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Archive for the ‘Thought for the Day’ Category

Little things seem nothing, but they give peace… like those meadow flowers which individually seem odorless, but all together perfume the air. – Georges Bernanos

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First corn of the season

I’m not a hundred percent sure what it is about corn that makes so many people so happy… but it does….

Why not be happy? It’s a thrilling vegetable.

And really, it’s rare in the vegetable world… veggies are a lot of things, but thrilling is not typically an adjective folks use unless their being hyperbolic… I mean, let’s be honest, it’s just corn!

I mean, corn doesn’t win the Super Bowl. Corn hasn’t sold out Fenway Park. Corn won’t win a Nobel Prize or become a poem laureate.. now will it? Corn is just corn… and it’s temporary… but it is thrilling.

In days gone by, when we’d put the corn sign out in front of Cricket Corner Farm, the dynamic of our farmstand changed immediately. Folks who would come by to get it…. would want to know what kind it was, how it was growing that year… they’d tell stories about picking corn as a kid, before dawn in Concord, MA, to get it to the Boston markets…. or tell stories about their granddads corn.. that he saved and planted until one year when he didn’t make it through the winter, but they kept the jar of his seed ‘just in case’ someone in the family got the itch to play in the dirt…. stories about the best way to cook it, in milk, with butter, on the grill in the husk, or on the grill husked, baked, broiled, steamed, soaked & microwaved. Then there were the hundreds of recipes for succotash, fritters, and corn relishes they’d generously share with us.

We’d listen to their stories about the best ear they’d ever eaten…. or how today we seldom find worms in the ears.. “now why is that?” they’d inquire. I’ve met very few people that don’t have a top five corn eating moments list… about the farm or farmer that grew it… about the company of friends and family gatherings, or the special camping trip… and more recently during a point deep in Covid isolation… that first or last ear of corn shared with a loved one.

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Yup, corn hits like a primordial gong.. boing!… it sort of reasonates equally and instantly through the entirety of this magnificent universe… and though any vegetable could do that… they don’t, but corn clearly does – and that’s what makes it so special. We’d take the growing of corn very seriously on our farm because we knew the potential gravity of the corn eating experience. Yes, growing corn can be a bit tricky, and we didn’t always get it right, but we’d try our damndest… probably more than any other crop on our farm… for you, for us, for everyone.

Corn is important….

Corn is the staff of life… and it sure is thrilling! 🙂 C’mon, how many of you can deny biting into that first buttery ear of the season and not smiling to yourself? 🙂

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My dad, as did his dad always said… a vine is only as strong as the soil you grow it in, and I think he was absolutely right! Harvested the first of my grapes yesterday.

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My friend Paul’s son was out jogging yesterday morn… obviously oblivious to what was around him.. when a vehicle pulled up alongside him to tell him to be careful.. he asked why? “ uhmm because there’s a rather large Momma bear on your tail not 20’ behind you!!!” Holy smokes!!

Jogging Companion

…. and all the while her two cubs just played aimlessly in Paul’s back yard for most of the morning! LOL
They’ve GOTTA do something about all those bears down in NJ!
( but the cubbies are sure sweet! )

Playful Cubs

While Mama was out terrorizing the neighborhood joggers LOL.. the cubs scooted way up in their tree. Surprised they would climb so high! Look way up into the trees.

Paul commented.. after his blood pressure had lowered somewhat… calmly saying to his wife… call the tree surgeon and have all those trees taken down ASAP! 🙂 🙂

 

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The Lord will guide you always = protector.
He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land = provider.
He will strengthen your frame = preserver.
You will be like a well-watered garden = productive.
Like a spring whose waters never fail = promise.
Isaiah 58:11

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A big part of the privilege of living here on planet Earth is our responsibility to protect and improve our environment. Pollinators are vital to our survival and thriving as a species, as without them our crops would not fruit nor multiply.

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But Ma.. SHE started it!

In memory of Jackson

Jackson & Funnyface… inseparable best buddies

Jackson was our oldest golden and in another lifetime I’m certain he was a Mom. He had the most wonderful disposition–nothing ever rattled him. Not what I’d call a watchdog–at worst he’d wag you to death with his tail. And nearly all the critters on our farm were practically raised by him, be it kittens, orphaned lambs, bottle fed kids, day old chicks or the baby ducklings.


