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Tomatoes
Canning and Curious Bunnies
I briefly discuss canning tomatoes, meanwhile, the sheep and I encounter a baby rabbit rummaging around the willow tree.
August 20, 2016

We are drowning in summer’s bounty!  Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes!  Once again, like squirrels storing nuts, we are canning and putting away goods for the winter.  Our canned tomatoes are a tasty reminder of summer in midwinter, and give us a nice alternative to the greenhouse tomatoes in the grocery stores.

Each of our tomatoes is first given a hot bath to help remove the skins.  After this, we quarter them and place them in the quart sized canning jars to be filled with hot water and a teaspoon of salt.  During all canning processes, lids and jar rings must first be sterilized in boiling hot water before placing them on each jar.  Make sure there is no debris or liquid left on the jar rims before placing the lids, and screw the rings snugly but not tightly to allow for expansion.  I process these in a hot water bath canner for 45 minutes.   A successful canning will see all lids sucked down tightly.  Unsuccessful canning will result in a lid that can be pushed in at the center with your finger.

We are also canning salsa, which is packed full of vitamin C, and is good for winter illnesses.  The colors are red and green, which is also very festive around the holidays, and makes great gifts.  The recipe is so popular that my husband keeps it on hand at work to pass out to his coworkers.  See recipe section for full details.

Later today, after the sun had gone behind our tree line, I took the sheep to walk in the cool of the shade.  I try to keep fans around them in the carriage house, during the summer, so I don’t have to give a late shearing, and they really appreciate any bit of cool they can get.  While I was sitting in my new yellow chair watching them munch off my beautiful Rose of Sharon blossoms, a baby bunny decided to hop by and sit beside me.  I determined I was probably sitting in his usual path to hop back home, around the base of the willow.  I eventually moved, but he stayed so perfectly still, I ended up giving him a little bump with the tip of my finger.  I was right.  He went right to the base of the willow and disappeared.  No wonder Dobby has been stomping around over there!

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January 1, 2017

Between Christmas and New Year's Eve I remain busy, but New Year's doesn't really feel like a new year changing to me.

December 25, 2016

We celebrate Christmas Eve and I find time to rust tin snowflakes for gifts.

December 17, 2016

We keep up the Christmas card tradition, deal with icy runs, winterize the cement benches, and enjoy the babies' new eggs.

December 10, 2016

We finally learn the secret to citrus tree success and start the Christmas season with good will.

December 3, 2016

I try my hand at bakery quality spritz cookies, and end the busy week with Marty's birthday.

November 26, 2016

My busy week begins with Meg's birthday and includes Thanksgiving and a Christmas turnover.

November 19, 2016

Unseasonable weather occurs while I prepare to shut down the garden

October 31, 2016

We have our traditional Halloween bash, while winterizing the garden and helping build onto a barn.

October 8, 2016

I discuss rearranging cheap bouquets to maximum effect, and we start work on a project dear to my heart.

October 1, 2016

The unseasonably long growing season is making me reconsider how I winterize my garden.

September 26, 2016

Bulb and new roses arrive, while Marty and I finish some projects.

September 3, 2016

I reassess my native plants and redistribute the wealth.

August 27, 2016

I repaint our living room rug, raspberries come off the vine, and butterflies fly all around

August 20, 2016

I briefly discuss canning tomatoes, meanwhile, the sheep and I encounter a baby rabbit rummaging around the willow tree.

August 13, 2016

I discuss my tips for cost efficient sidewalk repair, meanwhile, Marty makes a bench.

July 23, 2016

The baby chicks become mini acrobats. We get a bumper crop of peaches, make some basil olive oil, and gather fresh garden carrots

July 16, 2016

We work on upgrading an old flowerbed to a more colonial look.

June 27, 2016

I celebrate my birthday with a new batch of baby chicks.

June 18, 2016

We get the sheep some hay and I begin harvesting our cherry trees.

