If you want a golden rule that will fit everything, this is it: Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.William Morris.

Monday, September 30, 2013

What's Up

It is unbelievable to me that I have only written 3 times this month.  I have been wanting to sew but just haven't had the time because of working in the veggie garden maintaining, harvesting and planting the fall crops. It has been a very good year in the garden and I have been harvesting a tremendous amount produce. 

This is from last Saturday's harvest and I have picking like this 3 or 4 times a week this past month. Except for the acorn squash it varies in what I pick. The green beans are done producing which was a good year, a little over a 100 lbs.
That also means I have been very busy getting it put up. 



The major part is over for now so I hope to get busy working on one of the many projects I have started. So today I went into my sewing room to see what I could work on. 
I haven't been in that room for nearly a month now and this is what I walked into

What a mess!!!
At least the plants are still alive. 
I have pretty much just been dumping things in there as you can see for yourself. 
What did I do but turn around and figure I'll tackle that tomorrow.
I am still quilting on my daughters quilt and I guess that I'll stick with that today.












Monday, September 23, 2013

To Autumn





To Autumn

John Keats

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep,
Drows'd with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twinéd flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barréd clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.














Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Yarn Along

I can't believe I actually finish something. Here lately all I've been able to do is garden work and canning.





I know it isn't much but I'll take it.
As you can see it is just a garter stitch the width of the bag I made. This bag is a sample bag for what I want to make. I have some vintage linen that I want to use as the outer bag. 
I like my sample bag though.



The book is a new one I found on Amazon when trying to find something else. I haven't started it yet but hope to this week. I did finished "The Kitchen House". Really enjoyed the book, would've wanted to hear more.



Here is what the book is about

Tears of frustration and loneliness more than once filled the eyes of Marjorie Myers Douglas as she valiantly coped with her new status as a farmwife. Life on a western Minnesota stock ranch in the years during and after World War II was, after all, a far cry from growing up in her parents' Minneapolis home community of academics and her years as a medical social worker in New York City and St. Paul. It all began in 1943 as a two-year plan to help Don's ill father avoid losing the 1,200-acre farm. With World War II pulling able-bodied men into the military, it was nearly impossible to find good farmhands, and Don felt an obligation to contribute to his father's physical and economic recovery from a severe heart attack. Leaving their modern suburban house behind, Marjorie, Don, and baby Anne moved their worldly goods to the simple farmhouse some three miles from the little town of Appleton. For Marjorie it was more a challenge than just a change - a challenge that stretched far beyond the two years into seventeen! In Eggs in the Coffee, Sheep in the Corn Marjorie Douglas tells how she faced the challenge and came out on top: raising three babies in a house with no running water; learning to understand and live with a demanding father-in-law; providing an ever-ready supply of coffee to go with endless lunches, dinners, and suppers; nurturing peonies for the touch of beauty she needed; making new friends and playing whist; establishing working relationships with the farm animals; finding some satisfaction in her own PTA and church work; keeping the sheep out of the raspberries; canning fifty quarts of rhubarb sauce; getting acquainted with German prisoners of war; butchering eighty-fivechickens. With sharp wit and quiet wisdom, Douglas offers a candid view of life in rural Minnesota from 1943 to 1960. Her stories will ring true to anyone who has ever experienced farm life and will pleasantly bring understanding to anyone who hasn't.









Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The making of Sauerkraut

I had made sauerkraut last week and have meant to post this for a friend of mine, Linda G.


This recipe is an adaptation from one on About.com
Here is some of the info they gave gave that I thought was pretty interesting.
Sauerkraut came to Europe via Asia, where people have been pickling cabbage for thousands of years. Because of its high vitamin C content, it was very useful in preventing scurvy and keeping people healthy throughout the winter months when no fresh food was available.

To make your own sauerkraut you will rely on the bacteria found on the cabbage leaves. The salt draws out the water and kills off the spoilage bacteria. You will need between a 0.6% and 2% salt concentration, which equals 3/4 to 2 teaspoons of table salt per pound of prepared cabbage.

Makes 1 quart

Ingredients:

8-10 cups shredded cabbage, loosely packed (about 2 lbs), about 1 cabbage
1-2 tsp. un-iodized or pickling salt
1 c. filtered water mixed with 1 tsp. salt
Preparation:

In a clean, non-metallic bowl, mix cabbage and salt. Stir cabbage to release juices. Let rest 10 minutes then mix again. You may let this rest longer (1-2 hours) if needed.

Sterilize jar and lid by boiling for several minutes in water and draining on a clean dishcloth.

Pack into a sterilized quart-sized, wide-mouthed jar, (I use a gallon jar)  pushing down with a wooden mallet. Add filtered, or non-chlorinated, salty (1 teaspoon salt per cup of water) water to rim of jar. I like to save a couple of the outer leaves that I had kept whole and washed. I put them on the top to help keep the shredded cabbage from floating to the top. You cap loosely with a sterilized canning lid or can use several layers of cheesecloth  Place jar on a tray to catch overflowing juices. Keep jar between 65°F and 72°F for 2-3 weeks.

After bubbling stops, check container and top off with salty (1 teaspoon salt per cup of water, warm slightly to dissolve completely) water if level falls below rim. Skim any (harmless) white spots or film from the top, close jar tightly, wipe off outside of jar and store in the refrigerator until you use it up.

More: German sauerkraut is made using salt, whereas Kimchi is made with rice wine. Both create a favorable environment for fermentation. Canned sauerkraut should be rinsed in a colander prior to eating, to reduce the briny flavor, but fresh sauerkraut does not have to be. Sauerkraut may be eaten raw, as a garnish or salad, or cooked, with apples, bacon and onions. It is low in calories, too.


Right now mine are sitting on the counter in the kitchen doing it's bubbling thing.
Can't wait for it to be ready to eat. I think I might can some of it this year.
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