Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Glorious Fourth

We celebrate in our own particular way here at Blackrock.

With labor:

A. is going to be really, really glad when this roof is done.  So will I.  TERRIFYING.

Shortly after this helpful loading of the wheelbarrow with pulled weeds for Grandma, Cubby tipped the wheelbarrow over to examine the wheel.  Not so helpful after all, then.

And with food:

A five-gallon bucket of basil makes four ice cube trays of pesto.  Just a handy little measurement for you, next time you fill a five-gallon bucket with basil.

While I was picking the leaves off the basil branches, Cubby entertained himself by planting the stripped branches to make a basil forest.

Good to put this planter to use for something besides weeds.

And then, of course, we had to go inside to dump all that basil in the food processor with walnuts and olive oil and garlic, and then eat it.  Because it wouldn't be fair to make Cubby sit through all the making of the pesto and then not get to eat it.  He does love his pasta with pesto.

Know who doesn't love pasta with pesto?  A.  He finished his roofing (well, not finished, but quit for the day anyway) around 11 a.m.*  He saw the pesto and, as he told me later, knew immediately that his secret hopes for a big Fourth of July barbecue blowout were to be dashed.

Damn straight.  I want a holiday too, sometimes.  And I really do not enjoy standing over hot coals when it's 92 degrees outside.  I was planning on copping out with hot dogs.  So A. took matters into his own hands.  Thirty minutes later, I went out to look for eggs in the shed and walked right in on A. butchering a lamb hanging from the shed roof.  Why not, right?  All that meat right out there in the pasture and all, just waiting to be put on the grill.

Except first it had to be slaughtered and butchered.  So he did that.  The lamb ended up being 20 pounds dressed weight (that is, after gutting and skinning), so it didn't take long.  And it was small enough that he just cut it in half lengthwise and put it in our chest freezer to cool down.

Then he had to build a grill big enough to hold half the lamb.  So he did that.  Random fire bricks and big grate that mysteriously appeared on our beach?  Check.

The grilling of the lamb was sort of disturbing, since it looked exactly like, uh, a skinned animal lying on a big-ass grill:


Tasted good, though, and A. was overjoyed that he got to glut himself on grilled meat as an appropriate celebration of This Great Nation.  I was overjoyed that I didn't have to cook except for cutting up some peppers and onions for him to put on the grill with the lamb.  It all worked out.

Then we took Cubby down to the blisteringly hot beach, where I convinced A. to give him his bath in the lake so when we went back up to the house, all I had to do was get him into bed and then I could plant myself in front of the fan in the living room with an enormous slice of watermelon because HOT HOT HOT, MUCH TOO HOT.

And that's the Fourth of July, Blackrock-style.

*  I think one of the definitions of crazy may be spending five hours on a roof on one of the hottest days of the year.  And if that's a definition, I married a crazy, crazy man.  Useful, though.


Anonymous said...

Wow. Quite the celebratory day. Unless you are the lamb, I guess. So glad that A. was able to take care of his own BBQ. Hope it cools off soon for you!


sheila said...

You just might be a woodchuck, if the first part of your holiday meal includes, go catch a lamb and butcher it. This was what America was all about though, self sufficiency. People used to know how to do stuff, like roof a house and butcher a lamb... glad to see at least some guys are still real men! 96 degrees F tomorrow, hope A has the roof done before then.

tu mere said...

That might be how our fore fathers did it, but I'd have to do a lot of mental redirection to chow down on a lamb looking hunk of meat. Too used to the whole packaged, non-reality based method of eating.

Glad A. got to have his special meal; however, beside the whole "looks like a baby lamb" thing, that was a whole lot a work for one meal. Good for A.

Drew @ Willpower Is For Fat people said...

I can just imagine walking into the shed, seeing the carcass hanging from the roof, and thinking, "Well of course."

FinnyKnits said...

Holy hell, woman - that post has all kinds of WTF in it.

Firstly, never seen a 5 gallon bucket of basil. I usually harvest enough at once to fill ONE ice cube tray. Four sounds like a miracle.

Secondly, it's perfectly amazing that A. had the energy after re-roofing the house in that heat to go butcher a lamb and grill it for the 4th. That man's a patriot.

Thirdly, (and I'll stop numbering things, promise.) Bubba reroofed our garage on the hottest day in recent history about five years ago. It was 109 and I was sure he and my 60+ year old father were going to perish.

It was awful.

Happy 4th! Hope you're managing OK. Slap the doctor until he agrees to birth that baby.