Two days of tomatoes were cooked down to pizza sauce and canned yesterday during the rainy afternoon. It made 6 half pints, but I didn’t waterbath one, instead used half of it on last night’s pizza and froze the rest for next time. The red and a handful of green Seranos and Jalapenos were chopped up in the blender and started as a hot sauce ferment while the sauce was processing.
Though I don’t grow as many tomatoes as I used to and don’t can nearly as much as it is just the two of us, it does my heart good to see the shelves beginning to fill.
It is nearly time to add applesauce, apple/pear sauce, and a few jars of pear marmalade to the shelves, and more hot peppers as they mature.
Yesterday morning, the pots in the back garden were scattered around the bed I weeded, the sprinkler set up on a pedestal, but we ended up with a couple inches of rain between yesterday afternoon, over night, and into this morning, so no watering was needed. More of the smaller rocks were moved from the work area to the back edge or top of the wall to clear them. And every pot of boiling water left from cooking pasta or canning goodies is taken our and poured on the vetch. Slowly, it is dying off and the edge of the work area and remaining rocks will be visible.
This afternoon was to be used to make soap and instead, I got involved in closing down the shop business. Much of my equipment that I only used for vending has been sold. Today, a small loom that was beautiful, but didn’t get much use was also sold. By the end of the year, hopefully, there will not be much stock left and what is left can be donated to the museum or given as gifts and my fiber arts and soap making will be for family and close friends. Though I enjoyed the years of being Cabin Crafted, the tax ramification were just too stressful for a cottage business that broke even each year at best.
Somehow, we manage to get our walks in each day, around the rain showers, or sometimes in them. Since my wellness check, and the report of slightly elevated cholesterol, we have both picked up the pace and extended the distance by about 3/4 of a mile. My already healthy, low meat diet has been tweaked more to totally eliminate dairy products except for cheese in Mexican food and on pizza. My morning smoothie is made with plant milk, whey protein, flax, peanut butter powder, and frozen berries. Most mornings, it is like eating a cup of ice cream it is so thick. Ice cream has been reduced to a single scoop once a week. Starches limited to whole grains and fresh vegetables that contain starch like corn and potatoes, and then prepared steamed or boiled. It isn’t terribly different than I was eating, except I was using homemade whole milk yogurt and real peanut butter in the smoothies, a slice of sourdough bread with it, often buttered with avocado, more cheese, and butter on many vegetables. I was put on a low dose statin, though I didn’t react well to one about 14 years ago and hope that maybe the diet changes and exercise will allow me to not take it after a while.
All of the garden work aggravated the arthritis and trigger finger in my hands, so crafting has been minimal for the past few days, but I did finish two more Sashiko panels and used one to decorate a small canvas zip bag to hold the Sashiko supplies and unfinished small panels in.
There are 8 more of these panels, 1 finished, 7 to stitch. Maybe they will become a tote bag, or a table runner. Time will tell. Spinning happens mostly in the car, a bit at night as I continue to work my way through the 5 ounce braid. It has lovely colors in the sunlight, greens, purples, golds, on a gray background, but in the house, those colors seem to hide so it feels like spinning gray. After a whole year of spinning only natural colors for the breed blanket, more color has been needed in my craft this year. I think it will weave on my rigid heddle loom into a lovely, drapey shawl once it is done. It is a smooth spin so it shouldn’t grab while weaving as long as it is strong enough to not break the warp threads. Maybe a commercially spun silk will be the warp as the braid is 25% silk.
The mornings, feel that summer is edging away, the daytime temperatures in the 70’s. This morning, herb and salad greens were sown in the hydroponics as the frost will take out the herbs and I never plant lettuce outdoors. We will enjoy salads all winter with the hydroponic garden and the salad greens will be refreshed as needed. For now, there are some greens and radishes being harvested from the garden, lettuce from the Farmer’s Market as needed, the cucumbers just starting to produce and new green beans about ready to harvest. Pumpkins this year will have to be purchased, they never did come up or at least didn’t produce vines and fruit. The peas are gaining size, strings need to be added to the posts for them and they should produce before we have our first frost. The greenhouse cover needs a minor repair before it is needed outdoors. Summer is moving on to a close, and it is raining hard again outside.