This is the kitchen where we talk about food, life, and recovery—a spiritual path to healing and peace.

You are invited to keep coming back to A Cup of Kindness to share your experience, strength and hope; fears, doubts and insecurities; and to pick up information, inspiration … and have a little fun!

My story
In January 2007, at the age of 51, I joined a 12-step program and began my recovery from food addiction, losing 75 pounds in the process. Read more…

In January 2011, at the age of 55, I began my recovery from a multi-trauma accident, 36 fractures, damaged lungs, and post traumatic stress. Read more…

I am deeply grateful for all the kindnesses, large and small, offered to me in recovery. Here I am... alive… still making progress … still not perfect … finding a new way forward in a growing community of women and men who share a lot in common around food and life.

I hope you'll join me in this kitchen and let me know what's cooking with you.

A Cup of Kindness

Open Heart Project


A New Loving Kindness Meditation

Towards all beings… including me

Let’s wake up…

Know our True Nature

Connect with Goodness

Be wisely kind to all

Take care of genuine needs

Grow joy

Practice a healing discipline

Get creative

Keep learning

Feel confident, grateful, and peaceful


Find love

Love & Light,


Repair of the World

18 steps we are taking at home

When the pandemic first started, I felt utterly wrecked – grief stricken and heart broken. I was overwhelmed by the firestorm that was going to exponentially increase suffering due to the widening cracks in our fragile systems, and due to the further rise of fear, greed, hatred, delusion, violence, ignorance, xenophobia, injustice, inequality, and cruelty.

Gradually, I began to follow the advice of Mr. Rogers’ mother. “Look for the helpers.” I looked for what the helpers were doing and what I could do to help.

We are following guidelines for social distancing, making donations to food pantries, and working to elect responsible leaders. But what else could we do to help?

I thought of tikkun olam – a Jewish concept that describes action on behalf of the powerless and work towards justice through acts of kindness. The Hebrew phrase tikkun olam translates as “world repair,” which led me to think of the correlation between the pandemic and environmental degradation, between human health and the health of the planet.

What actions could my small family take to help heal the planet and match our intentions for tikkun olam? Would any of our changes make the slightest difference to the huge challenges ahead for the world? I decided to “act as if…”

Here are 18 of the daily steps that we are taking in our small household to help make a healthier world.

1. Most of our meals are vegetarian. Giving up meat can reduce one’s carbon footprint by as much as a quarter. We eat fish once or twice a week and chicken or turkey on rare occasions.

2. Food waste is a huge emitter of greenhouse gases.  We eat more than 30 pounds of vegetables and fruit per week. I buy and prepare what we eat and nothing ever goes bad before we can get to it. Well, sometimes the odd bunch of parsley gets a little gnarly.

3. We keep a compost bucket in the kitchen and, until the pandemic required a hiatus, ScrapDogs Community Compost picked up all food scraps, yard waste, and soiled paper. In return, we can get or can donate ½ a yard of compost delivered annually.

4. No more plastic wrap. No more foil. We use parchment paper for sheet pan dinners, roasting vegetables, and baking fish; beeswax wraps for covering and wrapping food; and glass containers for storage.

5. No more plastic yogurt containers. I’m finally making our own yogurt and it’s delicious.

6. No more canned beans. Cooking dried beans is easier than I thought and the variety of beans and recipes is amazing.

7. Reduced food packaging. We buy from bins, baskets, and bulk; at our food co-op and from local farmers; using our own cotton bags and glass jars; for produce, nuts, seeds, beans, grains, granola, almond butter, coffee, spices, bar soap, dishwashing soap, and shampoo.

8. No more sponges. We use a hand woven cotton cloth and a walnut scrubber as needed. We’re looking forward to having a dishwasher soon, which is the most water-saving, energy efficient, and effective method for washing dishes.

9. We use cloth kitchen towels… most of the time. We haven’t given up paper towels completely. We always use cloth napkins.

10. We carry our own reusable water bottles and travel thermoses. 

11. No more toothpaste tubes! We are now using Bite Toothpaste Bits and bamboo toothbrushes. Four months worth of bits come in a recyclable glass bottle with an aluminum lid. Refills come in 100% home compostable pouches, in kraft envelopes padded with post-consumer recycled newspapers. For a reduced carbon footprint, Bite products are shipped using existing postal routes. It may take a little longer, but on average this will have a smaller carbon footprint than driving to the store to pick up a plastic tube.

12. Speaking of shipping, we use no-rush shipping options whenever it is offered. This means that our order doesn’t require an extra trip. It arrives via a regular route.

13. We are doing what we can to eliminate excess packaging.  We live in a small town and, especially now, we want to support local merchants. However, we occasionally use Amazon. Our Amazon account notes our request for less packaging for everything I order. I look for products that offer “frustration-free packaging.” Instead of clamshell cases and plastic-coated wire ties, FFP items are delivered in easy to open, 100% recyclable packages.

