Welcome and thank you for being here! I’m Calysta and I created this food blog as a space to celebrate how food can be a vehicle for personal enjoyment, community building and a wellness lifestyle that supports mental health. 

As a foodie, enthusiastic home cook and Licensed Clinical Social Worker, so much of my life revolves around supporting people on their journey to improving their mental and emotional health. I have always seen a strong correlation between what we eat and how we feel— and it turns out that science has proven so over and over again. I hope to foster greater  awareness of how food and its preparation and sourcing can nourish our minds as well as our bodies. 

I also hope to foster engagement around themes that bring me joy: cooking and baking, connecting with friends and family, creating fun and engaging experiences around food, and helping myself and others become more intentional about enjoying life.

Originally from Los Angeles, I currently call Oakland, California home. I have a delightful 4 year old son and a plethora of nieces and nephews that I claim as mine as well.  In addition to my mental health profession,  I also have a background in teaching yoga and theatre including teaching, producing, writing, acting.  Some say I’m dramatic and I say “AM I?!?!?” ;)~ I love to travel and I’ve found myself under the tutelage of many home cooks in Samoa, Tonga, Fiji, Greece, Vietnam, South Africa, Japan, New Zealand, and The Marshall Islands. My travel experiences have been magical and I hope to offer culinary travel opportunities here on the blog in the future. 

My love of cooking began when I was around 10 years old, when I somehow began making lots of sauces (all vinegar based, as my mother tells it). One thing led to another and you couldn’t pull out of the kitchen!  I found such comfort in being creative.  I noticed a meditative state I experienced while cooking that still occurs to this day. While some see cooking as stressful, I see it as the ultimate stress relief! I also love growing in my knowledge of food and sharing those findings with others. 

In many ways this food and lifestyle blog is a natural evolution of my creative, social and career backgrounds that have all centered around engaging with and helping people. I have so many ideas for recipes, experiences, tools, resources and events that I hope to share here. Please stick around and enjoy what this blog has to offer. Click here to jump into some yummy recipes!