Despite the seemingly endless work staying on top of the pests in the garden (or perhaps trailing closely behind them would be more accurate), and attempting to keep nature from swallowing us with its persistent growth, we have passed some pleasant and restful days with family and friends.
One Saturday we spent almost an entire afternoon sitting at the picnic table with four friends. We ate good food, drank red wine (which seemed decadent but was lovely), talked and laughed.
Just last week my cousin came up with her family. We were a bit more active (thanks to 7-year-old Olivia and 4-year-old Maggie), although Oliver was by far the busiest representative of our household. Everywhere Olivia and Maggie went, Oliver followed close behind, showing off his swimming skills and running countless races. (However, in the last race, completely pooped, he stopped midway and waited for Olivia’s return lap.)
Maggie and Olivia are adventurous eaters. Cherisse had prepared the ingredients for her nime chow—a platter with shredded cabbage, kohlrabi and carrots, lettuce and mint, and cubes of tofu. Olivia not only correctly identified the tofu, she asked for some as a snack. When the nime chow rolls were ready, Maggie ate hers with unwavering focus, and then polished off each sliver of vegetable that had fallen onto her plate.
Of course vegetables were no substitute for what was perhaps the meal’s highlight—s’mores made over a bonfire. It was a happy day, for us…and the garden pests.