Monday, September 24, 2018

Welcome Fall & Frugal Accomplishments

Hello, friends.  After working in town last week, I ran errands... the bank, groceries, and a soap delivery.  At the grocery store, I found 1 lb. pasta 5/$5 and bought 2.  I also bought a bouquet, which was marked down to $2.49.  Though I do have a few flowers left, they're looking quite straggly after the storm, and I kind of like leaving the ones I have in the landscape to cheer me for a few weeks longer.  I picked up books I had requested at the library.  When I was putting groceries away, I noticed some dishes I had frozen previously, and it seemed a perfect time to use them.  Along with leftover vegi loaf, we had spanakopita and eggplant crumble from the freezer.  More freezer room is always a good thing.

Another of our stored watermelons was cut, and not surprisingly, the middle was soft.  McNibs and I shared some good bits, then I brought it out to the chickens for a treat.  Our tomatoes were used in vegi BLT's.  My summer slippers needed a wash, but are too fragile for the machine, so I used some homemade soap gel, scrubbed them with a brush, and hung them on the line. I'm thankful that there are still jars of tomatoes on the pantry shelf from the past couple of years.  This will be one of those years that there were just not enough tomatoes to can.  The majority of the tomatoes are dying from all the recent rains, as well as one of the basil plants, both of the sweet peppers, and our green bean posts fell over with all the wet.  I'll be surprised if we get any more squash, as they're looking very sad.  Okra is still producing some, and it looks like we'll get more eggplant.  Our recently planted cucumbers have blooms, so it's possible we may get more cucumbers before first frost.  It looks like about half of the fall lettuce seedlings have rotted.

sweet potatoes drying under the carport
After an out of town appointment, I stopped at a thrift store I pass, but didn't find anything I needed.  We shared okra, pawpaws and eggplant with friends.  Our eggs and homemade bread crumbs were used in a broccoli quinoa dish.  I've heard and read good things about celery juice, so have been giving it a try, drinking it some mornings.  The celery pulp from the juicer goes into the broth bag.  J dug our sweet potato crop, which we then harvested.  We usually wait until the first frost is forecast, but ants and other critters have been munching on them, so he decided to get them now.  We got a bigger harvest than expected.  Though some were partially eaten and others were cut, we should still have a gracious plenty to eat through the winter.  The hummingbirds have been at the feeders, often with two fighting over the same feeder, though there is another feeder.  I'm sure they'll soon be flying to warmer climes.

Last week, a potter friend gifted me a beautiful spoon rest.  It's such a pleasure to enjoy handmade things in my daily homemaking tasks.  Another friend gifted me several canning jars and two shirts.  I took the leggings out of the dye pot.  When I rinsed them, they sadly lost lost much of their color.  I'm going to keep at this, maybe trying oak galls next.  I'm wanting a nice deep mottled brown, so we'll see.  After Florence, many leaves fell.  Along the walking path, it's beginning to smell like autumn, that lovely spicy scent of decaying plants and leaves.  It's looking more like fall too, with asters blooming and hearts-a-bustin' along the paths.  We had to make some changes to our upcoming road trip due to Florence.  It's always good to be flexible.   I'm so looking forward to cooler days and lower humidity.  Wishing you a lovely first week of autumn.

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