Not that my situation is a lot different than the rest of you gardeners/homesteaders/trying-to-be-self-sufficienters, but throw in a few other difficulties and stresses that one encounters in everyday life . . . and I've just been too busy lately. Too busy to keep up with correspondence, harvesting, processing, homemaking and doing all the rest I want to do. Night before last I had terrible, awful nightmares all night long and woke up feeling dreadful physically and sporting an ugly attitude. How much more of a wake-up call do I need to realize some changes need to be made?
I talked to myself all day yesterday and think I have things going in a better direction. My self-analysis and pep talk must have accomplished something, because I had a pretty good night's sleep last night and don't feel like biting anybody's (man or beast) head off this morning. So far.
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Gosh, I didn't mean to give the impression with my last post that our garden was a complete bust this year. I've been continually amazed at what we have gotten out of it considering the not-at-all conducive growing conditions we had from start to finish. Plus, I still have bountiful amounts in the garden waiting to be harvested. We've been luck and although we've had a couple of nights down in the high 30s, no frost for us yet.
My green pepper plants have done wonderfully, although they were "babied" under a cold frame for most of the growing season. I've harvested some with holes and a few misshapen ones, chopped them and put them in the freezer for use in soups, casseroles, etc. this winter. I still have to do the main harvest and make them into Stuffed Green Peppers for the freezer.
We've been blessed with oodles and oodles of luscious salad greens most of the summer. Swiss chard, arugula, mizuna mustard, kale and lettuce is still coming along.
The yellow and red onions look to be large in size this year. I haven't harvested them yet. The tops have toppled over but are still mostly green, so I'm squeezing all the growing time out for them that I can.
I have more slicing and lemon cucumbers than we can eat, I can ferment or give away. I've never had lemon cukes grow so prolifically.
Our garlic harvest was fantastic. I think I will be giving small bags of garlic as Christmas presents. (Kidding.) We will never consume all of it fresh so I may be dehydrating some of it.
Potatoes, carrots and some beets are still in the dirt. The beets I've already processed have been beautiful. Very scab-free and perfectly formed. I'm expecting the potatoes and carrots to be a heavy harvest. We'll hold them in the garden as long as we can. Then they'll be stored in our root cellar which isn't cold enough yet even though we've been using the air exchange fan to bring in the cool night time air.
I harvested and we ate the last of the radishes just last week. I did succession plantings of them all summer long and because of the lack of any sustained hot weather, they grew like gangbusters.
I haven't put by as many shell peas as last year, but I did plant and freeze sugar snap peas which puts us way over our "pea quota" for the ensuing months. No problem there.
My green beans never got a chance to do all they could because of the mold that decided to attack them. However, the yellow wax beans produced so well we won't be suffering any bean shortage.
Cabbage, both red and green, grew exceptionally well, and I've fermented a lot of it over the summer and will store the remaining heads in the root cellar where they kept very well last winter.
The bulk of the Brussels sprouts are still in the garden. Supposedly, they become sweeter with a light frost, but I'll be harvesting all of them soon, I'm guessing. It was a good year for them, and they were prolific.
Last but not least, our blueberry bushes continue to bear so heavily I'm afraid the frost will zap the remaining berries before they have a chance to ripen. This year they have been outstanding.
So you can see our good, ol' garden has come through for us and there would be no way we would starve this winter even if we never left home to buy food!
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As far as the stresses I need to learn to deal with in a better manner so I don't have those nights filled with ugly-bugly dreams, keeping everything in perspective is the key. My stresses are piddling-little compared to those with which other good folks are dealing. I'm thankful and appreciative of my life and that I have the good health and ability to be
too busy living the life I've chosen.