Thursday, August 23, 2012

Scratching around in the dirt

August is harvest month for gardeners! We are getting our fair share for sure, but it is definitely eye-opening to see how much we can actually bring in and how much we need to feed everyone given the space/knowledge/resources we have.

I made a real grocery trip this week. I haven't done that in months. To be completely honest, it feels so bittersweet. I have so much more peace when it comes to a meal time because there is enough food stocked up in the pantry and refrigerator to actually put something together that resembles a meal instead of a plate full of snacks from all of the food groups. On the other hand, it was weird just picking up cheese in a brightly lit deli case and not getting it from a cooler stashed behind a 3 foot table.

Carrots have been the prize winning crop for us this year. We haven't bought carrots since... March, maybe? It's been a long long time. They just keep coming! We have chopped, steamed, pureed, stir-fried, or roasted these beauties in at least one meal every day.

The cooler days have us back outside playing in the dirt again. We are all really enjoying the lower temperatures. All of us...the people, the poultry and the plants. The naughty-flighty-moody, yet curious and totally quirky, hens are each laying about an egg a day, giving us anywhere from 24-28 eggs a week.

We have beets! This was totally an experiment. I had a pack of Burpee's Golden Beets from Seed Savers sitting in my seed box and an empty row between beans and potatoes. The entire plant is edible, which means greens in a stir fry and beets in a salad. I love using ALL of the plant up.

The tomatoes are still rolling in, thank goodness. See these two jars of tomato sauce? 23 roma tomatoes. 23.  We are pulling anywhere from 10-15 red tomatoes every night or every other night. We consume them just as quickly as we pull them, so nothing has been canned yet. I froze a couple of jars of salsa and these two jars are sitting in the refrigerator awaiting their fate in a spinach lasagna that is planned for this weekend. 

We visited the Randolph Fair this morning. It was so... magical. I don't know how the importance of the county fair got lost on me over the years, but it is so important. Teaching kids how to care and raise animals should be a required class in every school, in my opinion. I wish I knew half of what older generations know naturally about raising livestock.

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