Tuesday, April 20, 2010

In keeping with the farming theme...

Spring has sprung and thank God for it! I was about to start believing the term "seasonal depression" really does exist. This past weekend my friend Kathryn and I had the most classic Raleigh, spring-time, weekend sort of day. It was Sunday so we started with church at Edenton Street United Methodist. We went to the early service and made it out before the "church crowd" so we ventured off to find brunch.

3 words for you - Farmer's Market Restaurant. 

Oh my goodness... I can't really put into words how good this country cooking is. Think your grandma's food meets the Cracker Barrel's decor. We ended up ordering lunch instead of breakfast only because the kitchen was so backed up the waitress hinted that lunch was coming out faster. She was right... plus you get banana pudding with your baked chicken. I don't think that would have come with bacon and eggs. We did our best to pull ourselves away from the table so we could head out on our tour of the farmer's market. 

We found the market imports building. I hadn't been there in a long time and certainly not since I've been old enough to appreciate really large planters and outdoor decorations like trellises. I found so many things I was ready to buy... unfortunately I don't have a few acres to display them all.

Afterwards we found the rows and rows of vegetables and plants. There were so many gorgeous colors and smells. We stared at the hydrangea and azaleas and found the perfect apple mint for our summertime mojitos. 
Unfortunately, I was so mesmerized I must have thrown my blackberry back in my bag and missed all of the great photo ops. Kathryn said we had to stop and get a homemade lemonade before we left. She was right... this is one of my new most favorite reasons for going to the Farmer's Market. 

And then we were off to our next stop - The NC State Fair Grounds/Flea Market... There were even more flowers and food. Along with dishes, furniture, jewelry, socks and a lot of unknown items that I never knew I needed. I was a little disappointed to find that my favorite furniture dealer was no longer there. However, what we did find was a DEAL on flowers. We found these huge azaleas on sale for just $10! Again, if I had the backyard I wish I had my car would have been full and I may have gone back for more. These plants are gorgeous! 

All in all, Sunday was a good day... some good food, good window shopping and good friends. I'm so happy springtime is here and I can't for more weekends just like this. 

Monday, April 12, 2010

You Been Farming Long?

I love this picture. My grandmother has had a copy of this hanging in her kitchen since before I was born. Those little boys are probably all grown up and are doctors or lawyers or mechanics... probably not farmers.

I grew up on a farm and am thankful for those who do that day in and day out. My father isn't a farmer but he does a very good job faking it. He has a garden...which isn't just your typical 3-4 rows of cucumbers and tomatoes. I think he's up to 30+ rows and does most of the work from his tractor, or so I thought. I was back at home for the Easter holiday and ended up getting put to work. I'm not a farmer. But I won't ever complain about paying $2 for a tomato. Planting those are hard work!

Each one has to be planted by hand after you've stretched the black ground cover. Multiply that by 52... You're talking back pain and a farmer's tan in no time!

You can't see them but there's vegetables in those rows. We planted potatoes, beets, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, zucchini, onions, and so much more. But, we're not done. In a few weeks it will be time for peas and corn. The work never ends. 

After I came home I decided to be crafty and make my dad a little gift for his farm garden. These are going on stakes and will mark all of our hard work... I never grew up wanting to be a farmer but it can be fun to pretend every once in a while.