Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Up Before the Chickens

Rowdy seems to love to nap in this position.  Maybe it is cooler for him.

Summer is really hanging on here.  I am not complaining, really, I'm not.  We have had above average temps, upper 80's, during the day for the last week or so.  And yet the sun is rising later and setting earlier and I am generally up and out before the chickens are even stirring in the coop.  That will change once it is cold in the mornings, though.  But for now I will continue to be up before the sun.  

The extremely warm weather made for a hot weekend for me at the Wool Gathering.  Storms were forecast for Saturday and while there was a big gust of wind at one point and very dark and ominous skies a good part of the day, there was minimal rain, for which I was grateful.  I do think it kept some attendees away as sales were a little slower Saturday than on previous years, for me anyway.  Sunday was just plain hot and humid.  But in general I would say it was a successful event.  I have not decided whether I will attend next year.  I should.  But I really hated missing the agility trial this past weekend.  I need to see if the 2 will coincide again next year.  I fear that they will.
 Meanwhile, back on the farm, the garden continues to pump out tomatoes like crazy.  Sam made a huge batch of salsa on Sunday, which I canned most of on Monday.  So far, we have a dozen quarts of marinara, a dozen quarts and 7 pints of whole romas, a dozen jars of salsa, 2 pints of ketchup, and 2 pints of dried romas.  Plus we have had BLTs, pasta with fresh sauce and even fried green tomatoes.  It has truly been a bumper year for tomatoes.   Monday I made a double batch of pesto and I think I will make more this weekend as I have a lot of basil.  I have also frozen basil in ice cubes, which is nice for cooking in the winter.   The pesto was wonderful on some cheese tortellini.

I still have sunflowers to harvest seeds from. I have been giving some of the flower heads to the chickens since there are way more than we can eat.  There are still 3 large flowers waiting to be cut and several smaller flower heads.

I am glad this gal chose to make her web on a sunflower stalk from which I had already cut the flower.  She seems have no trouble securing a meal.

I have lost the weakest of my 3 bee hives.  I will take it apart this coming weekend and see if I can determine what happened.  They never really got up to speed over the summer.  The other 2 hives however are doing very well.  I may harvest some more honey this week.  There have been so many bees on these yellow flowers that grow wild at this time every year.  We will stop next to a big patch of them on our walks and stand still for 30 seconds and soon realize the entire patch of blooms is in motion with honey bees.  It's pretty neat.

My studio is coming along.  This photo is from last week and since I took it, the rest of the OSB board has been put on and the windows have been cut out the rest of the way.  The deck is also on, but there are no stairs as yet.  Sam put his back out last Thursday, so he spent most of the last weekend taking it easy, which is hard to get him to do.  I know he is suffering when he sits in his chair all day.  But at least he got to watch football.  

I finished this sweater a while back, but finally got Sam to photograph  me in it a few days ago.  It really has not been sweater weather, and still isn't.  I also just finished a hooded poncho I have been working on and I love it.  I hope to get Sam to take a photo of me wearing it when I get home this evening.  It will be kind of warm to put on a wool poncho with a hood, but I have to take advantage of opportunities for photos when Sam is home (and I am not in grubby farm clothes) when I can.

Both my looms are empty right now and I have no big knitting projects going.  That's how busy the canning and gardening has kept me.


  1. Thought Id share a couple new favorite tomato-saving recipes. Our crop is huge, too!
    This jam is great on burgers, fries, sweet potato fries, on a grilled cheese sandwich....
    These are like the expensive sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil that you can get in the store, but better. I use them in egg dishes, etc.

    1. Thanks for the link to that site. I may have to try some of those recipes!