Saturday morning, the Shop Tart attempted to sleep late. (It didn’t really work. It never works. It won’t work until her children have all moved away. By then, she will probably naturally get up at 5 am. Darnit.) She had a busy day ahead, so when she finally did get out of bed, she went to exercise. (Will you believe her if she promises this gives you more energy, not less? True story. Try it if you don’t believe her.) After her workout, Mr. Shop Tart left town with Child #1 for a soccer match in Savannah and she was on her own with Child #2, a delightful boy, and his crazy sidekick, the three-year-old otherwise known as “The Tank.” They enjoyed an easy lunch compiled from leftovers from the night before, delicious takeout from DiPrato’s.
After lunch, the Tank was invited to an event blessedly long enough to exhaust him and his adorable peers a party at the Little Gym on Beltline. (He had a blast and can’t quit talking about it. This place is genius: They run the kids ragged for more than an hour, give them cake and send them home. The sugar in the cake doesn’t destroy them because they are so tired and happy from the playing part. The people who work there have boundless enthusiasm and patience. For real.) After that party, a docile Tank went to City Roots, “your in-town sustainable farm,” for a barbecue to benefit Slow Food Columbia. The buffet was provided by Smoke and included (counterclockwise from left) coleslaw, vegetarian baked beans, the best mac and cheese evah, sweet potato cornbread, salad made from City Roots sunflower sprouts, and barbecue (center). The Shop Tart tried to eat light since she was attending a dinner later…
The salad was prepared by Tracie of Slow Food. Those greens, available at Rosewood Market and City Roots, are sunflower sprouts and they are crunchy, relatively high in protein and totally delicious. The Shop Tart enjoys them in salad and stirred into hot food, like chili, for a bit of added crunch.
Tracie’s dressing was delish and the Shop Tart plans to buy the ingredients to make it at Rosewood Market today after she enjoys their regular Monday lunch special, lemon-butter salmon. Speaking of Rosewood Market, three cheers for them for switching to compostable utensils, which may cost them a bit more but costs the environment far less. Hooray for personal responsibility!
Slow Food Columbia founder Cerelle Centeno and events manager Tracie Broom took tickets and smiled with the glow only whole, locally grown foods can give.
In addition to the aforementioned excellent meal, guests enjoyed music by Tom Hall and the Plowboys and tours of the farm, including the super-cool greenhouse. The Shop Tart is clueless about these things, but her more informed eight-year-old explained that the circulating water was full of nutrients. The Shop Tart liked the greenhouse because it was warm in there and smelled like spring.
Cerelle gave a quick speech thanking everyone and farmer Eric McClam followed her. He is a very handsome farmer. As an old married lady, the Shop Tart is sharing that as a journalist, in the interest of giving you a complete story. She is quite the journalist.
Speaking of sustainable good looks, the Shop Tart copied Tracie’s idea for a photo op and snapped Carter Cox, this pretty lady from (the) USC’s Green Quad, a learning center devoted to sustainability.
There was plenty of eco-fabulous fashion in effect, from the Shop Tart’s recycled-from-her-college-years overalls to specially created t-shirts by Emily McCravy of Fox and Grapes.
Emily’s line of shirts is created from organic materials and silk-screened by hand. (There are gorgeous ones available at KD’s Treehouse on Devine.)
Debi Schadel was there rocking a multi-strand infinite scarf created locally for Softspoken. The Shop Tart has been wanting one of these. Now she really wants one. (Other Softspoken products, including regular scarves and hats, are available at the Bohemian.) This is so freaking cool. Count the Shop Tart obsessed.
The Shop Tart has admitted before that she does not fear wine of the box variety, so she must point out that this one was pretty darn good.
The Tank tired himself out further by doing laps around the building, dancing to the Plowboys, throwing wood chips into a barrel of fire, climbing a pile of dirt, inspecting the farm, swinging like a maniac in the cotton hammocks in front of the building and – finally – doing repeated and intentional face plants into a pile of clover. Miraculously, he was not hurt and managed not to lose his shoes.
City Roots is open Monday through Friday 10 am until 5 pm. Do stop by and purchase some produce or just take a look around. The Shop Tart happens to think a downtown farm fits her philosophy to a “t.”
Tracie sent her this photo of herself from the event and it’s typical. The Shop Tart is holding a camera, a shoe and a glass of wine. Story of her life. (For those of you who follow these things, yes, her hair is looking kind of rough. She is going to Austral in Irmo on Wednesday for another Keratin treatment. Hooray!)
Just before she left for home, where she would have 15 minutes to get ready to attend a black-tie event, the Shop Tart got a phone call from her sitter, who had to cancel. The Shop Tart is not deterred by minor inconveniences, because she likes to party. She secured a back-up, rushed home, threw the Tank into the shower and rushed to get dressed. The Tank – true story – fell asleep in the shower, thanks to Little Gym and City Roots Farm. Mwah! Miss Sidney Heyward arrived to take her to “Black Tie and Boating,” a benefit at the Medallion Center for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Sidney was her date, as her husband was still in soccer hell Savannah.
The benefit was fab, of course. Executive director Dana Bruce looked stunning in a long black and white floral gown. (Hmmmm…wonder if she’ll let the Shop Tart borrow it for the Black and White Ball?) Sidney looked lovely in St. John and a new pair of evening flats from her recent trip to London. The Shop Tart looked…good enough for an old lady who only had 15 minutes to get ready. The food was plentiful and the wine was flowing. The auction items were incredible. (Private boat trip to the British Virgin Islands, anyone?) There were special touches like these messages in bottles at each place. Within each bottle was a quote from someone personally touched by Juvenile Diabetes. Very moving and super-cute!
The best part of the evening was a speech given by Anna Felder, a ten-year-old girl who lives with diabetes. Anna was lovely and so unbelievably poised. The Shop Tart cannot imagine many ten-year-olds – or adults! – who would have done as well. She was introduced by her father Johnny and guests were treated to a slide show of family pictures of Anna with her brothers and parents. The Shop Tart hopes you will take a moment to read more about juvenile diabetes and consider what you can do to help, even if you missed the benefit. Anna and other children like her deserve a cure. Forgive the low quality of the photo – a point-and-shoot has its limits – but Anna deserves some recognition.
After the party, the Shop Tart should have gone home really, but when one is out with youngsters, one has an obligation to chaperone. So she went to Bar None for a Grey Goose and soda and a slice of pizza, the perfect end to a lovely day.
Okay, fine. Someone is bound to notice the second lime in the glass. She had two. So sue her. She and Sidney wisely employed the services of Valet US and the Shop Tart dearly hopes you will consider doing the same next time you have one too many. Mwah!
Happy Shopping and don’t forget to tell them you read it on the Shop Tart!
P.S. Have you heard? Mr. Friendly’s is going Fish Camp tonight and tomorrow night. Enjoy all your favorites on this first official day of spring. From hush puppies and coleslaw to fried fish and baked clams, Mr. Friendly’s has you covered where golden-fried goodness and lowcountry fish and seafood is concerned. Yum!