We got home this past Tuesday night, after spending Christmas with my family and then ten days in Oaxaca, Mexico, with a couple of friends, and I’m so relaxed that I can hardly remember how to type. I’ve never been particularly good at relaxing, but in the past year, I’ve started to get the hang of it: how to do nothing but read for an entire day, how to be a fair-skinned person on a tropical beach and not die of sunburn, how to drink a beer at noon, and how to enjoy swimming in open water without thinking about Jaws or that giant sturgeon they found in Lake Washington. Having just spent more than a week practicing my new skills, I can report that I am ready to go pro.

I took my old Nikon film camera with me and shot three rolls, which I should get back from the lab tomorrow. I’ll share them with you in a few days. In the meantime, I bring you some snaps from my iPhone. I posted a few of them on Instagram, and some of you requested that I share tips and recommendations for eating in Oaxaca. I am not any sort of expert on the region, especially since my Spanish is mostly limited to Donde esta el baño?, but I’d be happy to share the spots that we enjoyed and a few helpful details we learned. For example: tarantulas! Won’t kill you! Cuter than expected!

I hope your 2015 is off to a smooth start. After being sick for part of November and more than half of December, we’re elated to be healthy and are settling back into home with a batch of Granola No. 5 and a roasted chicken from Ashley Rodriguez’s beautiful new book Date Night In. Actually, I should also mention that I’ll be leading a discussion with Ashley this Thursday night at Book Larder. Please join us!

I’ve never been a New-Year’s-resolutions person, but I like to set a few modest goals. In 2015, I want to make pottery again, take a writing class at Hugo House, learn how to sew, and read more fiction – starting with this stunner, which I took on our trip and, after a slow start, wound up loving. I want to write more.

Be back shortly.