Posts Categorized: Books, Gifts, Culture

14 Summer Reads

My friend Liz Egan is so funny. You might know her from Glamour magazine where she’s the Books Editor. Or you might remember her from a post she wrote right here on DALS about her insane, yet totally adorable lunchbox note ritual. But I am lucky enough to know her as a friend, in real life and in Facebook life…. Read more »

Sundays with Eric

Eric Ripert’s accomplishments are endless and impressive: Michelin-starred chef at New York’s Le Bernardin. Longtime TV host of PBS’s “Avec Eric.” Author of several award-winning cookbooks, and, just this month, author of a riveting coming-of-age memoir, 32 Yolks. (Subtitle: From My Mother’s Table to Working the Line) But for our purposes today, he’s a father, and like a lot of parents… Read more »

For Your Mother-in-Law

I have a lot of favorite moments in Katherine Wilson’s hilarious memoir, Only in Naples, but my most favorite is when she describes her Neapolitan mother-in-law, Raffaella, staring at a ring of measuring spoons in Wilson’s American kitchen “as if they were an archaeological find.” Cooking in Naples is a feel-as-you-go expression of love, not an exercise in precision, just as… Read more »

Catastrophic Happiness

I can’t pinpoint the exact moment I started obsessing — maybe it was around the time both of my girls were fully enrolled in middle school, which was right about the time the feeling of clutching their hands on the way to the elementary school bus stop began to fade, no matter how hard I tried to conjure it. I… Read more »

Let’s Talk Plates

Last week I was on the N train between 42nd Street and 34th street when I got a text from my friend and stylist extraordinaire Victoria. (It’s still surprising to me that I can get a signal in those deep, dark tunnels.) She wrote “Go to Prop Workshop on 30th and Broadway.” She knew I was looking for plates to… Read more »

How to Start Your Day

This is not a sponsored post. In other words, no one paid me a cent to write this. No favors were exchanged, no upgrades scored, no swag bags received. The truth is, I should be paying someone to write this post — specifically, I should be paying the members of The Drive By Truckers. I’ve chronicled my existential debt to… Read more »

How I Turned My Kid Into a Reader

My friend and author, Andrea Montalbano texted me this photo of her son a few weeks ago from school pick-up, which, naturally, warmed my heart. A few days earlier, she told me she’d discovered the secret to getting him excited about reading — like voracious reading — and I asked her to share it with you all. Take it away, Andy! Until… Read more »

When Breath Becomes Air

A post from Andy: . I never met Paul Kalanithi. . We knew each other for a total of four months, talked on the phone a bunch of times (more than once, while he was in the middle of a chemo treatment), and exchanged a flurry of emails on writers we loved, his upcoming trip to the Super Bowl, and… Read more »

Need A Last-Minute Gift?

It’s a Christmas Miracle: My daughter has come out of retirement just in time for the holidays. Some of you might remember me mentioning Nerd Alert, a blog Phoebe started a few years ago as a way to explore books, comics, graphic novels, and “other essentials,” to quote her tagline. She hasn’t posted in while — which might have something to… Read more »

Holiday Gift Guide 2015

Let’s take a look at that holiday list, shall we? Organize Christmas menu, make sure you have enough place settings for holiday dinner, trim the tree, make the latkes, pick up cloth napkins to replace dirty old stained ones, figure out gifts for Mom, Dad, Sister, Brother, Uncle, Cousin, Daughter, Son, Teacher…wow that’s a lot of people!? Feeling overwhelmed? OK,… Read more »

5 Food Lessons Learned from Kids’ Books

When you finished Catcher in the Rye as a teenager, did you feel like someone finally understood your misunderstood self…OR were you captivated by Holden Caulfield’s go-to restaurant order: “a Swiss cheese sandwich and a malted milk?” When you read (or saw) Silence of the Lambs, were you amused by Hannibal Lecter’s famous line — “I ate his liver with some… Read more »

Kids’ Audiobooks for the Road Trip (or Whenever!)

Summer! Time for watermelon, s’mores, road trips, and — of course! — the annual Dinner A Love Story kid’s reading round-up. This year, I’m happy to present a twist: The gifted and talented mother, magazine vet, friend of DALS, and childrens’ book lover extraordinaire, Rory Evans tackles the best audiobooks for kids (and their parents). Take it from here Rory! –Jenny —- Last… Read more »

A Birthday Ritual

I celebrated a birthday last week. There was a nice dinner out — one that required shoes that were not Birkenstocks — and a buttery pile of pancakes for breakfast that came with instructions from my daughters to “Sit down and don’t get up for ANYTHING.” That one sentence would’ve been enough to call the day a win, but a… Read more »

Obsessed

As my daughters slowly, tragically transition from Dollhouse Phase One (turning anything and everything into a miniature world, then spending hours and hours inside that world) to Dollhouse Phase Two (watching Wes Anderson movies, naturally), I’m so glad I have this blog. Seriously. How else would I be able to justify obsessing over pretend kitchens like the one you see… Read more »

Being 12

Anyone who has ever volunteered at school will appreciate the scene in my kitchen all day yesterday: Dozens of 28-ounce cans of diced tomatoes and cannellini beans, enough chopped onions to kill a small animal, large, misshapen bags of frozen homemade chicken stock thawing in the sink, two 6-quart Dutch Ovens on the stovetop, and one lobster pot on the… Read more »

When the Cat’s Away, The Mice Will…Watch Movies The Cat Would Never Watch

Both of my kids did a week of sleep-away camp this summer, different camps, during different weeks, which was wonderful for many reasons: They made new friends, they ate new foods, they learned new skills (including sitting on one end of a raft while a counselor jumped on the other, launching her fifteen feet out into the lake). But the… Read more »

Kid Classics for Summer

Just in time for summer reading, I’m delighted to present this guest-post by Catherine Hong, veteran magazine editor and writer, mother of two, and the Mrs. behind Mrs. Little, one of my most favorite book blogs for kids that you should be reading if you’re not already. Take it away Catherine! –JR I know that plenty of great children’s books… Read more »

How to Shop Responsibly

As we are all well too aware of, having kids these days seems to be synonymous with having stuff. Especially when we are new, impressionable parents, easily bamboozled by marketing messages telling us we need everything — from wipe warmers to the developmental toy du jour — or our kids will be destined for failure. But let’s forget about our… Read more »

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