Monday, November 18, 2013

I'm Climbing Back onto the Homestead Wagon!

      Since facing the discouraging summer of gardening, I felt like I had totally 'fallen off the homesteading wagon'! Well, I'm pleased to announce that I'm climbing back on again! I've been cleaning out the vegetable beds, now that the bugs and chiggers have gone. I am so glad to finally be able to access them! I had to hack my way through the weeds to get to them and I'm still hacking, but at least I'm making progress! It's a good feeling! I am so thankful to be able to do this! If I was working a job outside the home, I probably wouldn't have time to do all these things! Have you ever fallen off the homestead wagon? I'd rather be on that bumpy-riding wagon heading for the wild blue yonder, than sitting by the road, watching everybody else do what I love to do! Is it too early to start seeds indoors? Lol!

      I've been thinking about and praying for the people in the mid-west who were ravaged by devastating tornadoes! Who would have thought tornadoes would go through Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, all the way to New York! We were expecting strong storms here, not there! We didn't get them. They stayed up North. So sorry for those people! I hope none of you were touched by those awful storms!

      The weather has been so nice here today! Sunny, breezy and right below 70. It was somewhat rainy over the weekend and very humid! I guess living in the South, we'll always have humid weather all season long! That's O.K., I guess I'm used to it! 

      I raked leaves to go in the raised beds and got enough to go in the raspberry bed. It could probably use another bag, but my shoulder can only hold up to so much raking! I've used leaves that I raked and bagged last year to fill the beds, so far. I've got about three bags left, so I will have to rake more. With this mild weather, I don't mind. Would you like to come and help me rake leaves?

      We are having Thanksgiving here. I need to get the house cleaned and prepared. But I'd rather be outside! If all goes well, I should be able to do both. At least I can get the dining room table cleaned. It has canning jars that I'm wrapping with newspapers and putting upstairs until summer. And the kitchen island cleared of all the glitter and craft scraps. If I can get that done, then I've accomplished something! Someone want to volunteer to help?

      Ya'll know I'm just kidding, but sometimes a little help wouldn't hurt. Maybe my nieces can help this week. Have a great week! Until next time, Blessings from Bama!

Ground Boston butt I ground to make two different recipes. The one on the left is taco flavored, whereas the one on the right is Italian sausage.

I made a chili pie with the taco flavored one and as you can see, spaghetti sauce with the Italian sausage.

Three raised beds that have been cleaned out and mulched leaves put in.

These are what the beds look like before. These are two beds that I still have yet to clean. You can barely see that they are beds!

Two more beds that need cleaning. See the garlic? I hope it winters well.

This awful mess isn't a bed; just an area in the garden that needs cleaning!

You don't know how good it makes me feel to see these beds cleaned out! I finished the one on the back left today! It was a job!

The one on the left is done, the one on the right is the strawberry bed. Should I move them when I clean them out, or just leave them here? They've been here a couple of years.

I get so dirty doing this, but I love it!

Roasted butternut squash and acorn squash. The acorn squash has cinnamon sugar, and tasted pretty good. I probably won't make it again. The butternut squash is going in a soup.

The making of Kind bars. Randy calibrated my oven and they were overcooked. He needs to fix it back.

Jim Lahey's whole wheat bread. I wanted to try the whole wheat, but I'm just not a fan of whole wheat. I like the unbleached, unbrommated flour best.


  1. I had a disappointing garden year as well. I usually host Thanksgiving for Al's family here too. I hope I can get a day at home to clean and get ready. Weeding is a HUGE job. I have 2 raised beds that are overrun with raspberries and weeds. I wanted to keep the raspberries, but they have been unproductive for years. I might pull them out and plant them near the woods - I can't stand to kill them. Have fun diggin in the dirt. Blessings from Wisconsin.

    1. Hi Jacky! Yes, you need a day at least, to prepare! Prayers your situation with your Mom will be where you can have some time at home. I hate to kill them too! I kept digging up runners and putting them back into the bed. It will be full by summer! Thanks, Jacky! Blessings!

  2. This year was one-of-those-years for me too. My heart just wasn't into the garden and never felt like I found my 'rhythm'. The straw that broke the camels back was when my daughter and I had spent the morning (one of those very wet summer mornings from the crazy very wet year earlier) picking blackberries and when she was cleaning them - they were full of microscopic, threadlike 'worms'! We spent hours trying to figure out how to get rid of those worms and nothing worked and it made me so sick, the gallons of blackberries were thrown to the chickens and I didn't feel like doing anything in the garden after that. Yet, there was still the odd cucumber here and there, the cilantro, the basil, the eggplant, no tomatoes - but a little here and there in looking back. Corn patch was another big failure. Stalks so pitiful I couldn't even use them for Fall decorations. I hope to be more back on the 'homestead wagon' next season too - and if I lived closer I'd help you rake leaves - if you'd come and help me rake leaves too! 'Chores' are so much more fun when shared with a friend! Your cleaned out beds look wonderful and should make you feel good to see them prepped for winter like that.
    PS I run our lawnmower over the leaves with the bag attached, and that helps. Sometimes I'll even rake them into a big pile, then run the lawnmower through the entire pile over and over again. Clippings go into the beds and to the chickens. They - the chickens- get real excited when they hear the lawnmower start up! Blessings to you and have a great week!!!! You are doing a GREAT job!

    1. Oh Lisa, I didn't know blackberries got worms! I just hope we get the blackberries next season since the only ones Randy is allowing to live are in the chicken yard! Basil and a tomato and a few jalapenos is all our garden produced! So sad, but I'm looking forward to the next growing season! Thanks, I'd love for us to be able to help each other! I need to see if we can get one of those bags for our lawnmower. That's funny about the chickens! We have a couple that will follow the weedeater, but the rest are scared of it. Awe, thank you Lisa! I do feel blessed when I see the clean beds! I feel a huge burden is being lifted as well! Blesssings!

  3. Looks like you had a successful day. From all the time in the kitchen to outdoors, I wish my days were that productive. I am with you on the whole wheat. We have been making a lot of switches from processed foods to produce and healthier choices but the wheat was not a good change. We found though that white whole wheat was a fair compromise. They say it is just as healthy as whole wheat with the taste of white flour.

    1. Hi Lady Lilith! Thanks for stopping by! I'm sure your days are just as productive, maybe in a different way! I tried white whole wheat and dislike the taste of it! The texture is the same as regular whole wheat. But if you like it, that's great! We all have different tastes! Blessings!

  4. Sometimes I stop doing the things I like to do too. Maybe we just get tired out! Your beds with leaves will be so great next spring. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! Nancy

    1. I was met with so many obstacles in my garden: weeds, which in turn caused chiggers and biting gnats! I couldn't even get close to the garden without getting 'eat up'! Now that I'm getting it cleaned out, I hope it never turns into a jungle again! Thanks Nancy! Happy Thanksgiving and blessings from Bama!


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