Tuesday, December 17, 2013



I hope you have been enjoying this festive season as much as I have!  Things have been very busy, with the launch of my new book...

Did you get your copy yet?  Not to worry, they've printed plenty!  You can pick it up HERE.

Want to come see me and get a book signed and hear me speak?  There are some fun opportunities coming up.  I'll be at The Standard Club in Chicago on January 15, you can get tickets HERE.

On January 16th I'll be in the greater Milwaukee area at the Boelter Superstore at 4200 N. Port Washington Rd in Glendale at 6pm.  This event is free and I will be recommending some of my favorite cooking utensils and supplies, all of which will be available there along with my books.

In other news, things here at the house are progressing apace.  Have I mentioned that it is loud?  No?  IT IS FREAKING LOUD UP IN HERE.  At this very moment, stonemasons are right below me with grinders, tuckpointing away on the stone and brickwork.  On the one hand, we are so excited that we will be able to leave the stone and brick exposed, it was done with true artistry, and will provide some actual architectural interest in the basement, which could have been very generic and bland without it.  On the other hand, I AM TRYING TO WORK AND ITS SO DAMN LOUD!

Sorry.  It makes me all shouty.

But this happened:

In case you were curious, no there was not originally a hole in the back wall through which to pour cement.  And there is not one now.  Apparently there is some kind of Harry Potter track 9 3/4 that only our contractor can see.  But it was useful, because this needed to happen:

And this:

Here is what they are doing right now:

See all those spaces that are now between the stones?  All the old mortar is gone, any loose or broken stones and bricks are replaced, the walls are all cleaned and then they will be getting a limewash and linseed oil treatment to help seal them up.

They are also continuing to work on the ducting for the new HVAC system, and we are hoping upon hope that they get it finished soon.  For many reasons.  The old steam radiators are hissing and clanking away.  The holes they cut in the floors for the new registers are not currently attached to anything, so all the chill from the now gutted basement, with its damp dirt floor and wide open spaces, is now entering our apartment willy nilly.  My feet are like icicles despite socks and slippers, we've got the space heaters blasted at us, and are wearing only slightly fewer layers than I wore to the Bears game last week.  You know, the one OUTSIDE in 10 degree below zero windchill?

But we are getting closer and closer every day, and it is terribly exciting.  Permit applications have been submitted for the next phase of the project, and we are actually beginning to think about fixtures and finishes.  You know what is more fun than you would imagine?  Going to a showroom to lie about fully clothed in empty bathtubs with your boots on.  Seriously.  You should try it sometime.  And I'm currently more excited about toilets than I ever thought I could be.  One word.  TOTO.  Seriously.  Gamechanging toilets.  LIFEchanging toilets.  All this girl has to say is: Double. Cyclone. Flushing.  More on toilets later.

All in all things are smooth, if noisy, and every day brings some change that is noticeable.

I'm also hard at work finishing my next book, Recipe for Disaster, which will be out next year at this time.

And the best holiday gift I could hope for?  My publisher just gave me a new contract for two more books, so there is much more to come!

I just want to take a moment to wish you and yours a very festive holiday season, and a truly joyous, happy and healthy 2014.  Thank you all for being on this journey with me!

How cute is our tree???

Yours in Good Taste,
The Polymath


  1. I love your little tree! I am so happy everything is going well for you!
    I finished reading Out to Lunch and thought it was delightfully original and witty.

  2. Ha! Just sent you a tweet about your tree not having flying 18# cats.
    I'm re-reading Out to Lunch...I envisioned you having a much more elaborate tree. But I guess the cute little one makes more sense with the construction going on.
    Wish you'd visit the South sometime on book tour!