Every Day Should Be Like This

August 31st, 2010 · 11 Comments · Grilling, Pork and Beef, Rituals

7:30 Kids watch Fantastic Mr. Fox; parents take turns running on the beach.
10:00 Pool: Work on touching the bottom of the 9-foot deep end with hands, holding underwater handstands for at least 5 seconds, and tightening up jack-knives off the diving board.
1:00 Lunch. Tomato Sandwiches. Leftover Shrimp & Grits.
1:30 Quiet Time: Dad reads Freedom, Phoebe reads Utterly Me: Clarice Bean, Abby plays paper dolls, Mom marinates a pork tenderloin in bourbon, soy, brown sugar, olive oil.
3:00 Beach
4:30 Discuss the differences between a Snowy Egret (black beak, yellow feet) and a Great Egret (yellow beak, black feet) then seek out real-life examples on our bikes.
6:00 Yardarm. Mom prepares potatoes, peaches; Dad prepares the grill.
7:00 Family Dinner…

Grilled Pork with Peaches

A few hours before dinner (after the pool, before the beach?) marinate pork tenderloin in 1/4 cup bourbon, 1/4 cup soy sauce, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, a few glugs of olive oil, a 2-inch hunk of peeled ginger cut into chunks.

Dinnertime: Slice three to four peaches as shown and brush with either melted butter or canola oil and a sprinkling of brown sugar.

Grill pork for about 15-20 minutes, turning every 5 minutes, until the middle is firm but not hard to the touch. During the last 5 minutes, grill peach slices, turning so they don’t burn. Serve with campfire potatoes.

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The 1080

August 29th, 2010 · 8 Comments · Drinks, Rituals

I’ve made it clear how much I love my 6:00 cocktail. But since most of you have only known me for six months or so, I’m not sure I’ve made it clear enough how much I love my summer vacation cocktail. It’s been tempting to relax the 6:00 rule on the Dark & Stormy since I’ve been relaxing the rules on pretty much everything else this vacation (“Of course I’ll load your Pez dispenser for the second time in 15 minutes!”*) but so far, I’ve been pretty good about it. (I keep hearing my father-in-law’s theory on the 6:00 start time: “It’s important to me that I exercise some restraint.”)

It makes me think back nine years ago when I was vacationing in the very same week in the very same house and too afraid to relax the rules on drinking while pregnant even for one night. It was August and peaches were as sweet and perfect as they are right now so as soon as the sun went over the Yardarm, Andy would mix up a pitcher of my very own virgin cocktail: apricot or mango nectar, lime juice, club soda, strawberries and a handful of fresh sliced peaches (measurements pretty much to taste). We called the drink “The 1080,” named after the house number where we stay, and it was so good that whenever the peaches are good enough (even when I’m not pregnant) I mix one up and raise a glass to my third grader (how is it possible that she is in third grade?). Then I pour the Goslings.

*It’s a little embarrassing how many examples I had to choose from for this parenthetical. Runner-up: No folding the girls clothes: Each of them has one drawer and all their shorts, Ts, sundresses, swimsuits, and underwear get tossed into them right from the laundry basket.

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