CSA for June 26

While we were on vacation we missed one of our CSA pick ups, so I don’t know what was in the June 19 delivery. But this was waiting for us when we got home thanks to a good friend who picked it up for us Sat. morning.

What we got this week:

Lacinato Kale


Swiss Chard

2 zucchini & 2 yellow squash

Garlic Scapes

Sugar snap peas

Here is the kale, it is being used daily in green smoothies:


I have plans to turn this cabbage into a slaw for our red, white and boom party.


I think the swiss chard will be added to a quinoa dish, similar to the one I made on vacation. It was good that I’ve been craving it.


Dan has already grilled the zucchini and squash for a yummy dinner he made Monday night. I’ve started back to a art class on Monday evenings so he’s in charge of the kids and dinner.


The garlic scapes will be chopped up and used as seasoning in different dishes. I’m sure I’ll use some in my slaw.


The sugar snap peas were eaten right out of the bowl. Half of them were gone before I even had a chance to wash them.


For more information about this CSA you can contact:

Ben and Lisa Sippel

Sippel Family Farm



All produce on the Sippel Family Farm is grown using
sustainable principles and without synthetic chemicals.
Everything that we sell at market and offer in our CSA
program is grown by
US on OUR farm. We NEVER buy
wholesale products from auctions or other farms. We
encourage you to ask other producers at the market if they
do the same.

The dangers of the ocean

When the kids were smaller my biggest fears was that they would get washed out to sea. One minute you would be watching all the kids, doing the regular head count to make sure they were all there. Then all of a sudden you would be missing one or more of them. You would scan the water to make sure they hadn’t been pulled out, then you would look up to the house to see if they had gone back up without you noticing. Inevitably you would need to make the trek up to the house to calm your fears and just make double sure that they were ok. We’ve had to make a few rescues when the rip tide or under current has pulled out a weaker swimmer but never anything too serious.

Who knew that the biggest danger would be when they were young adults and had just enough freedom to get them into trouble. Last night Daniel was in a downstairs bedroom with his cousins that are 22, almost 21 and a friend that is in her 20’s, drinking beer and playing cards. We had talked to Daniel about his behavior on this vacation and how he is NOT still living in the dorms so he does NOT need to be getting drunk and obnoxious. We were ok with some moderate drinking, he was warned not to be drinking other people’s alcohol and that he needs to be aware of all the younger children in the house. I had hopes that this would not be a problem, but I was not so naive to think it would all go by without any issues.

It never occurred to me that the issue would be the four young adults driving after they had been drinking. We have always stressed to Daniel to never drink and drive, that we would always come pick him up at any time or place if he had been drinking and needed a ride home. But apparently when his older cousin was able to drive to buy more beer he didn’t think about the dangers of drinking and driving. Luckily, they all made it home safely and no one was hurt. But I am still shaken by the incident. I can’t help but think about all the possible outcomes. And I can’t help but be furious with all of them for being so completely stupid. Everyone makes mistakes and I have done plenty of regrettable things in my past so I can empathize with their stupidity. But it is my job to make Daniel aware of the ramifications of his actions. One reckless mistake could completely change his entire life. He has to be able to look past the moment and understand what could happen. That’s a gargantuan task to put on a 19 year old, but one that he needs to take seriously. Now I just need to figure out how to make him realize that.

Thomas learning to surf

When I first started dating Dan 2 decades ago he was a surfer. That’s a pretty amazing accomplishment when you live in Columbus, Ohio but at least in his mind he was a surfer. There was a 3 month period when we were dating that he moved to Florida so he could surf more frequently. And for as long as we’ve been making this trek to the beach we have always had at least 1 if not 2 or 3 surfboards strapped to the top of our truck, car or van. Surfing in North Carolina is NOT easy. The break is too close to the beach so you just don’t have enough room to really ride a wave in. But that doesn’t stop everyone from trying.

This year is Thomas’ turn to catch the surfing bug. Dan traded in all of his old surf boards for one long board. While Thomas thinks it would be easier with a board more his size in reality it’s much easier to get up on the long board.

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Day 2 of the surfing adventure

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By gum, I think he’s got it! Now if he could only had somewhere to practice in Ohio!

