The Gang

The Gang
October 2008 Sweet Potatoe Harvest

About Me

I am a busy mommy of 6, seeking to be a loving, godly helpmeet to my husband and a biblical discipler to my children. God has blessed us with a child with Autism. May the lessons that the Lord is teaching me and our family be a blessing to you and yours!

My Favorite Books

  • Bible
  • Created to be His Helpmeet by Debi Pearl
  • Four-Season Harvest by Eliot Coleman
  • Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World by Joanna Weaver
  • Home Cheese Making by Ricki Carroll
  • Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon
  • Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp
  • The Excellent Wife by Martha Peace
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Yesterday was a very busy day! Phil and the kids harvested about 40 pounds of tomatoes, 15 pounds of pickling cucumbers, 10 pounds of regular cucumbers, several HUGE zucchini, onions, beans, and the tender thinnings of our fall lettuce bed (which we used for our salad at dinner last night).

Elizabeth, Caleb and Phil helped me to make a few types of pickles, relish, grated zucchini and tomato sauce. I tried to sit with my leg up as much as possible throughout the day of processing food. It will be much easier to get things accomplished when I don't have to sit with my leg up all the time!! I have learned that it is much easier to cook down tomato sauce in a Nesco type of cooker than it is in a pot on the stove. The sauce cooks down faster and doesn't burn!!

Tonight I made a list of all the foods we've processed from our garden so far. We have canned: diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, strawberry jam, brined dill pickles (still fermenting), cucumber chunks, cucumber sandwich pickles, sauerkraut (still fermenting), bread & butter pickles, dill pickles, hamburger dill pickles, beet relish, cucumber relish, dill relish, zucchini relish, zucchini pickles, summer squash pickles, and applesauce. A dear friend of mine told me that she used to love canning because her pantry looked so pretty with all those different jars of produce. I thought when she wrote that to me that the thought of my pantry looking pretty was silly. However, she is totally right!!! My root cellar looks so pretty with all the different colors from the various canned goods!

I still have a LOT of tomatoes ripening in the garden. I'm hoping for another 2-3 hundred pounds. We also have to pick more apples from our tree. Our pickles and cucumbers are both still producing a lot too. We have lots of celery to chop and freeze some nice leeks that need to be blanched again, a few more onions, a few cabbages, 6-7 heads of cauliflower still forming, some new broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts plants just starting, Brussels sprouts to finish from the spring planting, and our lovely butternut & spaghetti squash are getting bigger and riper. Our fall pea plants are close to 1 foot long now and ready to attach themselves to the fence so they can climb and grow this fall. Our third planting of beans is going well and should start flowering in a couple weeks hopefully before it frosts. I'm not sure how frost hardy bean plants are, I guess we will find out!

We have put grated zucchini, zucchini crisp in a bag, freezer slaw, green beans, broccoli, and yellow wax beans in our freezer. We will soon be adding apple pie in a bag and apple crisp in a bag and we continue to add more beans to our freezer each week.

Over the next couple of weeks I hope we will have the chance to make apple preserves, more applesauce, seasoned tomato sauce, BBQ sauce, sweet pickle relish, cucumber chips, ketchup, and dilly beans.

I really underestimated the amount of onions I should have planted. Next year I will plant 3 – 20' X 3' beds with onions (red & yellow) that I will start from seed. I will definitely do as many tomatoes as I did this year if not more and I will do a LOT more pepper plants!! I've had to buy onions and peppers for the pickles and relish we're making rather than being able to just pull them from the garden. It has been fun using our fresh dill for the dill pickles, but I will grow more next year.

Our house is a wreck with me being off my feet for a week now. I'm looking forward to a bit more help this week from Phil's folks. Phil is also looking forward to getting back to a regular work week. We plan to start our school program this week. This weeks focus will be establishing a chore and school routine that works smoothly. The kids have to milk goats and feed the animals before we are able to eat breakfast. Then we have breakfast clean up and lunch prep before starting our school day. My goal is to get our school day started by 9 a.m. which will require the kids to get up early for chores.

So now I'm off to finalize the school lesson plans for tomorrow and fold some more clothes.