Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Reporting for Duty...

Our phones rang shortly after 5am on Monday morning. It was St Francis calling us all to cancel us for the day! This meant that we had to go to CRH at 7am and "report for duty!" We met at 7am and were reluctant to find out our assignment for the day! We told the supervisor, we didn't care what we did as long as we got to stay together for the day! (That was our first mistake of the day!!!) She replied, "Do you want to go fix meals at the community center?" Our reply..."Sure, how hard can it be to cook???" (Second mistake of the day!)
We arrived at our destination, and awaited to hear our "cooking assignment" for the day. The volunteer lady was nice and was grateful for our help. She quickly told us our menu for the day. We were immediately overwhelmed to hear the number of meals that we would be preparing by 3pm. We were to fix food for approximately 400 flood victims. The menu was Salisbury Steak with homemade beef gravy, sauteed with onions and squash, mashed potatoes and green beans. The real kicker was that they had one stove to cook with, 2 skillets and 4 roasting pans! Okay, it didn't sound completely impossible..until we learned that we were to make the Salisbury Steaks out of hamburger and had to make approx. 400 patties by hand. So...at 8am, Susie and I began our work! (I quickly acquired the name "Patty" for the day!)
Let's just say that none of us care to see another hamburger for a loooooong time! :)
Blair and Jane chopping onions and mincing garlic for the Salisbury Steaks...
Shirley, our "top chef" of the day...placing the hamburgers into the roasters to simmer.
Taking a much deserved "5" minute break... Blair on the other hand is high on garlic cloves!
Amy saying "I just lost count of how many hamburgers we have cooked!!!"
There's a hilarious story behind this picture!!! (Don't tell anyone I smelled burnt plastic...)
The CRH labor and delivery chefs! Food for 400 people in 7 1/2 hrs??? No problem!!! Diced squash...we put this in "everything" as we were told to do so! Do you have any idea how many potato flakes it takes to make servings for almost 400 people? I think I grew muscles stirring them up!!! On the last leg of the meal...the volunteers were about to arrive to set up the assembly line to box up the food! (Another story in itself!)

It just dawned on all of us that we now have to wash all the pans when they were finished boxing them up! Groan...........

We totally should have volunteered to clean out the shed instead of going into the kitchen first thing that morning. The people outside were done much sooner and did odds and end jobs for the rest of their shift!

We however, had a hilarious day together and got to know each other much better than we ever intended!

We smelled so bad like fried hamburgers when we left that the dogs chased us home! Not quite, but they could have! The smell must have been up my nostrils as I kept smelling it all night even after a shower!

I didn't complain one bit today as I reported back for duty at St Francis to deliver babies!!! ;)



See....? Now that was an experience! I know you dread your days up North--but there are worse things to do than helping deliver babies!!! I still think you need to volunteer for that job of sitting in front of Walmart, in the shade, visiting with everyone who walks by, and sell DVDS of flood picturs. Those girls were having way too much fun!!!

What is it now...maybe 8 more weeks until you get back in CRH??? I'm sure you all are counting the days.

Angie Davis

Well now, this certainly makes up for not getting to work at Burger King as a teenager, doesn't it? Please excuse me while I laugh my silly head off...

Looking forward to seeing Patty and Elvis in person next week. ;)


I was wondering throughout the whole post if I was going to be seeing you at St. Francis...afraid you did such a good job cooking that you might have traded professions.

Bet that made a memorial day...


Cute post, Karen! Next, you should maybe consider being a Camp cook or something. Ha. If I had to pick between cooking or delivering babies ... I'd have to pick cooking - unless, I could go to school in between. smile.
Hope you all are doing fine.
Love, Angie


I was wondering how soon we could come over for salisbury steak? :)


Glad you survived and had a good time while you were at it. I want to know if you are going to show off those "muscles" you grew:)

Jonathan Walden

will be awhile before I get a home cooked meal of salisbury steak now...


wait til you have to go to Sans Soucis for 5 weeks like I have been. Really makes you miss work huh?LOL

Jody J

That's totally hilarious, Karen. I'm so sorry for you. You sure didn't know you needed to know how to cook when you went to be an RN, did you? Hopefully, it won't be too much longer for ya!


Does anyone really like salsbury steak? I bet you gals won't like it for awhile......! ;)Looks like you had fun together though.


Very funny story.

Lady J

Great write up Karen! This reminds me that I need to ask you about something! I guess you are fortunate that this was your only day thus far in the "trenches"? Let me know when you get cancelled and I'll let you do clinical for me!


That kitchen looks very familiar. Is that the same one in which your mom and I made gallons and gallons of strawberry lemonade and prepared enough finger food to feed the five thousand??
Looks like you girls made the best of your hard work and had fun.
See you tomorrow!!!
Can't WAIT!!


Wow!! You are a lady of many tasks.
We know who to call when we need help! Wanna come clean my house?

Beth Stetler

I'm sure you did NOT go to college for that! :-)

Nettie's Nook

You can start your own Patty Barn!!


Hey, now you know what it feels like to be a camp cook! Multiply that work times 3 meals a day by 10 days! Want the job?!?! loL! Looks like you had fun anyway. And yes, Denise, some of us DO like Salisbury Steak - even Banquets once a year (but homemade is better :) That's actually one of the first meals Tony ever made me (his first mistake - now he does most of the cooking!)


UGH! Hopefully you didn't smell anything like White Castle! BLECH! I think the cooking would of been funif it didn't involve some of the stuff you did! Maybe spaghettie sauce or lasagna would of been better!


Wow! What a talented bunch of L&D nurses! Next time things are slow at the hospital, you can volunteer to help out in the cafeteria :)