Update August 6, 2013

Dear Readers,

You may have noticed that we have been publishing less frequently.

The blog naturally migrated to being every three weeks, and given the summer vacation season, we have decided to change our schedule to avoid inconsistency and to maintain high quality.  After meeting with the staff, we have decided to publish once a month.

Thank you for your patience in this transition, and thank you for being our reader.  If you like what you see, feel free to share it with your friends.

Best wishes,

Nadja Masura, Chief Editor


Dear Reader,

Welcome to SimplySonoma! Your montly destination for all that is fresh, local, and fun; the essence of what is good about life in Sonoma County. Every other week you will find new recipes based on produce you can find at the farmer’s market or harvest from your garden, beautiful pictures of flowers and plants in season, tips on vacationing in your own back yard from original articles and relaxation techniques to home projects. In addition you will find editorials and features on local arts & culture, towns to explore, shopping, nurseries, bakeries, spas, antiques, farmer’s markets, florists/farms, bakeries—all the things that make for a great leisurely day out and a great night in.

Life in Sonoma is one of appreciation of the beauty of the nature that surrounds us, caring about ourselves and others, and cherishing good food and good friends. We are a group of friends from Sonoma County who want to share our insights on living the good life—no matter what your means. Many of us hold graduate degrees in the arts and humanities and are trained in the life of the senses and enjoy having a venue to share our thoughts on esthetics.

On a personal note, the seeds of this project were planted in me years ago and lay dormant, images gathering and ideas waiting unnoticed—until they became ready to sprout with the past year after a meeting with a former Magazine editor in New York who was excited about the idea of a lifestyle magazine about and for Sonoma. A year and a half later, here we are.

As a child growing up in West Sonoma County I have always loved the rolling hillsides, creeks cutting through forests rushing to the open Pacific. My youth was spent playing in apple trees, helping in the garden, marveling at the beautiful perfection of each flower. I was raised on an organic farm where we grew specialty produce for local markets and world renowned chefs like Alice Waters of Chez Panice. I recall once coming to the door in my night gown and bare feet and seeing a man with a funny tall white (chef’s) hat, Mark Malicki (formerly of Iron Horse Vineyard). My uncle who helped raise me, Sy Weisman, was deeply involved in the early organic food movement. He helped craft the state’s organic legislation, and also left his mark through the CCOF Sunflower logo which remains today. Better yet, he was an artist with plants, grafting multiple apples varieties to our trees, creating his own heirloom tomatoes, experimenting with new varieties and flavor combinations of basils, radicchios, Asian pairs, golden-berries. Yum!

Just as he was an art professor by training an organic farmer by trade, life in all its wisdom seems to have led me and my colleagues down unexpected paths, often requiring a dose of humility and the saving grace of gratitude. Life in Sonoma County is truly special. The arts blossom here, and culturally we have Charles Schultz, Luther Burbank, Jack London, ex-hippies with graduate degrees, and hardworking everyday people descended from loggers and farmers to thank for a collective character of hopeful perseverance, innovation, humor, and reverence for nature. Here there is a certain joy and elegance in daily living—an easy perfection which comes out of joy and gratitude for beauty in the small things like how we grow food to eat, get involved in the community, and value the beauty of each and every season. It is my pleasure to begin to share this joy with you through photos, stories, and more.


—Nadja, Chief Editor