InnSane Rain


We’ve had a lot of rain lately. Here’s a picture of our creek in the back

Psych! That’s actually a picture of Betsy Apgar-Smith’s painting. This is the class you are missing. Kim is down loading the dramatic creek pictures.

And here is the actual picture. Not too different. Now mind you, the painting was painted without the benefit of the creek. What a coinkidink!

We aren’t flooded out and that workshops are still on. Wait till you see these pictures, though.

Today is sunny. No rain. And it’s warm.

Inntrepid Betsy


Elizabeth Apgar-Smith is in the house. If you are a pastel painter and are not in this course, boohoo. As a matter of fact, she does watercolor, oil and pastel. Just not in this class.

Wowie zowie

We have 21 enrollees for next year already. Isn’t that something? How do you know what classes are what next year, well, you enroll for a class this year and we do a slide show for you. You get the list and become an early bird.

How’s that sound?

Of course in a few months, we’ll be sending out brochures.

Loretta Marvel — Cloth Paper Scissors

Well, indeed, you’ll have to read Loretta’s wunnerful review of the inn and workshops in the Fall 2006 issue. She doesn’t mention us by name, everyone knows she’s talking about us. She mentions the deconstructed banana’s foster and she mentions some of our students by trade if not by name.

Now isn’t that nice. Thanks Loretta.

InnSane Painting

InnSane House Painting

No, not painting workshops, nor fiber (hey it is our blog after all) rather we’ve been having the house painted. Scott, our local painter, has started and finished painting the house. Normally, he paints for a few weeks but this time, because he had a helper and the weather cooperated, he finished all the painting in a week or so. Maybe a little longer.

The place is too big to paint all at once so he does different buildings each year. So far so good.

We had the front and back porches painted as well as the gables and the main house in general. The port-cochere also was painted. I also had to fix one of the “Bilco” (Basement) doors. Whew! It looks beauteous.

Speaking of the beautiful, our second set of flowers are in bloom. Pictures coming. Everything is beautiful… in Greenville. Kim’s fine. The dog is good. And all is right with the world.

17 workshops under our belt for this year already

Whew! And I’ve done 3 menu changes already. Whew! We have 2008 already lined up, or almost, just one more teacher we need to contact, and have started lining up 2009.

The menu for next year will be comfort food. So, you’ll see that great Mac and Cheese again as well as the wunnerful Toasted Cheese Sandwich. And introducing Meat Loaf, Steak and Eggs and maybe Du Burger. You’ll see again The Big Moose, Maple Salmon, Paella. Yes, I’m keeping both the Maple Salmon again and the Paella. Yowza.

This combined with our wunnerful line up of talent, Jerry Brommer, Melody Johnson, Laura Cater-Woods, Koo Schadler, Karen Rosasco, to name just a few. Kim’s working on the brochures! It’ll be out in the late fall. The fiber one will be first and then the painting.

Treats for Bob Rohm’s class

This class has gotten more treats than any other class. Let me list them.

Truffles — other classes got truffles but because they are quickly expiring and because I’ve been trying to save them by having them get absorbed by eggs, they got the truffled eggs as well as plenty of truffles in the Mac and Cheese, another treat.

Mac and Cheese — a dish for next year. Nuff said. Yum.

Toasted Cheese — another comfort food dish for next year. I perfected it here. Basically, a mini-cheese brioche with embedded cheese, sshh a secret, baked to a crispy yum. They got this twice. First as an app second as bread.

Guacayumyum — homemade guacamole with chips. Yummer.

Vegetarian delights — our vegita got a special tofu fried thin with sesame-oil and chimichurri sauce. (Or as John puts it, Chimchiminey Sauce.) Also, she’s getting some great pasta tomorrow with a peanut sauce. I’m trying out some vegetarian yummers.

The Big Moose — yup, I tried out and perfected the ultimate Dark Chocolate Mousse. This one is either a chocoholics dream or nightmare. One of our guests, a chocoholic going through withdrawals, put away two! Well, one and a half. And yes, this is more chocolately than Life by Chocolate. Last year’s Chocolate Mousse is a squirt gun compared with this magnum.

This is above and beyond our normal special food. When the truffles run out, I’ll be switching to steak and eggs. Another dish for next year and one I’ll be working, yum, on, yum, this, yum, year.

Photo Op: Bob Rohm

They are finally here. Honest.

First the maestro. Relaxed. Ready to instruct.

Ready to eat.

Ready to take photos?

Ready for paella!

We served the paella on Monday. This is usually a Friday dish to top off the week.

Ready for paella?

Kim doesn’t like wearing her jacket but when she helps me carry out the paella, she does. Don’t worry. She’s happy on the inside.

