October 31, 2014

Everyday Gourmet: Enoughness

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By Kim Dannies

I recently dined at a restaurant where an old Basque saying “Nola jan jakitea, nahikoa jakitea da” graced the menu: “to know how to eat is to know enough.” I am smitten by that word, enough. I feel my belly and my head and my heart come together with a satisfied sigh of pleasure and relief every time I hear it. Enoughness. It’s that countless place of comfort where basic needs are more than met, where contentment with simple means and accomplishment allows us to experience the elegance of satisfaction.

After nearly 300 Everyday Gourmet columns, it’s time to for me to say “enough.” It’s been a wonderfully satisfying experience to share cooking knowledge and stories with my community and I am grateful to the Observer, and to my readers, for all of the loving support and enthusiasm you have shown me. I have just published my first book, “Everyday Gourmet,” a collection of my favorite Observer columns since 2003. I started writing the column as a way of sharing culinary knowledge with my community, and it also served as a kind of family food journal as we raised our three daughters.

“Rashomon” is a generic term for “same story different memory.” One can share a whole life with others and all are going to tell a radically different story about what that life was like. As a parent and a wife, it was a treat for me to witness and publish my version of our story as it unfolded. I dedicate this book to my family as a way of saying thank you for allowing me to write about the intimacies and humor we experienced during the caviar of the childhood years.

When we feel we have enough, our definition of satisfaction and standards releases the pressure for “bigger, better, more” and allows us to operate in a sweet flow. “Everyday Gourmet” is a modest book, but it is enough for me. My Observer departure is an opportunity to reboot my inner navigation system and risk some new writing projects. This is my symphony moving forward: that I have enough, that I am enough, that I live in the sweet spot of enoughness.

Farewell dear readers, and pots full of love.

Kim Dannies is a graduate of La Varenne Cooking School in France.  She lives in Williston with her husband, Jeff; they have three twenty-something daughters who come and go. For archived Everyday Gourmet columns go to kimdannies.com.

Obituaries

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Alice M. Chase

Alice Chase

Alice Chase

 

Alice Mary (Shortsleeve) Chase 94, of Williston passed away October 27, 2014 at Burlington Health and Rehab.

She was born in Burlington on July 23, 1920 the daughter of Stephen and Hazel (Bleau) Shortsleeve. She was married in 1942 to Leonard M. Chase, Sr. and had 51 happy years together before his passing in 1994.

Mrs. Chase enjoyed her life as a homemaker and gardener. She had a talent for sewing, when her children were young she handmade many of their clothes. She had a strong will and determination to survive which helped her live a full life. In the last chapter of her life when she required more assistance, she spent four happy years at Sterling House assisted living home in Richmond. There she made new friends and became very attached to the staff there. Her family would like to extend their sincere gratitude to the staff at Sterling House for providing excellent care and loving kindness to our mother while she was there.

She is survived by her three daughters, Alice Boyer of Lake Elmore, Genevieve Boyer and her husband David of Monkton, and Bonnie Chase of Essex Junction and one son Leonard M. Chase, Jr. and his wife Deborah, of Williston; 11 grandchildren and many great-grandchildren; one brother Kenneth Shortsleeve and his wife Dora of Humble, Texas, several nieces, nephews and many friends. She was predeceased by a daughter Nancy in 1987.

A private graveside service will be held at the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, donations, may be made to Sterling House, 61 Farr Rd., Richmond, VT 05477. Visiting hours will be held 4 – 6 p.m. on Oct. 30. Arrangements are by Ready Funeral and Cremation Service, Mountain View Chapel, 68 Pinecrest Dr. Essex Junction. Online condolences may be sent to www.readyfuneral.com.

Library Notes

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Does your employer offer directed giving or a matching gift program? The library is fund raising for a new bookmobile. Your donation is tax-deductible. Please contact Marti Fiske at the library if you need more information for your employer’s giving program.

Youth News

Make It! Rubber Band Bracelets

Monday, Nov. 3, 3:30 – 4:15 p.m. Bring your own loom, use one of the library’s or just use your fingers! For grade K and up. Presented by Food for Thought Teen Group. Pre-register at 878-4918.

Read to a Dog

Tuesday, Nov. 4, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Bring a book and read to Oli the Samoyed, a therapy dog registered with Therapy Dogs of Vermont. All ages. Call 878-4918 to pre-register for individual reading sessions.

Babytime Playgroup

Wednesday evening, Nov. 5, 6-7:30 p.m. (first Wednesday of each month). For children birth-2 years and their caregivers. Age appropriate toys, stories and fingerplays. For information call 876-7555. Sponsored by Building Bright Futures & DAML.

Food For Thought Teen Group

Thursday, Nov. 6, 4-5 p.m. Grades 7-12 Teen Advisory Group. Teens meet for pizza, discussion, book/DVD selection, and planning special events for the library. New members welcome.

Fall Story Time and Craft

Tuesdays, 11 a.m. For children ages 3-5. Nov. 4: Bears and Birds; Nov. 21: Science Story Time with Kristen Littlefield. (No story time Nov. 11 and 25).

After-School Games

Monday, Nov. 10, 3-4 p.m. Bring your own trading cards (Magic, Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh) or play one of the library’s games. Grades 3 and up. Snacks provided.

Adult News

Friends of the Library

Nov. 3, 7 p.m. Planning for winter and spring programs, voting on donation to benefit the library bookmobile.

