A journal of our day to day; homesteading and homeschooling in the Land of the Midnight Sun.
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Final summer days
I have the worst cold ever. I could write an entire post detailing every part of my body that hurts, but instead I'll attempt to rechannel my self pity and share some of the goings on here, before the events are too outdated. D has been working about sixty hours a week, which doesn't leave much time for extra projects. But he got a couple extra days off last week and rented an auger, put in twenty-eight post holes, and planted ten foot posts around the garden. The fence has yet to go in yet. I'm beginning to worry more about an early frost than a moose attack. We've already had a frost advisory for low lying areas and I heard Delta had a hard freeze already. Usually our garden goes until mid to late September, as our hill location is buffered from the early frosts that put an end to low lying gardens. The last few years we have had beautiful August and Septembers, the nights are cool, but the days are sunny and warm, giving us an extended time to get the harvest in. This year something tells me winter is going to come early.
The trees are still green. I have to really scan the woods to find any yellow. The fireweed are in full bloom. The garden has finally reached peak season, with nothing but strawberries being on the down hill side of production. Usually once we get to this point, we have another six weeks of fresh eating. I'm thinking I've got at least a couple more weeks of enjoying peas, beans and zucchini. Maybe it is just that I feel so helpless, tired and low energy right now, but I am starting to panic. I haven't put much away yet. Once I'm feeling better, it is time to start mass harvesting, blanching and freezing. So far I've made and canned several batches of jam, and the salmon from earlier this summer. I finally got out for a blueberry picking trip this weekend, and froze about two and a half gallons of blueberries, and made a beautiful pie. I need at least one more successful blueberry run.
The Cornish are ready for the freezer. As soon as D has a day off, and I pick up two gallon freezer bags and sharpen some knives. The meat birds are looking great this year. We just recently lost our first one. We butchered two a couple weeks ago for some fresh chicken meals, which leaves twenty-two for butchering day. They are pretty uniform in size this year, I'm guessing most of them will be in the five to six pound range if we do them soon. I'm ready for the geese and ducks to move into their new home, once the Cornish are out.
And now for some more summer pictures:
We made rhubarb strawberry jam with half our own strawberries, rhubarb ginger jam, rhubarb blueberry jam, rhubarb preserves and then we froze a couple gallons of chopped rhubarb. Thanks Nancy for the rhubarb!!
Summer is winding up. The mornings and nights are chilly, and even some afternoons. There is so much to do it is overwhelming. Today is a good day for making lists, and just enjoying the sun and the green.
We are a family of four (with one more on the way), living in the Arctic Boreal Forest above Fairbanks, in the Interior of Alaska. I write about our simple life and trying to keep our life simple in a day when the typical American life is anything but. When I first started writing this blog I had a toddler and a baby and we were a growing homestead. I wanted to share our day to day and all the lessons we learned along the way, from mixing our own chicken feed to goat kidding season and cheese making. As our children have grown, home schooling has really taken over and I have had to examine every aspect of our lives to keep our days simple yet fruitful. These days you will still find me posting and sharing pictures of our chickens and garden, berry picking and salmon processing. I also hope to be writing about home schooling decisions and lessons as well as other interests and hobbies the kids and I explore. Reader interest and feedback is what keeps me writing, so please leave lots of comments!
The here and now of our homestead is what I'm writing about. Compelled by a sense that we are participating in something significant, heading back to our roots... this is my attempt to share what we are learning along our journey. For those of you on similar paths, whether you are raising kids, a flock of chickens, a couple goats or run a farm, well I'm hoping to learn from you as well, so feel free to put in your two cents!