A little processing

Yesterday afternoon before dinner prep, we set out to do a walk. My energy and blood pressure had been in the dump all day and I was hoping it would help. We generally walk two figure 8 loops around the double pond, so about 2-2.25 miles, and I only managed one. As a result, I never went back out to the garden in the evening.

This morning, while it was still cool and the sun low, the fall bed was planted with spinach, spinach mustard, kohlrabi, and radishes. Last night I planted the two hydroponic gardens on the kitchen counter with spinach, spinach mustard, mesclun mix in the 12 cell one, and an herb garden in the 6 cell one and set my alarm clock for 6 a.m. to go down and plug them in. At 6 a.m., I was sound asleep deaf ear up and didn’t hear the vibrating alarm go off. I turned them on when I did get up, but will have to try again tomorrow to get them on a reasonable schedule so the lights don’t keep us awake at night staying on too late.

We decided that we needed a day off from our walks, hubby had a bad calf cramp that has him sore. And I called the primary care Doctor to get my access to the portal reset to see my results. My RBC, hemoglobin, and hematocrit are unchanged from the morning I left the hospital inspite of eating dark leafy greens, meat, eggs, or seafood at least one a day, and taking the probiotic and multivitaminn with iron suggested by the hospital releasing physician. I expected a call from the P.C. Dr. as he said he would call when the results were in but I haven’t heard from him.

Because we weren’t breaking up the afternoon with a walk, I decided after lunch to process the bucket of apples as many were going bad, and the basket of Asian pears that were very ripe by making apple/pear sauce. We found a 4 pack of pint jars with lids last week and I had 1 remaining lid, so jars were put in the canner, the fruit cut from the cores and chopped to cook down until it could be run through the food mill to remove the skins. I ended up with 4 1/2 pints of fruit sauce to add to the shelf and with the metal lids, heard the satisfying pop of each lid as they cooled.

Don’t you love the unpaper towel they are sitting on. They are made by a friend with an Etsy shop. I love her stuff and no, I don’t get a cut for advertising for her.

The hot peppers from yesterday were brined and stored in the refrigerator for use later in the year.

That was about all I can manage in one day, so I will sit and spin for a while.

It’s been a week and a half

After lunch and a grocery run, while hubby turned on football, I wandered out to my very overgrown garden with intent to start cleaning it up. The lighter weight weed eater allowed me to fairly easily beat down the grass that has come up in the paths. Sitting on the edges of the various beds, some weeding and harvesting was done, but there are still tomatillos and tomatoes that I didn’t bring in, I just couldn’t do any more. I did gather a lot of tomatillos, 3 small cabbages, some tender new kale, 2 winter squash, and some peppers. There are still so many weeds, the dry corn stalks to pull and I think the tomato plants after I gather the ripe tomatoes, though the freezer is full of ones I haven’t had the energy to process. The second crop of bush beans were eaten to stalks by bean beetles and there are hundred of bettle larva and young beetles in that bed. I killed as many as I could by squishing them. I will have to see if there is an insecticidal soap that will kill them off, the stalks were pulled and put in the compost. I need a really hot pile to kill off any remaining insects.

When it cools this evening, I am going to try to smooth the bed that had the potatoes in it and see if it is too late to plant some spinach, spinach mustard, and kale and cover them with a mini hoop house of row cover and later plastic. One of the 4 X 4 beds will be planted with garlic in late October or early November. The rest of the garden just put to bed, a little bit each day.

I had to quit while out there, because every walk and every other activity that requires exertion, drops my blood pressure, which makes me feel washed out. I didn’t get results on my most recent hemoglobin check yet and for whatever reason, I can’t log in to the Doctor’s office portal to see if they were posted. Maybe they will let me know tomorrow. I am hoping to see some improvement so I know there is an end in sight.

The upcoming week is a return to summer at least during the daylight hours. The cooler fall like days of last week were so welcome. Next weekend the University plays an away game, so maybe we can eat on one of the patios in town one night and actually go to the Farmer’s Market on Saturday.

Maybe I should check more often

This afternoon, with fruit picker in hand, the apples and Asian pears started coming in to the house to make applesauce and pear marmalade.

There are many times that amount of fruit still on the trees. It got too hot to stay out there, so I quit for today. I will leave some for the wildlife, I tried to pick higher than they can reach, but last year the fruit was there and not ripe and a week later it was gone, not a pear, and only enough apples for a few pints of sauce. I will also pick a box of apples to take to Wilderness Road Regional Museum for pressing and bring home a half gallon or two of fresh cider. I divide it into smaller jars and freeze it to enjoy longer. Maybe I’ll make vinegar out of some.

As I was heading out toward the garden after dinner, I spotted these two spring fawns frolicking with each other with two of the hens right by them and no concerns about sharing the yard.

When I stepped out the side door after they had moved farther across the back, they just stood there and watched me as I pulled out the camera on my phone to get a shot. One doe is in the picture, the other just out of the frame.

The garden was generously overwhelming when, I went out to pick ripe tomatoes. This 16 liter bucket has a quart of ground cherries in the bottom, and maybe half a dozen tomatillos, the rest is tomatoes and there are more in a few days. The leaves on the plants are totally devoured by bugs, but that just makes it easier to see the tomatoes. I discarded at least 4 or 5 of the large flat slicers as they were too far gone or were sunburned down about half the fruit. The popcorn was ready to harvest and dry, so two armloads were brought in and put in a box. The husks were pulled back and the cobs spread on a wire shelf to dry out. Some of the short vined Hubbard squash were ready too, so 5 of them came in. While I was picking the tomatoes, I stood up and the corn was right behind me and I got stung on the tender underarm near my shoulder. I don’t know what got me, but it still stings.

And the hens gave me a full dozen eggs today. The fewest I get from these gals is 9 a day, still haven’t gotten 13 which would be all of them providing an egg.

A few nights ago, I finished the second 16 row chart on the hat, placed it flat to take a picture and spotted a “I can’t live with that” error on the 3rd row of the first chart. Totally disgusted with myself for not spotting it earlier, I went to bed. It ended up being a sleep is optional night, so I got back up after an hour or so, ripped the hat back to the first row after the ribbing and started over. I have reknit the first chart and and about a third of the way through the second chart. Yesterday’s dressing up as an 18th century working woman and spinning at a Heritage Day event, put a crimp in my knitting on the hat or spinning for the monthly challenge with my spindles. I use my wheel at events and a top whorl drop spindle or a Scottish Dealgan, as the Turkish style doesn’t fit the period.

Tomorrow, I will have to get more large freezer bags to put the tomatoes in the freezer until I’m ready to can them.

I think I am organized to pack up for the much anticipated fiber retreat later this week. We are all vaccinated, will all wear masks, but it will be so good to see those friends after 2 years.