Gossamer Tapestry

Reflections on conservation, butterflies, and ecology in the nation's heartland

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Random Bits from Thanksgiving Week

I've been getting caught up from all of my travels. Unfortunately, I did not quite succeed before we plunged headlong into the holiday season.

Nearly a year ago, I blogged about my first attempt to make blue cheese. What I never said later was that it was a complete bust. A couple of weeks after I started it, it had become nasty and slimy. A few months later, I tried again, with much better results. This time I used the good milk (raw milk from Guernsey cattle), and that made all the difference. I opened the first of two wheels for Thanksgiving and was pleased with the results. The cheese still needs a bit of work. The humidity in the cave was a bit too low while I aged it. I think that I can easily fix that. The flavor is surprisingly good, so I'm optimistic for future attempts at this cheese. I started another batch last weekend.

Last weekend we also had our annual seed mixing party. This year, we did not gather quite so many species, and a lot of the seeds were already cleaned, so we finished very quickly.

Thanksgiving was to have been a quiet affair for just Leon and I. At his request, we had ham instead of turkey. The day before Thanksgiving, Adam posted on his Facebook page that he and his partner Andy would be flying from Tucson to O'Hare the next morning and driving up to their farm in Wisconsin. This would take them a mere 2 minutes from our house. We had them over for pie (and some of the blue cheese). Although they were not able to stay nearly as long as we would have liked, it was great to get to see them both. Two minutes after they left, I realized that we should have gotten a photo.

The day after Thanksgiving is traditionally the day we put up our outdoor holiday lights'

Both yesterday and today have been very beautiful. We went for a walk at the Fen this afternoon. We took a bag of seeds from the seed mixing party with us and scattered some prairie goodness around. Tomorrow, off to visit Gary and Gary Lee's farm to get some manure for the vegetable garden.

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At 20:53, Blogger Gaelyn said...

That is very industrious of you to make blue cheese. But fresh is best. Sounds like a nice quiet Thanksgiving. Happy planting.

At 21:17, Blogger Celeste said...

I hope you have recovered from the trauma of a turkey-less thanksgiving Doug :)

At 21:31, Blogger Will said...

Annual seed mixing party? Sounds intriguing, but please drop the other shoe--what kinds of seeds are being mixed? Why do they need to be mixed? Having mixed the seed, what happens next?

Are there subsidiary events, like an award for the best bread made with seeds? best art made by gluing seeds to a sheet of paper (junior division only)? So many possibilities; please explain.

At 23:52, Anonymous Mark H said...

My heart stopped at the outdoor lights! We have our outdoor lights down in the garage......and will be putting them up tomorrow ..... YOU BEAT US to it!

At 20:20, Anonymous Pablo said...

Do those lights on the front of the house spell "Gossamer Tapestry"?

At 18:56, Blogger Chilmarkgirl said...

Trial and error is the key to almost everything!
Hey- sorry for no call this weekend- we are in high gear doing a huge kitchen renovation and wanting to finish it in 2 weeks for my QuitsaKiki Party! You will be amazed when you see our re-do- so please forgive my lack of communication right now!

At 22:23, Blogger Ur-spo said...

You have a marvelous life. I am envious.

At 10:45, Blogger Jim said...

George loves blue cheese. Maybe we should swing by your place next time you make blue cheese again. And I'd also like to have a piece of that pie, thank you. :) It sounds like you had a lovely Thanksgiving.

At 13:56, Blogger Kathiesbirds said...

This sounds like a wonderful way to spend the holiday, especially the walk in the fen! And isn't that the way it always is with photos of friends? You get so involved in visiting that you forget. Too bad, but I am glad that you had fun.


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