Archive for the 'From Left to Write' Category

From Left to Write: The Earthbound Cook

Earthbound Cook by Myra Goodman

Earthbound Cook by Myra Goodman

There are good cookbooks, and there are special cookbooks. The Earthbound Cook is special, filled with delicious and healthy meals that are good for the body and good for the planet. I was offered a copy as part of virtual book club From Left to Write, and as a fan of delicious and organic food, I jumped at the chance.

This cookbook is filled with recipes that feature fresh fruits, vegetables, meats and herbs. The recipes are healthful and the photography is visually stunning. Happily, I found the colors of the ingredients translate to equally beautiful plates of food. I made several dishes from the book, and here are two of my favorites:

Shrimp and corn chowder (pages 14-15) = This amazing soup is a new staple in our house. The soup is both filling and light. It has a creamy feel, but is crunchy because of the potatoes. We live in Austin, Texas, so we were lucky enough to make the soup with fresh gulf shrimp, which added a subtle (and delicious) salty flavor.

Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Chard, Gruyere and Prosciutto (pages 106-108) = This is an elegant dish, that is perfect for entertaining and impressing your guests. This main course produces a dish with great color and flavor. I love Gruyere and proscuitto, but had never cooked chard before this recipe. I loved how easy it was to add such color (and extra nutrition) to a meal.

The Earthbound Cook has so many interesting recipes, and I have just hit the tip of the iceberg.  One section that is very interesting to me is the “innovative salads with substance.” I am so excited to try the tri-color potato salad, filled with potatoes, tomatoes and green beans. Of course, I might even try the German potato salad recipe just to see how it stacks up to my grandma’s recipe.

If you are looking for a unique cookbook that honors the Earth and the palate, you can buy your copy HERE.

Photo Credit: Earthbound Farms

Note: The book is provided by the publisher. I volunteered to write this post, without compensation. The words are mine and unedited.

From Left to Write: Staying Married and Personal Evolution

Author: Maddie Dawson

Author: Maddie Dawson

Despite the name of my blog, I really do more than work and watch TV. I actually love reading all sorts of books, from Paulo Coehlo to Barbara Kingsolver to Dan Brown. Luckily, I recently was invited to join a virtual book club with some of my favorite people. The newly formed club, called From Left to Write, is a collection of avid readers and writers, and we collectively read and share thoughts on a variety of books. This club is not designed to review books, rather we write about thoughts and feelings inspired by the books.

My first book-reading with this club is “The Stuff that Never Happened” by Maddie Dawson. The book is a reflection of marriage and parenthood, choices and mistakes, and personal evolution. The book explores infidelity, love, and the complexity of marriage.

I’ll be honest with you, I had a hard time getting this post started. Marriage is such a personal thing; no two marriages are the same and every couple handles their challenges and triumphs differently. That said, I am one of the lucky ones. I will proudly say — even at the risk of sounding smug — I might have the best husband ever. And I really mean it.

As I read this book, I felt a variety of emotions, randing from anger to compassion. I guess the constant emotion was my best life-lesson: no matter who you marry, you and your spouse are going to evolve as you age, just try to evolve on a parallel track.

My husband and I were married young. He was 26, and I was 23. Looking back, I would never advocate getting married that young (and will probably freak-out if my daughter wants to marry that young).  But, I was madly in love and I got married.  Sixteen years later, he’s still the love of my life.

As cheesy as that sounds, I have to say that he and I are both very different than when we married. How could we not be? We married so young. And since that time, we experienced a variety life-changing events both together and individually: we moved to the West Coast, built our careers, made new friends, traveled the world, had a child, dealt with deaths in the family and more.

I am a different person than when we met. And so is he.  Honestly, that’s how it should be. I’m glad that I have evolved into a happier (and hopefully) wiser person with experiences and memories shaping who I am. But I am even happier that my evolution was parallel to my husband’s. We both have grown and changed, and luckily, we stayed in-synch and together. The opposite could easily be true, and possibly the norm for people who married at our age.

– LTV Mom

Photo Credit: Maddie Dawson Web Site