I've been MIA for a while. I've been on facebook because I can do that in 30 seconds or less. But I've not blogged and I've not really seen many people in the last few weeks.
We finally made it to a homeschool hangout yesterday and people were like "Woah! You are out in public" yep, we've been a bit reclusive for a while...but not without reason.
In the last 4 weeks or so I've canned
40 quarts of green beans
24 pints of pickles
21 pints of salsa
7 pints of pizza sauce
5 pints of pickled tomatoes
7 pints of pickle relish
45 or so quarts of corn.
And a few bags of shredded zuchinni
and some chopped green peppers (I chop these and add them to a big freezer bag...and use them for soups and stuff-just busting off the bits I need)
I wish I had double or so the green beans and corn. I wish I had a few more bags of zuchinni. And I'm hoping for at least 24 pints of pizza/pasta sauce. Next year, I'll know how to plant and plan differently.
All that produce has been grown, picked, cleaned, prepped and processed by little ole me. The family has helped a bit. We all plant together. The King helps with the tilling some and so did A. But I do most of it. The kids snapped 8 gallons of green beans one afternoon.
We were supposed to start school on Monday. But I have at least 3 more canners of tomatoes to run thru (they'll be pizza sauce) not including the tomatoes still left to pick on the plants (which will likely be unseasoned tomato sauce or BBQ sauce). And I have a crisper drawer in my fridge full of green beans I have to decide what to do with (eat fresh or can). So school is being pushed back one week. I have the boys first week of lessons all laid out but I still need to get L's preschool work figured out (that takes more planning from me).
If i can get my hands on peaches, I'll can/freeze those and make peach jelly and later in the fall we'll be doing applesauce and apple butter and pumpkin puree and butter.
Sometime this fall, the pig will be ready to butcher (which we'll pay to have done so we can have bacon, ham, and lard) and deer season will be rolling around. We process all of our own venison. By December or January, we'll also have a cow to butcher. And we'll be borrowing a billy goat so we can have baby goats in the spring....when gardening starts again.
Although it is a never ending cycle, which has never been more apparent than when typing this out, the few weeks of canning and freezing the garden's produce are crazy. I hide out. Frankly, I neglect my house and the kids watch too much tv/play too much wii so they aren't in the kitchen with all the hot/boiling stuff. But it always feels so great to have a pantry full of food knowing that if the winter is like it was last year (which is being predicted), that we will have plenty to eat without leaving the house. :)
(PS- Although I totally enjoy sharing things like this about our lives, I am also sharing so that next year I can remember how much of each thing I had in the cabinet so I know how to change up my plans and have enough to last the year without much leftover-I don't anticipate any leftovers this year. If I write it on a paper I will, without a doubt, lose the paper HA!)