3rd Time's a Charm: The Midwest Roundup Revisited!
Jun. 16, 2012 12:41 pm
Updated: Jul. 11, 2012 7:06 am
Back in January when I posted the first invite blog for June, I just knew I would have everything done. The gardens were going to be perfect, the house was going to be perfect and the food was going to be done on time & perfect. I got a good running start
too. I started working on gifts in the morning & evening even though my crochet skills are nothing in comparision to Lady S. That woman makes magic with a hook! Her stuff is so pretty when finished you don't want to use it! Since our weather was so warm, I
started working in the gardens weeding and helping with the new horse barn. While DH was laid off, we made the decision to use part of the designated horse fund to build our own barn. Boarding the horses elsewhere was just getting too expensive and we have
land with hay shares. Since DH signs up for all those "rewards" programs that I don't bother with, we were able to start this in the backyard.
Yet again, we started projecting before a roundup. We are trying to build an outdoor kitchen area complete with wodd burning pizza oven. We started this project before the DH was laid off. DS and I ripped up existing patio bricks to reuse for this project then
it skidded to an abrupt halt with the layoff. With the "rewards 4 times" special we were able to start on the backyard again. All that lumber cost $5. I know! I couldn't believe it, made a "rewards" believer out of me. It will cost more to totally finish the
project but it will be done as the DH has consistent work. So maybe everyone can come back for pizza and wine some day. I must say coocar knows her wine. And she can make pretty food that really tastes good! Did anyone get a photo of her deviled eggs?
So why wasn't everything perfect? Maybe cause we took time to paint the house. Uh, maybe cause I lost some days helping my sister. The one that sold her farm and is now living a gypsy's life. Whom I must say I have talked with less in the last 6 months than
I have a certain AR cook that gave another AR cook the perfect Kodak moment. I had no idea my jaw could drop that far! Lastly, maybe because there really is too much to do for the team of me, myself and I to finish. Well, at one time the gardens were blooming
and looking nice cause the DH took this.
Back to the gifts, I wanted to do something that I could afford and that would be useful. With the help of WFDM? (She and her girls made these really cool gift bags and donated them to the roundup) I was abe to decorate the bags with a saying that I thought
appropriate since all but one of the cooks traveled some distance to get here. The states Oregon, Nevada, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Kansas were all represented.
I made herbal finishing salts and a minted sugar from my garden herbs to share and I crocheted some stuff. A mini lid potholder and 2 handle covers.
Yes, that is a stencil of Pippin's remaining front paw. Can't say he was thrilled to help with this project. He didn't even stick around to meet our guests. The DH opened the garage door and he was gone like a shot! Yes, he did come back after his outing.
My dear friend, bhawk/Brenda, came on that Friday before the party to help. She gave up a day 2 weeks before also. We were supposed to work in the gardens but we didn't accomplish as much out there as we did planning our assault on the tasks for the weekend
roundup. We had several lists going and for the most part we got it done except for the appetizer round. The Relay walkers came a little earlier than I planned so we didn't get everything out, but they exceeded their goal and that was awesome.
By the time Mi Being Mi arrived, everyone was gone. We decided to forge ahead and productively party unlike some of the others with that orange stuff. Our thinking was to get as much done the night before so we could really visit with each other the next day
because that is so much more important than sleep! We figured we were working so well together we needed a name like our "Thelma & Louise".
The best we could come up with was the Katkateers. Hey, look we are moving so fast in the kitchen Mi Being Mi is a blur!
One of us also had a great decorating idea during the evening. Brenda wanted to do cool gifts but ran out of time so she brought orange cozies to decorate with the thought of cutely stuffing the rest of her gift in them. Well, we had already gotten into the
cozies so we decided to use her washclothes as placemats. Earlier under the careful supervisiono of Mrs. Mike, Mr. Mike set up the tables and chairs getting everything situated in the sunroom. The placemat idea added a perfect splash of useful color to the
tables. BTW those balloons are still holding air, Mike. Guess we know who is full of hot air now, don't we? :)
These quiches deserve another shot. Brenda got the recipes from AR but won't be reviewing them because she totally tweaked them but she would like to thank Sharon Skildum/Asparagus Quiche and Dorothy Collins/Zucchini Quiche for giving her the ideas to work
with. And we who ate them, would like to thank them too! Yum!
