I am just returning from 4 ½ months in Italy working on organic farms…WOW! My son, Noah, and daughter, Hailey, have been managing Finch Gardens and doing an amazing job! I could not be more proud of them! I am very excited to return to my favorite place in the world and to put some of the millions of things that I have learned into play. My time here in Italy has been over the top inspiring and what better way to become a better host than to go out in the world and be hosted. I feel like I gained so much being on the other side of hospitality. I did some vacationing while I was in Europe and spent time at a number of other AirBnB properties. It was a great opportunity to see things that I could do better.
I spent 9 weeks working on farms that had sheep and goats and made cheeses from both and I worked 6 weeks on another farm that was more focused on their vineyards and “ristorante”. I spent a great deal of time watching and learning about bread and pasta and everything else that goes on in an Italian kitchen. On one farm, I had the pleasure of sharing a kitchen with 3 Italians and getting to prepare meals with them twice a day as they take lunch every bit as seriously as they do dinner. I am having a lot of fun putting together a new Finch Gardens menu to share with my guests.
The drought in California (and my Italian sabbatical) left me without a vegetable garden this summer but I will be busy getting things in the ground as soon as I return home for a fall and winter garden.
Throughout August and September I will be offering seed planting classes on Saturday mornings for anyone who is interested in planting their own fall garden. In October and November we will start having some fun with wreath making. Please let me know when you make your reservation if you are interested in attending.