14. No more nail polish. Pre-pandemic, I had made a change to polish-free manicures and pedicures. Buffing only.

15. We use rechargeable batteries. We are still looking for some place where we can recycle our old batteries and light bulbs.

16. A spray bottle with a solution of water and white vinegar really works for cleaning. I’m hoping to persuade my husband to let go of harsher cleaners and laundry bleach.

17. Green building. We bought property in Maine and decided to build our “forever home” here. So, instead of taking down the existing house and sending much of it to a landfill, we donated the whole house to Habitat for Humanity. H4H offered the house to the highest bidder who will move the house to another location. The money paid by the bidder will go towards building a new Habitat ReStore in our town. We are building the new house as greenly as possible on the old foundation, and hope to approach net zero energy efficiency.

18. Garden. Michael Pollan says that planting a garden is “… one of the most powerful things an individual can do to reduce your carbon footprint…” My husband will make our native garden grow to feed bees, bugs and birds, and our own minds, bodies, and spirits.

Will our post-pandemic world find its way to a better future? While I feel good about the changes we are making at home, we need collective action for larger scale change.

We will lobby our state and local leaders, including our town’s Climate Change Committee, to pursue climate protection legislation. We are engaged in electing political candidates who prove that climate change is among their top priorities. We support national climate action organizations, such as the Sierra Club, Moms Clean Air Force, 350.org, and the Sunrise Movement; and local organizations, such as Coastal Mountains Land Trust, Friends of Acadia, and the Maine Island Trail Association.

I know that we aren’t perfect and that’s okay. We are more connected with others who are helping. We are learning and we are making progress. We are part of something far greater than ourselves – a movement towards tikkun olam – repair of the world.

May we all be well, happy and peaceful.

Love & Light,


Staying sane… relatively

Here’s my little chart for what I am doing on a daily basis, as best I can, to stay relatively sane, to cultivate connection and peace. It’s going well. Not perfectly. It is progress though.

I wake up and look for a sense of gratitude.

I choose one word as my intention for the day saying, “I want to feel… “ Today my word was “connected.”

I read from Psalms for Praying: An Invitation to Wholeness by Nan C. Merrill and Meditations with Teresa of Avila: A Journey Into the Sacred by Megan Don.

I sit quietly for 20 – 30 minutes, returning to my word as often as need be.

I prepare and enjoy healthy food.

I look for opportunities to help others and I ask for help when I need it. Asking for help can be a gift to someone.

I do some art now and then. I’m hoping to get a daily art practice going.

I walk Miranda-the-labradoodle, often with a friend; and join friends for yoga and Gyrokinesis via Zoom.

I listen to music and sometimes play the flute or sing.

I pray and hold the world in the Light.

I get in bed and my husband and I each read a psalm aloud.

I find something about my day that makes me smile.

I go to sleep.

The more I practice, the more moments arise of profound peace, even in the midst of the crisis we are facing. I notice that my heart is eased.  I look out and see beauty. I see people being kind. I see stars in the sky, Miranda-the-labradoodle, and my good husband. I feel grateful.

May we all be well, happy and peaceful.

Love and Light,


Spiritual Evolution

It is March 24, 2020. Last night it snowed 3 inches. I love snow. I love winter. My morning readings were particularly wise. Or perhaps I especially needed wisdom and just received what is always there. I took what I read and it percolated in me on our walk.

The reading was the following from “Meditations with Teresa of Avila: A Journey Into the Sacred” by Megan Don. I hope it’s okay to share it with you here.

“By experiencing separation from our divine source, we also come to see ourselves as separate from one another, whether it be through difference in culture, religion, or species. Our spiritual history is and has been a slow process of evolution. It is bringing us back into a place of unity – with our divine source, with ourselves and with others. An acutely dire but seemingly necessary experience for our spiritual growth entails coming into complete consciousness of the separation. By doing so, we open the way for the unity to occur. This dynamic is found among most mystics and is known as the “dark night of the soul.” Many people today are living in a state of separation without conscious awareness of doing so. They are also unaware of the light of unity that awaits them. Conversely, those entering the final purification know that there is always light after loss…

The dark night of the soul can be a time when people become lost and return to their old ways of living, forgetting the love that previously shone in their hearts. Or it can be a time of moving into a more mature spirituality. Love for the Beloved is no longer only about joyful emotions but is a true surrender of self. A sense of selflessness, and an ability to love for love’s sake alone, is born.

Let us join with the mystics in learning that we all come from the same divine source and that we can all actively participate in bringing a message of peace to our world through our daily living.”

May we all be well, happy and peaceful.

Love & Light,