Food feeds the soul

big night

I am reminded of the film, The Big Night as I clean the leftover glassware, scrub the last pots and put the furniture back into place on Monday night. Our refrigerator is now packed with small containers of colorful sauces and the small packed remains of assorted vegetables from last night’s dining event. What I remember and love about the film, is the food—the care, excitement, and challenges with the extensive preparation and the bringing together a disparate group of individuals to enjoy the carefully prepared feast. There is the music, the family, the friends, all gathered to experience the event together. Then there is the drama, the conflict and the peace. The meal experience is transformative, and the film invites us to have a seat at the table. Food, film and music have a way of bringing us together, challenging our expectations, and solidifying the bonds between us. We hopefully go forward nourished in so many ways.

Although the movie was memorable, experiencing my own “Big Night” was magical. I am reflecting and savoring the memories of the feast that I was treated to in my home on Sunday evening. My son Ethan, now obsessed with food and his brother (also interested but less obsessed with the culinary craft) along with the assistance of bartender friend, Deb and a former chef and family friend, Nate created and executed their own “Big Night” for a group of 11 adults – many never having met before Sunday.

The boys spent weeks planning and testing dishes for their eight course meal, selecting the music, inviting the guests. They spent the weekend cooking with Nate while Deb carefully crafted cocktails to perfectly pair with each dish. I had the pleasure of setting the table, selecting the flowers, and dining as a guest. What unfolded was a meal that surpassed my expectations. Each course was carefully plated, delivered with an explanation about the ingredients and special cooking techniques. The accompanying cocktail had its own story about the flavor paring. I was amazed by the creative and collaborative efforts it took to put together this experience for the rest of us to enjoy.

At one point during the meal, the guest next to me exclaimed, “Wow – this is a palette thriller!”

After the meal was done, and the guests had left, Ethan sat down for the first time all day reflecting on what he had done, pleased with what they crafted in the kitchen and rewarded by the compliments from the guests as they left.

A “Big Night” in so many ways. I am thankful to have had a seat at the table.

cool design finds

What I love these days:


interior designer and ceramicist kevin o’shea’s home (via design sponge)

new custom-designed fabrics from balanced design

carry’s home redesign: before and after (via design sponge).
And love that she has my same dining table!

Zaishu Flower Clocks Seat or Table

great pattern and use of sustainable materials. Zaishu Flower Clocks Seat
from one of my favorite shops – weekend in orleans, ma.

Rock, paper, scissors, Wiscasset, Maine.
rock, paper, scissors
in wiscassett, maine
small cool shop floor to ceiling full of stylish paper products, cards and wonderful selection of creative kids books, toys and stuffed animals.

Kreatelier Store on Hope Streetkreatelier in providence, ri

kreatelier sells it’s own beautifully designed products made from colorful textiles along with handmade items from other artisans. lovely owners, line and pernilla offer workshops for kids and adults.

2011 Home Trends

Loved this highlight of 2011 trends a la lynda reeves on the sara.wandering blog. Totally inspired. Motivates me to go forward with my own home re-do.

Living Room (After): Painted the white walls a color (Shark Fin from C2),  replaced sofa with new Karlstadt couch and love-seat from IKEA. Brought danish modern coffee table out of storage (purchased at yard sale years ago but never used). Rearranged the artwork.

Tried out a lighter carpet first (found in the attic), then decided I like the texture of the original living room shag rug better.

Dining Room: Painted Ravine from C2

Chez Pascal Holiday Gift Sale

Shop for handmade gifts, support a local charity ( and eat from your favorite mobile food truck all in one day…and oh the bar will be open.

Shop for clocks, frames, ornaments and more from ANISA designs.

Other participating artists: Deb Hickey, Karen, Miller, Beth Falk, Jan Willett, Ruth Scotch, Christine Guanipa, Karissa Chase, Pam Laurenzo.

Chez Pascal Restaurant
960 Hope Street, Providence
When: Sunday, December 5, 11am – 3pm.