Change in plans

With today supposed to be a warmer day, the family decided to go have a cookout in the fire pit. May as well get some use out of it now, because we might not be able to use it in the summer again!

My original plan had been to do my usual morning routine at the computer, then decide what to test the new Dutch oven with. Making a damper had been suggested, and that seems just the quick and easy thing that would be perfect for a test recipe.

I was just settling in at my computer when the phone rang. It was my sister. Where we going to be home today? Yes… She then started telling me something about Holy days, and she wanted to bring us some chicken, when the phone started screaming and the signal was lost.

My sister had gotten rid of long distance service on their land line, and has been using her cell phone for long distance calls. The problem is, she’s in almost as bad of a cell phone dead zone as we are!

She called back a little while later. She hadn’t realized the line had gone dead at her end – the screaming noise was only at my end! – and had been talking for a while. 😀 When she realized just how much I’d missed, she cut it short and just said that they were going for a drive and wanted to swing by. They could be here at around noon.

So we decided to start the cookout earlier, so they could join us. Which meant no time to experiment with the new Dutch oven this time. We’ll have to plan a day for that. One of my daughters headed out to get the fire going, since it took a long time to get and keep a fire going when the girls had a cookout before, and stayed outside to tend it.

I admit that we are not the best of housekeepers so, of course, the place was a disaster. They did say they would only swing buy, but I thought they might want to come in for tea, so I went on a whirlwind cleaning spree. 😀

The fire was down to cooking stage by the time I was bringing the tray of food when my sister and her husband arrived.

Sort of.

I saw their car pull up the driveway, very slowly, stopping a little past the garage. I figured they’d drive up to the gate, but no. They backed up, then turned to park in front of the garage.

They didn’t want to drive through the “lake” and leave muddy ruts in the soil.

They also didn’t have rubber boots, because, why would they?

Which meant they couldn’t get to the inner yard. Or the house.

So it was a short visit, outside in front of the garage, as I slogged through the mud to them with my rubber boots!

I finally got the rest of the story, too.

My sister and her husband wanted to follow scripture for Holy days. They are Christian, but of a sect that also follows Old Testament Jewish traditions. They wanted to get all leaven out of the house for the Sabbath, and realized they had some breaded chicken cutlets in their freezer.

Rather than throw out good food, they offered it to us, while also just going out for a drive together. Something they haven’t done in a very long time.

That was very kind of them. It’s a shame they couldn’t come any closer to the house, though! They would have gotten their shoes completely soaked and muddy!

After they left, the girls and I had our cookout. My other daughter made tea and coffee for us, and we cooked up some hoagies to bring in for my husband, too.

I just had to take a picture of the set up.

I found it so funny to see the fancy tea cups with coffee in them, and the giant coffee mug with my tea in it, sitting on the very convenient concrete blocks. The lids did a good job of keeping the ashes out of their coffee!

Unlike my tea…

The grill my brother and his wife gifted us with could be swung over as needed to toast the buns.

My younger daughter doesn’t like hoagies, so she’s the one with the normal sized wiener. We only had regular hot dog buns, though, which are comically too small for the hoagies.

It was far windier than I expected, but it helped keep the fire going! We ended up staying out for at least a couple of hours.

We do enjoy cookouts. We need to build a more permanent shelter from the rain and wind, though, seeing as how we’ve had two tent shelters destroyed by weather already. I wouldn’t mind making something that can still be moved, though.

When we build our outdoor kitchen, sheltering walls are definitely going to be part of the design. Wind is a major and near constant issue. We all really enjoy cooking and eating outdoors, and would love to have a nice, comfortable set up to do it.

All in good time. The area I’m thinking would be best to do this – well away from any trees – is not far from where that old shed that lost its roof is located. We have a lot to do in that area because it can be made into a useable space!

Just one more thing on the list of stuff we plan to work on over the next few years. 🙂

The Re-Farmer

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