Shape and Share Life Stories

Monday, Nov. 3, 12:30-2:30 p.m. Learn to craft engaging stories from life experiences. Led by Recille Hamrell.

Gentle Yoga with Jill Lang

Tuesday, Nov. 4, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Presented by Williston resident Jill Lang. Come and enjoy free classes. Please bring your own mat.

The Tech Tutor

Wednesday, Nov. 5, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Stop by anytime during tech hours for one-on-one technology help from a teen. Guarantee a time by making a 15-minute appointment 878-4918.

Chair Yoga with Jill Lang

Tuesday, Nov. 7, 10:30 a.m. Presented by Williston resident, Jill Lang. Come and enjoy free classes. Please bring your own mat.

College Application Essay

Monday, Nov. 10, 6:30-7:45 p.m. With the trickier Common Application essay topics and increased importance of the essay in college admissions, it’s more critical than ever to write a great application essay. Learn tips and strategies for this high-stakes composition from Lauren Starkey, local author of “Write Your Way into College.”

Williston Author: ‘House of Wonder’

Wednesday, Nov. 12, 6:30 p.m. Sarah Healy introduces her new book “House of Wonder.” It’s funny, sad, hopeful and heartbreaking and filled with characters that stick with you and make you care. Sarah’s debut memoir “Can I Get an Amen?” was a hit. Book signing available.

New in Adult Non-Fiction

“The Roosevelts: An Intimate History” by Geoffrey Ward and Ken Burns. Documentarian Burns follows up on his recent multi-part documentary on the Roosevelts with this in-depth book full of historic photographs and portraits.

“Lincoln: An Intimate Portrait.” Continuing with our theme of past presidents, is this new, well-reviewed book of photos and stories on the life of the 16th chief of state, released in honor of the upcoming 150th anniversary of his assassination.

New in Adult Fiction

“Lovely, Dark, Deep: Stories” by Joyce Carol Oates. The National Book Award recipient and New York Times bestselling author’s new release is a collection of thirteen short stories.

The Dorothy Alling Memorial Library is located at 21 Library Lane in Williston, and can be reached at 878-4918. All events are free. www.williston.lib.vt.us

Service, community and climate change

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By Ben Civiletti

Fresh out of college, I know first hand that it can be difficult to find work—especially meaningful work—these days. In an era of many complex challenges, the state of the world can feel depressing, and embarking on life as an adult, a little daunting.

That is why I feel lucky to have begun service as an AmeriCorps member, proudly working with the Vermont Natural Resources Council and the Vermont Energy and Climate Action Network in their effort to support Vermont’s town energy committees. In the less than two months since I began, I have come to admire these volunteer, grassroots groups and find inspiration and hope in what they are accomplishing. They are, as we say in AmeriCorps, “getting things done”—working with their municipalities to stop wasting energy by retrofitting buildings, with their schools to bring solar online, with businesses to promote transportation solutions and more.

This experience has already showed me that when many problems seem so complicated and so entrenched in our society, we can move forward. It has become clear to me that if you do something, if we all do something, taking one step at a time, the problems become smaller. They become surmountable.

The benefit of breaking problems into manageable pieces is the foundation upon which AmeriCorps works, and how this important program serves our country. Members serve directly with communities, helping low-income Vermonters access wholesome food, reduce their energy burden, access affordable housing and more.

In my service, I am watching local energy committees lead Vermont forward on a critical issue of our time—climate change. They are untangling complicated issues and achieving real results, from helping get the South Hero Town Office retrofitted (reducing the town buildings fuel consumption by over 50 percent and carbon emissions by over 25,000 pounds) to helping quadruple the number of solar installations in the towns of Waterbury and Duxbury.

It has become clear to me that communities across Vermont are ready to roll up their sleeves and dedicate their time to important issues.

One effort that many Vermonters are taking action on as of late is helping the state “button up.”

On Nov. 1, the Button Up Vermont Day of Action, Vermonters are working in a variety of ways, in communities across the state, to raise awareness about the benefits of tightening up our leaky homes and buildings.

As Governor Peter Shumlin has said, “Vermonters spend hundreds of millions of dollars every single year by letting oil and fossil fuel driven heat leak out of our old buildings, forcing us to reach into our pockets to pay for oil at high prices, where, if we just used less, had more efficient buildings, we’d save those dollars. (That’s) why Button Up Vermont is so important and why we need your help. First, it puts money in your pockets. Second it makes our planet more livable for future generations.”

The goal of this statewide initiative is to motivate more Vermonters to take actions themselves—or help their community do something—on Nov. 1. Whether that’s sealing your storms windows (or helping your elderly neighbor do it), patronizing your local hardware store to buy supplies to caulk leaky doors and windows or taking a more significant step—like getting an audit and undertaking comprehensive weatherization improvements—there are many things people can do.

The point is, to help save energy, save money and do something to combat climate change, taking action doesn’t have to be difficult. It just has to be done. So check out buttonupvt.org to learn far more about what you can do on Nov. 1 or what you can do beyond that, including starting or joining an energy committee.

It’s my hope that I can help ensure that the challenges we face as individuals and a shared global society feel a little less depressing and a lot less daunting. That starts with each of us taking steps forward and, cumulatively, having significant, positive impact.

Ben Civiletti is the AmeriCorps Member serving at the Vermont Natural Resources Council and Vermont Energy and Climate Action Network. Reach him at [email protected] Find out more about VECAN at www.vecan.net and Button Up Vermont at buttonupvt.org.