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Author Archive
Mark your calendars!

Mark your calendars!

Booksigning at Gilbertie’s On Saturday, December 20, Sal Gilbertie, local author and owner of Gilbertie’s Herb Garden, will be selling and signing his new book, Cooking with Microgreens, at Gilbertie’s Herb Garden, 7 Sylvan Lane, Westport. Sal Gilbertie is the third-generation proprietor of Gilbertie’s Herb Garden in Westport and Easton, and is the microgreen supplier...
Mother Nature:  A Darien homeowner brings the outdoors in at Christmastime.

Mother Nature: A Darien homeowner brings the outdoors in at Christmastime.

During the months of November and December, Darien resident Cynthia Princi can be found in the produce section of the local grocery store at least once a week, and she’s not necessarily buying food for her family. Cindy relies on nature’s bounty when it comes to decorating her house for the holidays, and for Cindy,...
Home sweet home: Scent your house with holiday cheer

Home sweet home: Scent your house with holiday cheer

There’s nothing better than walking into a home full of the smell of an evergreen Christmas tree and fresh flower arrangements of cut cedar, incense, pine, lilies, and roses. Eucalyptus, pinecones, candy canes, and bayberry in arrangements are nostalgic scents, according to Keith Barker, owner of The Gardener’s Center & Florist in Darien (gardenerscenter.com). “Earthy...
Shake it up! Elegant holiday cocktail parties made easy

Shake it up! Elegant holiday cocktail parties made easy

Sparkling lights, the happy sounds of holiday music … ’tis the season to celebrate with family and friends! Elegant, easy cocktail parties are a wonderful way to entertain a crowd, be it large or small, with none of the fussiness and labor of a more formal dinner party. Let’s get the party started! Ensure a...
Gallery Barn transforms into a Festive Home

Gallery Barn transforms into a Festive Home

Ridgefield Guild of Artists has had a makeover. The gallery on Halpin Lane in Ridgefield is now a holiday marketplace for its 10th annual Festive Home. This year’s theme, “Be Brilliant,” says it all. The usual white-walled gallery space has been transformed into vibrant holiday home vignettes showcasing a variety of gift-giving, decorating and entertaining...
Deck your halls with decorated houseplants

Deck your halls with decorated houseplants

Beautiful evergreen trees aren’t the only plants that enjoy getting “spruced” up for the holidays. Houseplants also show off their Christmas green when placed in the spotlight. Whether you like a subtle look or go all-out glitz when decorating your home for the holidays, don’t forget that indoor plants can add extra interest and sparkle...
Making cookie memories

Making cookie memories

The thing about an old cookie press is that it can make a lot more than just cookies. The cookie press I’m talking about is silver-colored, made of some kind of thin metal. The hollow cylinder is closed at each end with silvery pink caps, and a black handle at one end twists downward to...
A meeting of the minds: Interfaith couples share their blended holiday traditions

A meeting of the minds: Interfaith couples share their blended holiday traditions

In our increasingly global culture, it’s not only world travelers who embrace the thoughts and ideas of far-away lands. Those who stick close to home have also opened their minds and hearts to global influences around us, creating intoxicating blends of experiences, beliefs and lifestyles. This becomes especially evident during the holiday season (known only...

Junk drawer

“Don’t sweat the small stuff.” I don’t. Now and then, however, when the surfaces in the house become cluttered with pens and tools or cooking utensils, we go around and pick stuff up. Most frequently it ends up in one of the several junk drawers around the place. There’s one in the kitchen, one in...
Good gold, bad gold

Good gold, bad gold

I’m not sure how many times I’ve heard it said that Italian gold is better that the gold we have here, so it may be time to set the record straight — gold is gold. There is no good gold or bad gold. (There isn’t even any in-between gold.) This may be difficult to believe, but pure...
Starting from scratch: Colonial bakers took a hands-on approach

Starting from scratch: Colonial bakers took a hands-on approach

The fire crackles and embers glow in the brick beehive oven adjacent to the hearth. The smell of rising cornmeal fills the tiny room. Pie crusts made of whole wheat and cornflour blended with lard are finished on the table as johnnycakes bake. A loaf of bread with a lovely golden complexion still steams next...
Moorefield Herb Farm: Bringing locally grown produce to local farmers’ markets

Moorefield Herb Farm: Bringing locally grown produce to local farmers’ markets

The popularity of farmers’ markets has been growing each year, along with their fresh, just harvested local produce. There are now more than 100 farmers’ markets in Connecticut, with new ones being added all over the state. Moorefield Herb Farm in Trumbull is in different farmers’ market towns almost every day of the week, from...
Photo finish: Share old and new memories around the Thanksgiving table

Photo finish: Share old and new memories around the Thanksgiving table

Every Thanksgiving, traditions are either newly made or time-honored. Grandma’s recipe for sausage stuffing gets served right next to Heather’s latest vegetarian side dish. The brand-new crystal wine glasses that sparkle with a promise of heady joy look perfect on the heirloom lace tablecloth that has been handed down for generations. Old and new come...
Building my Passive House — Part 9

Building my Passive House — Part 9

This is the ninth entry in a series of columns about the design and construction of my newly certified passive house. Passive House Institute US (PHIUS) offers certification programs for highly energy efficient homes, and the home design and building professionals seeking to build them (www.phaus.org). Because my heating requirements are so small, my house...