Don't Let Summer Get Away, Take Time to Savor Its Flavors

Whether spending long summer days working or playing, summer on the Island is an energetic time of year. On Island roads, in grocery store lines, even eating our meals, the pace is quick.

Death Is Part of Life on the Farm

I was 15 minutes late to the Allen Farm this morning. It was cold and getting out of bed felt like torture on my bare skin, so I delayed as long as I could before rolling from beneath the covers to a standing position while cartwheeling in circles to gather the previously worn and cast aside clothes littering my floor. Socks would be worn for the third straight day, a T-shirt, button down and sweatshirt were already layered and pulled on easier than I thought.

Vineyard Inside Out: Keeping It Real With Chickens, Home Farm Delivers Life Lessons

Lucy Thompson lives on Spring Moon Farm off Lambert’s Cove Road, a here-an-oink, there-an-oink working farm. It requires all the dawn-to-dusk responsibilities involved with raising cows, sheep, chickens, ducks, pigs and other animals, plus all the daily work of maintaining a lush garden that tumbles over with herbs, melons, squash, and a variety of vegetables. 

Lettuce In, Raw or Cooked, We're Delicious and Nutritious

Summer is the time for taking advantage of the abundance of available fresh vegetables and fruits. Lightly steamed, prepared raw, sautéed or grilled, vegetables go with anything, anytime. Gobbled up as snacks, blended into smoothies or sliced on top of yogurt, fruit quenches thirst, adds sweetness and tastes delicious.

Sweet Pea Perfection, Grown On the Vine, Eaten Out of Hand

I miss having goats on the farm. As annoying as it was to wake up each morning to milk and to coordinate the same in the afternoon, it was a labor of love that resulted in excess to the point that our pigs were getting used to their grain looking like a bowl of cereal. We named our lactating goat Kale because she eventually refused to allow us to milk her unless she had a bowlful of freshly picked kale to snack on while we tugged on her teats. Her daughter was named Chard, but this was only to match her mother and had no real connection to her diet, it was simply cute.

Walking the Past Among the Gulls

I am eight years old. My father, my brother Andrew and I board a large fishing boat in Menemsha. We have packed sandwiches and bananas for lunch. We both have binoculars around our necks and backpacks holding our picnic. We leave the docks at a crawl and soon open up the engine to a brisk pace after exiting the harbor. We arrive at the lone dock on Penikese Island, cold from the wind but awake. Two muscular young men help us secure our lines and an airplane flies low overhead dropping the day’s mail and newspaper in a sealed plastic bag into the ocean 20 feet away from us.

Spring Asparagus Is Definite Home Run

My first cousin Nathaniel and I used to spend every waking hour together in the summertime. Our mornings were at the Chilmark Community Center running after perfect spirals from the Rev. John Taylor on the football field. Players were encouraged to be barefoot and the game was not over until the noon whistle was no longer audible to our eagerly searching ears.

Green, Lean and Glowing All Over

Eating is crucial to what goes on inside the body. It also has a lot to do with appearance and vitality, too. Skin is bombarded daily with the stressors of pollution, the natural aging process and environment, in particular the sun, cold, humidity and wind. The rate of skin cell damage begins to exceed the rate of repair after about 27 years of age. Poor nutrition accelerates this damage. The good news is that the right nutrition can help.

A Farmer's Education Can Sting, But Even the Mistakes Are Tasty

I have had more failures and mishaps learning to farm than most. My tendency to be cheap and, at times, careless has proven costly more often than not. In California, on a winery where we were also raising food, three heritage breed piglets were purchased from a breeder on the coast for more money than I would like to admit. They were brought back to their new home, and housed in a small makeshift pen meant to be a temporary home while we constructed a more permanent place for them behind a large storage facility.

On Island Tables: Eating Is Only the End of Long Journey

The lamb had been tethered in our yard for days in advance of Candice’s visit, peacefully keeping our grass down. A southerly breeze carried the fragrance of lanolin across the yard that drove my brother’s dog mad. Candice was a new friend about to graduate from college in Brooklyn, and the lamb would play an important role in her graduate thesis.

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