Long-time readers of this blog will remember when I proposed the idea of Wine Camp. It was during our first harvest when I got the first ugly taste of just how back-breaking every aspect of the harvest/winemaking process could be. My thought was that people could send me their problem kids, I’d whip them into shape or scare them straight with a solid week of harvest and winemaking work. I was only planning to charge parents a pittance. It was a genius plan. Of course, it was predicated on knowing some actual juvenile delinquents.

Luckily or unluckily, my friends have wonderful kids. So I never did get to test out my chain gang theory of tough love. But as I contemplated the work ahead of me populating the new raised beds in Flying Terrier Farms, it occurred to me that I could try this with good kids. All I needed were some willing — or naive — parents. And some kids young enough that they could be convinced that slaving away on a fledgling farm was actually a really fun thing to do. I’ve read Tom Sawyer several times. I know that with enough enthusiasm and aiming at the right age — say about 13 — you probably have a good chance of short-term success. But you have to move fast. Kids wise up quickly.

So long story short, I find myself in possession of two thirteen year olds for the next several days. And knock on wood, so far they seem really excited about planting and weeding and trips to the dump. Either that or thirteen year olds are a lot more polite than I ever remember them being.


Meet DeeDee. She's already got more style than you'll ever have.


And Lexie. She's a super jock. Plays basketball, soccer, volleyball and more.

Since Camp started late Monday afternoon, it made sense to just spend the evening working out our game plan and setting our priorities. Again, these kids are eerily compliant. Either they are the most polite kids that ever were, or they actually have been convinced that farm work might be the coolest thing to do on their summer vacation.

No, the real trouble was with me. I’ve completely lost the ability to talk meaningfully to thirteen year olds. So the early hours were a bit like opening day at the UN. We were sort of speaking the same language, being very polite, but probably not really understanding each other. The girls attempted to bridge the gap with the universal language: music.


So out came my iPod with the Country Western tunes. In went Justin Bieber and Jaden Smith.


I countered with the Universal Language of Pizza at Mary's Pizza Shack.

Thank goodness, we all spoke the Esperanto of iPhones. You always have something to say when you each have an iPhone. You might even be able to approach Cool if you have iPhone apps those decades younger than you don’t have.


Especially if you can turn Alexis psychadelic.


And Mulletize DeeDee into White Trash.

It’s also gratifying to find out that thirteen year olds still know Monty Python and the Holy Grail.


Here Alexis demonstrates the Black Knight after his limbs are cut off.

Ah yes, we’re all going to learn so much from each other in the next few days.

More pix of Day One here.

But hey, don’t take my word for it. Let’s let the girls speak…or blog:

Hey it’s alexis, blogging about mi first day here… ummm… yesterday was actually really fun:) First when we got here, Dee’s family came along, and we ate cookies:)))) Then we went over to Lake Charles and caught tiny frogs, which was really cool. Then one of Dee’s sisters saw a snake… So i went over to where they said the snake was and i lifted up the rock, and what do ya no, it was a 3 yr old rattle snake:/ When i saw it i sprinted away from it. Haha. Afterwards, Dee’s family left and we went up to the tent cabin where we were gunna stay. So we put our bags inside and came back down to go to dinner. We went to Mary’s Pizza Shack:) I got mushroom, pepperoni, and olive, and it was really good! And Dee got olive, pesto, and ham. I thought mine was the best out of both of them but sadly Dee and Lisa thought otherwise:((( After we finished our pizza me and Dee ordered a huge piece of Mud Pie! yumyumyumyumyum! hahah Once dinner was over we when bak to the tent cabin and got ready for bed… Well when we were in the cabin, Dee saw allloootttaaa spiders, so she decided to kill them, with her shoe… Now her shoe has spider guts on them :X haha

This morning we woke up and got brought down to the barn. After our showers we put mi itouch in the dock and listened to music! Wooo! Later we hav to go get vegetable starters and plant them. 🙂 yesterday was funn and today shud be tooo!!!!!<3

HEYY its dee (diana). ystrday wuz mi frst day heer, nd it wuz priitty chill. We went 2 mary’s pizza wich wuz gud cuz i got pizza w/ ham nd pesto nd olives(my fav) ok now i have to stop spelling like this or my mom’s going to take away my phone.(i know its pretty harsh but she will do it.) So like I said in my 13 year-old language, yesterday was fun. We went to get pizza, which was good. Lisa let us play our music in her ipod doc. Alexis got there before me so of course we had to listen to HER music…which is stupid to be honest. She listens to Justin Bieber and rap and stuff. Barf. We can agree on some music though, like Lady Gaga, and the song I’m Awesome! ANYWAYS, it was really chill when we got to the tent cabin, because i got to kill bugs with my shoe rofl. (rolling on the floor laughing) We went up there in the ATV and the dogs hopped in with us.  Lucy and Oscar (the dogs) like to jump in lake charles and get all wet. Its really funny.  This morning we took showers and ate eggs, bacon and toast for breakfast. It was good and I’m excited for what we get to do today:}