The table is set with absolutely wonderful food. Thank you, Brenda for setting up the menus and place cards for the food. Thank you, Sheila for jumping right in and helping all weekend too!
After visiting around the table for awhile
We decided to go to the back and see the horses and the pond.
Lora is explaining her trip to the back from the previous year and I believe she is absolutely refusing to repeat it.
My DS offered his vehicle as more suitable transportation. Mrs. Mike is wondering if her DH is going to be pried away from the hot rod shop where my DH was engaged in conversation with him, our BF Alan and his dear lady. They decided even more deluxe transport
was necessary so...
Christine and Sheila were game however!
The morning after at Cracker Barrel. Mike thought perhaps leaving that yellow hat behind would induce me to drive it all the way back to his house. Afraid not this year :)
The group is saying goodbye. The weekend was ever so short or so it seemed.
The Katkateers headed for Kearney to pick up a gift to be sent on from Candice and Christine. It was sad to say goodbye again! But wait, on the way there Brenda felt a perfectly good day was going to be wasted going back and cleaning up from the party. After
all, the chores would still be waiting patiently for us at all of our respective houses. So we called mauigirl and arranged a meeting back at Cracker Barrel. We were going to play tour guides with what was left of the day before we had to put Julie on her
plane. A brief aside here and then I'll share how the 4 of us finished our weekend.
Don't ever play poker with this group especially Lora and Julie. Two weeks before the roundup, Julie, tells me she wants to make nametags for us. A nice cheap little gift she can do for us. Oh, how nice! BTW they were REALLY cute! Several days before the party
she calls and actually sounded upset which made me feel bad for her. She had a surprise that is now ruined because the stupid flower shop in Kearney couldn't find my house. So I email explicit directions and went on with my "to-do" list. Friday afternoon the
flowers still weren't here along with the nametags. Those having been "sent" to be delivered with the flowers. Friday evening I call to let Julie know about the missing stuff. Little do I know she is sitting in an airport waiting for her flight to KCI. So
this is how that Kodak moment happened for me. Sat. morning Brenda is sure we need to call the flower shop and complain. Lora had to scramble for her phone so she could tell Brenda to NIX that idea. Just as I'm getting WFDM? soft & fluffy hamburger rolls ready
to go into the oven, Lora sings out that I'm needed in the sunroom. I reply, "Just a minute, please". No, come now the flowers are here. So this delivery lady shoves the flowers and box towards me while complaining about finding my house. I'm formulating this
sentence in my head, "I'm sorry I thought" /the question mark above my head is turning into a dim light bulb/ "the directions were ok" / why is this lady looking over my shoulder at all the cooks gathered round the door?/ "but I am sure glad you got here"
/ the light bulb has grown brighter and finally exploded with the realization it is the high energy imp, Julie, standing in front of me! Like I said don't play poker with these folks!
So what did the tour guides decide to do? This was coocar's suggestion the day before. We took Julie to the city market in Kansas City and we went to the Steamboat Arabia museum.
Sorry, Candice, we tried but couldn't get any of those lovely beads for you. BTW thanks for telling me about my grandmother's antique butter bowl.
Sheila is being grossed out by what is in this open barrel.
Because I decided to wear an orange tank top for our last day together, I got a free candy onion. I never get free stuff and would never have seen the sign if the little gal hadn't said something to me. I was concentrating on not walking into posts or off the
sidewalk. I was a little tired.
While in the city market, we decided to have some lunch. We walked by a Vietnamese cafe and Julie asked around to see if it was any good and then she played culinary tour guide for us. I admit to not trying ethnic restaurants because I have no idea what to
order and my guys are not that adventurous at all. Enjoying new flavors was quite a treat for us all!
So our day ended and the only tangible things left behind the next day were all the thoughtful gifts everyone brought.
The most important thing left behind, though, were all the wonderful memories and bonds of friendship these people helped to make.
We thought it fitting to have our group photo with my grandfather's restored Allis Chalmers tractor. After all it is orange :) We also raised a toast to sassyoldlady for begining the roundups and to Marianne and Baking Nana for following after with theirs.
To Lora, who took a chance and drove all the way here one dark and rainy night.
XOXOXO to all of you and thank you so much for gracing my home with your laughter, stories and recipes.