I arrived home from work on Monday and found a much anticipated package waiting on the porch with the new book Recipes for Every Day by British author Jane Cumberbatch nestled inside. I have collected all of Jane’s Pure Style books over the years and she is a beacon of artisinal living—choosing simple over fussy, DIY over big spending and enjoyment of food in its purest loveliest forms. I like that the couch cushions are a bit askew in her living room and that children and busy life are part of her recipe for beauty and good living. Perfection isn’t strived for, but lived-in comfortableness and a feeling of welcome for anyone arriving at the door.
I strive for this feeling here at home. But Tuesday night had plans for me. Different from my plans of sitting on the sunny patio at the umbrella table paging through the new gorgeous cookbook while sipping Cote de Rhone rosé. It was an evening for muck boots.
After dinner we discovered that one of our lambs had a wound on his back. We spent the remaining hours of daylight cleaning him and trying to make him comfortable.
I will spare the gruesome details.
In general our four years of raising lambs have been sprinkled with the need to give oral wormer a few times a season, but have otherwise been fairly simple and placid. This week, as problems spread from the first lamb to two more, our non-expertise in veterinary practices caused anxiety, despair and quite a bit of sleeplessness.
If not for kindness, help and knowledge of our neighbor Jess, I’d probably be crying in the corner. Jess is a veterinarian, and a high quality person and friend. She came to our rescue several times this week, helping to shear the wool from the infected areas and teaching me how to administer shots to the three lambs. I joked that if she had a decorating crisis she could call me. She joked that if my art gig doesn’t work out I can come work with her as a vet tech.
Finally last night we breathed a sigh of relief that the worst is past and the little fellows are going to make a recovery. At last, I pulled out Jane’s new book and joyously prepared the cover recipe, a Spanish tapas dish that we enjoyed daily in Barcelona two years ago—pan con tomate. It was absolutely delicious, and the first taste of many good things to come.
See Jane prepare pan con tomate here.