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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

This Week I Am . . .

  • working on my fall deck garden. I cleared out another planter, mixed in compost and got it ready for some autumn kale.
  • peeling, slicing and dehydrating apples. A sweet friend dropped off a large bag of her tree apples for my family. In addition to dehydrating, we've also been eating a lot of the apples fresh every day.
  • harvesting green beans, blueberries, kale, chard, rhubarb, salad greens, cucumbers and summer squash. This is peak garden time. Lots of variety every day.
  • enjoying these long sunny days. I'm not usually a morning person. But this time of year, I can't help but get up with the birds once the sky looks light.
  • admiring the beauty and fragrance of the Oriental lilies in bloom in my yard.

So, how about you? What are you doing this week?


  1. I don't think I've ever seen lilies that bloom up a stem like that. They are very pretty.
    Like many others, we're trying to keep up with what we harvest. Unfortunately, the deer are helping with that. I don't know of any local wild blackberry patches or I'd be out there picking. I, too, have nostalgia associated with them. My sister had a cultivated bush, but the bigger berries from it were just not the same. She eventually pulled it out.

    1. Hi Live and Learn,
      Now that's interesting -- that cultivated blackberries are not quite like wild ones. Aside from the wild blackberries we find around here, I've only ever had farmed blackberries a couple of times in my life, so I can't really make a comparison. Some folks say that these wild blackberries are seedier than cultivated. I also wonder if maybe they're more flavorful. The seeds don't bother us. I think of them as added fiber and nutrients.

      Oh, isn't it too bad that a creature so beautiful as a deer can do so much damage to a garden? I wish you luck with your garden and keeping deer-damage to a minimum.

    2. The cultivated berries I've had from my sister's garden and the store are larger and less flavorful than the wild ones. And while they may not have as many seeds, the seeds are larger. I don't mind the seeds in wild blackberries but I do in the cultivated ones.

  2. We've been eating a lot of produce and freezing what I can. I've made some jam for the freezer and can't wait for peaches to be ready.

    We picked up daughter from Ohio yesterday. The sad news is that she miscarried her baby on Sunday and so emotions are running wild. We have her home since she wanted her mama (me) and hopefully we can process this in a positive way this week. Her husband will come up for the weekend to take her home again. I also had a miscarriage 29 years ago so at least I can say I know what she's going through.

    1. So sorry to hear that, Alice. Praying for your daughter and your family during this time. I'm glad she can be with you for comfort.

    2. Hi Alice,
      I'm so sorry for your daughter's miscarriage. I'll keep her in my prayers. I had a series of miscarriages in between my son and daughters. I remember the pain and sadness that I felt and can empathize with what your daughter is living through right now. I'm sure you'll be a loving support for her.

    3. Prayers for your daughter, SIL, and all of you who are supporting them.

    4. Prayers for you daughter and your whole family.

    5. Alice I’m so sorry to hear of your daughters loss.
      Lili you give me hope ,as my daughter experienced her second miscarriage this week. Sigh, I’ll be thinking of you Alice and your daughter. Prayers for us all.

    6. Hi Teresa,
      I pray for strength, comfort, and courage for your daughter as she deals with this recent loss. As I said above, I can relate to the devastation she feels.

  3. I love hearing about all your produce! So exciting, though I know also a lot of work. But so worth it.

    I think we're about to hit a little lull in preserving. Still busily working on preserving the tomatillos and Hatch chiles as salsa verde, and getting enough tomatoes every few days for another batch of lacto-fermented salsa. Picked LOADS of cucumbers last week, but I think the really hot spell we had kept them from setting much more fruit, so not a lot forming. This week is cooler, so potentially lots more in another week or two. We also harvested pears for the first time (we got a handful last year, but this is the first real harvest on these young trees), so as those ripen, I'm making them into Spiced Vanilla Pear jam and we're eating some fresh. They're actually very good! These were clearance trees, and I'd never heard of the kind before, so am glad that they are.

    Feeling? A little stressed. This is school check-in week, and I do not enjoy the process at all. Lots of paperwork to do (at least that can be done online this year), then physically taking each child to their respective schools for that whole part of the process, then "walking their schedules" out so they know where they're going first day, particularly with my youngest, who begins middle school this year. But we'll get through it. And this introvert must confess that I'm looking forward to some quiet days home along with just the pets, very soon, after a summer of everyone home and the cacophony of noise and bustle that brings.

    1. Hi Cat,
      your salsa verde and spiced vanilla pear jam sound delicious. Those will surely be appreciated in winter! It amazes me how vast our country is and what a variety of climates our different zones have. You're able to grow tomatillos and hot peppers, there. Our summer, here in the PNW, is just too cool. We can, however, grow lots and lots of leafy greens all summer long.

      I can't believe it's about back-to-school time already. I can understand how the quiet days will be welcome to you. I like that feeling in the house, too.

  4. Your oriental lilies are pretty! It's fun to see what others grow in their gardens.

    We are enjoying the first of our green beans. I remember that my daughter disliked green beans from her school--the flavor just didn't compare to the ones from our garden. We enjoyed wild blueberries and blackberries when we went to WV on vacation last week. The blackberries aren't plentiful in our area in MI so that was a treat for us.

    1. Hi Kris,
      Your daughter knew goodness when she tasted it. I agree -- garden fresh green beans are so much better than commercially grown, and especially better than canned or even frozen.

      It sounds like you and your family had a wonderful vacation together. I hope you all made a ton of memories.

  5. I just got home last night from a VERY quick trip to Iowa to attend a funeral. We were there about 18 hours and the rest of the time we were driving. 3 of my 4 children went, plus my dil. Ideally we would have been there longer but we sandwiched the trip in between commitments here at home. Now I need to play catch-up around the house-fast because I am hosting a family plus one bbq tomorrow. A friend of my two daughters is visiting from DC so she’s the plus one lol.
    I brought home sweet corn, tomatoes, green and yellow beans, and a cantaloupe from Iowa. My son was pretty confused that we could stop at a roadside stand and by produce which had been picked that morning lol. We don’t have those here lol. My husband and I shared a tomato last nite, and oh my, was it ever good. We can’t grow tomatoes that taste like that here.

    1. Hi Diane,
      I'm sorry for the reason for your trip to Iowa. I'm glad that most of your family could be there.

      Good luck getting everything together for your gathering!


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