By Sumiko Saulson
Berkeley is a progressive college town, well known for its commitment to arts, culture, and the ecology. It’s the first US city to create accessible spaces and curbside cutouts for the mobility impaired back in the seventies.
Farmer’s markets, pro-cyclist events like Sunday Streets Berkeley, plentiful bicycle lanes, and automobile-free zones, community gardens, composting, recycling centers, urban farming, and parks dedicated to preserving native wildlife are part of how Berkeley works towards a greener planet.
University of California Berkeley is home to a beautifully manicured thirty-four acre botanical garden featuring foot bridges, relaxing streams, lush flora, and aromatic flowers from around the globe. It’s Student Organic Garden at the corner of Walnut and Virginia Streets, encourages urban farmers to grow healthy, earth-friendly fresh foods…continue reading in the Spring 2018 issue.
I was not always a gardener. I’d lived in dorms, apartments, and rented a house without ever noticing the plants around me. Once I owned my own house, I became excited at the possibilities for the sad, weed-riddled plots circling my yard. I wanted my kids outdoors, riding bicycles and playing tag. A neighbor kindly took me under her wing, perhaps inspired by the view of my yard through her front window, and opened my eyes to the many annuals, perennials, herbs, and evergreens. I found every plant interesting and soon brought home dozens of plants with every kind of foliage and flower.
Since then, my landscaping has calmed down. I’ve learned to arrange the same plants in groupings so they’re more noticeable and easier to maintain, and to appreciate the strength of a good shrub instead of spending money on perennials that flower for a week and do nothing the rest of the year. My gardening fever has calmed, but the joy of seeing new life never ends.
This spring, we welcome you to enter the garden with us. Whether you have a green thumb or prefer to admire plant life from the path, we’ve got you covered. In this issue, you’ll find tips on making things with the herbs you grow and on attracting birds to your garden. Celebrate the refreshing beauty of our local Ruth Bancroft Garden and Philadelphia’s Bartram’s Garden. Get your copy today!
SCRAP, San Francisco
By Emerian Rich
SCRAP is an awesome place for crafters, teachers, and makers. Essentially an art and crafts thrift store, this nonprofit is a great place to both donate and shop.
Calling themselves “a source for the resourceful”, SCRAP is a creative re-use center, material depot, and workshop space founded in 1973. Breathing new life into old objects, SCRAP reduces waste by diverting over 200 tons of materials heading to landfill every year. For those looking for a learning opportunity, SCRAP offers classes and workshops. Some are regular drop-in events, while others require registration beforehand.
Located at 801 Toland Street, San Francisco, this is a creators dream. Supplies are inexpensive and range from fabric and home decorating items to paper, craft supplies, crayons, and books. Educators will love…continue reading in the Winter issue for 2017.
By Leslie Light
Rodeo, California was not my first choice to live in. It’s a small town on the north-western edge of the San Francisco Bay Area. It isn’t tony, or upscale, or even hipster. What it is, however, is easy. Easy to get to and out of. Easy to stay in and make a quiet home. We’ve been here five years and will probably stay five more.
Rodeo is bisected by the I-80 freeway. The built up part of town can be divided into three areas: Old, Mid-Century, and New. Most of the Rodeo town limits is open space where cows graze, and there is rumored to be an old military installation somewhere. Regardless of where you are, you can see a field of grass.
In the “old” part of town are cute three and four bedroom houses built before WWII. Sitting porches with views of rose bushes are the primary look and feel. Many have back decks have a view of San Pablo Bay. Most of the Mid-Century houses were built for…continue reading in the Winter issue for 2017.
Galindo House, Concord
By Emerian Rich
Most Concord residents never knew the Galindo house existed until a few years ago when the Concord Historical Society took charge of the estate and cleaned up the trees and greenery in front of it.
Located at 1721 Amador Avenue, Galindo House was built in 1856 for one of Concord’s founders, Don Francisco Galindo and his wife Maria Dolores Manuella Pacheco. The six-room farmhouse sat on the then seventeen-thousand acres of land granted to Galindo after the Mesoamerican War. The names Galindo and Pacheco will sound familiar to residents because many of our streets and buildings are named after the founding fathers. Don Salvio Pacheo’s Adobe at 1870 Abode Street—belonging to Maria’s father—is another notable building still standing from that time period, but Galindo House was the first wooden house built in town. …continue reading in the Winter issue for 2017.
The word cozy conjures up images of comforters and warm socks by the fire with a good book. Cozy can mean cuddling up with your favorite person and a movie. Cozy means comfortable, safe, and comfy.
