Join Janet on her adventures as a designer, writer, maker, and farmer in montana. no two days are ever the same. you might even see a bear or two.

Ugly Tomato Contest

Ugly Tomato Contest

I got a lot done in the garden yesterday morning. I collected all the leftover baseball bat-sized zucchinis and fed them to the chickens, pulled up the zucchini plants and stacked them to compost, picked cucumbers, picked about half the watermelons, weeded the lettuce bed, sprinkled a few more packets of lettuce seeds, raked up the section where the beans had been, and picked the current wave of tomatoes and brought them in to finish ripening. But wow—do I have some strange-looking tomatoes:


I think these were all individual tomatoes that ended up fusing together because they were too close together on the vines. I may try pruning my tomatoes next season. We were talking about that at sewing on Thursday and my friend Pat says she always prunes hers. Heirloom varieties tend to have less perfect-looking fruits and vegetables than more modern varieties, but these are something else. Oh, well. It’s not like I am growing produce for market. These will get cooked down into sauce so it doesn’t matter what they look like, only what they taste like.

The tomato vines have enough fruit on them that even if I have to pick them all green and let them ripen inside, I should have plenty for sauce. As these ripen, I’m putting them into gallon zip bags and tossing them in the freezer.

My kitchen looks like a bomb went off in there. This always happens during canning season. Every horizontal surface is covered with produce or canning equipment. I didn’t feel like cooking dinner last night in the midst of that mess. The husband was willing to go out to eat, but I knew he wanted to get started on DD#2’s car, so I said I would just run into town and get take-out. (We have no Uber Eats out here.) Unfortunately, our favorite Chinese restaurant on the east side of town is closed because some whackjob drove his vehicle through the front of it a few weeks ago. That same family owns another restaurant in Kalispell so I went there instead. It’s clear on the other side of town, but I was pleased to note that Kalispell was mostly deserted on a Saturday night, signaling the end of tourist season. HALLELUJAH. I got a couple of orders of egg rolls, Mongolian Beef for the husband, and curried tofu for me and brought them home so we could eat here.

My fortune cookie fortune made me laugh:

“Now is a good time for a new collection or hobby.”

Ummm, no thank you. I have enough going on as it is.


The husband took some nice pictures of the work he did up at the Spotted Bear ranger station yesterday. Unfortunately, they are still on his phone. I’ll have him send them to me and I’ll include them in a post later this week. In the meantime, here are some shots of a stairs project he just finished. These are steps going down from the garage into a split-level home. The framing, before:


The finished stairs, after:


And because I live with a Steelers fan and it needs to be said:


The Husband Goes to Spotted Bear

The Husband Goes to Spotted Bear

Got My Spot

Got My Spot