Saturday, August 29, 2015

Summer winding down; chicks, harvest, soaping, and a smidgen of quilting

The newest, and FINAL, chicks of the season joined us this past week.  

I had been peeking in on Mama daily seeing we didn't really know when she started sitting on her clutch of eggs.  Do you see the little guy tucked in right by her breast?  
Since the hatch, we've been trying to get an accurate count, but have simply decided to shrug and wait until we graduate Mama and chicks to a ground brooder, that way we'll count as we remove them from the brooder house. We THINK there are 12-14 in there, which brings our total number of chickens on the property to..........

somewhere around 85-90.  LOL.  However, not all of them will spend the winter with us.  Many of the hatched chicks this year are roosters, and we simply don't need a whole lotta roosters around the property.  Two have already been claimed by a neighbor; we're hoping to find houses for others just as easily!

Goodness, WHERE to even start with this catchup...

Well, it IS breakfast time around here.  Hungry?  Paul shared an Apple Fritter recipe to my FB page a few weeks ago, so last weekend, I gave it a try.  Soooo yummy!  See the icing drip onto my thumb?  Yuppers, folks!  Finger-lickin' good! Recipe here.

And yes!  It is that time of year again;  the annual pollinating of Ragweed!
*whispering*  But crazy enough, I have not been overwhelmed with itchy eyes or runny nose this year.  Could it be that I'm finally growing out of this allergy????  Candace, on the other hand, continues to be miserable;  allergy medicines we've tried barely take the edge off.  

So that means I've been able to be in the garden without too much discomfort.  Yay!
The tomatoes are slowly starting to ripen; about 20 pounds harvested so far, with HUNDREDS of pounds yet to come.  No lie!  HUNDREDS!!!!!!  Holy tomatoes, batman!  I guess 78 plants will do that, huh?  LOL.....

One monster so far....

The excess basil from the Pesto making a few weeks ago has been drying and waiting for processing. 
It doesn't take much basil to fill a spice container, so we're reserving the rest to make some tomato-basil seasoning once we've dried some tomatoes.

A coffee filter worked great as a collection device and then again as a pour-spout, only after sifting out some larger stems by hand.

Coffee filters were also used to keep dirt from falling out of some pots that were used for my plant clippings.  
I find it quite cool watching the root systems grow!  I don't know what kind of houseplant this is, but it is SO easy to care for AND propagate!

Much of our living room has been taken over by plants, which doesn't bother me at all... sorta!  
An opportunity was given to me to add two more mini-greenhouses to my lot (thanks Karen!!!!), all in exchange for some homemade lotions and soaps.  

For now, the greenhouse plastic was set aside, and they are being used as organizational shelving for our (ever-growing) collection of plants.  Weird, maybe, but I can't help but smile when I look at the showcase of plants and photos!

Some more soaps have been added to the curing shelves:  Oatmeal, Milk and Honey, and Hazelnut coffee (my NEW favorite!!!!!)  I love walking through my curing room (which also happens to by my quilting room).  The smells are yummy, yummy, yummy!  What a fun adventure this has been this summer!

Caitlyn's Lemon yogurt "Energy" soap has been in the bathroom for the past couple of weeks.  After trying it out, I accepted that a simple recipe is truly sufficient to make a great bar of soap!  This was one of the first batches we made this summer:  70% olive oil and 30% coconut oil, and then some fragrance.  Quick and easy to mix up; lathers and bubbles wonderfully, and does its job!

The corn harvest has been underway for us for the past week, and two weeks ago, when visiting my parents, I allowed myself to kick back while waiting for the grilled corn.  (Hmmm... another picture with a glass of wine.... )
Have I mentioned how thankful I am for the help I get with the Fall harvests????
Amidst a harvest, when time doesn't allow for large time-consuming meals, it IS okay to simply place a jar of fresh salsa and a plate of fresh corn-on-the-cob on the table.  

We ARE finding time for fun and relaxing, too!
Last week, Paul and I finally buckled down and hired a crew to pour a 30x30 concrete slab, with intentions of using it as an "activity" area for the girls.  Basketball, volleyball, skating...


....wait for it.....

I found a couple hours of time to work a little more on the Smith Mountain Morning quilt!  Hours 13 and 14 (no pic) were completed.

School schedules are almost back in full swing.  Cassie has made the starting lineup on the JV volleyball squad; I'm not sure who loves the sport more, her or me!  We're off to watch the Varsity play in their first tournament of the season in a little bit.  
The first day of school is Tuesday (9/1).  I think we're ready. ;)

Happy Saturday!


scraphappy said...

Wow. Busy times. Glad you are getting it all in before school is back in full swing. So much fun though, looks like you had a great summer.

JB said...

So much fun always happening at the Skattebo home! Thanks for the update.

gayle said...

I think I've eaten my weight in grilled sweet corn this month - between corn on the cob and corn salads - it's just been magnificent! (I'd never had grilled corn before, so it's been quite the eye opener!)
I bet you'll be glad when winter finally comes and you can slow down just a step or two...