Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I've been thinking . . .

And I try not to strain my brain when I do, but it's time I thought about summer plans.  Hubby will be laid off in about 3 weeks.  He's usually off all summer.  I am taking classes this summer in order to graduate in December.  We put on a garden and I can and freeze and dehydrate everything I can.  I have a flat of strawberries in the freezer now just waiting to be made into strawberry jam.  I may tackle that next week.  I have plenty of green beans that were canned.  I just opened my last jar of salsa a few days ago and only have 2 quarts of tomato juice and 3 pints of spaghetti sauce left.  Fortunately because of hubby's great hunting skill, we still have deer in the freezer.

My summer plans are to garden as much as possible.  I sit on pins and needles just waiting for the garden to start coming in.  But because of all the rain Kentucky has had, the garden isn't even broken up yet.  My Grandmother says as long as it's in the ground by the end of May I'm still in good shape.  I have to pull everything up, get all the tomato stakes out and get it tilled up.

I saved purple hull pea seed from last year.  It was the first time ever that I'd grown them and it will be a permanent fixture in the garden.  Easy to grow, harvest, and freeze.  I also saved cantaloupe seed and butter nut squash seed that will go out.  I'm also planting corn, banana peppers, jalapenos, and of course my all time favorite - TOMATOES!!  No meal is complete without a homegrown, still warm from the sun, tomato.  Oh yes, let's not forget cucumbers.  The boys HAVE to have their dill pickles.

People are surprised that I can.  I'm told it's too complicated, too much work, etc.  It can be complicated for a beginner, but information is out there if you just look and ask questions!  I don't even consider it work.  I enjoy gardening.  I love seeing my little pantry stocked with jar after jar after jar.  It's "my thing".  I truly love doing it.

Mustard relish

Pickled eggs

Squash pickles, dill pickles, and salsa


Spaghetti sauce and mustard relish

Green beans going into jars for canning

Tomato juice

Strawberry lemon marmalade

What are you plans this summer?


Out on the prairie said...

I think with our present economy canning will take on a new charm. I like to can with others, it takes the drudgery out of it and becomes fun. My youngest is starting to can just as she did growing up.My summer is full of fun, wait all year my life is full of fun. I play harder in the summer.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi Cathy, I love gardening also--but my love is growing flowers... We grow Roses (50+ bushes) and lots of perennials, etc. Being outside playing in the dirt is refreshing. Glad you love your garden. Sounds like you will have plenty of fresh veggies soon. YUM.. I too love those home-grown tomatoes.


Clint said...

Thanks for bringing up memories of canned vegetables. They are the greatest! My favorite was creamed corn.

Nancy said...

With just me and my husband at home, and the fact he works out of town M-F, we have scaled way down in gardening and canning. We just can't eat it all. But your canned goods all look so pretty! It's such a nice thing to see them all stacked up in a pantry. :)

Jules said...

I need to learn canning, my freezer(S) are full. I'm going to try to add a few vegetables to my flower garden and do my herbs in pots on my deck, a new one; Ginger.

I have a flower bed that never got flowers, vegetables will do. :)
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

floweringmama said...

Oh yes, don't forget the herbs! I planted dill, garlic, basil, and oregano. I always like to plant mint (in a pot!) but rarely use it other than to drop a few leaves in tea.

Jean said...

I use to can...when I was a "stay at home mom". It was an easy way to preserve.

Christine said...

Oh, I just loved seeing your homemade preserves - how comforting to pull out something homemade from the pantry. Fingers crossed for a good growing season for you!

Anonymous said...

Hope we can get together soon and plant that garden. Maybe you can share with your Mom (ha.

Sabine said...

Oh, what a nice blog.
Many greetings from Germany

Michelle said...

I can, too. I know that's a lot of work. Great job!

Corner Gardener Sue said...

You have some lovely things put up there! I used to can, but lately just freeze things. I keep thinking this may be the year I can. We'll see.

Rezervesana said...

This food looks delicious!!