Winding Down Into Fall
It doesn’t look like we’re going to get our typical shot of warm, sunny September weather this year. The forecast is for cool and showery weather for the next couple of weeks. The furnace has been coming on and it is starting to feel like fall. I saw no point in risking the tomatoes to a frost, so I picked what was left out there today and brought them in to finish ripening:
I also pulled up all the vines and stacked the tomato cages. Might as well clean up as I go.
I told the husband that the two most useful pieces of equipment on the homestead are the forklift and that Little Tykes wagon. I have hauled more produce in that thing than I ever did children. It was full to the brim with tomatoes, although I took some out before I remembered to snap a picture. I’ve got tomatoes laid out on every horizontal surface in this house now, including on a folding table in the living room. I should probably get started on making sauce with the ones I’ve already frozen.
The pumpkins, a few cucumbers, the potatoes, and the grapes are all that is left in the garden. The fall lettuce crop looks amazing. I am hoping we can pick up the black plastic from our farmer friend this weekend and also get a hoop up over that lettuce. The Honeycrisp apples are ready, but it’s been raining and I am going to wait until this weekend to pick them (don’t tell the bears). The last batch of pears is in the dehydrator.
I felt bad that the husband had to eat frozen pizzas while I was gone, so I made him a big apple crisp last night with the rest of the Duchess of Oldenburg apples.
I like this time of the year. I like the slowing down and closing up in anticipation of a time of rest and solitude. Once I get the living room cleared of the produce, canning supplies, and all of DD#2’s stuff that is here in storage (it’s going back to her in a few weeks), I’ll bring quilts down here to bind and get my embroidery projects out for working on in the evening. Soups and stews will reappear on the dinner menu. We’ll have a fire in the fireplace every evening. I’ll see the husband for more than five minutes in the morning and five minutes in the evening, although he tells me he still has several foundations scheduled to do over the next couple of months.
He ordered the new shop garage doors yesterday. Some time in the next couple of weeks, he and the crew will pour the floor, and then things should be closed in and dry enough for him to work in there this winter. He still has a long way to go to finish it all off the way he wants it, but getting that building to this point is a big milestone.
I got the snow tires put on the BMW yesterday. The set of studded snow tires I bought in 2016 needed to be replaced. I liked the ones I had on there as they were good and aggressive and the car handled well in the snow, so I ordered the same ones again. I never wait until the first snowfall to get my snow tires put on because it is madness at the tire place when that happens. They said I do need an alignment but suggested I have it done at the dealer, so I’ll arrange to do that on the next trip through Spokane.
Sadly, I don’t think our dog, Rusty, is going to last through the winter. He is already at least 15 years old—possibly 16—and he has trouble getting up and lying down. He’s blind and deaf and senile. We will give him the best life we can for as long as we can, but we don’t want him to suffer, either. I hope that he just slips away peacefully some night.
I was worried that my roosters would have forgotten me while I was gone, but Baby clearly knows who I am. (Despite my best intentions to give him a better name, that one has stuck.) I gave the chickens their scratch grains yesterday and went back into the coop to collect eggs and he came tearing in there after me so fast I was sure he ran over a couple of hens on the way. I managed to give him a pet and a handful of scratch grains before the big rooster came strutting in and wanted his pet and a handful of scratch grains. I do not want a couple of roosters fighting over me.
My life has been sadly devoid of sewing, in case you hadn’t noticed. That isn’t for lack of ideas or sewjo; it’s entirely due to a lack of sewing time. I have a whole list of things I want to make once canning season is over. The benefit is that I can drill down and prioritize what I want to work on first when I do have time, and lessen the chances of getting distracted along the way. In theory.