I start and end my days with this. I think that’s Cholula‘s version of bliss. She treats each morning as it is: a new beginning. Hints of spring were everywhere today in my ‘hood! Maybe I’m motivated by the season of renewal, but I came across two ‘challenges’ that inspired me today. There’s a concept that seems to be growing in popularity (I think I’m late to the game). Take a look at the Day Zero Project. I learned about it over []

The little things.

Sometimes a few days alone is a good thing. Tonight’s little joys: Unconditional love. A charming book by Edward Monkton. A colorful veggie quesadilla for one and a glass of Pinot Noir. A classic movie I love on TV (Overboard). A sweet treat and some peace and quiet. Cheers to you, Monday.

Time flies.

There are just some friends in life that bring you back to yourself. No matter how long it’s been since you’ve seen each other, it’s as if no time has passed. You realize that, actually, normal life has been off somehow, because now it feels back in balance. That’s how it always is when Amanda and I get together, and this weekend was no exception. Let me start by saying that while we see each other multiple times each year, she hadn’t []

Sunshine and goodbyes.

Today is a stunning day. The sun is shining, and the grass is getting greener by the second. I hear happy birds chattering away through my open window. Flowers are everywhere, and I’m wearing a sundress and no shoes. I said goodbye to my sister today. We had a fantastic weekend and, as predicted, my heart feels a little bit empty now that she’s back on a plane to L.A. But on a day like today, I think I’ll pour a glass []

One year ago: The Big Island

Last April, I was drinking Mai Tais on the Big Island of Hawaii. How’s that for bliss? Every year, there’s a Bianchi Family Vacation on the books. I’m pretty sure it’s my parents way getting us to spend time all together, now that we’re spread out in a couple of different states (my brother and his wife live near Denver). They bribe us with trips we can’t refuse: the destination has been Hawaii more than once. Smart folks! Last year’s island of []

Daffodils and chocolate chips.

Today feels a little bit like Christmas Eve. My best friend, Amanda, is coming to visit tomorrow! We’ve been BFFs since the 4th grade (count ’em- that’s 27 years). We call each other ‘sister’. People say we’re so alike, we must share the same brain. From braces to big hair, from sixth grade graduation to prom night, from weddings to babies, from California to Colorado to Utah… we’ve been through a lot together. No one knows me in the same way that Amanda []

The queen of the house.

It seems odd that I introduced Betty before the most important member of the family. This is Cholula. She’s part German Shepherd and part Chocolate Lab. Here’s the photo that accompanied the classified ad online. She’s the one on the left, with her brother sitting next to her. They were the last two puppies left from a litter of 7. It’s a good thing the woman didn’t bring Cholula’s brother along when when we were introduced. I think it’s a safe bet []

Whiskey and donuts.

An impromptu date night on Monday at High West Distillery. Whiskey lemonade. Pulled pork over heirloom tomatoes. Chicken schnitzel with pancetta. A perfectly medium-rare burger. Wine on tap. And grilled Krispy Kreme donuts. (We took ours home to eat with ice cream and cinnamon and vino.) Well done, Monday. Well done.

Travel bug.

Meet Betty. She joined the family almost a year ago. But let’s back up a bit and recall the events that led up to that. Last Memorial Day weekend, John and I had taken a camping trip to Boulder and Escalante in Southern Utah. If you want to see a truly ‘painted’ desert or experience ‘cowboy’ country, go there in May. The burning reds of both the canyon cliffs and the sunsets are unforgettable, and you expect Paul Newman and Robert Redford []

A tale of two Sundays.

One week ago, my stroll through Durango on Easter morning was spring at its finest. The warm weather had the flowers soaking in the sunshine and there was a low hum of busy, buzzing bees in the apricot trees. Kids were hula-hooping in their yards, and pelotons of bikers outnumbered cars on the roads. A man wearing Vans with dreadlocks sped past on his skateboard, coffee in hand. (He was probably 45 years old. I love this town.) I happened upon a []