To my Life In A Skillet readers,

What is this blog about??? I’d written a good handful of exploratory posts before I figured it out. Then one morning – while driving to the grocery store – I heard a story on Morning Edition about Depression-era photographer Dorothea Lange. She taught photography in the 1950’s and challenged her students to bring in photographs of where they lived. Not a photo of a room, or a street, but ones that said something profound about their lives. When her students challenged her to do the same, she showed them a photo of her deformed foot.

That’s when I realized my raison d’être. Life In A Skillet is my photo.

I’ll make no claims as to any profundity, but I can definitely point to the kitchen as a psychic center of my life. I’m the family meal planner and cook; it’s been my work for 20 years now. Whether shopping or chopping or just thinking about what we’re going to eat for dinner, I’ve invested an enormous amount of time and energy food. Increasingly more over the years, as I’ve learned to bypass the ease of frozen and canned items to prep and cook from scratch, but it’s all good. It’s quality family time. Food has become as a means of expression and of exploration. Of infusing our lives with flavor. And nutrition. Even ritual: we hike and stop to eat. Friends come to visit, and we eat.

So I cook and write and take photos and indulge myself a bit here pulling it all together for a narrative of my life, as it relates to food – my life in a skillet.

The name evolved one cloudy winter afternoon while my youngest was learning to skateboard along a cliff overlooking the sea. We stopped occasionally to watch the surfers and talk. I mentioned I wanted to start a blog that had to do with food. He was quite encouraging, as ten year old boys generally are toward their mothers. We tossed around a few ideas for the name, and this is what he liked best. Afterwards, we sat and sipped hot chocolate from a thermos and ate store-bought bagels. It was a really lovely afternoon – a perfect example, in my mind, of how there is a bit of food almost everywhere.

So here are my bite-sized thoughts about food and any other little thing that catches my eye. They do run the gamut – I’m discovering my quirky side more and more as Life In A Skillet evolves.

I know there is a wealth of wonderful content out there, so thank you for stopping by and taking the time to read my work. If you enjoy what you see, please choose one of the options at the top of the page where it says “Follow The Skillet” to get my newest blog posts in your most convenient way.


Maggie Daniel Caldwell is a writer and photographer living, working, and inspired by the Central Coast of California. She runs the blog TravelSearcher, is the author of Animalfish Alphabet and develops online content for both business and non-profit organizations as Aptos Multimedia.

Email me at maggie [AT] lifeinaskillet [DOT} com (you know the right format!) or reach me through Blogdash.