Monday, September 26, 2011


There was a whole lot of hole digging going on this mid-September. Remember last year when we had some torrential rain and our basement sprung a leak? Well, we hope we have solved this problem by re-routing the downspout. Justin did most of the trenching but I covered about 5 feet while he rested up.
Just getting started, only 40 more feet to go!
The good news is that it's been raining quite a bit in the last 48 hours and our basement is dry as a bone. It's still to early to declare victory but this is definitely a good start.

Sunday, September 11, 2011


Well, it's that time again! Time to fill the larder and get ready for a long winter of soups and stews and the occasional pizza with homemade sauce.

My friend Jen and I invested in 75 pounds of tomatoes and put up 34 quarts for our respective pantries. And Jen couldn't get enough and canned another 9 quarts of dill pickles in the same afternoon. And then I couldn't get enough and picked a peck of wild blackberries--the kind that grow in ever neglected patch of land in the Northwest--and turned them into jam for my Sunday morning amusement.

Super-canners extraordinaire: Laura & Jen.

Another angle to get an idea of the magnitude.

I had to break out the bacon for my first BLT of the season. That tomato beauty is home-grown--weighing in around 2 pounds.

Five pints of blackberry jam. It's extra delicious because it is seedless.

So far this year, I've done peach, plum and blackberry jam, sliced peaches, dill and sweet pickles, sweet relish, dilly beans and tomatoes. I've nearly exhausted my supply of jars...although I think I have enough to make a batch of jelly from the grapes growing all over the foreclosed home next door. And, if I come upon a abundance of something, I might just have to locate some more jars.