We started our day today with chocolate muffins and peach milkshakes! It has to be a great day now! B also gave me these super earrings made by a local artist out of old typewriter keys. The perfect gift for me, I think. He reminded me not to put them on the other way or I would go around saying OX. Not the message he had intended.
The last few weeks we have been busy with harvest and food preservation. We have frozen (and eaten) many peach and blueberry pies. We didn't grow the peaches but we buy them when they are in season. We had so many plums on our trees that we tried making plum juice. It turned out a little bitter but that could be because we left the pits in until the juice was squeezed out. It would have taken way too long to take the pits out. The chickens are still feasting on plums and the bugs that are eating the plums when they fall to the ground. All of our onions have been pulled. This is one of six varieties.
We planted nine varieties and dig the potatoes after the plants die. The potatoes and onions will be stored in our unheated basement. They keep well there while we use them fall, winter, and into the spring. So far we have 145 pounds of potatoes! We have been harvesting the carrots and eating them too. They are fun because so many of them have a "freakish" look. It looks like we will be having a lot of potato soup this winter!
We also trade our garden bounty with neighbors. We get goodies like peppers, tomatoes, pesto, cucumbers, and perennial flowers and plants.
I like how our diet changes with the seasons. In the summer we eat lots
of pasta and rice with fresh vegetables. We love the fresh fruits too.
We freeze what we can through the summer. At the end of summer we start
eating potatoes. At first we use the smallest potatoes and have
them boiled or baked. After they have been stored a while and aren't
quite as juicy we have mashed potatoes, and soup, and other potato dishes which are perfect
for the winter months.
This morning we are finally getting much needed rain. It is not a five minute downpour like we had the other day, this is a gentle thirst quenching rain. I hope our shriveled pumpkins can rehydrate. And that our grapes get juicy again before we harvest them for juice.
I started this blog as a way to share creations from my sewing room.
I have also shared socks,
a few recipes from the kitchen,
some of my favorite books, and some tidbits about life on our little farm. In honor of this being my 250th post I'll be giving away the five cards shown here. Just leave a comment on this post by midnight Sunday night to enter. I'll post the winner next Monday.
This last week was the week of our local fair. The kids and I usually enter a lot of items in the hobby, sewing, and garden departments. This year we were just not organized enough to do that. The boys were at camp last weekend learning the new music for Chelsea House Orchestra. We only got over to the fair to work the Elephant Ears wagon on Tuesday for a fund raiser for the House Orchestra. Working the elephant ears booth is always fun. Mixing, rolling, and frying dough while listening to the demolition derby! Sometimes we can even see flames from the derby arena. Ah, the excitement of the fair. I feel bad about not taking P to see the animals but we did, however, watch the Fair Parade. It is a big event in town; they close main street and several others for several hours. P was excited to see kids that she knows in the Marching Band and also on the House Orchestra float. She also saw her preschool teacher dressed as a pirate. The horses and helper dogs were a big hit too. Some of the demolition derby cars are in the parade. Some looked a lot more beat up than this. Almost every group that goes by throws candy, or has some other kind of give away. The teachers give out apples and pencils. One of the highlights of the parade is the Jiffy truck. As mentioned here, Chelsea is the only place Jiffy mixes are made. Jiffy gives out boxes of mix! P took her little tin pail and it was over flowing when we came home. It was a fun afternoon.
As part of my clean up and get organized plan I am finishing some projects. Here is my latest doll quilt. This one is for a flickr swap. The center portion is traditionally pieced with half square triangles and matched points. The sawtooth border is free pieced with different size/shape triangles. I titled the quilt "Breaking Free."
There is a little more color in the border fabrics but still has an earthy tone.
I can't tell you where it is going; that is a surprise. We wouldn't want the recipient to know would we? I hope she likes it.
Ever since our June issue of Mother Earth News arrived I have been wanting to make cheese. I finally ordered some rennet and tried making Mozzarella.
We used the 30-Minute Mozzarella recipe that was included in the cheese article. It tasted great and was easier to make than I thought it would be. We served it with tomato slices, salt, pepper, oregano, and olive oil. I almost didn't get a photo of it. You can't see the forks poised in the air ready to grab a serving. Yummy!
We will definitely be having this again. And plan to try the ricotta too.
edit: I ordered my supplies (rennet, citric acid, and salt) from Dairy Connection. I used the vegetable rennet. I also used milk from the grocery store. The directions say not to use "ultra" pasteurized milk. Be warned- there will be no left overs!
The other day B walked into my sewing room while I was working and said, "Oh, you're cleaning up the slow way."
Yes, he knows me well. I made this "little pink riding hood" cape for P from some thrifted pink velvet fabric and fringe trim. She chose the large pink button from the button bin.
Years ago when the boys were small I made capes like this for them and all of the nieces and nephews I had at the time. M was just walking then and his cape was very short. We still have the one I made for D. It is purple with metalic gold trim. I thought P would enjoy a pink cape. And as a bonus, the bulky velvet fabric moves out of my sewing room. Yep. Cleaning up the slow way.
Also, I have started making barn raising blocks out of the leftover bits of sock yarn. I first saw the idea here. I like the way the self striping yarn turns the corners.
I plan to knit up odd bits of sock yarn this way and eventually make an afghan.