Where-oh-where has this past week gone?
It's been spent in a combination of trying to stay ahead of the garden's harvest, trying to finish a moderately sized outside project, trying to get my energy back from the week long attack of germs I contracted and trying not to panic about the near catastrophe caused by our 2-1/2 year old, 6' long Frigidaire freezer in the pantry.
First of all, it's amazing what the garden is producing considering the dismal start it got the first half of this summer. I'm grateful for every little vegetable that has matured and can be squirreled away for our eating pleasure and sustenance in these coming winter months, but does everything have to ripen at once?
Yes. The answer is yes.
Because of our whacky weather, even the "early" crops didn't have decent weather to grow in until mid-summer (or beyond) so I now have shell peas still ripening on the vine. Today. At the very end of August. That's how it's happened this year, so that's how we'll take it. At night, I dream of picking beans, of steaming pots and kettles on the stove, of jars pinging on the counter, of trays of quiescently freezing berries. It sure is an intense period.
On Tuesday of this week, we discovered quite by accident that the floor under our relatively new, big freezer in the pantry was . . . soaked. With water. The tile had buckled and the sub-flooring was saturated. Wha . . . ? Huh?
In this terrible, hot humid weather we've been having, I've been like a crazy person (a quote from my husband), constantly checking and monitoring the temperature in the pantry. It's never gotten over 70° and we've managed to keep (what we thought was) a good air flow in there.
Come to find out condensation was building up (why? why? WHY?!) on the back of the freezer (which was a good 3-4" away from the wall) and running down to the floor and under the freezer.
On the extremely hot, sticky, humid day when the problem was discovered, the condenser was making an abnormally loud noise and the side of the freezer was too hot to hold your hand on it. I had to empty the very full freezer, we had to get the huge thing out of the small pantry and into the garage . . .
. . . which necessitated taking off three doors and moving darn near every stick of furniture in the house. (Believe me, deodorant was of no use that day.)
Then we had to rip up the ruined tile and start drying out the plywood sub-flooring.
The good news is that we didn't lose any food in the process. The bad news is we don't know why we had the problem in the first place. Detailed researching, gnashing of teeth and pulling of hair is still in progress. I am not happy about the state of the pantry. Husband is not happy about the huge freezer taking up needed space in the garage.
But it's a small problem compared to lots of others. Could be worse. We'll figure everything out. I'm no longer sick to my stomach thinking we were going to lose everything stored in the freezer. And that the freezer was going to catch fire. And that the floor of pantry was going to have to be torn out. It will all work out fine.
Now I'm going to go to bed early so I can dream of canning beets.
Tincture Time ~ Bilberry Vinegar
11 hours ago