The Price Center chef smiles when I ask if he minds if I take his picture. He removes his glasses, sitting opposite me, commenting, “Tell them it is a picture of Robert De Niro.” I study his face. He does look like Robert De Niro, but in fact, he is Chef Ray Abiza, Albanian-born, spending […]
The young woman is surprised when we order an entire bottle of wine to accompany our dinner, till I tell her our aim is to kill time. It is two hours before the Main Street Concert begins, just beyond the doors of the restaurant. Maybe we should have left our big city ways at home? La […]
After several hours of antiquing, walking and exploring I may expire from the heat on this scorching record-breaking June day in Gonzales. At least the porch of this old southern-mansion-styled home is shaded by the second-floor balcony roof. I look at Michael, “We are ten minutes early. Two empty white rocking chairs are begging for […]
Arriving in Gonzales, investigating the town on foot, the first thing we hear is, “What are the two of you doing out in this heat today?” That is probably the best question of the year. The temperature gauge says 101°F. The heat index is 116. I blame it on serendipity. Gonzales Emporium We walk into […]
Today is The Day! After twelve months of hope and excitement and wishes and worry our friends are closing on their newly built home in the Texas Hill Country. I promised a celebratory dinner when that happened with grand plans of china and crystal and silver and candlelight. Instead, I find myself outside in the […]
In January 2005, Michael and I traveled to San Miguel de Allende for a three-month experiment of living in Mexico—running away from our current reality, testing the waters of being somewhere other than home for an extended period of time. Barely settled, Michael headed for Spanish lessons each day, while I opted for oil painting; […]
Between Google Maps on my phone and Michael’s memory of old San Antonio, we successfully slide into the large parking area adjacent to The Oge House Inn. We are even on time. I suggest leaving our suitcase in the car till after we check-in; there must be an easier way to our room than up […]
The Hill Top Café, tucked on the side of the highway on US 87, peeks at us between the trees. Michael turns the car into the side parking lot, snagging one of the few vacant spaces. Formerly a combination roadhouse-gas-station, the wooden structure was purchased almost forty years ago by Johnny Nicholas as a means […]
Picnic at Bending Branch Winery Shrimp and Mango Cocktail Curried Smoked Chicken and Wild Rice Salad Mixed Vegetables Vinaigrette Squash Bread Candied Ginger Shortbread Hearts, Strawberries, Grand Marnier Cream Shrimp and Mango Cocktail Serves 4 2 tablespoons mayonnaise 2 tablespoons plain yogurt 2 teaspoons Cognac 1 teaspoon ketchup 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, […]
Thursday’s are special days, and if we are in town, ever since we moved to the Texas Hill Country eleven years ago, we are at San Marcos’ Summer Concerts in the Park. There is something magic about night music under the stars accompanied by wine, food, and friends. I wouldn’t trade it for anything—so I’m […]
Artist - Traveller - Foodie - Avid Hostess - Picnicker - Amateur Chef
Simply put, I love Texas. I have lived almost my entire life in this state. Born and raised in San Antonio, I spent the majority of my adult life in Fort Worth, in addition to ten years—on and off—sailing in and around the Gulf Coast on our 40’ Endeavor, Island Rose. For the past ten years, my husband and I have called Wimberley home—and if I love Texas—I adore the Texas Hill Country.
We have traveled extensively in this state--from deep East to far West, from North to South--and have probably been on more back roads and in more towns than anyone I have encountered. I AM a Texan—through and through!
I’m a foodie. I love to cook. I am a good judge of what is excellent, what is not. We will drive two-and-a-half hours for Saturday lunch; for the journey and the destination. I love picnics and trying out local wineries. Food and wine pairings draw me like a magnet. And music—all kinds. Concerts are on the menu at our house every year, be they concerts in a house, in a park, in a barn, in an auditorium or at a winery--we're there.
I paint. I cook. I entertain. I love back country roads and small towns—we own two convertibles so I can be sure that nothing bars the experience of just being there.
I finally decided it was time to share my love of this state and these hills with anyone who will listen or read, letting them in on on the famous, the infamous and the not so famous places that dot the countryside and cities. I'll share stories, experiences, and recipes.
Hopefully, you will come along for the ride, blaze your own trails and let me know if you are having fun. If you step out your door and take a chance, I know that you will!