Wednesday, November 24, 2010

...and then I stuck my hand in the middle of a dog fight.

So I've been gone for a while, eh? Yeah, well... I stuck my hand in the middle of a dog fight.

Gross, huh? It got worse.

But I had lots of help.

It's hard to tie your shoes one-handed.
We managed to squeeze in a little more summer fun, though. We ran around the docks with our friends.

Hunter learned to fly.
Just one of your average ordinary Vineyard summers.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Fair rides are fun. Or, they are fun in my memory. In real live present day action, they are a little scary.

And make me a wee bit dizzy.
And unlike my offspring, I cannot ingest Fair Food whilst queasy. And let's be honest here, the Fair is all about food. Whether you're a chocolate on your fried dough kinda guy (I am decidedly NOT)...
Or you're more into the whole local BBQ thing.
Oh, I am. I very. very much am.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Tomato Sauce

It all starts with tomatoes. Lots and lots of tomatoes.

They don't have to be perfect, you just need to pick a whole bunch of 'em (I assume you also have a million tomatoes this year, it being such a wonderful tomato year and all.), and dice them up, thusly:
I wish my honey wouldn't bite his nails. Doesn't seem to interfere with his knife skills, though.

And throw them in a big pot:

And let it cook.

Then put on a silly hat

And take pictures of the steam rising.

And voila! Tomato sauce! At least that's my experience of it. The problem with not doing it myself is that I miss some steps, what with all my documenting and wine drinking resonsibilities.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Our trip back in time, to the grain store in the Model T (a hipstamatic photo essay)


There are real live, honest to goodness PEARS growing in my yard. What? You don't believe me? Here's proof:

But that's not the only one. He has friends. Lots of friends.

A treeful of friends.

I've always known this was a pear tree. But I put it in the same category as the choke cherry and the crab apple. A tree that puts out pretty flowers in the spring and feeds the bees and then might bear some kind of fruit, but nothing edible. Nothing sweet and crisp and delightful.
Did I mention it's in my yard?

Shades of Tomato

Fixation of the week: Synthetic Corp's Hipstamatic iPhone app. Oh joy and rapture. I don't know enough about photography to understand what it does, but let's just say there are different lenses and films and flashes to choose from, and pictures that would normally look like this:

End up looking like this:

Oh I just love enhancements, don't you? I wish there were a writing enhancement app.
Any-hoo, a few days ago, I took a walk in my garden, and was struck by the variety of tomato color. So I thought I'd share.

Pics of fried greenies and tomato basil salad to come.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Talk about your plenty

This summer is just going too fast for me. Case in point: I have to go back to work in exactly three weeks. What? What happened to all my summer projects? All the blogging? All the organizing things so that life will be so much easier when we go back to school? All the lazing about on the beach, reading trashy Swedish novels and drinking Coronas? At least I got SOMEthing accomplished. Okay, so I did some gardening and harvesting and cooking, too. But this whole summer seemed like a hot, sweaty race against time. Quick! Eat the lettuce before it bolts! Pick the green beans before they get tough and stringy! Turn on the irrigation before everything dies! Even our summer squash isn't doing well, as if it's too hot. For summer squash? And yet, there it sits, stunted and dying on the vine.
Luckily, at Camp RunAmok, we can repurpose our gone-by veggies. Piggies just love anything that vaguely resembles foodstuffs.

And I love to watch them grunt and root and munch.


I need a new camera. Seriously. Is this the best I can do? I play with the settings and try and try and try, and then end up with nuttin'. Whatever. The point here is to document my thrilling farm life, not to post amazing pictures. So here I am, showing you the kids' beautiful sunflowers that are so much more beautiful in person (in flower?) than they appear in this picture. Until they start to die.

And then your kids start nagging you about how maybe you should have just left them in the garden, where they belong, rather than picking them and MAKING THEM DIE. 'Cause you really shouldn't pick flowers that don't belong to you, Mom.
Where did they learn to nag like that? Oh, right...
Anyway, I'm hoping to inspire them to enter some in the Fair, because they are just lovely. But in the meantime, can someone tell me why dying sunflowers smell like pee? 'Cause damn.

