I was born and raised in Akron, Ohio where my early visual interest in suburban house types and studying floor plans and rooms in 1960s design magazines began a passion for historic architecture. Catering doll teas from my aqua Easy Bake oven, messing up my mother’s pink-applianced 1950s kitchen for my Girl Scout “Cooking” badge, and hours spent in my own pink play kitchen under the basement stairs would also instill a love of pantries and food. In 1974 I moved to my grandparents’ New Hampshire farm with my mother and two brothers after memorable summer visits there as a child.
In 1984 I received my BA in art history from Wheaton College and spent my junior year studying art and architecture at University College London. After working for the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Yankee Magazine Intern Program (I had also been an intern), I moved into Gibson House Museum, a preserved Victorian-era townhouse in the Back Bay, where I lived and worked as a resident guide. Later I would complete a history and study report of the site that helped define its eventual Boston Landmark and National Landmark status.
While in graduate school I worked as a “Project Prepare” intern, and wrote planning and historic preservation studies of two New Hampshire towns, Jaffrey and Harrisville, for the National Trust for Historic Preservation. I received my master’s in historic preservation studies from Boston University in 1991.
After several years as a preservation consultant and a job in public relations at Antioch New England Graduate School I became site manager for another historic house museum, Barrett House, a rural New Hampshire manse built in 1800 and owned and operated by Historic New England. I planned diverse programs, generated press and articles in national magazines and operated a weekend tearoom that was featured in the original Victoria Magazine.
I have contributed a variety of house-related and personal essays to design magazines such as Victoria and Old-House Interiors, among others, and have contributed to many regional and local publications. My first book The Pantry—Its History and Modern Uses was published in May 2007 by Gibbs Smith, Publisher and combined my life-long interest in pantries as well as the domestic and design history of kitchen spaces. You can read more about pantries and earlier domestic musings (2005-2010) at my blog In the Pantry.
For over a decade I lived with my husband Temple Pond and our three children in his ancestral 1813 Federal home in a classic New England village. Here we built two traditional-style butler's pantries and collected too many things. Now we live on a ridge in Kentucky where we are farming and planning our ideal country farm home (with pantries, of course). You can read more about our farm on my blog Farmwife At Midlife.
If you are interested in local produce and products and related information from south central Kentucky's Old Order Mennonite community and other sustainable farmers in Casey County, check out my blog at GROW Casey County.