My sister is a foodie. A so called recipe junkie who loves to create. Oh and her craft is good my friend, OH SO good. In fact it’s downright decadent. She bakes things that Betty Crocker only wishes she could have thought of. Rachael Ray, move over there’s a new chef in town. Pastries, pies, squares, tarts and cookies…oh my God the cookies. Anyway aside from my sister’s lifelong mission to fatten me up she really is an artist. A guru in the kitchen, she slaves away lovingly trying new craft after craft until the icing is at that level of sweetness between “oh dear Lord” and “my teeth hurt”. Just right.
So..........she did what any self-respecting Pastry Chef and Sweet’s Connoisseur would do and….bought a diner. Yep. A road side diner snuggled in beside a road side gas station. Leather booths, deep fryers, rooster paintings and all.
At first I was reluctant. I mean the talent! The pastries! The baking! Traded in for fries and burgers? (Don't worry she is TOTALLY SELLING HER BAKING!) But yesterday we went to the FarmHouse Diner to pitch in (with forks and with brad nail guns) and help prep this diner desire of hers and I started to understand.
What I noticed immediately upon entrance was not the delicious smell of my niece’s favourite food group: bacon. (okay I did smell bacon) But the swarms of people like worker bees busying themselves to get this place ready to open. Family was there, friends were there, new faces came and went. All working hard to make sure that my sister’s latest dream (when she and I were in France studying the art of Macaron’s and Crêpe’s and French Living we decided that she has had about 35+ “jobs” that were all born out of some dream or another)
We all joke about Stephie’s slave labour. But it doesn’t take more than a minute to see that this is a labour of love.
Throughout the day we accomplished much. We built a wall, a new food prep station and scrubbed that baby from head to toe. Rome wasn’t built in a day but we were pretty proud of our accomplishments. Over and over I kept reveling in my sister’s friends who were there out of loyalty and goodwill and who have been there through ALL of her ideas and her two greatest projects of all (her kids). My sister’s friends are like an army of love. A true community. They set their minds to something whether it be a backcountry camping trip, having kids, starting a new job or opening a diner and they support each other.
Stephie is always there for her friends when they need her, whether cooking them meals, sending them home with cookies or having all of their kids over to her house. When our mom was ill with cancer Steph’s friends were there for us. When Steph needed help with the kids her friend’s were there again. And they’ve been at every birthday and milestone I can remember. They give and they take and then they give even more. I like to think that they are even my friends too. (But of course a little sister will always piggy back on her siblings accomplishments).
Stephie does food well. Like really well. I’m talking drool worthy stuff here. But I’ll tell you what she does even better: COMMUNITY. If you go to the FarmHouse Diner for breakfast you’ll get a delicious meal no doubt, but you will absolutely without question also become part of Stephie’s community of friends. And that is the true nourishment.
The FarmHouse Diner is opening January 4, 2016 3 minutes north of Greenbank, Ontario!
Also you will be privy to Stephie's sense of humour and fun loving-ness. I'm pretty sure she meant Fresh Coffee AND Baking!
Good Luck to my Sis!