(texto em português ao final)

This is a post I will write without going back to edit  a single word or  typo. Bear with me


My Dad had a huge influence on me.  He’s been gone for a long, long, time. More than a decade.

If I had one hour with him, just one more hour. This is what I would ask him.

Dad, how did you get into playinhg chess? Who taught you the game? WHy did you start playing and how did you get so good at it?

Dad, can you tell me one thing about you..  one thing you would like to have changed? ONe flaw you regret having? One handicap you wish you had a  better grip on?

Dad, I don’t think you had any idea of the impact you had on my life, or how much you influenced me, every single day. If I had one more hour with you, I would tell you. I cannot say I think about you every hour of my life, but that’s because when I think of you it hurts a little. But I think about you a lot. And I miss you . MOre than words can say.

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Meu pai teve uma influencia fantástica na minha vida. Ele se foi ha’ muito, muito tempo. Mais de uma década. 

Se eu tivesse apenas uma hora a mais com ele, eu perguntaria  – Papai, como e’ que voce começou a jogar xadrez? Quem te ensinou a jogar? Por que voce começou a jogar e como se tornou tão bom no jogo? 

Me conte uma coisa sobre você.  Uma coisa que gostaria de ter mudado. Um defeito, talvez. Algo na sua personalidade que gostaria que tivesse sido diferente, que gostaria de ter de alguma forma modificado. 

Eu não sei se você fazia idéia do quanto me influenciou em cada passo da minha vida, a cada dia. Se eu tivesse uma horinha a mais com você, te diria.  Eu não posso dizer que penso em você a cada hora da minha vida, porque pensar em você traz um pouco de dor, uma saudade dolorida. Mas o pensamento existe, e’ constante e sinto uma falta que palavras não conseguem definir. 

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For four long years we had to deal with serious dog aggression issues between Buck and Chief. Serious as: if left alone Chief would get killed by Buck. Simple like that. It was a huge challenge to keep it all under control for such a long time, and for obvious reasons we were worried about bringing Bogey, an adult, strong-willed dalmatian to our home. After getting advice from our friend Cindy and also reading a lot of stuff online, we planned our strategy. Phil would pick up the dogs at the kennel, I would stay with Bogey in the house.  When he arrived, we would take first Oscar and Bogey for a walk together. I would be outside the house (neutral territory) with Bogey on a leash, Phil would bring Oscar with him, also on a leash.  We would go up and down the street, then release them in the backyard.  Let them be there for a while, then do the same with Buck (the problem child) and Bogey.  I cannot tell you how nervous and anxious I was. First thing that happened, Oscar and Bogey snapped at each other. Not too bad, but that was their first hello, and my world seemed to collapse a little. Phil did not let that bother him, decided it was a normal reaction and we should follow with our plans. Soon they started sniffing each other’s behinds, and apparently they liked what they sniffed. They hung out together in the backyard, no issues.


Then, with my heart racing, we did the same with Buck, and there were two pretty serious snapping episodes from Buck, matched with a scary growl, but then he calmed down.  I was so anxious that I could not witness the release of the beasts in the backyard. I was sure it was going to end in a horrible dog fight. Well, I was wrong. They were totally fine!  Next step was to have the three together outside, and you can see for yourself how it went:


Here’s the amazing turn of events: Buck behaves like a pot of honey, whereas the one causing a bit of trouble is Oscar, very jealous of me. He is always following Bogey and showing his displeasure for him being around.  He lies on Bogey’s bed the moment Bogey stands up and leaves his spot, grabs his toys and takes them away, just like a spoiled brat. Yeah, that’s our Oscar.  But he is not a fool and knows not to pick a fight with a dog who outweighs him by more than 40 pounds. So we turned a big page and life should slowly get back into a new routine.  Bogey has a lot of adjustment to go through. He was used to sleeping in a bed cuddling with his Mom, he was always inside staring at the window and furiously barking at passing cars and dogs…  Now he will be part of The Pack of the Fabulous Three.  I thank my friend Elaine for the term, by the way, although truth be told, her real term was “The Fabulous Five.”  Is she super nice or what?




ONE YEAR AGO: Turkey-Chorizo Burger with Green Chile Dressing


THREE YEARS AGO: Semolina Sourdough Boule 

FOUR YEARS AGO: Forgive me, for I have sinned

FIVE YEARS AGOCracked Wheat Sandwich Bread

SIX YEARS AGO:  Au Revoir, my Bewitching Kitchen

SEVEN YEARS AGO:  French Bread


I am taking a break from the blogosphere due to the unexpected death of my sister-in-law. We are in Portland, and will head home later this week in a long drive taking a new member to join our family. Meet Bogey, a 6-and-a-half year old Dalmatian, full of energy, and very sweet. We cross our fingers for a smooth adjustment to his new life. He’s been through a rough time.



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(picture courtesy of our dear friend Karl)

Seven years blogging! Cliché or not, time goes by fast when you’re having so much fun…  The other day I was reading a very insightful blog post in which the blogger asked the question “why do we blog?”  In her case, the question arose mainly because after several years publishing posts, she realized a pattern. She would get excited about writing posts and go on periods of a lot of activity, then abandon her site for months in a row. Feeling guilty about it the whole time. Basically the blog becomes more a source of pressure/pain rather than pleasure, meriting the question “why do it?”.  For me, the question is easy to answer: blogging is fun, it makes me a better cook (or at least more adventurous), and it leads to many wonderful connections with other food bloggers (and readers), forming a sort of virtual family. So, there you have it, seven years and I have not tire of it yet. I don’t have a cake to celebrate the occasion because it was humanly impossible to bake one before our trip considering how busy we were then. Landing back on the very day of my blog-anniversary, I am forced to postpone the virtual party for a few days. Stay tuned. I do have a specific cake recipe in mind, and if all goes well… it will be legendary!

(I probably jinxed myself once more)


Six cakes from previous Bewitching anniversaries…


ONE YEAR AGO: Bewitching Kitchen Turns Six!

TWO YEARS AGO: The Bewitching Kitchen turns Five!

THREE YEARS AGO: The Bewitching Kitchen turns Four!

FOUR YEARS AGO: The Bewitching Kitchen Turns Three! 

FIVE YEARS AGO:  The Bewitching Kitchen turns Two!

SIX YEARS AGO:  Bewitching Birthday!

SEVEN YEARS AGO: Welcome to my blog!