Friday, January 23, 2015

My Life as a Short-order Cook

Anyone who knows me knows I spend a lot of time in the kitchen. A WHOLE lot of time.

I’ve baked professionally.  I’ve done some catering. I preserve food for our winter-time eating and customer sales.  I’ve made most all our bread for well over 20 years.  I’ve been on meal duty since 1984. I've gone so far to say "food is my life".

I love baking and trying new recipes. I read cookbooks like novels and you better not get me started on all the pretty pictures and delicious entries on Pinterest! I don’t even mind the relentless pressures of putting interesting/nutritious meals on the table every single day. 

All the time spent in the kitchen has made me a noteworthy cook, too.  I know that sounded fairly presumptuous, but this is not just my opinion…

Last week, we saw a fella in town whom we hadn’t seen in years…15 years in fact.  He recognized and greeted the Boss. When the Boss asked if he remembered me (as I look FAR different than I did all those years ago), he said, “oh, yeah…I remember…you can COOK!” Proof that the way to a man’s heart (or at least his memory) is indeed through his stomach.


Any cooking adventures have been put on hold. Recipe experimentation has ground to a screeching halt.   I’m still putting meals on the table, but I don’t have any extra time for “pinterest-ing”, or even cookbook reading.  

At present, if you see me with a mixing bowl and whisk, I’m not in pursuit of some new and wondrous dessert or even some scrumptious new casserole. I have no plans for any sort of culinary experimentation. And, I'm probably not even making supper.

No…I’m just mixing up lamb bottles. Again.

Since you always give the “customer” what they want, there is not much variety at this café. Make that NO variety.  They don’t want ambience.  They’re not at all concerned with presentation. Just give us our bottles and give them to us NOW! RIGHT NOW!  BAAAAA!

I must admit, I miss the challenge of new things.  The monotony of bottle after bottle is more than a little mind-numbing.  But, this too shall pass.  In another month or so, the lamb bottle marathon will be a distant memory.

Six times a day, I pull out the bowl and the whisk and the milk replacer…measure and mix and stir and pour.  Then, I hand deliver the meal.

Come back and clean up the mess. 

…and do it all again just a few hours later.


The bottle lambs are a demanding bunch who never leave a tip…or a positive review. (and are next to impossible to photograph!) On the other hand, they don’t complain or demand any sort of challenging menu with expensive ingredients.

I take that back.  You have any idea how much a bag of milk replacer costs?! It's worth it's weight in gold.

yes, there is milk replacer in our living room!
And, as of Tuesday night, their number increased by one.  Yes, now I have an entire flock of bottle babies. Five little lambs think I am their mother.  It’s kind of ridiculous.  But, it certainly beats the alternative.

meet lamb #5

So, please excuse me, if you will…I hear  another order being placed.

I can't tell if he's licking his lips
or sticking his tongue out at me!

Wonder how to feed a lamb?  Or multiple lambs?  Watch this video that the Boss shot the other day.

But, be very...very quiet.  The babies are finally sleeping!

my "hospital pen" is filled to capacity
they are moving to the barn SOON!


  1. Educational factor: 10
    Josephine interest factor: 10
    Squee factor: 110!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Been there, done that, got the T shirt to prove it, don;t want to go there again - too exhausting. But although it is hard work, what benefits in the end. Soon be over, so bear up. They all look good and healthy.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. So i have a question out of ignorance. Why bottle feed them instead of the mama?

    1. I guess you missed this post.
      We truly prefer to have the ewes raise their own babies. It's better for the ewe and much better for the lambs. However...
      We lost one ewe, so I have to feed the orphans.
      The same day, another ewe rejected two of her triplets.
      Then we had one get separated from his mother at birth and she never accepted him.
      In order to assure their survival, I became a "surrogate sheep mom". lol
      Hope that answers your question.

    2. You're right, i did miss that post! I'll definitely go read it. Thank you for your help!

    3. Thanks for reading! ...and taking the time to comment. :)