December 20, 2006

The other night I decided it was time. I had grown all this miniature, ornamental popcorn, and the cute little (mostly corn earworm damaged) corncobs were in their basket in all their colorful glory. Pinks, tans, reds, yellows and blues……..but would it make popcorn? I was sure it wouldn’t. I had put off this very moment because I didn’t want to admit I had a basket full of useless corncobs. It took a few minutes to rub the kernels into a pot, about 3 corncobs did the job. Then I added a little oil, just like I remember my mother doing (I am halfway between the stovetop and the microwave popcorn generations). I put it on the fire, and I’ll be darned if in a few minutes I heard popping. I felt elated, like a little kid at Christmas……I just couldn’t believe it worked. A little more time and I had a pot of little bitty popcorns, each one about half the size of what one would be used to eating. The taste was very good, and there was even a bit of color left on the everted kernel. We added melted butter and grated parmesan cheese………..tasty. The next day I mentioned my personal victory to my coworker and CSA subscriber, Kathryn. Who proceeded to inform me that her daughters had a much easier method–they tossed the entire corncob into the microwave and let them all blow up in there while watching the show through the window. I haven’t tried that yet, but I will. When you grow your own food, the fun never stops! And I’m saving lots of seed, so that I can have a regular fleet of popcorn next year……….

December 4, 2006

Last night we visited friends for a dinner and socializing instead of the usual workdays. The meal was simple, but all of us there realized that we were eating something that isn’t to be had in this day and age. The point of this meal was to trot out (and enjoy for ourselves for a change) our own farm and ranch products.

December 1, 2006

Our biggest news has nothing to do with farming: Monday night we performed Handel’s "Messiah" onstage at Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco with the San Francisco Sinfonietta. I remember seeing concerts there when in high school and daydreaming about what it might be like to perform in a world-class concert hall. What a dream come true! The experience of hearing your own voice both go out into the hall and bounce back at you…unforgettable. It’s been a long road. There was a time I couldn’t string 3 notes together or sing higher than a B above middle C, and something like 25 years of work has turned me into a respectable amateur soprano. It’s proof that when you work at your dreams, they can happen. So after our evening in lights, it was back to the farm……