2006 has — without a doubt — been the most spectacular year of my life.
2006 was the first full year of living gluten-free, and thus being the healthy self I had never known, the self I have always wanted to be.
2006 is the year I attended the IACP, landed my wonderful literary agent, and signed a contract for a book deal with Wiley. This was the year I let go of teaching and finally, after an entire lifetime, became a full-time writer. Words can barely tap at the surface of that happiness.
in 2006, I met wonderful food bloggers, made wonderful, wonderful friends, and remained perpetually grateful for this community.
In 2006, I ate sunchokes, miner’s lettuce, foie gras, sweetbreads, and persimmons for the first time in my life. I want more.
In 2006, I had yes tattooed on my body, permanently.
And of course — the most burning and essential part of the year, more important by far than anything else on the list — I met the Chef in 2006. This is the year we first fell in love. And this is the year, blessedly, that we both quickly came to realize that we will live many, many years together. (If life continues to bless us, that is.)
There have been sadnesses and annoyances. I am perpetually misty-eyed when I read the newspaper and see the way this human family is treating itself. No life, no matter how glowing, is lived alone.
However, forgive me if I don’t dwell on those sad notes right now. Today, I am only feeling blessed and grateful.
Tomorrow, on the first day of the new year, I am sending my manuscript to the publishers. You will hear much more of this in two days, when it is done. Suffice it to say that I could be frantic and panic-stricken. Instead, I am feeling calm and happy. I have worked hard — harder than I have ever worked on anything before — and the process has filled me with joy. This morning, the Chef and I took an almost-hour-long walk around our neighborhood. Before, I would have been hunched over the table, desperate to wring every last minute out of the process. But, with him by my side, I am breathing easy. Alive.
In 2007, we will be married (July). My book will be published and sold across the nation (October). Those two events would be enough to fill ten years. Along with those, who knows what will come? I have some ideas, but I’m not saying now. We’re just going to let life take care of itself.
I can promise you this — you will hear about this year to come, with photos and recipes to accompany.
Thank you to everyone reading. You have filled my life with enormous joy. Honestly, I cannot imagine my life without this website. My life, as I know it now, simply would not exist without those of you reading.
In a few hours, I am headed to his restaurant, where a dozen friends will be having dinner with me, all of it made by his hands, to celebrate the book being (nearly) done, and the new year. I hope that you are all finding a way to celebrate that brings you peace.
May we all have peace. The Chef and I would both like to wish everyone reading a spectacular new year. I hope that there are a thousand memorable mouthfuls in your life this next year. We all deserve such joy.