Sunday, July 17, 2011

Let's talk about good things, shall we?

There is only so much negativity that I can stand before I have to come up for good, positive air.  It's been a week that tested my mettle sorely, but there are also things going on in friends' lives that make my little inconveniences just that.

Without further ado...

Kay brought over a huge bowl of fresh-picked red currants!  This, when she was here to help rassle sheep for worming.  I rassle, she administers.  I mean, how generous is that?  I may have to live to 100 just to pay her back for all her kindnesses.

Very little was lost in the great freezer meltdown, thanks to my pressure canner and a neighbor's freezer space.  I managed to get all the meat-type thaws cooked or canned.  The only loss was my frozen pumpkin, but it wasn't a total loss, as the chickens sure loved it.  All the rhubarb and rhubarb strawberry sauce has been safely water-bathed.  This has made me rethink 'convenience' foods, and I am going to start canning make-ahead meals.  I also have a nice, defrosted freezer!

Garlic has been harvested and will be hung in the barn this afternoon.  It's supposed to be a corker today, so I will be doing my outside stuff early.  On the list is staking the beans - my initial 'string' method is woefully insufficient for the plants.

My Swiss Chard turned out wonderfully, which is doubly wonderful, as it is my favorite green.  The peas are done, so Sage and Chickie are enjoying some extra fiber.  I've started them on a natural wormer that I used before with goats -- it's from Hoegger's, which is my favorite place for everything goat & dairy.  I'm hoping to work on the sheep yard, but it depends on the heat factor.  As we all know, I am not a hot weather person.  But, there is plenty to do inside.

This morning's barn treat was Grandma's Donuts -- an amazingly easy concoction that doesn't entail turning on your oven.  With the water bath canner going full steam this morning, I didn't want to add to the kitchen temperature.  It does entail hot vegetable oil, but only for a short time.  The bad thing about it?  It involves convenience food.  Well, hot times call for drastic measures.

I've just started a home remedy that I think I will really enjoy - drunken raisins.  For purely medicinal purposes, I've put a cup of golden raisins in a quart canning jar and covered them with gin.  There they will sit for two week or so, until the raisins soak up the medicinal properties (ahem) of the gin.  Then I will consume them at a rate of 9 a day to help combat the arthritis in my hands.  Really, no lie.

I've decided to rename Slim.  He's now Trip.  Nuff said.

I hear the kids calling, so I'm off.  Here's to lots of good things for all of us.


  1. Susan I am right with you in that I want to can more ready made foods this year too. It is terrible to get sick or something in the winter and all you have are ingredients and no energy to turn them into a food. And I dont have arthritis too bad yet, so I think I better get on your prescription real soon to keep it at bay, right ;)

  2. Thanks for pushing the positive thoughts. I've had a really negative couple of weeks and it's wearing me out...

  3. I know what you mean about rethinking convenience foods. Years ago we had two freezer fiascos in a year, and it about put me off freezing ANYTHING! But now I'm back to two full freezers; there's just so many things we prefer frozen (peaches, strawberries, caneberries, blueberries), and it safely stores surplus (milk, bread, flour, nuts) so I can buy in bulk when they are on sale.

    P.S. I have a YUMMY red current pie recipe! Want it?

  4. Jane - You cannot be too cautious! I might have 18 raisins a day just to be sure it works! I hadn't thought about that aspect - how nice it would be to have good homemade soup ready to heat up when you're feeling awful.

    Ruth - I sure know how that feels. Sometimes it is hard to find the silver lining, but it (usually) is there somewhere.

    Michelle - I would much rather have frozen fruit, but I was left with soggy bags of rhubarb and strawberries, so....YES I would LOVE that recipe. Email is swomersley at gmail dot com.

  5. Know someone who named their dog "Trip" and this person tripped over "Trip" and broke her ankle:)

  6. I'm thinking the same thing - this fall I'm going to start doing things like lasagna and stews in the pressure canner. Freezers are great, but I don't like depending on them, especially during hurricane season here since we lose power frequently. Can't wait to see what you come up with!

  7. It's just a good thing you had this past week "off" so you had half a chance of dealing with all you were bombarded with.

    Do tell us about Slim. I mean Trip. What happened?

    I guess we all go through those times periodically when we wonder why everything is so hard. The best part is when it eases up a bit. Ready yet?

    We had our warmest day of the year so far here today. The inside of our house got to 76 which is really warm. Still, it felt like walking into air conditioning when coming in from outside.

    Hang in there. We'll all make it. (Now where's my sangria?)

  8. I hate to think that my freezer would let me down. I know, I know--never rely on anything electric. But my gosh, I love my freezer!