Dinner for 21

Cooking for this houseful of people is quite a task. The way we accomplish it is each family being responsible for dinner one night of the week. The day of your dinner you do the grocery shopping and stock up on any other supplies or food that is needed for the house. Different families have their yearly traditions. Dan’s parents always take care of dinner the first night we get here by ordering pizza another family always picks up Chinese food. Our dinner is always a seafood feast. We start with crab cakes for an appetizer then the main course varies from year to year. In the past we have made seafood jambalaya, broiled fish, seafood scampi and fettuccine alfredo with seafood. This year we tried something new; fish chowder. As usual it was a hit! Along with the crab cakes and chowder we also had lots of bread, a huge salad and  quinoa with veggies.

For the past several years John has acted as Dan’s sous chef and helps with the crab cakes. Dan has always done the majority of the cooking on our night and I usually do the bulk of the clean up.

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I was in charge of the salad


finishing off the chowder

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making the vegetarian dish of quinoa with veggies (this was so yummy!)

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My SIL Mary kept my wine glass full while i was working on chopping up all the veggies.


You’ll notice how my kitchen is nice and clean and calm, while Dan’s kitchen looks like a bomb went off and is anything but calm! Maybe he should drink more wine while he cooks.

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And what does it cost to feed a family of 21, a seafood feast? We spent $237 at the grocery store (for dinner and more) and $175 at Captain Willis’ seafood market, so just over $400. But Dan wouldn’t have it any other way.

first charter fishing trip of the trip

Some of the guys in this family are die-hard fisherman; Dan, his BIL Mike and his son Joey. Then there are the occasional fisherman BIL John, Dan’s dad Joe, Thomas, all of John & Jenny’s girls; Madalyn, Emily and Jordan. They all do a lot of surf fishing every day. And usually some grouping of them also do one charter fishing trip each year. This year Dan is going on two charter trips with different groups each trip.

Today was the first trip with Dan, Thomas, John and Maddy.  Maddy is a year younger than Thomas but just as much of a fisher-person as he is. They all had to get up at 4:30am for today’s trip. It was supposed to be an all day trip but there was a miscommunication with the captain so instead it turned into a half day trip and they were home by 1:00pm instead of 4:30pm. They were fishing for Red Drum and there was a 5 fish limit for the boat, they ended up coming home with 4 of the 5 fish they were allowed to catch.

Dan caught his fish right away but it was 30 inches long which put it just past the size restriction. Meaning it was 3 inches too long so he had to throw it back. The rest of the fish they caught were under the length restrictions and ok to keep. The kids are always excited to bring their fish home and eat them up. Today’s trip made for a nice lunch time snack. Or a very expensive lunch time snack depending on how you think about it.


John and Maddy reeling in a big one!


Maddy & Thomas showing off their catches.


Here’s Thomas reeling in his,


It’s hard work reeling in those big ocean fish!


Here’s Thomas with his red drum, what a pretty fish!


Everyone had a good time but they were glad to get back to the house so they could play at the beach!


the view from my bedroom door

Through the years we have gone to many different vacation houses but  what remains the same is we always go to Emerald Isle and we always have a house right on the beach. For the last few years we have been at the Carolina Clipper (beach houses are always named.) It is a 10 bedroom house that the 25 of us fit in, just barely. When the kids start getting married and having their own kids we’ll definitely need a bigger house. But for now we all squeeze in and are very appreciative to Dan’s parents for making this happen year after year.

And here is the view from my bedroom door…

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this is the view if I walk out on the deck…

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And this is why we LOVE Emerald Isle. It is a very unpopulated beach! Granted I did take this picture at 7am. But for the most part the only people on the beach belong to the houses directly behind them. This is NOT a touristy beach like Myrtle Beach or Virginia Beach.

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here is Dan all alone on the beach, fishing at 7am. We usually spend our mornings alone on the beach before everyone else wakes up and joins us.


Heading to the beach

I have been going to Emerald isle, North Carolina with Dan’s family (all 25 of us, including my clan) for 20 years. The first time I went I was pregnant with Daniel and I’ve gone every year since. There have been years in the past when I didn’t want to go, when the stress of being with 4 sisters-in-law was too much. But I would pack up my tub of books and spend lots of time reading and playing with the kids, while Dan fished. Those days of discontent have passed but I still bring my tub of books. Spending a week laying on the beach reading a stack of books is like heaven to me. Now that kids don’t need as much supervision I have more freedom to read and nap at will.

