And the Busy Week Continues…

King DominionAs I mentioned in my last post since the summer officially began, and by “begin” I don’t mean summer solstice type of first day but when school gets out because lets be honest that is when things really become SUMMER, things have been busy. We finished off the first week of summer break, finally breaking out of the rain and getting the kids to an amusement park for a day and the following day we threw a surprise birthday party for my kiddo’s best friend, a fellow Aspie. Then the kidlets made their way north to spend the first for many alternating weeks with their other parent unit. So that left me and the hubs for the weekend, and the rest of the week. The silence is deafening. That’s the weird part right, we go crazy doing things and then the minute they are gone are confused about what we are supposed to do. I liken it to this quote by Elizabeth Stone “Making the decision to have a child – it is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body. ” Its incredibly hard to walk around when my hearts are so far away. But I digress.

Saturday, Richard and I were excited, scared and nervous as all get-out to go to our first ever Meetup with Paleo Parents and Friends, hosted by Stacy Toth and Matt McCarry, THE Paleo Parents and authors of Eating Like a Dinosaur and the soon to be released and AH-MAZING Beyond Bacon: Paleo Recipes that Respect the Whole Hog.

photo credit: Nate Brown

Passing of CHIPRA and speaking at Nat’l press conference with Nancy Pelosi, 2010

So Richard and I are obviously newer to the paleo world, so going and meeting a bunch of new people, in a new place, with new food is a little nerve wrecking and I don’t scare easily. I had to take a few dishes too and did I mention, we are newer to paleo? Yes, so I was nervous about making something that wouldn’t suck. I was overthinking it, I know, Richard said so, but my brain was just buzzy. We went to the Farmers Market, to the local butcher, Olde Towne Butcher, where I got some Asparagus from Snead’s Asparagus Farm. I had goat cheese. I had no idea what I was making. So, we had cheese and asparagus. WTF? Still nervous, I am not sure why, maybe meeting new people, maybe because I didn’t know what to make… I have met people before, I mean I have testified before congress before for Pete’s sake!

Were we driving home from downtown and I thought about figs, I love figs. I thought about how I wanted to do something salty and sweet. I had some prosciutto still at home! Yes. That was it. I had made this compote of fig and balsamic vinegar for some chicken earlier in the week and the kids and hubs loved it… it was good. So I was thinking on recreating that and making a roll type of appetizer.

At the end of my prep time, my rolls were eh. I mean they tasted great, but they weren’t much to look at. I felt really bad putting them amongst the other foods when we got to the Meetup, still nervous as all heck. Then after we had plates of food and meandered a bit aimlessly, we found seats and sat down. Then were bombarded by the most kind people ever introducing themselves and we just jumped in. It was great being able to talk to people about our lifestyle and not get weird “omigosh they are weird” sorts of looks. I wish I could have had the kids there too because as Stacy was talking to one of the other moms about how her kiddo could just eat ANYTHING and it was great she didn’t have to say there was this or that they couldn’t touch or eat, etc. The mom said “yeah… its a Goldfish world out there.” I couldn’t agree more and can’t wait to have my kids join in and have a free for all at all the foods at a grain-free paleo potluck.

In addition to just great company and meeting everyone for the first time, it was the previewing of Stacy and Matt’s latest book:

 Beyond Bacon: Paleo Recipes that Respect theBeyond Bacon Whole Hog. Let me tell you, this book is beautiful. I would (and probably waynes worldwill)buy it for gifts for paleo and non-paleo alike. I COULD have had my own copy and been cooking from it right this very minute… except I didn’t realize they would have copies to buy at the meetup! UGH! I have to wait till the release… and I am dying to get it into my hands. You must check out the book, its amazing and I just can not wait to have it- I have already mentally “post-it-ed” pages to cook from.

So continuing my week of solidarity, I have time to work and meet even more new and wonderful people! So I had been wanting to attend the more local (sort of) meeting for gluten-free folks lead by Shirely Braden at gfe, who did this wonderful post on the Top 10 Reasons to Live gfe. So I decided that I was going to again hone my skills on my Asparagus and meaty-thing… as I was so far calling it. So I was back rolling goat cheese, fig compote and prosciutto again. This time, they were actually very attractive, and still just as tasty.  I hit the road, which evidently ended up being a bit more of a drive than I anticipated (Google Maps is not my friend people… took me the BACK way, twice the length of time, what the heck!?) and got there terribly late but with such welcoming arms… and a plate because I was late and there was enough for me! It was a great evening and a beautiful night! It makes such a difference being able to actually meet some people IN REAL LIFE for a change. The internet is a big world, but nothing can replace actually human contact.

I left a few of the, now named Prosciutto Asparagus Spears with the hubs… after all he was dinner-less.  I also brought him back a gluten-free brownie as he is still eating grains and I am not. When I got home, he said he decided the name of the appetizer should be (and he said this in a very manly and stern voice) “They should be called Meat Missiles: Ready to Destroy Your Hunger.” Ummm, I’m not so sure about either of those.. but I did laugh my butt off.