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Garden Food

August 8th, 2021 at 06:31 pm

The last couple of weeks have kept me busy dealing with stuff from our garden. I'm not complaining by any means. I'm glad we have the fresh food and have either prepared it or figured out a way to preserve it. DH just pulled up all our garlic and I spent most of yesterday afternoon working with about 2/3 of it. I plan, once I finish this, to go finish up. I peel it, wash it, mince it, and then pack into jars with olive oil, and then store it in the fridge. Yesterday I had about 4 pints, so I think I'll get another pint or so. I share some of it. I also hold back some of the garlic bulbs so DH can plant it again for next year's crop.

His tomatoes started coming on early and once we got enough, I started canning. I can regular tomatoes, make tomato juice, and also make what I call spaghetti sauce with tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, garlic, mushrooms, basil, and oregano. I will need to start drying herbs for the winter as well, but right now, the tomatoes are keeping me busy. 


We bought a half share in a local CSA so I have been using what has come every week. One reason I did that was I wanted the challenge of never knowing what would show up and then being forced to use it. We've tried things I never would have tried before so that is good.

A friend gave me some bunch of cucumbers so I made sweet pickles and sweet relish. 

I did a count on stuff I've canned so far. Some of it is from finding things on sale like fruits to make jelly. The green beans weren't on sale, but I prefer canning my own. But these are the totals of what I have on hand. I have actually canned more, but we've used it.

4 pints and 1 half pint of sweet relish

2 half pints of sweet pickles

6 quarts, one half pint of tomatoes

5 quarts, 8 pints of tomato juice

6 quarts, 16 pints of spaghetti sauce

12 quarts, 4 pints of green beans

9 quarts 2 pints, and 1 half pint of applesauce

12 quarts of apple juice

6 half pints of apple jelly

5 half pints of grape jelly

1 pint 2 half pints of lavender jelly

6 half pints of blueberry jelly.


I'm looking forward to when DH gets bigger bell peppers because I plan to wash and chop,and freeze them to use over the winter. I was in sticker shock earlier this summer when I had to buy a couple since I had run out!



Busy, busy

July 25th, 2021 at 06:02 pm

Life has been busy. I'm not complaining though. 

DH's garden is starting to produce. He picked over 70 tomatoes and I made spaghett sauce with his onions, garlic, bell peppers, tomatoes, oregano, and basil. I realized 10 pints yesterday, plus two pints of tomato juice and one pint of just plain tomatoes. I used to basically do quarts, but a pint will make up a meal for us. I still can quarts, but use it for soups and stews. Since it has been extremely hot and humid, DH has spent a lot of time watering his garden. 

We took a day trip to Fairfield, Iowa. That is about 4 hours northwest of us. It was a nostalgia trip for me. My great aunt lived there and when I was a little girl, I would go and spend a week in the summer with her. It's been 43 years since I've visited, and I wanted to go back one more time to see if the place had changed a lot. My aunt had an apartment in a huge old house; I looked it up last fall and saw it was no longer an apartment house, but a single family home. I wrote a letter to the owners (I didn't know their names, just put to the owners of and the address) and sent photos I had taken when I was a kid and asked them to realize it was taken with an Instamatic and I was a kid when I took them, and shared the sweet memories I had of the place. Much to my surprise I received a nice note back from one of the owners thanking me for the photos and a little history of the house and how they have worked to keep the original woodwork and plaster. So, it was nice to see it in person. I didn't go up in the yard or to the door. I also talked to the cataloguer at the local library about sharing some photos and other stuff from my great aunt and uncle for their genealogy department and will be sending that stuff along as soon as I label it. Anyway, I'm trying to post a photo of the house below:


I went to give blood three weeks ago and much to my chagrin, I was deferred. I have never been turned away. I was told my blood pressure was too low. Which of course made me worry that something was wrong with me. Fortunately I had a physical scheduled for the next day and my blood pressure was normal. Thinking back on it, I don't think the two people at the blood drive wanted to be bothered with me. I realized that the bp cuff wasn't very tight and one started the procedure and then said her boss wanted her and someone else would finish with me and that person didn't act like he was pleased being pulled over. I gave this past week with no problems at all, so I'm thinking it wasn't me that had the problem to begin with. With the shortage of blood, you'd think people would get over their petty little issues at work. 

The maid didn't show up yet again, so I see lots of housework in my future. But I try to remind myself that I'm blessed to have a home to clean. 

Start your ovens!

November 30th, 2020 at 09:26 pm

I started some holiday baking. Here's a recipe I developed. It's a quick one. 


Chocolate Coffee Muffins

2/3 cup milk

5 T butter, melted

3 Tablespoons of freshly brewed coffee

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 large egg, lightly beaten

1 cup sugar

1/2 bar baking chocolate chopped ( I used dark chocolate)

1/3 cup baking cocoa

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 to 2 cups flour

additional sugar for topping

Muffin tins with cupcake liners

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit

Mix wet ingredients together. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients to the wet. If the mixture is too dry, add a little more milk. 

Put into cupcake liners in your pans. I used an ice cream scoop to try and make them all the same size. I sprinkled some sugar on top and baked about 18 minutes or until the toothpick came out clean. 

I think this could be changed up by using different types of chocolate or even chocolate chips. My husband doesn't like coffee, but he likes stuff made with coffee. 

Sad, sad day

December 15th, 2012 at 03:44 am

My heart goes to the families and school staff of the Sandy Hook School in Connecticut where so many children were shot and killed. Prayers for the survivors.

You Know It's Hot When...

July 27th, 2011 at 12:44 am

It's still warm here. So, the emails are starting about the heat! OK, I had two different people send this photo to my personal I say, let's start this off and have a contest and say,

"You Know It's Hot When the Ice Cream Truck Melts!"

So, what do you say?

The Annual Christmas Letter, orThe Written Bragfest

December 10th, 2010 at 01:53 am

It arrived yesterday in our mailbox - the annual Christmas letter from this fellow we know. Each year he puts in detail what he has bought and in great detail. Last year's letter was all the stuff he bought for his house and where he traveled and how much he spent. Forgive me, but who needs tumbled marble tiles in his crawl space?

This year's brag was 3 ties for $625. Apparently they are like the ties Donald Trump wears.

Apparently this person has money to spend like this, but I personally would prefer to be ignorant of it.

His whole letter is about him, what he did, and what he spent. It's sad in a way that he has to brag each year what he did and bought.

I used to feel sorry for him, but I've since decided he likes living the way he does because he can buy whatever he wants. He fills his loneliness with things and then presses us with the details.

I would rather find satisfaction in what I have and the people who love me.

Needless to say, I won't be sending an annual Christmas letter to anyone.

Food and Friends

May 18th, 2010 at 01:08 am

It seems that so many celebrations center around food…birthday cakes…retirement dinners, graduation parties…the list is endless. Some folks give exquisite dinner parties with the fashionable settings and even more fashionable food. I’m not doing that – most of my stuff is pretty down home basic, but I feel anyone who comes to my home for a meal is fed, just not in a fancy way.

We met some friends to celebrate her birthday tonight. We had a decent meal at a local restaurant. It wasn’t really the food we went for, but the company and the observation of another year passing. It was a good time and a nice way to catch up on our lives.

Tomorrow night we invited a friend to sup with us. He’s the perfect guest – he compliments anything we serve, offers to bring something, and always makes the effort to try things. He is a witty conversationalist and we look forward to having him. He doesn’t mind the house isn’t totally picked up and tidy – he’s just happy to be invited and is good company.

Fortunately not all friendship depends on food, but it sure is a nice benefit, isn’t it?