Friday, August 6, 2010


So here's my current obsession (hopefully it gets along well with cilantro and Lady Gaga and the other objects of my obsession roaming around inside my little brain): noses. Animal noses, to be exact. Like pig noses, for example:

And also sheep noses. Here's Daddy:

Do I smell really good or what? Oh, I suppose it all has something to do with the heat, or my being the bearer of tastey treats. But maybe the rapid nose sniffing is how they show their love. Which is what I will continue to think until one of my blog followers proves otherwise. Oh wait, no one reads this stupid thing. Perfect! I can continue to live in my fantasy world. And upload poor-quality video of knucklehead ram lambs who like to butt and run and kick.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Cool as a Cucumber

Ughhh... So sweaaaaty...
What's it called when you're just sitting in front of the fan with a glass of ice water pressed to your wrist, not moving, and you're still sweating? Shvitzing? I think that's it. Feel free to correct me, Jewish friends.
Seriously, my skin contantly glistens with sweat. It might be sexy if I didn't also stink so bad. And my hair wasn't so frizzy. And the heat didn't make the mere thought of skin-to-skin repulse me so.
Anyway, I visited my friend's garden yesterday. Nicole is new to gardening, and had a lot of questions for this seasoned veteran (ha!). She was worried about proper basil picking technique, and why she didn't have any squash yet. I put on my best farmer face, trying to reassure her with what little knowledge I have. The truth is, her garden is beautiful. She is doing everything right. I couldn't help but feel a little tinge of pride- that maybe our little farm has helped inspire her, or given her the encouragement she needed to dip her toes in the ocean of self-sufficiency. It is a small thing, yes. But this is what it's all about, no? Influencing others in a significant, positive way?
But back to the garden. And her lovely little cucumber blossoms, so adorably star-shaped and hopeful. I wish I had my camera with me, because I was a little obsessed with them. Might have something to do with our oversight in the cucumber department this year. (How does one FORGET to plant cucumbers? And of course I just found a wonderfully easy pickle recipe that I will never, ever get to use. Until next year.) And then my amazing friend Nicole, who was already taking my heathen children for the afternoon, even though she had to mow her lawn with a (gasp!) push mower, because her poor husband has ruptured a disk in his back (eek!), did something so very wonderfully generous, and thus indicative of her personality.
She gave me her one perfectly perfect cucumber.
I know! I love her.
And guess what I did with it? No! Not that, you dirty, dirty bird. Sheesh.
I ate it for lunch! All on it's own, it was that delicious. And pretty.

And lucious.
And then I put some of the slices in my ice water, because that's one of my favorite things to do.

Yeah, I threw a lime in there, too. I'm crazy like that.
And then I ate the limey slices out of my glass after I finished the water. And I am still sweaty and frizzy, but I'm starting to think that I might be able to handle this summer thing after all. It's opressive and overwhelming at times, but really, what choice to I have but to let it crash over me, like a big old seaweed-laden wave?
Oh, and for those of you who are concerned about my caloric intake, don't worry! I had a nice nutritious zucchini muffin for dessert.
With butter. :)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

I loves da beach

Warning: This blog entry has nothing to do with farms or farming. Just in case there's someone out there who comes here for such information.
Stop laughing. It happened. Once.

This is about boys on the beach.

And sandy dogs.

And little girls who are NOT tired, Mama. Not even a little bit.

And sunsets that bring tears to your eyes.

And how easily you float in the salty water, as if you could stay there forever, sleep there, bobbing with the cormorants. And how the fading light and the lazy waves make the water look black and thick, like ink.
But mostly it's about the irrational, yet unavoidable, desire to stop time. To keep your kids, and your friends, and your friends' kids, and yourself, and the dog, and the strangers on the beach, and the ocean and the sun and the clouds exactly as they are right now. Forever.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

On Lambing

Sheep are famously dumb- known for their ability to get themselves in trouble. And, like, die and stuff. They do pretty stupid things, like get their heads stuck in electric fences, and have lambs on the coldest morning of the year, and forget which lamb belongs to them. And they make us do really stupid things, like heave hay bales when we're really out of shape, and use power tools in the rain. But sometimes, (accidentally, I'm sure), sheep get it right. They go into the barn when it's raining. And feed the right baby. And let us help them. And we humans end up figuring things out, too. Like how to milk a sheep. And how to hold a drill in the pouring rain.

And how to help when we thought we had nothing left.

Because, even when we're "sosososososososososososo tired, Mom!", and despite their inconvenient choice of birthdays, these animals are, after all, here because of us. Oh, and so that Dogwin has someone to bark at.

And unlike Chick Day,the actual birth of a real live animal on our farm could never fail to inspire enthusiasm. And humble us. Because, though we've had our share of misfortune in our limited farming experience, on the whole, we are damn lucky.