Hey there, long time, no see!
This summer was, as always, hectic. Camp came and went, but I had the most incredible team this year. I lost P, the camp guru, who had been returning from the West coast for camp for the last few years. It was only a matter of time, of course. That was a little intimidating, since I had only joined this age group last year, and I knew the only other returning staff for my age group were two (albeit, phenomenal) interns from last summer. But, I had an amazing new co-teacher and all of the newcomers to our group (whether new to camp or just our age group) really came together to create a well-oiled machine. Camp was a breeze, and I can’t thank my team enough for making it that way!
I am so grateful that camp was smooth, since this was a pretty big summer in other aspects of my life. I am starting classes for my graduate degree in two weeks. Acceptance was the easy part. I spent the summer coordinating classes with my work schedule and jumping through hoops for things like parking and tuition (since I am employee of the university, it adds a few more details to organize–like securing parking passes that are eligible for my campus where I work as well as the campus where I have my classes). I also lose my mother’s insurance coverage at the end of this month, so I’m working out setting up my own through my employer. My old insurance is proving less than helpful with that switch. I have some very firm phone calls to make, now that I am back from vacation.
Camp ended last Sunday, and I ran away to Cape Cod and the beach on Tuesday. I need to go to the ocean at least once each summer, and seeing my family was the perfect way to wind down after camp. M is in Las Vegas for a bachelor party (truly not a worrying as that sounds), so it was nice to get my own vacation while he was gone. As well as seeing family, I made it to the beach, ate some seafood, went to my favorite brunch place, and even had time to gather some family history materials. After my grandmother passed away in October, my father has been slowly going through all of the paperwork in the house. He’s managed to find plenty of pictures and several different historical documents for his side of the family. When I was deep into my heritage research, I was able to follow my mother’s line–full of odd surnames and unusual country origins like Holland and Norway–back for many generations. My father’s family line, on the other hand, is almost entirely English and Irish and full of Johns, Elizabeths, Edwards, and Thomas’s. And my surname is exceedingly common in England. I didn’t have much more information beyond names and potential birthplaces. By the time I reached my great-grandparents, I was pretty stuck. Among the paperwork was a family tree diagram for my grandfather’s and my grandmother’s sides, so I am hoping to make some more headway soon!
Now I am back home, and M will be back late Sunday. I am trying to get back into the groove of life post-camp. New expenses are coming new month–parking passes, insurance, car payments for M’s new car. It is going to take some careful budgeting on our part, but that is of another post. I was able to make it back home to get to our farmer’s market today. We have several new vendors this year, including a seafood stall. Much of their meat is precooked, understandably so, in a Saturday-only, tent-based market. But the shining star of the stall is their smoked salmon. It is amazing! We buy some whenever the stall is at the market, and more than once I’ve been picking up the last of their stock well before 9:30am! A few weeks ago, Shauna mentioned making smoked salmon salad with capers and salmon salad has been bouncing around my brain ever since. This fantastic smoked salmon, of course, would make the perfect starring ingredient. This salad was very simple, in order to really showcase the beautifully smoked filets. A half-pound of salmon was enough for M and I to eat for two meals–first with some hearty sides for dinner and then packed into avocados for lunch the next day. That meal was one of my favorites to emerge from my lunchbox this camp season. I imagine this salad would be best with a filet-style smoked fish, rather than the thin, soft slices of smoked salmon packaged in the grocery store. A filet-style develops the thicker outside that provides some texture to the salad.
Smoked Salmon Salad
Serves: 2-4 | Prep time: 10 minutes | Cook time: N/A
- 1/2 lb. smoked salmon filets
- 2 Tbsp. mayonnaise
- 2 green onions
- 1 Tbsp. capers, drained
- 2 tsp. fresh dill, chopped
- juice from 1/2 lemon
- salt & pepper
- To serve: avocados, toast points, or greens of your choice
Chop the green onions, white and green parts, finely. Flake the salmon into a bowl and add all remaining ingredients. Add salt and pepper to taste (just a pinch or two). Mix gently to keep the salmon intact. Serve with greens and/or toast or spoon into halved avocados.