I’m Donata. I live over here on Fobes Hill in Snohomish, Washington, inside of the great Pacific Northwest. My husband and I tend 3 acres where we like to play with sustainable gardening and hobby farming. I spend the bulk of my time in the kitchen where you can find me herb crafting and putting up the food that we grow. The kitchen has been like a vortex to me since when I can’t even remember.
I spent the past 30 years cocooning my kids and throwing epic parties and even blogging from inside of my kitchen. I suppose in a way, I was hiding. And now, well, it’s just me and the hubs and the dog and the chickens. I find myself writing about food more than I do cooking; that’s where this blog comes in.
I am passionate about food, slow food, local food, real food and especially about foodie philanthropy. I spend a couple days of each week preparing food for others and helping at the food bank. This passion, I believe, stems from an Italian heritage and the gift of growing up with grandparents who were children of the Great Depression and participants in World War II. They taught me the value of a victory garden and the art of gardening to maintain cultural heritage, along with the art of sharing those things. They both strongly conveyed a waste not want not approach to food that was invaluable to me when feeding a young family on a budget.
Everything the woman ever wrote or directed.
While other kids came home and watched MTV I watched Julia, Jacques Pepin, East Meets West. While nursing my babies I watched Martha Stewart. Then, Michael Chiarello, The Barefoot Contessa, Nigella Lawson. And, Rachel Ray, David Rocco, and re-runs of the rest!
I adore reading foodie things. To me, a cookbook reads like a novel, but I’m completely obsessed with books about farming, gardening, traveling, renovating and anything that involves food and culture. Someday I’ll make a list.
I get a tad bit overwhelmed with all of the Foodie Periodicals out there, but I am currently obsessed with Life and Thyme.
I spend roughly one day a week here as a volunteer receptionist and cook for their U-turn program once a month.
Snohomish Food Bank
I volunteer here once a week or when needed. I get to manage the produce section during Service Day.
My Notable Experiences Include:
I’ve been at it for 30 years with 3 kids, no to get political, but, they all have college degrees. They are just as happy as they should be and the two oldest seem to have found balanced relationships. I think that’s notable.
We’re still married, this July (2021), we’ll celebrate 30. We were teen parents, see above. I think we’re doing alright.
I’m not certain if this is an obsession or notable, but my cupboards are full of my own herbs and wildcrafted flavorful things, my canning cupboard is full of jewel colored concoctions, so I would have to say that I’m nailing the edible gardening thing.
December 2019, University of Washington: Culture, Literature, and Art
Global Studies: Rome
I was able to spend a month in Rome in a Studio Art program. My daughter came with me, so fun! I met David Rocco in the market in the Piazzo DiFiori but was too star-struck to speak! So embarrassing.
I had the honor to work a season in the 21 Acres Food Access Program. We hosted a CSA program for people on food assistance programs and held farm markets with produce from local farms in low income areas.
this is the literary and arts journal at the University of Washington Bothell where I participated on the editing team. I won an honor from the department for my artwork, See of Blue, a treatise on the definition of art.
I’ve written two cookbooks, though I’ve never published. One is often referenced by my children for easy dinnertime recipes. I shared it with them on google docs. Another I sold at craft fairs, this one my mom references constantly and brags about, yea me!
I sometimes write essays and opinion pieces on food. Most are buried deep within my saved docs, but one or two have made their way to a small publication that used to exist called the Lake Stevens Journal.