Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Picking Peppers

Oh guys, I'm sorry. I feel like I can't stop posting about how busy I am and I know it must be getting old. But fuck. People, I need a break. Honestly, I am not really sure what is going on. I am a busy girl because I like busy. But lately? Seriously, this weekend I had to have this to-do list pried out of my hands by my husband: pick blueberries on Mount Mitchell, make pesto, clean garden beds and plant the fall garden, make curtains, floor the second story of the chicken coop, build a raised bed, finish my book, spend four hours at the attorney's office I used to work for but am now just helping out on the weekends, make a birthday present, go to a birthday party, and play enough music. Plus get ready for a scary presentation on Monday morning at work and all the less exciting stuff like laundry. Yesterday as I was riding my bike to work I actually began to wonder if I might need to stop trying to pack so much expectation into my life, which kind of felt like a brand new thought, sort of odd shaped and unfamiliar, kind of scary and liberating at the same time. I am definitely a hyper productive person but lately I am not so sure it's making me happy. I think I need to lounge around in my underpants and sleep in more. Take long walks with no route in mind and put myself in the bathtub with something that smells nice.

Anyway, sorry to rant. The good news is: we did pick blueberries on Mount Mitchell, and although we were about a week late there were indeed blueberries up there and they were way bigger than we had any right to hope for considering the drought around here. We got maybe two gallons and it was pretty tough picking but man, I don't know if there's a more beautiful place to spend the day. You reach for a berry and once your fingers close on it you look out beyond yourself onto waves and waves of green mountains rippling out away from you. Seriously epic Appalachian action. We also made pesto and it rocked. And, biggest relief of all: we finally planted the fall garden. Four kinds of lettuces, peas, baby bok choy, two kinds of kale, chard, broccoli, spinach, beets, cilantro. And, the big winner: arugula. B and I planted everything Sunday morning, and it's already up. Hello two day germination rockstar. I will probably post a photograph of arugula coming out of the ground every year for the rest of my life because just as I will laugh at jokes even if I've heard them before because I can't remember any jokes for the life of me (wait, that's not true: Rachy I have a new one for you and you will fall over dead because it's so funny!) I also seem to get just as excited about the same old seeds popping up every season. Amen to cheap thrills.

The other good news is that B and I are headed to Maine this weekend for the 91st birthday of his grandmother. They have an annual party at this super swanky place on the most beautiful lake in Maine you have ever seen and there is ping pong and kayaking and a sauna and midnight skinny dipping and although it could not be coming at a worse time for me in terms of work I know that once I get there it will be a total blast. I am really lucky to be able to so genuinely look forward to spending time with B's family.

I am also really lucky in 9000 other ways having to do with B including this way. I left this recipe out and he cooked it up yesterday and it was so damn good. We used Marrow Beans from my favorite bean purveyor and they were amazing - Gran, were these the ones you said you liked so much? They were incredibly flavorful and super creamy, yet didn't lose their shape or skin. The only thing about the recipe is that she has you chop the mirepoix (leeks - from our own garden and I swear I will photograph them soon because they are soooooo long and lovely - carrots, celery) into really huge chunks which I totally disapprove of. I am not the biggest fan of huge hunks of cooked celery. Anyway, this is a fantastic fall dish that will kick down tons of great leftovers, highly recommended. (We made it with sausage from the farmer's market. Of course.)

Ok. May you all be just the right amount of busy.


rachel said...

I was so worried! I saw that the recipe was vegetarian and I about lost my mind? What about the sausage? And then, of course, I continued on and found that it was not veg after all. Imagine my relief.

Can't wait for my joke.

Renee said...

Man, I hear you about the hyper productive. I am reminding myself that as a gardener this is always the busiest time of the year. Next summer, no weekend getaways in Aug/Sept. And I am learning to just say no to things.

It's sad when I am too busy to spend time in my garden. Yesterday I actually left work early and spent four hours in the garden working. Then I played video games all night. Weird combo, but it's the right combination of downtime for me. My soul feels better today.

queenbeehoney said...

Well little girlies, you should all enjoy the fact that you're able to pack so much to-do into your days (and nights!). There does come the time when Mother Nature decides that hormones are wasted on the old, and you look back and are totally amazed at what you were once able to accomplish in a single day! I do love reading about all you young women gardening away. I am sending out a soil sample from my garden for lead testing. Just read an article that said many backyard gardens have lead. It's not very expensive.

dig this chick said...

Sister. I hear you. It is so hard to eliminate things from lists when they are all SO important. And as we get older it isn't like we lose friends and obligations when we gain new ones....time doesn't stretch as it should to accommodate this evolution.

And, you just blog your little heart out about it. That's what all us grow. eat it. readers are here for.

cake said...

i was just recently advised by a friend to take aimless walks. i am not sure i know how to do that, but i bet it would be good for me.

i found that once i had an infant to care for, my to do list went out the window. and, it felt so good to, for once, know for sure, what was most important.

now that the little one needs less of me, i'm back to the overly ambitious lists.

i planted arugula for the first time a couple of weeks ago, and i COULD NOT BELIEVE how fast it germinated. you inspired me to do a small fall garden/winter cold frame. i live in a colder place than you do, but i think it will be interesting to see how it goes.

in case you hadn't noticed, i love your blog.