Monday, June 23, 2014

Full, crazy, and good

First, the preparations.

Then, the welcome.

The feeding...

...and the feasting!

How wonderful it was to reconnect with my friend Steph! Back from the Great White North of Saskatoon, Canada, where she moved to right after we got married. I've scarcely seen her, scarcely talked to her (other than on Facebook) since. (I did cater her baby shower, and make her a baby blanket.) But we picked right back up. All these things: two children and a marriage and lots of crazy travel in her world, a dog and neverending house projects and lots of crazy gardening in my world. We snuck snippets of girl-chat in between the querulous toddler and squawking baby. We drank wine by the campfire, and watched fireflies, after dark. We schemed up a girls canning weekend for later in the summer. And we celebrated her return home to central NY, hopefully for good. Distance between girl friends can really stink, but the reunions are always so joyous.

And standing there in my kitchen, oh my goodness. WAA! My kitchen is SO awesome! So perfect for entertaining little get-togethers like this, the way we love to do. Jose and Steph and the kids spread out along the peninsula with glasses of wine (and jars of pickles) and we all chatted and laughed and I ducked and dived into the fridge getting a little of this or that for the meal, and it was perfect. I dished up a bit of snap peas with mint and feta for the chilluns, and dipped noodles out of the pot-- to test doneness-- that were snatched by Jose to feed to Ximena. Noodles + chilluns is a great equation. 

The meal was so fun and easy and, well, rustic. I guess that's the word for this direction my cooking has been leaning lately. I bought local strawberries, heavy cream, a few lemons, a red bell pepper, and an eggplant. Everything else came from the garden or the pantry.
  • Homemade pasta carbonara (just snipped chives, dill, sage, and parsley, black pepper, and a splash of heavy cream topped with poached eggs)
  • Snap peas with mint and feta (just lightly saute the peas in olive oil, salt and pepper and add mint and feta)
  • Mom's Chickpea Salad, which she made for our party, which I've since learned contains minced celery, red bell pepper, red onion, and black olives in addition to the chickpeas...)
  • Lemon Cake with Strawberries
Man. Spending time with these friends I've had for going on ten years-- it is SUCH a gift. I don't consider myself to be the type of person to make friends easily, honestly: it takes a long time for me to forge a connection that is DEEP as well as meaningful and fun. But once I have that deep connection, it doesn't erode over time. It stays put, even when a whole continent gets in the way. Still, I'm so happy to have this gal and her... well, BROOD... back nearby for visiting on those special Ithaca weekends. Lucky me, and lucky us. 

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Becky said...

Yay! Reunions can be so glorious!

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