Tuesday, September 17, 2013


Mid-September root cellar

I bet you can't imagine what I've been up to.  Eh?  Oh my.  Oh my goodness.

Approximately a quarter on these shelves is from last year.  The rest?  This summer.  I know.  Un-un-un-un.  And that doesn't even include the frozen or dried goods (for which I had to clear out another corner shelf).

This past weekend I canned 17.5 pints of BBQ sauce, 9-ish big and small jelly jars of crabapple butter, dried 3 crabapple leathers, and decanted 9 quarts of sauerkraut.  I ran out of time and still have about half of the cabbage to go for this week's batch of sauerkraut.  On Friday, my friend Lindsay came again and we canned 16 quarts of salsa, put 5 trays of paste tomatoes in the dehydrator, and cut up all those crabapples.

Honestly....?  I'm starting to run out of steam.  All this combined with the lack of any personal reflection or down-time has me schnookered.

Meanwhile, life goes on.

 Diego in the schoolhouse portion of his favorite museum

 Fun with 'Tatohead

 Version 3.0 of Truen's summer farmers' market table

 Our first summer with the sandbox --
How did we ever survive before??

 Jamie and I built this together --
That coy smile was the calm before the storm of a major smashfest.

Eliah has started clunking into things with his hands now.
He was mighty interested in this book
and patted it until it fell off the armrest. 

(This is what Truen and I have been calling him)
What a dumplin'.

Finally, I have some explaining to do.  Eons ago, my SIL asked me why I have been labeling Eliah under the name "Elias Ashmole".  I kept on thinking I would do an actual post on this explanation, but after 3 months I see that it probably isn't going to happen.  Heh.

Elias Ashmole was a fifteenth century antiquarian and alchemist.  He showed up in a book that Blaine was reading around the time we were struggling to find a name for Ee-yi-ya (Blaine calls him "Peach").  I woke up the morning of the 4th day with Blaine telling me that he had found a name and said, "I think it was Elias Buttcheek?"  Because really.  What kind of a last name is Ashmole?

We sat on it for a day and the name eventually morphed into Eliah.  And that was that.  

Telling this story had dredged my mind for the memory that I still haven't posted Eliah's birth story.  Nor have I contemplated birth announcements longer than a few seconds.  And his baby calendar is still hanging on the wall in the month of August.  Will I ever catch up with life?  No wonder why my parents were a decade behind in developing and sorting through pictures.  It was just too hard.

Thursday, September 05, 2013

Feeling optimistic again

The saints came marching in

My good friend and neighbor, Lindsay, came for a full day of food preservation this morning: 13 quarts tomato sauce, 10 trays of plum tomatoes in the dehydrator, all the green beans snapped, and tomato soup simmering on the stove.  Together we were able to accomplish what would have taken me two days to do by myself.

I am beyond grateful.  It is such a weight off my shoulders.  And!  She's going to come back and help when Mt. Saint Tomato-Table starts rumbling again.  Awesome.  Next time we are going to do salsa.

In other good news, Blaine is taking a three-day weekend to give me more time in the kitchen.  It will be apples up the wazoo: apple sauce, apple leather, apple chutney.  All added to the apple sauce and apple butter I did last weekend.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

The horror

 The tomato table is feeling a bit more 
like the plague this year rather than excitement or a blessing.
It niggles and mocks me every time I walk by.

Can I do it?  Can I really conquer THIS??
It remains to be seen (and makes me feel a little woozy).
Every time I make a dent in it, the darn thing just fills right back up.