A whole hidden world was taking place everyday on the internet and I had been completely left out of it. There were not only food blogs but wine blogs, lifestyle blogs, mommy blogs and even blogs about how to blog.
I was hooked. Reading blogs went hand in hand with my obsession of reality TV…an escape right at my fingertips that could be reached at any time of the day.
It made me realize I too wanted to blog. I had something to say and wanted to share the mundane, repetitive, boring details of my life. My own place to inspire, share, complain and learn.
So the Noble Pig was born. A place for me to rant about food, family and wine (my interests are too far and wide to be limited to one thing). Welcome to my site and my life.
I love to cook but mostly I love to eat. I walk 5.2 miles a day just to be able to chow-down on fattening food while maintaining a normal weight. All of this so my inner thighs remain distant relatives. The problem is I can’t stop eating. My appetite is insatiable and my husband marvels at the quantity of food I am able to ingest and digest on a daily basis. He says I should be in one of those tiny booths at a carnival where you pay a dollar to see a normal sized woman eat ginormous amounts of food in 8.3 seconds. Please join me in my kitchen and life adventures and while you’re here catch up on my progress of muddling my way through the bankrupting trials and tribulations, not to mention horrors, of planting a vineyard and starting a small winery in the Willamette Valley of Oregon.
My journey began in a small, quirky town in Northern California. My family and I were transplants there (by choice) from Southern California, Orange County area. One day I had this brilliant fantasy of becoming a winemaker and living the rest of my life happily ever-after in one of the wine regions of the world. Wow, easier said than done. However, all in the pursuit of education, we packed up the kids, left our life on the coast and moved to the land-locked, nuclear free, often whacked out zone of a town known as Davis. A town that doesn’t allow businesses that would make life better or easier for the people who live there; places like Target, Costco or Trader Joe’s, have not been allowed to enter the city limits. The folks that run Davis then complain about the lack of funds available for city projects, money that could be raised by sales tax generated by business. I say, “You can’t have it both ways”, they say, “We don’t care, let’s build toad tunnels and become famous for the most minuscule wildlife crossing this world has ever known”. Now, after six years there, things for me have moved along, while things there will always remain the same. And in case you were wondering, you have to leave the city if you want to buy decent underwear; that will never change.
Since moving from “The O.C.” and in case you’re wondering, “The O.C.” really is like the TV show portrayed it, a glamorous area where less is definitely NOT more and lives are made and perpetuated by the privileged who live there. However, I’ve left it all behind in the pursuit of bettering myself and making a good wholesome life for my children. We will nurture and take from the land only what we need, leaving the rest for future generations to cultivate and enjoy. Okay, just kidding, I am NOT, that good, and I love to exaggerate.
I completed my studies at the University of California, Davis with aBachelor’s of Science in Viticulture and Enology. We currently have 88 acres of land in the Willamette Valley of Oregon where we have planted 4 acres in Pinot Noir. We currently have 4 acres of Pinot Noir planted with more on the way. We are making our wines at another winery in town. If you are interested in trying our wines or learning more about our family winery and vineyard, check out our wine site Noble Pig Wine for more information. Our wines are very limited in production and are only available there.
I love to go off on long-winded tangents and write in run-on sentences using hardly any punctuation. I also love to cook, taking difficult recipes and breaking them down into non-intimidating steps that anyone can make, even the most self-proclaimed kitchen nightmare- nincompoop. You have to love that word, nincompoop, it really says it all. So yes, you too can do this, cook that is. Cooking is enjoyable and life is hard but when you return to your home and enter your kitchen you should feel, take your bra off comfortable, and not terrified to try new and exciting things that will impress your family and friends. Hopefully, I can motivate you to do this or you can sit back, be lazy, kick and scream and watch me kill myself while I try to inspire you to get off your tush and make something decent that your family can eat. Imagine taking a food dish to a party and actually being proud of it instead of making excuses that you can’t cook and being alright with that! Throwing cheese and crackers on a plate and calling it a day is no longer an option people; the world expects more of you. I told you about the run-on sentences right, we’ll just refer to it as my stream of consciousness writing from here on out. By the way, did I tell you I am 100% Polish, that will explain a lot and I believe is one of those tangents I was referring to previously.
The Characters in My Life
Oh he’s a funny one; I’ll call him, “The Wild Boar” as he would prefer to remain slightly anonymous (as you can tell by the picture). And yes, he chose that name for himself. Do you think there is any pathology involved in wanting to be referred to as, THE WILD BOAR? Does it mean he is passionate? Or does it mean he’s an ax murderer? If he’s the “Wild Boar” does that make me the “Pighunter”? I’ll have to look into this more, we might need a psychiatrist.
He loves to eat like me but even more so LOVES to kvetch about what I make. It’s too sweet, too salty, too bitter (always my favorite), too spicy, not spicy enough, too dense, too cold, too hot, oh I could go on and on and on….I call it the Goldilocks Syndrome, his love affair with disharmony. But even with all this complaining I love, love, love him dearly. His constant begging of me not to do certain things only pushes and motivates me even more to do just those things. Things like putting all my energy into a website that will give intimate details of our life together; where things he might say and repeated by me could be taken out of context. But it works for me, our life, his complaining; we’re a team and for the most part he is always ready and willing to go along with all my crazy, life-altering schemes and ideas. For example, when he agreed to take all our money and start a winery and plant a vineyard that could easily fail leaving us bankrupt and destitute and in the streets, yeah…that was a big one, but he jumped right in, no looking back. I respect that. So, I let him get away with these minor kvetching infractions, they are only words, right? I try to look at the bigger picture. However, I’m not sure what that bigger picture is but someday I hope to figure it out.Hooligan #1
My 12 year old son loves to try new foods and for the most part is willing to taste most things. His favorites, salmon and shrimp, not too exotic but he loves them. He’s a good kid who does well in school and enjoys life, I can’t ask for more than that. He says his mom is a “good cooker” and that works for me and puts a smile on my face. However, while at the dinner table he wields his fork and spoon like they are shovels, rests his chin on the plate and pushes the food in. We really need to work on the table manners before he starts dating. He’s also a master of saying the wrong thing at the wrong time, always keeping me on the edge of my seat. I love that.Hooligan #2
My 10 year old, the pickiest eater I know. It started when he was eight months old in the highchair; he would aggressively push the incoming spoon away with all the strength he could muster. He had a food plan that included only the healthiest of choices. I will name them here for you…Dinosaur Chicken Nuggets (microwaved only), Totino’s Pizza Rolls (microwaved only), green beans (cold, from a can only, not fresh, never heated), pasta (marinara or butter sauce only, with spaghetti sugar a.k.a. parmesan cheese from the green can only), toast (crust removed cut into thin strips), cheese sandwich (crust removed, cut into four squares) hamburger patty (no bun, cut into pieces, ketchup for dipping), french fries (any), macaroni and cheese (from a box only, none of that homemade stuff), pizza (cheese only, not too saucy), juice (apple only, I always buy Treetop®, he can taste the difference if the brand is different and will not drink it).
Save me from this child. However, I’m learning to embrace his picky palate. I fantasize about his palate evolving into a world-class, disconcerting, articulate, takes no nonsense, winemaking, super-tasting phenomena. He could be a winemaking star, picking out microscopic wine flaws in single tastes. It’s his mission. The problem is, he has no idea what his mission is. Will he accept it? Or will he cast that journey aside as a job of non-importance to the greater good, as if not saving the wine is not a job for the greater good…okay, okay I’ll stop.
I am also a contributing writer for the Los Angeles based magazineOne For The Table. My work has also appeared in the Chicago Sun-Times and the Huffington Post.