Christmas Is Coming, We Are Getting Fat.


Another Thanksgiving weekend for the books, and because of our BZ there were no outbursts, or arrests for drunken lawn mower driving.

There was a lot of eating and baking, and then eating the baking, which I find much more enjoyable than venturing out to shop on Black Friday. Why would you want to camp out in the cold to fight with some stranger, when you can fight with your own family any time?

If you were fortunate enough to escape family drama for Thanksgiving, remember Christmas is coming. Maybe you are in the midst of 8 days of dysfunction right now. Remember every detail (like you could forget?) in order to entertain your friends, including us, after the holidays are over. You just might have the winning dysfunctional family incident for Buffer Zone Day 2014.

Heading to Thanksgiving Dinner?



On the way to your family’s house for Thanksgiving dinner with the extended clan? I’m going to guess that your dinner table companions do not resemble the ones in this famous Norman Rockwell painting, except maybe the guy in the bottom right hand corner. He looks a little creepy….

Which it is why it is very important to get to the dining room table first so that you can stake out the best seat, far away from your repellative (our term for ridiculously crazy relatives), and close to the exit.

Hopefully, you have done some deep breathing exercises in the car on the way, and have packed a little flask of holiday spirits.

Wishing you a thankful day.


They’re Coming! A guest post about family and food from The Buffer Zone

Excited about my first guest blog, and inspired to make a few of the healthy recipes on Small Potatoes as soon as the triple chocolate caramel creme cookies come out of the oven!

Small Potatoes

Each month, Small Potatoes will be inviting a guest blogger to share  stories, recipes, and relationships to their food systems. Enjoy this first one from Diane at The Buffer Zone. Would you like a side of dysfunction with that turkey? 

H_bushesThey’re Coming!

Diane, of  The Buffer Zone

Buffer  n. 1. Something that lessens or absorbs the shock of an impact.  2. A neutral area between two conflicting powers.

Buffer Zone  n. 1. Where you can hide when you realize the “conflicting powers” are your dysfunctional relatives.

Lately, I’ve been trying to follow a diet I like to call the “Don’t Eat Crap Diet.” You know, no processed foods, no Diet Coke, blah, blah, etc., which is why I check out this blog about eating locally grown, right-from-the-ground type food.  However, Thanksgiving is upon us, and that means relatives breaking our established Buffer Zone to join us for dinner…

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Getting Ready…

Changing it up here on The Buffer Zone Blog in between making a map of escape routes from the location where Thanksgiving dinner will be held, and getting ready to be the FIRST guest blogger on an award winning site.

Check back to see the blog post, and the new BZ layout after it’s completed. Meanwhile, if you are extremely nearsighted, enjoy this version.

Of Course I Have An Opinion!


Does that surprise you?

This month I have been participating in a collective project at, called Project O, about the importance of having an opinion and being free to express it. The blog posts have come from all over the world (look for my post in Article #111! – yes, that needed an exclamation point because I’m really excited about it, and throw in some smiley faces also), and it has been engrossing, to say the least.

While it is a serious subject and survey, I can’t help but chuckle at the amount of differing opinions first expressed at the dinner table with family. But isn’t that how it usually goes? One minute you are calmly talking about the new rail project or proposed tax hike, only to find yourself freely expressing how you felt the time your sister borrowed your new sweater to wear on her date with your ex-husband. This reminds your father to tell you about his newest conspiracy theories, while your granny posts pictures of her pot roast on Instagram.

Yelling is the only option by this point to get your what-you-know-is-right opinion across, but no one will hear you over the screams of your nephew, who has just fallen head first off his chair and split his lip open. Your mom can always be counted on to agree with your point of view, but she fainted at the sight of all that blood, and is of no use whatsoever.

Ahhh, good times…..Looking forward to Thanksgiving dinner.