Cousin Julia’s and Victor Borge’s Recipes for Thanksgiving and Life
By Calla Corner   |   November 21, 2023

“Put the hen in a Dutch Oven. Brown her in butter for 1 minute. If you have a piano in the kitchen, play ‘The Minute Waltz’ 12 times. Add a little water. Put on the lid and let simmer. When you have finished playing half ‘The Dance of the Hours,’ dragging it slightly, you’re ready […]

Flower Power: Nasturtium Brings Back Memories and Recipes
By Calla Corner   |   June 17, 2021

It’s still amazing to me how photos posted on Instagram can bring unexpected responses. Instantly! It happily happened to me last May and my green, yellow, orange, and red creative juices started flowing. I had just posted a photo of the nasturtium pesto I’d made from the flowers and leaves in my garden. I was […]

Timing is Everything
By Calla Corner   |   April 8, 2021

If you saw John Sant’Ambrogio walking down Coast Village Road, you might mistake him for Larry David. On the other hand, if you saw Larry David walking down Coast Village Road, you might mistake him for John Sant’Ambrogio, the world renowned cellist. That is, if you’ve been the beneficiary of a private birthday concert given […]

The Film About Local Beekeepers That is Causing a Buzz
By Calla Corner   |   September 10, 2020

Although there is still a dispute over whether it was Napoleon or Adam Smith who coined the phrase “The British are a nation of shopkeepers,” there is no dispute that beekeepers in Santa Barbara want to convince us that America is a “nation of beekeepers.” The Beelievers, a short documentary made by UCSB graduate filmmaker […]

Mastering Melanoma
By Calla Corner   |   July 16, 2020

When a young, skilled dermatological surgeon asks if you mind “talking shop” with his assistant while he takes out a squamous-cell skin cancer from your forehead, you answer, “No, I don’t mind.” Especially if you’re a writer and the doctor took out a melanoma on your forearm just nine months before. When that doctor, answers […]

Vicky Diaz Pagenkopf, Family Nurse Practitioner
By Calla Corner   |   January 30, 2020

Family Nurse Practitioner Vicky (Virginia) Diaz Pagenkopf apologizes for getting emotional when she talks about the woman who convinced her to pursue a nursing career. “I was finishing my requirements to go to UCSB to become a high school teacher and was looking for a temporary job. My younger sister, who worked as a nurse’s […]

Dare Wright and the Lonely Doll
By Calla Corner   |   January 2, 2020

If you are the goddaughter of Talullah Bankhead, a child actress and gifted writer, you have quite a tale to tell. If you are also the goddaughter of the famous and stunningly beautiful children’s book author Dare Wright, known not only for her bestselling books that relied on simple storytelling, posed stuffed animals, and extraordinary […]

Spewing Out Stories One Minute at A Time
By Calla Corner   |   August 8, 2019

Roald Dahl could have invented the Short Story Dispenser. The Dahlian gizmo, that spews out free stories to an on-the-go or bored public at the push of a button, is the machination of Short Édition, a French company based in Grenoble. The publishing company, created in 2011, has more than 9,000 authors, who submit short, […]

Moody Sisters’ Cottages Go Modern
By Calla Corner   |   June 20, 2019

Once upon a time there were four spinster sisters who built storybook cottages in a town better known for its mansions reflecting California’s Spanish heritage. This fairy tale is the story of the four Moody sisters who in the 1930s and 1940s, long before women were recognized in the fields of architecture, interior design, or […]