One spring night we had a delivery of kittens from a young first time mother, that didn’t want to have any part of mothering. She’d rather be out running in the fields or mousing up in the barn loft. And we also had one other great mother kitty–Funnyface, that was simply a natural. Jackson watched and listened for two hours to the hungry crying neglected newborn litter and then decided to act. It’s a good thing golden retrievers are born with soft palates, so as not to damage their catch when field hunting.

We watched him remove each of the six newborns and gently tuck them all, one by one into Funnyface’s basket alongside her own two week old kittens. It was love at first sight. She took them in and raised them as her own.. If it weren’t for Jackson they surely wouldn’t have survived. Remarkably enough, a month later, the young mother kitty resumed her responsibilities– so now everyone was pretty content and we no longer had any supply & demand shortages of milk.

Snug as bugs in a rug.. and all were adopted.
Watchful Mom

Jackson was always drawn to the young–and they to him. I think overseeing all the critters on our farm kept him young. He was fourteen years old when he crossed over to Rainbow Bridge and had lived a full and very good life… and we were blessed to have him fill ours – but moreso, he was such a gentle giant… and a really good boy. ❤

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When the boys were younger, they’d refuse to leave the beach unless I promised to take them to the Scoop Deck, because.. well, passing up an ice cream surely must be a crime… or so I’ve been told 🙂 The tougher part is deciding which, of over 75 flavors to choose from comes next! Decisions, decisions!

Eli & Liam are our ice cream oficianados! 🙂 ❤

I, myself am your classic ice cream eater.. opting for coffee, maple walnut, orange pineapple, pistachio nut, black raspberry and sometimes I’ll even go a little crazy and ask for rainbow sprinkles too! Yes, I like to live on the edge.

But I do prefer going with folks or children that like to take risks in their ordering. The combinations my guys come up with always surprises me! They’ll try flavors like Summertime Blues, or Black Bear or Moosetracks! And they MUST have jimmies sprinkled on them.. ** you may call them “ sprinkles” but we natives call them “ jimmies”. But not once can I ever recall seeing anyone order just plain old boring vanilla. 🙂

So, if you find yourself traveling along our coast this summer, this is the one place you can’t miss visiting, as this is the best ice cream shop in the entire state!!

I think it’s safe to say they sell an awful lot of ice cream on most days.

You may have a little bit of a wait, but once you have a cone resting in your hand with your tongue working overtime to keep the spillage at bay, you will thank me for the recommendation! LOL The wait is well worth it! Trust me! And always remember…..

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The presence of a resilient local food system is critical. If you are lucky enough to have affordable access to fresh and local food, then count your blessings and support your farmers. Grow a garden, or go to farmers markets, or shop at your neighborhood farmstands, and learn who your local food producers are. Be it dairy, meats, or veggies.. they’ve got your grocery list covered.

While getting your food from all over the world through meal subscriptions and online ordering from the grocery store may feel safer right now, it impacts the planet and the viability of community food systems. Get to know and support your local farmers.

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By special request from the birthday girl.. Lobster Fra Diavolo! Well heck, birthdays only roll around once a year.. plus it’s a fave around here… so I caved. LOL

….. Fresh lobster, jumbo shrimp and scallops sautéed with shallots and garlic in a spicy and very flavorful marinara sauce. Served over linguine, and celebrated with family and good friends, it’s was fabulous! Happy birthday, Court ❤ ❤

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2 fresh (1 ½ #) lobsters
3 oz olive oil
4 garlic cloves, smashed
2 medium shallots, minced
2lb cooked shrimp
½ lb fresh scallops, diced
1 TBL fresh basil, chopped
1 tsp fresh oregano, chopped
1 TBL Italian parsley, chopped
¼ tsp white pepper
1 tsp red pepper flakes – start with ½ tsp if the heat is too much for you 🙂
2 tsp tobasco sauce
4 cups marinara sauce
½ cup dry red wine
1 lb linguine

·Boil lobsters, cool & pick all the lobster meat from tail, body and claws. Set aside
·In a skillet, heat olive oil, garlic & shallots briefly
·Add lobster meat, diced scallops, herbs and spices. Cook for 2 minutes over medium heat.
·Add marinara sauce, red wine & cooked shrimp. Bring to just a boil, then lower heat and let simmer 5-8 minutes.

·Serve over warm linguine & toss well.

 

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