One thing that does seem to be consistent for our trips is some type of issue before we leave the house. We try to leave the house early for our 9 hour drive, when the kids were little it was so they would spend more time asleep in the car. Now as we’ve gotten older its because Dan prefers to drive early in the morning and get to the beach as soon as possible. In the past we’ve woken up to flat tires, dead car batteries, windows that wouldn’t roll down and an  air conditioner that quit working. Last year we had a swarm of about a million may flies around our living room light that we needed to vacuum up before we could leave. One year we drove the wrong direction when leaving Columbus, instead of heading South we went North (I have no idea why.)

This year we also had a little problem but it popped up the night before. Dan had late appointments on Thurs night so he was going to load the van when he got home from work at about 8:30pm, then head to bed so he could get up at 4am. As he was coming into the house he turned his head and somehow managed to hit his eyebrow/ forehead on the edge of the metal screen door. Causing a slightly deep, 1 inch cut above his eye. In different circumstances he may have needed stitches. But considering our insurance situation and the length of time it takes to get anything done at an urgent care we opted for super-glue and steri-strips istead. I ran over to the grocery store to pick up some supplies while he got the bleeding under control. Luckily our neighbor was outside when I got home so I convinced him to come in and bandage Dan up. I get very light headed and queasy around injuries to my family. I can handle the emergency part, I just am not good at looking at the wounds, I pass out really easily.

Finally with a throbbing head Dan was able to load the van and get to bed by 11pm. Unfortunately, he did not get much sleep due to the throbbing of his forehead.

Luckily, we made it out of the house in the morning without any more incidents.

North Carolina, here we come!

The money room

On our way to the beach house we stopped for some fruit at a roadside stand and right next to it there was a radio station doing a live show. They had a small glass room with money blowing all over. We were all intrigued but Dan and I went to the fruit stand, while the kids were waiting in the van.

But Thomas couldn’t resist so he ran over and asked if he could try it out. Of course, they couldn’t resist him, so then Beth and Dan had to get in on it. It was almost all fake money but a few real dollars were added in. You had to try to push the real dollars through a small slit then at the end of 15 seconds you got to keep any of the real money you got through the slot. Thomas ended up with $2, Beth and Dan both $1.

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I actually missed getting any pictures of Thomas the first time because we were picking out our fruit and he literally ran over there without us realizing it. When I looked up I saw him in the money room so then we all headed over to it, abandoning our bags of fruit at the stand. The people running it were nice enough to let him go in one more time so I could get some pictures.

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Kohlrabi Salad

I posted in the last CSA blog a recipe for a salad made with the leaves from our Kohlrabi. I decided to make this salad last night to bring with us on our trip to North Carolina. It will give me something to eat on the road when everyone else is eating subway. Plus it should last through the first couple days of vacation.

Here’s my pile of leaves, I cut out the stem then washed and spun them. It really was quite a huge pile of leaves from just 2 kohlrabi. IMG_1299

This is after I rolled them then thinly sliced the leaves.


I changed the recipe around a bit.

Shredded leaves from 2 Kohlrabi bulbs

shredded carrot

shredded Kohlrabi bulb

finely chopped garlic scapes

finely chopped onion

finely chopped red sweet pepper

finely chopped hot pepper

chopped cilantro

tossed with dressing:

Flax oil

sea salt

juice from 1 lemon

coconut vinegar

coconut liquid aminos

Let marinate for a few hours so the leaves soften a bit.


making a green- fruit smoothie

I make smoothies every day, sometimes more than once. In the mornings I make 1 each for Dan and me and sometimes Beth. Thomas is not a huge fan but every now and then he’ll try one. Both Beth and Thomas will drink fruit only smoothies, so no green for them. Since being on the fat flush diet my smoothies have changed, I always add flax meal, chia seeds and often whey protein powder.

One thing I’ve done to make it easier is keep the main ingredients in a small container that fits in my freezer. That way I can pull out 1 container and have most of what I need.

This is everything that I need for Dan’s and my smoothies: from left to right: frozen peeled bananas, frozen kale from last years garden, freezer container with organic frozen fruit (blackberries, blueberries, and cherries) organic flax meal, organic chia seeds, raw organic cacao powder, whey protein powder (this was a fat flush addition) measuring cup and my vita mix.

I found the perfect amounts for making 1 smoothie are 1 cup frozen fruit and 1 cup of water, plus a chunk of kale and a 1 scoop each of protein powder, chia seeds, flax meal & cacao powder (if you want a slight chocolaty taste.)

For Dan’s smoothies I also add frozen banana.

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and this is what all of that yummy goodness turns into. This one is not so green. The cherries and berries make a pretty color. When i add the blueberries and kale it often turns into a brown sludge color, not very pretty but still tasty.

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