Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Catering and our little girl, Sarah

This is the back balcony of Styker Sonoma, a beautiful winery in Alexander Valley. We were fortunate to be the caterer for an event there on Monday night. The wind was crazy so the winery moved the event inside. Well...the buffet and guests were inside, the "kitchen" was outside in the howling wind. The glamorous life of a caterer!

I couldn't believe my luck when my old catering partner, Charlotte Stewart (also the very famous Miss Beadle from Little House on the Prairie) agreed to come and help us to serve!

Unbeknownst to me, Farmer Chef Jeff was out in the "kitchen" taking pictures of our food. One is of the set-up for the "Corn Pups", our famous house-made sausage made into mini corn dogs. We did a full on Barbecue menu with the corn pups, the smoked catfish pate, Texas smoked brisket, smoked chicken, award winning collard greens, mashed sweet potatoes, and for dessert, Southern Lemon Yellow Cake, an old family favorite recipe. (I didn't realize that the light in the kitchen cast such a blue light! Isn't this wild?)

Now about Sarah:

See Sarah
See Sarah Sneeze
See Sarah Sneeze and Sneeze and Sneeze

Our poor little girl, our Bantam Old English Game Bird, is sick. She started sneezing yesterday and I immediately grabbed her and moved her to the sick room, the garage. I have learned that you need to move a sick chicken IMMEDIATELY in order to not get the others sick. We set up a heat lamp for her last night and that seemed to comfort her.

I checked on her again this morning and she was actually worse. Now she sounded as though the problem had dropped into her chest. I had to take Ginger in for her check up (to see if her cancer has returned...NO!!! VERY GOOD NEWS!!!) and told our vet about Sarah. This is the vet that talked me into getting chickens, but for some reason I didn't think he "saw" chickens. It turned out that he does so I came write home and put Sarah in a...paper bag. I wanted to use something I could throw away because if she was coughing and spreading bodily fluids, I didn't want to accidentally take that back to the flock. I went so far as changing my clothes after handling her.

Once at the vet he determined that she has an upper respiratory infection AND sinus infection. I need to give her half a pill twice a day for 10 days. We are going back to Modesto for another benefit on Friday and will need to teach our house sitter how to do it! I pray that she will get better soon. She is a sweet and special girl with an incredible personality. Really...

I will give an update on her as soon as I have news.

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Sunday, April 13, 2008

All in a day's Work!

Today we planted the first of the tomato babies. What does that entail?

  • Creating rows/furrows (6 rows, each 60 feet long)
  • Setting up the irrigation system
  • Spreading 4 bags of powdered oyster shells carefully over the rows
  • Turning the dirt over the irrigation tape and oyster shell
Going to the nursery (Harmony Farm) to buy more stuff for the irrigation
  • Putting green plastic over the tops of the rows
  • Fixing us/the workers lunch
  • Cutting through the plastic to make holes for the tomatoes
  • Adding mushroom mulch to the holes
  • Planting the tomatoes, all the while making a very detailed list of exactly what was planted where. WHY? We did “library rows” at the Ruff Patch (the name of the farm where we are planting) with 2 plants of each variety of tomato and needed to keep track what was where.
  • Planted the tomatoes – 192!!!
  • Added more mushroom mulch

What are we doing now, you might ask? I am writing the "load/packing list" for an event tomorrow at Stryker Sonoma Vineyard. Farmer Jeff is supposed to be writing recipes for the cookbook. I think he is wandering around the internet while I write my blog! We are both playing hooky!

All work and no play makes Jack a very dull boy. Right?
(Who remembers what movie that was in? It feature
d someone named Jack. Coincidence? We think not!)

I am leaving with you a hint to the question above. A hatchet actually had a part in that movie.

The guys found this hatchet head while cultivating the soil. Will someone please explain to me how in the world folks believed that burning glass and metal with their trash would get rid of it?

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