And where did the happy painters paint? At Campbell farm, and may other places.

Ready to paint.

Really ready to paint. This is one serious coffee drinker, not to mention painter.

The famous painting titled “The Salad Eaters.” This class wore very colorful clothing. They’re a painting themselves.
and more eating…

And finally our chocoholic.

I made this very intense, 74% dark chocolate mousse, using Dagoba chocolate, New Moon, and as she was 1/2 way through, John, one of our waiters, took it away. He does this consistently. So, hold on to your dessert when you get here. Be warned. He’s good but zealous. So, I just so happen to have an extra, and she got it and ate it. Whew! 74% dark chocolate, people. That’s deserves some recognition. Even Peter didn’t want seconds. I call that dessert, The Big Moose.

Last year I made the mousse out of Callebaut 55%! That’s a mouse compared to The Big Moose.

Photo Op: David Daniels

And now, for the Dave Daniels saga. Whew! I’ll be caught up as soon as I get these posted! If only blogger doesn’t give me a hassle. (Oops. Too late.)

In the watercolor jungle, Dave, like a panther

stalks the studio, teaching,

dispensing wisdom,


and justice.

In the table clothed jungle, John…


well, maybe not…

John, in the table clothed jungle, prances…there, better…

The end! You already saw the Paella Pictures. They were from this class. Now you’ve seen the rest.


If you didn’t come to this workshop, you must be an oil painter! 😉

Photo Op: Zhang Hong Nian

Finally, pictures from the Zhang workshop. Let me put this in perspective.

First the Master!

Next, we have the serious chocoholic!

Next the serious students going into the serious studio!

Here they are hard at work!

And hard at play.

Relaxing and enjoying our hospitality.

And finally, enjoying our beautiful grounds! What a painting experience. For those of you who didn’t sign up for this wunnerful workshop, boohoo! You must be a watercolorista!

Photo Op: Paella

Finally, pictures from the workshops. I am starting with everyone’s favorite meal, Paella. I got my paella pans, not once, but twice from Sarah Jay

Charlene also sent me some fantastic paella photos and I plan to put them up as soon as I can get them scanned in. Which wont be that soon. We took 85 photos during the Zhang and Daniels workshops. I have to go through those and pick and choose and finally put them in the blog! Sigh! No time to lose!

Enjoy the photos! Next best thing to actually eating the paella.

Signature Dish(es)

For those that don’t know, a signature dish is a dish a chef is known for or by. Some people have said that my Maple Salmon or my Paella qualify as signature dishes. I’m not sure about that. I’d say that Life by Chocolate and my Deconstructed Bananas Foster definitely qualify and are uniquely identifiable. Maybe I’m a pastry chef! 😉

But, be that as it may, Maple Salmon is the only dish, non-dessert, I held over from last year. And it looks like my Paella, which doesn’t have any other name than Paella, is another big hit. It is the only dish where every week, I have people asking for seconds, thirds and fourths. Perhaps I should call it the Diet Killer.

So, it looks like I’ll be holding over Paella next year. It’s become comfort food. Should I also hold over the Maple Salmon another year? Please respond using comments.

Oh, yes, the pictures are coming. Kim was downloading them yesterday and I should be able to put them up in the next few days.

David Daniels


I haven’t yet done a write up of Dave’s class because I haven’t gotten the pictures from Kim. However, let me assure you, everyone is having a great good time. People have been coming up to me to tell me that Dave’s a wunnerful teacher and that they love his class.

Also, something about walking on water, but that’s in our pool, which doesn’t count. 😉 Anyway, speaking of water, it’s cool here and not really swimming weather. That might explain it.

Pics to follow, I hope.


Here’s the deal. When we run out of Calaspara rice, then I’ll go back to Fisch nach Burgenlaendischer Art. But I’ve ordered so much of la Bomba and other Calaspara rice that that may never happen. Or at least, probably not this year.

Sorry. Maybe next year I’ll get my equipment and run out of rice at the same time. 😉

InnSane Change Over


Dave Daniels is in the house. And the class has begun. It’s a nother wunnerful crew.

I took some pictures and more will be coming. Just not today.

A 3 day back to back with a 5 day workshop is a little hectic but everything went smoothly. Other than some late arrivals, that is. 😉 New Jersey always proves a challenge. It’s like hotel California.

InnSane: Muzzy

InnSane: April 2005

I was reading April 2005 and thought, boy I used to write quite a bit about Spotter dog but have not written too much about Hudsa-doggy. Hudson is a good boy. He’s getting his gangly legs in. He’s a sweet muzzy dog when he first wakes up and I take him outside. Then he becomes a snappy puppy. He’s still teething.

I think I’ve been putting up so many pictures, I no longer rely on words. So, I’m going to change that.