This “Saturday” post is being started this afternoon because tomorrow evening is our Spring Team Gathering so most of the day
will need to be spent in preparation and who knows how much time there will be
for computer work?

       At this point it is still possible we
might have to cancel because, apart from Committee people, there has not been
much of a response. This is worrying because it does not auger well for the
Summer since this is a time of year when we are hoping people are getting hyped
up about the coming Day Camp Season! 

      The past week started off quietly as
people were still on Easter Holidays but things have picked up as the week progressed.
Several churches have confirmed their status and Monday morning of next week
the Program Manual will be sent out to all the churches, which have already
sent in completed Application Forms.

    The Coffeehouse posters have been printed
and they really look great so it is to be hoped I can hand some out tomorrow
evening to take back to peoples’ home churches and youth groups.

    I am already starting to make grocery lists
in preparation for the Retreat advance cooking! May is the month in which a
bunch of calendar days are marked off for intensive cooking and baking marathons.
It seems ridiculous to cook and bake for unknown “consumers” but St. Paul does
tell us to be “fools for Christ” and my crazy optimism must surely
fall into that category! After all, year after year the people appear to
gobble up all that food! The Lord does have a good sense of humour too!

   The most exciting happening of the week was
the birth of a son to our Senior Youth Camp Director, Victoria and her husband Timothy. He looks
totally adorable (guess I’m biased!) his name is still in the “to be announced”
category. This big event took up most of my Tuesday with texts, emails and
phone calls coming thick and fast until the late afternoon after his safe
appearance! Quite the day!

  The weather is very slowly warming, in fact a
few snowdrops have appeared in the neighbourhood. Most of my flowerbeds
are still partially covered with snow,but today I’ve found a hellebore poking through AND I heard geese twice but still have
not actually seen any. Knowing the vagaries
of Eastern Canada, soon all the Spring flowers will shoot up and keel over as
the temperature rises to Summer heights almost overnight. Sigh. With the fond
hope of warmer weather I did manage on Tuesday afternoon, to sew a Summer dress
while dealing with the barrage of messages and enjoy seeing it hanging “in
waiting” in my studio closet.

  The Team crosses are finished, YAY! They
are also brightening the studio with the hope of Day Camp Team Members to wear
them. 
  Other afternoons I have been preparing a calligraphy maquette for a piece I have been commissioned to produce. It is similar to the original which was created as a gift for my parents’ last wedding anniversary.

  So, on this blustery, wet Friday I somewhat
impatiently await a verdict on the fate of the Team Gathering. Better not set
the buffet table yet!

  Wednesday was baking day so for dinner I made
a special Shrimp Pizza with a few shrimp from a bag given to me as a much-appreciated
Easter gift. They are being rationed out
to be slowly savoured and made a glamorous
topping. Here is the recipe.

                                         Shrimp and Goat
Cheese Pizza

½
recipe pizza dough (see below)

12
large raw shrimp, shells removed

2
Tbsps. olive oil

¼ tsp. chilli
flakes

1 clove
garlic, minced

1 cup
sliced mushrooms

4oz.
soft goat cheese

2
Tbsps. sundried tomato paste

1 Tbsp.
cornmeal

Pizza Dough

4 cups
unbleached flour

1 tsp.
coarse sea salt

6
Tbsps. olive oil

1-½
cups warm water

1 tsp.
yeast

Place
the flour, salt and oil in the bowl of a food processor; pulse several times,
until combined. In a container, which pours easily, dissolve the yeast in the
water. With the motor running, pour the yeast mixture into the processor bowl
and continue running until the dough comes together in a ball.

Coat a
bowl with oil and place the dough in it, cover and allow to rise for approx. 1
hour. Divide dough in half and freeze one piece, unless you decide to make 2
pizzas!

To
prepare the pizza: – Heat a pizza stone in a 475° oven. Combine the shrimp with
1 Tbsp. olive oil and the chilli flakes. Drizzle the other Tbsp. of oil over
the sliced mushrooms and toss together. In a small bowl mash the goat cheese
with the tomato paste and garlic until of spreading consistency.

Roll
half the pizza dough into a 12” circle.

Once
the pizza stone is well heated, remove it from the oven and quickly assemble
the pizza. First sprinkle the cornmeal on the stone, lay the crust on next, and
then spread the goat cheese, top with the mushrooms and finally the shrimp.

Place
the pizza in the oven and bake for approx. 10-15mins, or until the crust is
browned and the cheese bubbling.

Serves
2 hungry people!

Saturday morning coda-
The Gathering is on!!  I’ve set the table and we are now scrambling to find a PC laptop to connect up with the media projector. AGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Photos tomorrow…