I live in the Boonies and love it! I am a school teacher (special ed) and for fun I love to hike, mountain bike, dance, draw, paint, sculpt and sing. I never really use cookbooks or recipes except to check for what type of seasoning a certain type of food uses (say indian food)or cooking temps. I like to experiment with different spices and create original delicious dishes. But when in doubt (for spices and temps) I usually turn to the good 'ol Joy of Cooking since it is one of the few cookbooks that lives on my shelf. My passions are the same as the things that I do for fun. Lately I am most passionate about mountain biking although that is on hold b/c I am 8 1/2 months pregnant.. so it'll be a while until I can get back out there. I am also passionate about fitness.. I practice yoga on a regualr basis and enjoy what my body is capable of.. even with a little buddha in tote!.... My pet peeves include.....laziness.. especially when it is my own...and crumbs.. anywhere YUCK! If I had a month off without responsibilities and unlimited funds (which would have to be the case or there would still be responsibilities) I would go to southern spain and live in a little villa and learn to speak spanish...ahhh that would be lovely.. or I would go on a tour of loal spas and get a massage on a daily basis... ok reality time!