This long weekend could not have come at a more needed moment for me. Two mornings with no alarm clock gave me a chance to increase my weekly average sleep!
Saturday we had no agenda other than clean the house and do some shopping for the sausage making and dinner party on Sunday.
Of course when shopping we found a steal of a deal on corn fresh from the local fields so we had to cook and freeze 30 ears of corn! It will be so worth it to have that taste of summer in the dead of winter!
We had to go in to the City to collect the 12 pounds of ground pork we had ordered for the sausages so Emily, Lindsay and I headed over there and had a delightful "lunch" at Trafiq and then shopped for a swimsuit for Lindsay from the Nettles Tale pop-up store on Main St. She has been looking at these locally made, body honouring suits for ages and was pleased to finally have one for Maui!
We got the large bag o' meat and headed home happy to find the power back on after a long outage.
Emily had decreed several weeks ago that she wanted Allan to teach her to carve wood. By "teach her" she meant "teach us".....somehow I was also signed up to learn. Our first lesson commenced on Saturday afternoon in our backyard. Allan was, as usual, organised and methodical and we began with our practice boards. I knew this was coming but it wasn't until Allan was talking and demonstrating that I realised there could be implications for our marriage in this escapade. Of course Allan has taught me many things over the years but this seemed more serious. I sat up and paid attention. I am not the most "handy" or "arty" both of which could be Emily's middle names.
In actual fact it was a great hour or so and I was pleasantly surprised that I was able to do all the tasks pretty well although I was the only one who ended up bloody from a nick from a sharp blade! Phew.
We had a mellow evening, caught up with my parents Great Alaska Adventure and another alarm free sleep (clearly I need a few more of these!).
Sunday was all about sausages and staging the house for dinner for 12.
I love getting the house ready for a party and being able to be outdoors on the patio and backyard was great.
With everything ready for the party the sausage making began. Two batches. One based roughly on the Toulouse sausage recipe and one an Ancho Chilli and Paprika mix. Once seasoned one throws the meat around slamming it into the bowl to emulsify the fat. Then into the stuffer and ages of pushing it through into the casings.....which occasionally split or run out..and one has to thread more and keep going. Once the long snake of sausage is done they get twisted into links and then popped in the freezer in desired amounts. It took a couple of hours.
We made small links for the BBQ so all our friends could have a taste of each. We froze the rest. It is really awesome to have our own sausages with no fillers etc. The ancho/paprika ones were the winner in my book.
We had time to shower and change and then our guests arrived. We had a mojito station and enjoyed lovely appys and then a great dinner of sausages, Allan's smoked ribs which were sublime and delicious fresh salads, skillet corn bread and two summer fruity deserts - the peach pie was incredible and made by our guest whose baking skills are renowned.
We lasted outside until after 10pm and then port, whiskey and peppermint tea depending on preferences until later.
I am always in my "happy place" when my house is full of family and friends and I went to bed a happy camper.
Monday holidays are so great. We had a slow start and then a great family chat over coffee and blueberry coffee cake Lindsay whipped up. Lindsay and Allan are off to watch Pacific Nations Rugby while David and I mooch about the house and head of for a walk with my Mom later.
Its another beautiful warm day in the Pacific North West as the hot and dry summer continues.
It's going to be harsh to wake up to that alarm again tomorrow especially as the boys are done their summer school obligations (almost) and so only Lindsay and I are bringing home the bacon this week. We are all counting down the days to Aug 19th and that flight to Maui.
A whole week with no alarms!