June 4, 2016

I discuss old fashioned roses, close the greenhouse, and inspect the orchard for spring damage.

May 14, 2016

I give everything a fresh coat of white paint, and the kids give me a lovely Mother's Day tea.

March 12, 2016

Marty and I give the pool fence a colonial look with chinoiserie inspiration.

March 5, 2016

I prepare for the next season while encountering some problems with my seedlings. This year may be a trouble year.

February 27, 2016

We celebrate President's Day, while I turn some old baskets into new Easter decorations.

February 20, 2016

We celebrate St. Valentine's Day and take stock of a rat problem.

February 13, 2016

Planting annual flowers, tomatoes, and peppers. Plus, I begin decorating the mudroom.

February 6, 2016

The sheep are done with winter, while I put up decorations for February.

January 30, 2016

The last round of seeds arrive and I get started sewing some new yard outfits and repairing my old egg wreaths.

January 23, 2016

After a hectic week, I begin making rag rugs for the kitchen, an easy craft that will be easy to clean.

January 1, 2017

Between Christmas and New Year's Eve I remain busy, but New Year's doesn't really feel like a new year changing to me.

December 25, 2016

We celebrate Christmas Eve and I find time to rust tin snowflakes for gifts.

December 17, 2016

We keep up the Christmas card tradition, deal with icy runs, winterize the cement benches, and enjoy the babies' new eggs.

December 10, 2016

We finally learn the secret to citrus tree success and start the Christmas season with good will.

December 3, 2016

I try my hand at bakery quality spritz cookies, and end the busy week with Marty's birthday.

November 26, 2016

My busy week begins with Meg's birthday and includes Thanksgiving and a Christmas turnover.

November 19, 2016

Unseasonable weather occurs while I prepare to shut down the garden

October 31, 2016

We have our traditional Halloween bash, while winterizing the garden and helping build onto a barn.

October 8, 2016

I discuss rearranging cheap bouquets to maximum effect, and we start work on a project dear to my heart.

October 1, 2016

The unseasonably long growing season is making me reconsider how I winterize my garden.

September 26, 2016

Bulb and new roses arrive, while Marty and I finish some projects.

September 3, 2016

I reassess my native plants and redistribute the wealth.

August 27, 2016

I repaint our living room rug, raspberries come off the vine, and butterflies fly all around

August 20, 2016

I briefly discuss canning tomatoes, meanwhile, the sheep and I encounter a baby rabbit rummaging around the willow tree.

August 13, 2016

I discuss my tips for cost efficient sidewalk repair, meanwhile, Marty makes a bench.

July 23, 2016

The baby chicks become mini acrobats. We get a bumper crop of peaches, make some basil olive oil, and gather fresh garden carrots

July 16, 2016

We work on upgrading an old flowerbed to a more colonial look.

June 27, 2016

I celebrate my birthday with a new batch of baby chicks.

June 18, 2016

We get the sheep some hay and I begin harvesting our cherry trees.

June 4, 2016

I discuss old fashioned roses, close the greenhouse, and inspect the orchard for spring damage.

May 14, 2016

I give everything a fresh coat of white paint, and the kids give me a lovely Mother's Day tea.

March 12, 2016

Marty and I give the pool fence a colonial look with chinoiserie inspiration.

March 5, 2016

I prepare for the next season while encountering some problems with my seedlings. This year may be a trouble year.

February 27, 2016

We celebrate President's Day, while I turn some old baskets into new Easter decorations.

February 20, 2016

We celebrate St. Valentine's Day and take stock of a rat problem.

February 13, 2016

Planting annual flowers, tomatoes, and peppers. Plus, I begin decorating the mudroom.

February 6, 2016

The sheep are done with winter, while I put up decorations for February.

January 30, 2016

The last round of seeds arrive and I get started sewing some new yard outfits and repairing my old egg wreaths.

January 23, 2016

After a hectic week, I begin making rag rugs for the kitchen, an easy craft that will be easy to clean.