At some point at the end of September, I found I had made a decision to actively participate in Fall. No matter what else was going on, no matter how busy I was otherwise or what I had to set aside, this year I wasn’t going to let the inset of harvest, fall beauty, and cooler weather take me by surprise. Quite by accident, this has been the best thing I could have possibly done for myself.
In the past few weeks, with loads of incidental help from family and friends, Jared had the chimney swept, and I’ve plastic-ed half the windows, turned 1/2 bushel of Mutsu apples into sauce and butter, canned 4 qts of tomatos and 2 of salsa, acquired six kinds of squash to store in the basement, and dug up the chard and pepper plants from the garden (having been given a sofa table by a family friend so we can keep them in front of the sunniest window. The ruby swiss chard is quite the conversation piece).
I’d still like to plastic the rest of the windows, process the last three quarts of tomatoes into something, can and freeze several quarts of apple pie filling (i only have 2 quart jars left), make a couple green tomato pies, and have a little inventory of freezer meat and basement squash for efficient meal planning. In my delusional head, I still have a chance of knocking these things out in the next several days, since I don’t have class until Thursday. There are many things on my plate, but nestling is a time-sensitive priority set not by the arbitrary deadlines of humans, but by the turning of the earth, established long before humanity showed up to set dates on it. And all I could think about, as I held a hairdryer over window after window, is that this winter that we’re nestling in for is the same one in which we will bring a baby into the world.
3 thoughts on “Fall [Is] Upon Us”
I love your pictures! I know what you mean about getting ready for winter – it just feels so good. Now that I’m in a condo, the only thing I get to do outdoors is unscrew the hose from the faucet and throw the dead flowers away.
I LOVE that…..embracing the seasons! My mom (Grammy) always said that when they come, you HAVE to do what you have to do. Farmers cannot wait. Gardeners cannot wait for a more convenient time. For example, the only way to deal with weeds properly all summer is to begin the treatment in spring. If you miss the early treatment, your battle with them is pretty much lost for the whole season. Another example: when the pokeberries come, I must pick them because they will not be there forever! I got the last 6 pounds recently and have been having a blast with some new kind of dyeing. Walnuts too…..if I dye with them NOW, then I can work with WHOLE walnuts, rather than having to peal them first.
You know, as far as the tomatoes go, you can just freeze them. You don’t have to can them or process them in a special way. Just cut the buggers up and throw them in a freezer bag to be processed more later. In other words, when you want to use them later to make a stew/casserole/spaghetti sauce, you simply pull them out of the freezer, thaw them and take the skins of then!
Love baby, love baby, love baby……
i know, you can freeze tomatoes… and we have the freezer space. I did freeze 2 bags full. but i LIKE canning them. there’s nothing like seeing all those cans lined up, saying “use me please!” and it’s much more convenient to open a can and dump it in a pot (like i did last night) than to worry about thawing it. Though the freezer and microwave power it takes to freeze and thaw a bag of tomatoes is probably less energy than the gas it takes to boil a pot of water big enough to can the tomatoes…