The kitchen is where I practice alchemy—through tarts, soups, stir frys, cakes, and pies, I am constantly amazed by the transformative power of a few simple ingredients. I especially have a soft spot and knack for baking. I’ve been told I was born with a wooden spoon (or was it a whisk?) in my hand, with my memories of first helping in the kitchen going back to the age of four.
It wasn’t until my mid-twenties that I realized why the kitchen was important for me. I had moved clear across the country by myself for grad school to pursue a Master in Fine Arts and Design. After long days in the studio working on traditional graphic design concepts, I would find myself in the kitchen releasing pent up passion that could only be expressed through something as simple as a cookie or grand as a sacher torte. I was making up for the disconnect I was feeling in my studies with another form of communication: food.
This was how my concept of Eating Design evolved. I found myself problem solving all sorts of issues and ideas while I measured and dipped, stirred and tasted. I was applying design-thinking in the kitchen and to a larger extent, through events. Interested in seeing if others related to food in this way, I started projects like Pietopia and the Favorite Meal series—connecting people with themselves and with others through the action of eating and food.
Becoming certified as a Health Coach seemed like such a natural segue I actually had a physical reaction when I found out about the program. My heart jumped in my chest and I felt like the spot in the center of my forehead had just been hit with lightning. I almost fell out of my chair! This felt like the missing link. I had been working with people with the favorite meals in connecting with themselves on an emotional and creative level. Now I would have the expertise and nutritional background to empower them with and be able to support them with a holistic and creative approach. Eureka!
I live in Portland, Oregon with my boyfriend Andrew. We want a dog (or two—that’s my idea, hehe) and are looking. I teach yoga five times a week, ride my bike, curse the rain, and of course bake. I also love to read Diane Ackerman, MFK Fisher, Ruth Reichl and the Food Day section of the Oregonian.