Monday, October 12, 2009

B.u.s.y..... b-u-s-y..... B-U-S-Y~~~~

It's harvest time on the prairie. Beans are all off, Thank You Lord! The last truck-load was just under the price-dock, moisture-wise. Those were still a bit green, but Farmer-dear wanted them "Off and Done!"

And what good timing! We had our first measurable snowfall Friday night-Saturday morning. 1-2". And COLD! Hello.... 24° in October is not nice!

Since it's cold and wet and he won't be back in the field for a few days, it's fix-up time. A light on the front of the combine. A rattle in one of the trucks. Making a larger pen to prepare to bring the cattle home from the west pasture.

On the home-front, I've been working in the yard & gardens, getting ready for the cold and snow also. I finally dug the sweet potatoes. I got 4 LARGE and a bowlful of medium to small ones. Not bad for 2 plants and my first time growing them.

I also picked the last of the tomatoes. I have a line of green Brandywines on the windowsill. Totally free as this plant came up volunteer this summer. I picked a bowl of the large cherry tomatoes and the last 3 Cayenne peppers.
I potted up the Basil, Thyme, Purple Sage and Oregano plants. I trimmed and potted the Mandevilla vine and brought those all in with my BIG Rosemary plant. My back porch smells great and looks like a mini jungle. I'll be bringing in a pansy planter and the gerbera daisy pot soon too. I need a window area that is open and not by a heating vent.

On a health note: We've been trying to eat better. Cutting out more meat and high fat items. I've gone 6 weeks without soda pop now. Occasionally I miss it, but not badly. Last week I started incorporating more whole grains into my/our diet. I'm cutting back on the white flour and white sugar. I use alot of Whey Low products and can't say I really miss cane or beet sugars.
I do feel better since I've given up the pop and am avoiding more of the junk food.

Next on the agenda is to get more aerobic exercise. I do strengthening activities just in my day-to-day life, but that's about it. Walking with the hope of someday, running.

Other goals: I took along my hand-quilting project yesterday when we had a probable wait at the Dodge dealership. It ended up being an hour and I got quite a bit done. My hand-quilting is not great by any stretch of the imagination but practice does make more perfect.

I hope, this week to get some pile of clutter out of my house and my mind. I have some boxes that need to be shipped off to various places and some clothes that need to be taken to the consignment store & thrift store. I have piles of papers to deal with.... bookwork for Farmer-dear; recipes; receipts of my own; junk on the steps and CLOTHES in the bedroom. And a bit of a mess in the sewing room to be organized. Dear Son2 brought me some stacking plastic totes that will work wonderfully for more fabric stash organizing.

I've slowly been weeding through my pile of food magazines. Tearing out recipes I'll most likely make and tossing the rest. I like reading them but I need the shelf room in my pantry.
(I just read that Gourmet has ceased publication!!! What a shame! I'm looking forward to editor Ruth Reichl's memoirs of her time there. )

I've been scouting out those healthy recipes that invoke the tastes and smells of Autumn. Whole wheat pumpkin bread; whole grain cranberry banana bread, Sweet & Spicy Winter Squash, Hot Toddy (for medicinal purposes, of course, lol), & Caramelized Pears with Toasted Almonds; to name a few.

And at the same time I've been sorting and culling my food magazines, I've been reading some Autumn issues of basic household magazines I had squirreled away. I'm tearing out ideas for upcoming household projects, recipes (always) and holiday decoration ideas.
One seasonal decoration that caught my eye, was to pair hedge apples with mini pumpkins in a metal pan with some red leaves for "pazzaz!" We have several hedge apple trees by the pond, I have mini gourds that came up volunteer and my thrift store leaf garlands will not miss a few leaves here and there. I have baskets and old enamelware and other rustic metal in the sheds & barns. I'm excited to put this together. I'll take photos.
I bought a new book, No Time On My Hands by Grace Snyder . Mrs Snyder was a quilter who lived in the high plains of western Nebraska. She made wonderful, intricate quilts and lived an interesting life as a daughter, wife, mother out on the prairie.
I can't wait to start reading it.

I finally had the energy to take down the summer decorations and put up the autumn ones. And God is so good. I don't like to spend alot of money on seasonal decor so I look for it at my favorite thrift store. This past week I found a brass pumpkin (candle holder) and a small wicker pumpkin. I spent all of $3.5o on the pair. I'm not a fan of the bright brass look so will look for some spray paint that will turn it more of an oiled bronze look. Last year I found a bag of leaf garland for $1 (I think). These items with my old canning jars, rustic birdhouses, seasonal wreaths, fabric, toy tractors/implements and volunteer gourds & field corn, have my home looking like Autumn.

I feel like I'm getting my den all ready for a long winter. How are you snuggling in for the cold winter months?


** "Bittersweet October. The mellow, messy, leaf-kicking, perfect pause between the opposing miseries of summer and winter."
~ Carol Bishop Hipps

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