Monday, August 8, 2016

Monthly Goals Update and This Week's Goals

It is wet here.  So, so wet.  How wet?  I'm about to start building an ark and charging toll (hey you might as well make money off the ark right?). 

The weather is just playing havoc with my garden plans.  The slug traps are full within hours of me refilling them with beer, the slugs are somehow getting underneath barriers buried into the soil with weights on top of them.  And anything that isn't slug eaten?  The seedlings are quite literally rotting as soon as they start to pop out of the ground and grow a few inches high.  The ground is THAT saturated with water right now.  It's pretty gross.  I talked to my husband about potentially building a greenhouse with corrugated plastic instead of glass windows and such and he agreed that would be a lot cheaper and we might be able to swing that for next year.  At least if I can get him to draw up some plans I can start picking up material or at least get some cost estimates and start to budget for it.  It'd be nice to avoid some of these problems in coming years.

I actually dug some soil and put it into a couple of planters and have it sitting under the eaves of the house to see if I can dry it out enough to grow a few plants in those.  If the good Lord says no to a winter garden, annoy your husband by moving a mini garden inside ;).  It'll be interesting to see if I can imitate natural light with the florescent lights out in the garage.  We'll see how it goes.  Nothing to lose really at this point is there?

My husband left town late last night/early this morning and already my son keeps looking for him to come home, refusing for me to turn off the garage lights and keeps asking for items that he associates with his dad on his talker.  He even keeps wandering over to the window looking for him to come home.  Kind of makes me want to cry and he's not even in a really bad mood yet and is not helping me miss my husband less that's for sure.  And my daughter's stomach is officially cycling as well.  Top that off with OT cancelling this week and speech cancelling as well and the pouring it's depressing.

I refuse to get too caught up in a dark mood though as the kids are going to need me to distract them from theirs, so I ran out a couple of times today and foraged in the yard, picking rose hips and watermelon berries (a new find for me.  I was watching a cooperative extension service video on edible berries in Alaska and saw the watermelon berry plant and was like, "Holy cow!  I have those all over the yard!").  I am pretty sure between the rose hips I have dried from last year and the fresh ones I've picked I should have enough for rose hip syrup, which will be fun to make.  Since rose hips taste like apple, I'm figuring on making it with some cinnamon and making it into basically an apple cinnamon syrup for pancakes and things.  I think that will be really tasty.  And packed with vitamin C, calcium, iron and all the other great vitamins rose hips have in them.  ANYTHING that is as packed with antioxidants as rose hips can't hurt to consume over winter.  Ever.

When it comes to goals I got accomplished this was kind of mixed.  The plans for my husband going out of town changed suddenly when I found out all the details as it just was NOT going to work with my son's allergist appointment. Which led to me rescheduling my son's allergist appointment, led to my husband flying out earlier than expected and me scrambling to get things like laundry washed, sorted, folded and other things figured before my husband had to leave.  So sewing Christmas gifts and things was totally out this week after all of that.  I did get rhubarb and cherries canned (as I showed in my Frugal Friday post) and I also managed to can pears (seen up top).  Super happy with what little I did get done with everything that was going on around here.

I also was able to pull the pants that were too small for my son out of his dresser and put them in the donation pile.  I can't believe how big that kid is.  For what he eats it doesn't make sense that he is SO huge for his age.  I mean he's less than a foot shorter than I am.  At seven.  Crazy.

I've gotten more pantry organization and kitchen organization done, but not as much as I was hoping, so I'm hoping to get more of that done this week.

So, onto this week's goals.

Sewing Goals:
  • Work on Christmas gifts
  • Mend husband's work jacket zipper

Food Preservation Goals:
  • Dehydrate cabbage
  • Dehydrate carrots
  • Dehydrate celery
  • Dehydrate Potatoes
  • Can rose hip syrup
  • Can strawberry preserves
  • Continue to harvest peas.  Blanch and freeze.

General Goals:
  • Continue to work on pantry and kitchen organization
  • Get kids through meet and greet at school.  Drop off school supplies.
  • Work on master bedroom closet.  Start ripping things out of closet to do a hard reset.
  • Strip, wash and change bedding on all beds (I never manage to do all of them at the same time and would like to give it a shot *laugh*).
So, there you go folks.  My goals for this week.  How about you?


  1. At our last house, I battled slugs like that. It was discouraging, for sure. I feel your pain!

    Where I am parked in my camper this summer, it's much better. Our new house? Time will tell.

    We have been eating apples and pears around here, too, along with the peaches and nectarines from the farm we are parked at. Some of our garden is winding down, as well. This year, we had many successes in the garden, but one failure--our broccoli. It was awful and we did not harvest one bit from it! Imagine our chagrin when my sister and I went to check out what those workers were throwing into the harvest container on the land about 25 feet from our garden (It's my sister's land, but they rent it out to a neighboring farmer), Not difficult cauliflower as we thought. Yes---broccoli. Beautiful, lovely, perfectly formed broccoli! Hmmmm. Sometimes life is like that!

    1. Isn't that the oddest thing? My second year planting my garden here my neighbor came over with some "cabbage seedlings" that were extras from his garden and offered them to me. I totally jumped on it as I didn't realize the spider mites were a problem yet and they had just taken out my cabbage seedlings I'd parked in my front yard to help harden them to the weather.