A cozy memory for me is when I was a child sitting by my grandmother as she crocheted a new lap rug, with one of her very own creations covering our laps as we watched TV. Gram was a woman who couldn’t sit still and do nothing. She had an antsy “do-er” bug that inspired her to make dolls, tissue boxes, afghans, you name it. If it required yarn and a needle or hook, it was destined to become her project, but she didn’t just make these things for herself and her family. Every year, she crocheted a thousand afghans to give away at nursing homes. Her gift of crocheting spread coziness throughout the care facilities of Colorado Springs. It’s a gene she passed on to me. I’ve decided I will continue her tradition of selflessness this year by donating some of my crocheted items to those who need a piece of cozy to get through the winter. It might not be a thousand pieces like Gram, but hopefully it will bring cozy to a few people who really need it.
What are your favorite cozy activities? This issue of SEARCH will help you stay inside and keep cozy as we explore cozy books, music, and food. For you who like going out in the cold, we’ll add in some fun adventures away from home, like touring the Galindo house in Concord or shopping at SCRAP. Read more about cozy in our Winter 2017 Issue.
Our Food Story
By Ashley Vrublevskiy
In my early twenties, I ventured into the world of organic foods and slowly started making healthier choices for myself. I read book after book, loving all the information.
When I became pregnant with Zander, my first son, I vowed to only feed him organic, nutrient dense foods that nourished his body. When he got old enough to start expanding his food options beyond the mashed variety, we realized he was not on board with my food revolution ideas. I became desperate to get him to try new foods. This was the beginning of our long road of food battles. “He won’t even eat cookies! COOKIES!”
I remember saying to a friend to emphasize the severity of my then three-year-old’s eating restrictions. He truly only ate a handful of foods: pretzel sticks, squeezable baby food packs, raisins, and a few fruits, namely raspberries. My only saving grace was he absolutely loved soup. I made the most vegetable filled soups I could think of to be sure he would be getting some key nutrients in his diet. He would gag and refuse anything else. He wouldn’t touch a cookie, pizza, or pasta like most kids his age. I thought he was just picky, and if I kept trying, he would eventually eat more variety.
Around this time…read more in the Fall 2017 issue of SEARCH Magazine.
Chorizo Tamale Pie
by Brian and Patricia Dake
Fall is a delightful time for entertaining. As sultry summer days give way to blustery afternoons and cooler evenings, we find ourselves heading indoors for cozy gatherings and comfort foods. This month’s recipe features an entree ideal for dressing up in autumn colors and for autumn holidays.
- Cut ends from onion and cut onion in half. Set aside 1/2. Peel off outside layers of dried onion skin and dice.
- Cut the top 1/4 inch off the pepper removing the stem. Cut peppers in half length-wise.
- Set aside 1/2 of each pepper for another use. Cut pepper halves again length-wise, cut out stems and remove the white ribs, membrane and all seeds.
- Dice peppers.
- Spray fry pan with cooking spray. …continue reading the Fall issue of SEARCH Magazine.
By Emerian Rich
Rancho El Sobrante used to be the home of the Huichin, an Ohlone Tribe. Spanish missionaries took over the land around 1795, and after Mexico independence from Spain, it was deeded to Juan Jose and Victor Castro. El Sobrante is Spanish for “remaining land” and it’s fitting, given the three odd -shaped pieces of land it covers in-between Pinole, Richmond, and San Pablo.
El Sobrante used to have the reputation of being wild but in recent years has become a more family oriented with many parks in the area. Kennedy Grove, for example, is a great place to have picnics or toss around a football. They also have hiking trails and excellent bird-watching opportunities. For water sports, San Pablo Reservoir offers fishing, boat rentals, kayaking, and canoeing. Water birds abound at the reservoir including white pelicans, geese, ducks, and shorebirds. Along the trails, you can see wild turkey, quail, and dove, as well as predators such as eagles, ospreys, hawks, and owls. You might even spy a deer or a bobcat.
The annual El Sobrante Stroll is an event…continue reading in the Fall issue for 2017.
The Power of Aroma
by Murdo Morrison
I spent my childhood years during the 1950s in working class neighborhoods in Glasgow, Scotland. In those days any money went to necessities, and special items were things you saved up for.
Luxury items were often out of reach, with much of it yet to be invented. Not only was there less variety, but much of the produce was seasonal. We waited expectantly for the fresh strawberries and rich tarts the baker created. Fresh peaches, one shilling each at the time, were only an occasional treat.
The heightened senses of childhood made for a richer experience. It was a time when many items were served from barrels or bins. Potatoes were scooped onto a heavy scale, cheese was cut from the round. A simple shopping trip would be marked by the distinct aromas of the various stores where the air was filled with a heady mix of Provolone, Salami, spices, and other exotic aromas that, at the time, I was unable to identify. The strongest notes in the ‘perfumed symphony’ were played by the freshly roasted coffee beans. In our world, coffee, when we drank it at all, came from small tins of Nescafé in the form of a powder we mixed with hot water from the kettle. Perhaps it was then the idea… continue reading the Fall issue of SEARCH Magazine.