I didn’t mean to take a week break from blogging. I’ve been busy puttering about the homestead, but nothing I was up to seemed to make an interesting enough post on its own. So here’s a dump of some of what I did last week.
I cleaned out the happy corner in anticipation of projects I can feel coming on. The transition from summer canning season to the upcoming holiday season means I’m moving from the kitchen to my sewing corner. I have a tendency to pull that corner apart in the heat of working on something, then walk away, leaving it a mess. Which means that the next time I get inspired about a project, I find myself having to clear a path in which to work in before I can do anything – essentially, cleaning to make way for the project can sometimes become the project.
I do not have that excuse this time. The corner is ready to go for when inspiration strikes me.
Friday morning I came to the conclusion that every bowl larger than a cereal bowl was being used to hold either tomatoes, apples or tomatillos. Inspired by Patience, I whipped up a half batch of marinara sauce entirely from tomatoes I grew. That’s right. Those rotten, no good squirrels (of which I found two dead in the street this past week) finally let up on the tomatoes and I managed to pick close to 15 pounds last week.
I do not even want to begin to imagine how many pounds I could have grown had the squirrels let them be. Nor how much money I could have saved by not buying tomatoes at market every week.
I have a solid plan for how I’m going to get most of my harvest instead of the squirrels next year. It involves an off-site garden. I don’t want to talk about it here too much just in case those squirrels are reading. They are sneaky like that.
Meanwhile, I’m just so stinking happy I harvested enough tomatoes to can this year. Tomatoes are why I learned to can in the first place, they are why I have a garden. I’ve grown tomatoes since I was a little girl. My whole thing about knowing exactly where my food comes from started with tomatoes. I might have only gotten 6 pint jars of marinara on my shelves, but 6 jars of marinara that I grew? Pretty much all is right with my world.
I whipped up a small batch of tomatillo salsa Sunday morning to take to the swap with me Sunday afternoon. Edie girl was kind enough to help me chop, which lead to a lovely Sunday morning kitchen chat with my girl. My tomatillos have been going gangbusters this summer, as have my jalapeno plant, so I tried the tomatillo salsa recipe from the Food in Jars cookbook, which uses both. I think next time I’ll roast the tomatillos, onions & peppers when I make it.
I got my first not-quite-full bushel of apples (I used the coupon on Henley’s website to buy a peck, get a free gallon which adds up to 3/4 of a bushel.) I’m slowly working through them to make applesauce and things like sausage, apples & biscuits for dinner.
I also spent some time pondering creativity, the meaning of life and exactly what do I want to do with myself as canning season winds down. I have a few ideas for some cooking classes I’d like to organize and teach, but I need a space to work out of. I spent some time asking around about that. I have acquired a nice, new to me camera – not a point and shoot, but a real DSLR, something I’ve wanted for quite some time. I’m attempting to teach myself how to shoot with it manually, knowing not a thing about it. I just fiddle with it until I get a shot to turn out. Needless to say, there’s a steep learning curve. I’ve got quite the stack of books from the library sitting on the coffee table right now as I attempt to figure out what I’m doing. Or maybe I’ll just continue to muddle through in that special way of mine.
6 thoughts on “Tumbleweeds…”
I have so missed having tomatoes this year. Although in the tomato bed, which didn’t actually get even partially cleaned up until late spring, I have a couple of self-seeded plants among the weeds that have produced some nice looking tomatoes. But I’ll have to pick them green, because we’re now past enough warmth to ripen them on the vine.
Last year’s tomato harvest was exactly two ripe tomatoes and just enough green ones to make a small batch of pickled green tomatoes, which were excellent. I highly recommend them.
I’m like you–I always feel inspired to start sewing or knitting projects in the fall. I’ve started a nordic-patterned table runner that is to be a Christmas gift.
That sounds lovely.
You have such a hodge podge of creative endeavors going! It’s not quite apple season here, but we’re still getting tomatoes. I am in awe of your skills. The only sewing I do involves stitching on Boy Scout patches and reattaching buttons.
There are still tomatoes here too. Apple season starts here about August, with the early apples, but the good ones are just now coming in.