So many things to write about...
Many days have passed since the last post. I wanted to write a Father's Day post.
I wanted to write about how great my dad is, how he taught me hard work, hospitality, pancake making and butchering. How he taught me the joy of storying. How he taught me that it is important for a husband to love his wife like he loved mom and helped me know instinctively that Philip would be a good husband because he loves me like Daddy loves Mom.
I also wanted to write a post about what a great dad Philip is to our kids. They think he is much nicer than me. He makes us laugh. He works hard. He reads stories when it is way to late and teaches our children that daddies should love the mommies in the house.
BUT, I was out on a date with Philip eating a yummy cheeseburger, fries and fried okra at a BBQ joint downtown while Holly babysat the kids.
On Monday our friends Kathryn, Max and Mary came for their summer visit from NJ. We are so happy anytime they come. The kids wander the woods, build forts, play in the stream and come in the house occasionally for food. Patrick, Max and Rose set up the tent in the woods this visit. Mary and Maggie kept it a bit closer to home. Many glasses of milk are drunk, toast eaten with jam.
Holly and I had to run to town to get some Blenheim Ginger Ale for the occasion. When the peaches are ripe and juicy we have to have that stuff. It is unlike any ginger ale you have ever tasted. We found some in Fresh Market. We never go in that store because it is too wonderful. There are some proverbs written about that store. I have to drive far around it so I will not go into debt. But when the peaches are ripe we have to make a trip to buy a six-pack.
I recommend that you cut up some peaches, put them into a glass and then pour part of a bottle of the spicy ginger ale over those peaches. Eat with a spoon or just drink it down. It is an amazing taste sensation. The Blenheim ginger ale is the spiciest drink I have ever tried. It will burn your lips. But married to the ripe peaches, the burn simmers down to a glow. Pure delight. PLEASE try this treat sometime!!!
We had our peaches and ginger ale for dessert after our nice farewell feast for Holly. Holly loves duck. So of course we thawed out a couple of ducks, boned them and seared them, made a sauce with some of our plum jam from last year, sesame oil, garlic, rice vinegar, and a few other odds and ends. Then we served it over a delicious salad made from the nice lettuce in our garden. What a feast!
So after a good bye to Holly, we welcomed Krystin and Ingrid who dropped in to work in the garden for the day. They joined Kathryn and me and we pulled weeds for hours. Row by row we worked. Stopping for lunch, frittata made with the days eggs, homemade cheese and onions and squash. A big salad and some bread gave us enough energy to head back out and rediscover several rows of green beans. The gals were such hard workers. I wanted to cry as I saw how much we got accomplished. It was hard work but so very pleasant. We chatted about work, faith, friendship and metaphors. They asked Kathryn and me to tell them our thoughts on gardening and marriage. Much laughter. We marveled over the wonder of onions and potatoes.
Today we started the day a little slowly, worked on chores, laundry, paper work and food distribution. Our dear friend, Sean, came over and took Max, Patrick and Thomas for a hike up to Tinker Cliffs. When they reached the summit we ran out to the field to wave. I think they saw us, but they were invisible to our eyes. Mary, Kathryn and Maggie had a girl's trip to the art museum and a birthday party. We wrapped the day up with a delicious feast. Of course we had to have a salad with the remaining sweet and tender leaves. Olives, almonds, cheese and some raisins with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I picked a basket of potatoes and made salt potatoes, as per my friend Dawn's recipe. So simple: boil the whole new potatoes in water that is heavily salted with at least a half a cup of salt. We also pan-fried lamb steaks in garlic and olive oil. Bowls of melted garlic butter for dipping the potatoes manned each end of the table. Mmmmmm. What a treat. After Thomas cleaned up all the leftovers(how can one teenager eat so much?) the kids lit sparklers and danced in the starlight.
After such a long hike, the kids are happy to sleep in beds in the house. Sean is happy to sleep in the tent in the woods. Tomorrow is a new day. I will have to get feed. Chores will have to be done. Philip will have to leave early for work. But now we are tired and satisfied. Ready for bed. Just had to share how delicious good friends are!
Let's raise a toast to summer! Here's to dear friends, old and new.