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It seems like just yesterday I was sweltering in 30 degree heat and wishing for a reprieve, but today it feels like fall has set in. The nights are cool, we’re using our duvet again, and while the afternoon sun is still quite hot, the air in the shade is not. The season of sweaters and “hot again, cool again” has returned. Windows which get opened during the day suddenly need to be closed at night, the wood stove has seemed mighty tempting a couple of times, and our thoughts are turning to getting all those last things accomplished before the cold weather (and snow) sets in. Things like eaves troughs and soffits, insulating the trap door, draft proofing the front and back doors. Yesterday, for the first time in a few months, I made a roast chicken, and my mind wandered to making soup. Not yet, but soon. The kids returned to school this week, and that also makes me feel old, and happy, and sad.

I can’t say I don’t welcome the cooler weather, but summer sure flew by fast, and that makes me feel old and sad. The weeds in my garden are doing better than the plants I wanted there, which also makes me sad, but soon I won’t need to feel guilty for not weeding the garden because it will be too cold for anything to survive. So it won’t be my fault that the garden is dead and unproductive.

Things we’ve done this summer:

  • Planted 180 cedars. (Dug 180 holes!)
  • Went camping for a week with Twinkle Toes for the first time as a family. Really, have you ever gone camping with a one-year-old? It is more of a challenge than it sounds, and it sounds daunting. One of the lessons learned that week: When you suspect your child has a full, poopy diaper, do not continue to roll around in the tent playing “tickle”. I’ll spare you the details.
  • Acquired a new motorcycle, sold one, and fixed several bits on several motorcycles.
  • Successfully (just about) finished a room! I put down, stained and varnished the pine flooring. Now I’m thinking of another career. (Not really, but that pneumatic floor nailer was a lot of fun.)
  • Rupert built a two-storey deck with a friend of his. Quite the accomplishment given he is afraid of heights and that even only 5 years ago, he wouldn’t have known how to hammer in a nail. (I exaggerate, but only a little.)
  • Got over the dread of returning to work after maternity leave, had my position abolished, dealt with that stress, and came out the other side thinking that the world is full of possibilities. Today I ran into one of those possibilities. I’m going to start a production blitz in time for the International Plowing Match which will be taking place in my area in a couple of weeks. I also found out that I may be eligible to take some entrepreneurship courses, which would be dandy!

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Casa Cat Creek has been experiencing quite the heat wave. I’ve only just now regained enough energy for anything other than moving to the basement where 28 degrees feels cool, and sitting there in a puddle of sweat to moan.

The sun has been unrelenting and the temperature has been up around — or above — 30 degrees for what feels like ages, but is probably only two weeks or so. I’m happy I’m not 9 months pregnant like I was during last year’s heat wave, but I’m not enjoying it!

However, as they say, every cloud has a silver lining, and the heat and unrelenting sun, as much as it is making the lawn brown and crunchy, the cedars wilt and me sweat, is fantastic for making cucumbers into pickles.

(It’s also great for bleaching and airing cloth diapers, so get your fluff out on the line!)

Here are my first forays into pickle making:

 

 

I’m following my mother-in-law’s recipe (as I remember it). For the pickles, add fresh dill, garlic and salt, and fill with water above the cucumbers. Add a piece of bread for the yeast which will start the fermentation process. Cover with saran wrap and the lid. Leave the jar in the sun for three days and then refrigerate.

The process is the same for the green tomatoes, only this recipe is a little spicier: Use peppercorns, red pepper flakes and bay leaves.

The jar on the right has been out for two days already. Tomorrow I’ll bring it in. The other two I just set out today.

πŸ™‚ Happy pickling!

Toodoodoodoo… it’s all right…

πŸ™‚

Finally, the deluge has ended, and I had a chance to cut the Cat Creek grass — my, was it ever getting long! I planted a few starts that I hadn’t managed to get in the ground last week, but I will have to remember to water them because the forecast calls for lots of sun and dry weather this week.

I’ve had one casualty so far: the fuzzy ones mom gave me to transplant. The two I planted have both fallen over, wilted and died an ugly death. I don’t know what they were, though. Poppies? 😦 If so, that’s too bad. I like poppies.

Everything else seems to have taken to their new locations quite well, though, even with the dogs doing their best to lie on everything. πŸ˜›

Pictures of all the garden glory tomorrow, promise!

…you’re only a few hours away!

And have I got plans for the day!

Saturdays from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. the Vankleek Hill Farmer’s Market is open and bustling. They’ve recently moved from indoors at a local high school to their outdoor location, so I’m hoping this rain we’ve been getting lets up. It’s so much more pleasant to meander through the stands when you’re not up to your ankles in mud! Just the same, I am a fervent market-goer, so I will be there — I’m especially hoping for some produce! Enough with the baked goods and frozen meat, already. Give me some fresh new sprouts of something green… (not that I mind meat — I love it — but it isn’t as exciting to buy).

I’m especially hoping “my” veggie man, Alan is back. He’s charming and grows good veggies.

I also have another reason to look forward to the morning: I’ve got clearance from Rupert to head off to the market on my new motorcycle — not that I need permission, but I won’t be taking children with me, so he has agreed to supervise them so I can leave the house on. my. own. (Those of you breastfeeding or with young children know this is momentous.) And in case you were wondering, Oh yes!Β one can do the groceries on a motorcycle, especially one that is equipped with side luggage and top case. I don’t have a pretty picture of my new blue lady to show you, but perhaps tomorrow will bring sun and I can snap a pic in the parking lot at the market. Promise!

Also as promised, if the sun comes out I will get some pictures of my little garden projects. If the plants haven’t all drowned yet, that is. πŸ˜›

Now I’m off to bed with visions of peas and lettuce dancing in my head. Good night, all!

My Etsy Shop

A little bird told me…

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