      So, I planted them, nursed them and watched them grow. Then something odd started to happen. I kept waiting for heads to form, but the heads were looking odd. Kept thinking it was a different type of cabbage (so not an experienced gardener at that point) so I kept waiting. And loe and behold some of the heads opened to show cauliflower and some others formed broccoli. I think my neighbor gave me the most diverse cabbage patch that year *laugh*. I didn't find the cauliflower that hard to grow, really...about the same as cabbage. My mom gave me a tip that her grandmother (who did everything and was like domestic super should see that woman's quilts!) always did which was take some of the bigger leaves and tie them together over the head in both directions to keep the sun off the actual cauliflower and it'll stay white and won't get bitter on you. It worked great. I just finished up the last of the cauliflower pickles from that summer a little bit ago. Those came out so pretty I nearly entered them in the fair *laugh*.

    2. Sorry, hit reply too soon. Anyway, my neighbor came over later and was amazed how nice the broccoli looked as his hadn't done so well that year. And he's right across the street and has a lot more garden than I do and a lot more time (he's retired). The broccoli did so well I picked some and gave him some and gave some to friends and family as well as froze a bunch. I really jammed cabbage type plants into the garden that year and while the plants bent into odd shapes everything grew. Other years it is amazing I get anything at all from the garden the way the growing goes. The gardening gods are fickle for sure.

  2. I know how you feel with your husband being gone. My husband works a job with crazy hours where the kids don't see him for a week. It is really hard on the kids, and the mom too! So is this a second job he has picked up or is this for his current job? I am glad that he has this work. And you are doing a great job with your canning. I think I have given up on my garden, all of my tomatoes have got blossom end rot and the chickens are getting them. The rest if so dried up due to our drought and days of hot temps. We have watered but it just fries in this heat. Now I am working on some organizing and yard work. Its amazing the garden scorches but the weeds in the landscaping just keep going.

    1. The out of town jobs are for his dad's company. We both HATE him being out of town. When he's gone my son tends to slip backwards. He'll lose skills, communication (he won't even look at his talker this morning for instance) and start regressing mood-wise. At least now a days he gets mad more than climbing into his own head and refusing to let you in. When he was about three my husband was out of town all summer working jobs. My son regressed to a point he was basically drooling in a corner. I pray he never gets that bad again :(. I'm hoping someday soon I can sit there on his talker and explain to him that dad is working and no he's not running around having fun without him or something.

  3. I'm going to just pray for you and your family that you all get through daddy being out of town. Hard to explain to your son I bet that your family needs him to work like this. Cheryl

    1. All I can do is pray that the paycheck is worth it on this one. I have NO idea what the pay rate or anything is like. So, yeah, praying. The last job he got really good per diem on so it was definitely a good pay off anyway, but we shall see.

  4. Erika, it seems you are doing EVERYTHING possible to have a garden. Way to go! You have taken everyone's advice so surely something will work. Have you ever wondered how people did it years ago? How they survived. If my family had to survive on only what I could grow in the garden, we would starve. I enjoy watching the Amish every week. They know what to do and how to do it. Plus they do it without electricity. Sheesh. I am such a wimp.

    Anyway, this is the first time I have attempted to write down my goals for the week. I have LONG to do lists but usually I have my short-term lists in my head. I get overwhelmed when I see all I have to do. Well here goes…
    My goals: Harvest in coming garden harvest, load up on peaches, clean house for company and cook huge meals.
    Son #2 is out of town at an agriculture convention for school. He will return on Thursday. Son #3 will be finishing up his summer internship job and will be coming home on Saturday. Son #1 will be coming home on Sunday to see his brothers. Whenever they come home, I have HUGE special meals just for them. They miss my home cooking and I just love doing it for them. On Tuesday of next week we will be hosting Son #2's church group for dinner. This means I need to cook huge meals, bake deserts and freeze them ahead of time, clean the house good enough for company (and boy does it need it), go to the Amish tomorrow and load up, and continue harvesting from my gardening. Lima beans are coming in. Yesterday I shelled until my thumbs hurt.

    Dehydrate: last few peaches from last week, okra, leftover bananas
    Continue cleaning pantry and just stick stuff back in until after company is gone.
    Clean off front porch. This sounds so simple but it is a big job.
    Download coupons and make shopping list, bag up ice in freezer to take tomorrow, pack car with glass jugs to hold milk, wash peach baskets to return and load in car, load up both ice chests and fix lunch to take tomorrow.
    MOST IMPORTANT: Call every few hours and check on Mom. She had another vertigo attack yesterday and I need to make sure she is ok until Son #1 gets there after work.

    Put chicken in crock pot for dinner
    Brew coffee and fix TWO cups to go. I will need it before the day is over.
    Leave around 8:30 am to run all day errands. Will get home at about 6:00 pm
    Get gas, Goodwill, bank, post office, Dollar General, Kroger, Aldi
    Amish: get 6 gallons of milk, corn, cantaloupes, eggs, cucumbers and whatever else I see at a good price. I will be feeding an army this next week.
    Peach orchard: load up on my favorite peaches which are in for probably only one week
    Unload car (Big chore since none of the boys are here to do it. Hubby will do most of it.)
    Separate cream from milk and freeze extra gallons for sons to take to college.

    I can't think any further ahead than that and now is the calm before the storm.