Monday, January 28, 2013

A weekend away

It'd been a good long while since I'd disappeared for a weekend away by myself.
I drove the 4 hours over to Reidsville, Ga to attend the 
South Georgia Growing Local & Sustainable conference this past weekend.

Saturday was packed with classes & information. And I ran into some folks I knew from Savannah.  I loved that this was a 'zero-waste' conference, as everyone was asked to bring their own washable plate/cup/utensils for lunch (and compost buckets for uneaten food provided).

I stayed at Gordonia State Park in Reidsville.  This was perfect for what I was doing - just needing a nearby camping spot.  This had a great view of the lake & a hot shower in the bathhouse to boot.

A new friend made at the conference brought me firewood from her farm.
The full moon was rising over the lake.

Sunday morning sleeping in - view from the tent.

Monday, January 21, 2013

MLK day Joe & Levi at home

My "Owl"standing Leader for the month of November for his kindergarten class.
He received his award this past Friday.
Levi & Papa

Levi & Mrs. Ross

daydreaming under the camellias
and utterly thriving in the sunny 70s
winters are my favorite here

watching bees & airplanes drift by

these are my absolute favorite
lemony lovely white luscious
the bees think so too

I suspect these bees came from the $200 worth of bees I had fly away last spring...

yes, yes, the first of the azaleas teasing us

Made from flint found in the
Little River northeast of here (a very rare find).
Joe knapped this point & will be using it for a future hunt.
Notice the knappers buckskin leggings in use :)

I couldn't wait a moment longer.
All I can think of is homegrown homemade KRAUT!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Pumpkin puree

So, what's the flip side of digging thru pumpkins & gathering/drying seeds? 
You're left with lots of actual pumpkin to process.
Today was the big fat-daddy-15-inch pumpkin.
I ended up with exactly 1.5 gallons of puree.

Quarter & roast in a 350 oven for about 45 minutes.
Scoop the soft pumpkin out of its shell
& ziz for a couple minutes in the food processor.

I'll freeze in 2 cup packages.
Ready for muffins, bakes, pies...
Ever had pumpkin stuffed ravioli?!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Sunday home from Chehaw

The children & I arrived home late last night from Chehaw & Joe got home this afternoon.
I wish I had pictures to share how incredible it was - a little mixup with our
camera & all the picture I took are on my Dad's camera.

We had a easy sunny Sunday at home (nearly 80 here today) - harvesting so much from the garden - lettuce, snow peas, broccoli, beets, turnips, & mustard greens

Lovey & I ventured out this morning to find Levi busy alone in the pea patch. He picked 1.5 pounds - our biggest snow pea haul off these vines.  

a staple in our diet right now - popcorn sans butter with just a little salt
one cup will make extra to keep for snacking

once the main head is cut there continues to be side shoots to cut from the broccoli 

I cut these from the garden as I'd like to use them in the
house - a quick rinse inside & this shoot is ready as is

I've come to a reality as I create goals for the coming year:  I am not producing enough extra garden items to sell thru the Tallahassee online farmers market.  I kept thinking I would get there as I flushed out garden beds & got more efficient with growing large numbers of seedlings.  But an evening of crunching numbers shows me any profits would be marginal especially with the (2 hour) 70-mile-round-trip to downtown Tallahassee.

So instead, I'm refocusing on: trying to grow all that we can eat & really making an effort to make meals with what we have.  There's an economical incentive to that as well.  Plus all the other benefits of eating fresh from the backyard.  I'm charting our eating habits to see what percentage of the food we eat we are producing.  It's thrilling to see multiple meals a week in which every item is ours.

2 meals worth of broccoli

unwashed beets
Have I told you of my new love affair with beets!?

a beautiful gift of hand dipped beeswax candles from Chehaw

he wanted to sort them into groups by size

the fat daddies

bringing in a mess'a greens

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Pumpkin Cutting Day

Di Cicco Broccoli in our garden
the seed catalog says: "
very vigorous, emerald green, producing
nice central heads 3-5" wide

These are the last 3 pumpkins I had to cut & take seeds from before getting my Seed Savers Package together.
After today's seed harvest I've got around 700 seeds to share.

If you want seeds let me know in the comments.  I will mail them with the details of their history.

We're going to camp out at Chehaw tomorrow night for their Frontier Festival - getting the car packed today.

One big lovely out in the garden who is watched daily.
The "understory" in the garden is a mix of wheat straw paths & volunteers clover.

Gourd detail.  Swirling.

Potty Training with Babylegs sans diaper.

Monday, January 7, 2013

first seed tray of the year

I got a 2" soil blocker over the holidays & this is my first try with it.  Here goes the first tomato seeds & a few artichokes.  I'm a few days late getting these going - in our neck of the woods tomato seedlings should go in on Feb 15th.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Lost Canyon

We've enjoyed watching this PBS video:  Scientific America : The Lost Canyon.

It's a canyon in Utah that has never been disturbed & contains hundreds of untouched native american site.  Very cool - check it out.

Museum of Florida History in Tallahassee

We made a fieldtrip of it Satuday & spent the day in Tallahassee.  A large part of the trip was spent at the Museum of Florida History.  We enjoyed it completely - there was a little something for everyone.  

The museum was laid out chronologically - from the first human arrivals to the 21 century.  Joe spent the most time in the early stuff (lots of arrowhead & bone artifacts).  The kids loved the dugout canoes, and especially "Grandma's Attic" - a hodgepodge of dress-up clothes & treasures tucked away in an upstairs nook just for little ones.  I really liked the fiber samples of different cordage & weaving.  Also, I could have spent much more time studying the Spanish coins.