Archive for August 4th, 2009

Independence Days Update: A Day On, A Day Off

Sharon August 4th, 2009

We’ve had a definite improvement from earlier in the season, when it rained every day.  Now, it rains every other day.  As summer enters its waning month, we have the occasional warm, humid day, as opposed to cool, rainy ones.  But it has been a weird season. No blight here, thankfully, but still not enough tomatoes to can, no peppers to speak of, and teeny little eggplants.  I’m giving up and ripping out my okra all together – it doesn’t like this weather.  Might as well plant some cabbage there.

I’m starting to get into autumn mode – I know we’ve got another month of summer, but that will go awfully fast – we’re away for a few days later this week, and then back, a couple of busy weeks with lots of guests  (including potential housemates), and then we’re winding up and getting ready to send Eric and Eli back to school (ok, Eric has been teaching online and Eli attending a summer program, but close enough).  And by then, I’ll have fully entered “winter is coming, must. store. food.” mode.  Plus there’s wood to split, kindling to collect, the sunporch to reinsulate, the chickens to butcher…Wow, ok, I’m already in need of a nap and I haven’t done anything ;-) .

The coming of the prospective housemates has been the inspiration to deal with some of the messes we’ve been ignoring for a long time, most notably the laundry room and the garage.  Both have yielded treasures, but taken an awfully long time to get clean, mostly since the last time we did it was during an ice age, I’m pretty sure ;-)

Not too much new around here otherwise – I’ve been so busy with the end of Independence Days (finally done) and getting organized for the new book that I’ve barely touched the garden (and have the weeds to show for it) and am dreadfully behind on the preserving.  Goats at least have settled in, enough that we’re actually going to be able to go away for my niece’s Christening, thanks to some kind goat and poultry sitters.  First, however, we’ve got friends coming for a big dinner party tonight – 11 kids, 7 adults and an awful lot of fresh spring rolls, grilled chinese style tofu and garlic eggplant (thankfully, some local farms have eggplant!).  So don’t expect much from me this week – the blog will probably be quiet for a bit.  

Ok, on to the update:

Planted: arugula, lettuce, peas, valerian root divisions

Harvested: summer squash, zucchini, a few precious tomatoes, lotsa herbs, lettuce, broccoli, kale, mustard, chard, beets, carrots, raspberries, currants, blueberries, cucumbers, borage, green beans.

Preserved: Yarrow tincture, more currant juice, red currant jam, pickled carrots, pickled nasturtium seeds, froze pesto

Waste Not: Made cucumber vinegar from peels, put together a trellis from an old bed frame, finally cleaned out the laundry/clothing room and am in the process of sorting through 11 billion pounds (approximately) of boy’s clothes sizes 18 months to 4T for dispersal to friends, Goodwill, anyone who will get it the heck out of my house ;-) .  Cleaned out garage and found all sorts of useful things ;-) .

Want Not: Rescued big box of unused Mad Lib books from dump, Simon now totally obsessed.  Picked up polar fleece for boy’s Chanukah presents (everyone is getting a homemade blanket – not a surprise, the boys got to pick their fabric).

Ate the Food: Just enough tomatoes to make tomato shortcake, which is basically a creamy baked tomato dish over biscuits.  Was a huge hit with the kids, and frankly, utterly delicious. 

Built Community Food Systems: Not a bleedin’ thing.  Where did the week go?

 How about you?