Sunday, May 27, 2007

Weekend Dog Blogging- The Slime Machines

It's been a while since I was able to do Weekend Dog Blogging, and while I was gone, Sweet Nicks discontinued it. But I have this lovely picture, so I figured, why not post. We spent last week in Missouri, visiting family, and Juniper had her first lengthy interaction with other dogs in a non-kennel environment. Here she is hanging out with the Slime Machines, AKA Beefy and Sequoia. Everyone had a good time, Juniper was a good pack member. Unfortunately, she stayed at the dog spa and got her bath BEFORE meeting these drool masters...

I tell you, walking in Bart's house is like wading in a river of dog- there's always one right in front of you and you have to just push on through with your thighs.

Monday, May 14, 2007

A Local Dinner for Mother's Day


Sunday was the jewel of the weekend- beautiful weather, pleasant activities and a yummy, 90% local dinner. The highpoint of the day, of course, was the phone call from my sons, who were spending the weekend together in St. Louis, attending something called Beer Fest. I'm told there was a lovely Blueberry beer served.

Here in PA there was no Beerfest. Instead we took the dog for a walk on our local Rails to Trails. Juniper was excited to be out in the woods, Chuck and I were excited to see a Baltimore Oriole. We checked on the progress of the wild black raspberry and wineberry bushes along the verge, with June in mind. I noticed how much wild garlic mustard was growing alongside the path as well. It was idyllic.

Later, we drove over the mountain through the orchards to visit a friend's farm. Such a peaceful spot, just a few miles outside of Gettysburg. We walked along the edge of her orchard to get a view of the pond; her horses frisked around in the pasture, keeping en eye on Juniper from a distance, just as she kept her eyes on them. It was so quiet there. I think of our area as rural, but the traffic noise from the interstate a mile or so away creates a constant, almost subliminal, drone.

She tells me that while they have been feeding the beef cattle on grain, next year they will make the change to grass finishing. She says they will raise two grass finished steer; I'm hoping it won't be much more trouble to make it three. I don't know yet if I will go to meet him...

And then back home for a local dinner- grilled pork steak, roasted asparagus, salad and for dessert, a rhubarb custard. Everything was local except the olive oil to lubricate the asparagus and the Girl Scout cookies used for the crust of the rhubarb custard.

It was a good day.

Monday, May 7, 2007

Change is in the air

Kwan Yin and the copper beech

A great change is underway at our house. As of May 1, I am a full time employee, something I haven't been since 1992. I have a different job, albeit in the same organization. While I am thrilled to be employed, excited about my new job, I am also mourning the end of my old job, one I loved beyond words, with people who were superb to work with.

I'm also worried about how the addition of 13 more hours a week at work will change the fundaments of our life. To eat the way we eat takes time; time to gather the ingredients, since we can't just run to the grocery store and pick up what we need, and time to cook, since the food we eat is minimally processed. Without a CSA, we are growing more of our food- will I be able to keep up with that? What about when harvest comes around? Will I be able to work all day, every day and still deal with bushels of peaches or tomatoes when I come home? Ripe fruits and vegetables won't wait around because I am weary, or until the weekend when there is time.

I'm lazy and I am afraid I will slide into the path of least resistance. And I am such a whiner!

Tuesday, May 1, 2007


This 1s why I love Spring...And it's all in my backyard. Happy May Day.grape leaves- who ever imagined they were so pretty?
Lilac ; not purple, but lovely all the same
Viburnum- and does it ever smell wonderful~
Violets- one of my favorites- I trained Chuck and the kids to mow around them when in bloom
Bacchus and the grape- Chuck's god of wine