a painful day and I was hungry but I had lunch plans with Isabella at three o’clock at Yusho — one of those teriyaki places that keep popping up — and I was to see Noah at five. I was too lazy to make a snack, so I starved. Isabella picked me…

28. Tipsy Timeout

Bryan and Lena made dinner reservations for the two of them at A Tavola for Lena’s birthday. She loved the handmade ravioli. From there, the plan was to go to Bar Deville afterward and celebrate along with Werner for making his kickstarter goal within two days. Noah wouldn’t be joining because he had plans to…

27. Rude Awakening Rugelach

I woke up refreshed. Eight solid hours of sleep. My head didn’t suffer, but my social life did. Being a hermit was easy; getting over heartbreak was not. I wanted to make rugelach. A simple pastry loaded with edible treasures. I had the time and I had the ingredients, I just needed the motivation. But…

26. Unmoved Mushroom Soup

I pulsed the food processor to turn shitake mushrooms into dust when the buzzer went off.  I thought for sure it was the mail carrier, except that I wasn’t expecting any packages. A little scared about who it might be, rather than using the intercom, I went downstairs to see who was at my door…

25. Crumbling Cookies

Isabella picked me up thirty minutes later than she said she would. She was disheveled, but cleverly dressed the way art students always are. Though I’m pathologically punctual, I didn’t mind. She was a free spirit and, despite our fifteen year age difference, we got along very well. Isabella was very smart and we both…