Sunday, September 11, 2011

September days

By my book, it is now fall. Not because the rain was more than rain and less than snow last night as light drops made a dull thud on the hood of my jacket as I walked my evening chore routine in the dark. Not  because the garden is half harvested, or because winter coats, boots and hats have been dug out and now line the hallway. I feel safe pronouncing that it is now fall because as I look out at the hillside and the forest surrounding me, the colors are more gold and copper than green. The nights have consistently been in the low forties and high thirties. We are lucky if the days reach high sixties (in the sun). Moreover the air smells like fall. Fall smells like high bush cranberries, sharp, sour and sweet, combined with the pungent smell of decaying leaves and debris. I adore the scents of autumn.

There is so much yet to do, it is difficult to remain calm. I'm trying to stay focused and get at least something harvested and put away each day. This week is Avery's third birthday. So we'll be entertaining and enjoying ourselves more. Avery has requested hot dogs and strawberry cake for her birthday. When asked what she would like more than anything else, she replied: a broom. When prompted for her second choice, she asked for a dustpan. She doesn't know it yet, but she is getting a darling wood kitchen, which mama is perhaps too excited about - and a wood and straw broom of course.

This week blanching and freezing thyme, kale and celery are at the top of the list. I'll be simmering local crab apples into applesauce, shredding cabbage and starting sauerkraut and making one final batch of dill pickles with the last of the pickling cucumbers. I may get around to making tomato sauce with the tomatoes that are finally ripening now that they are in boxes indoors. What are you harvesting and making this week? What signals fall to you?


Anonymous said...

We are digging potatoes, canning zucchini, also some tomato sauce and drying herbs. We have had a hard freeze for 3 nights in a row now so as we clean out I'm trying to get ready for next spring! Our colors are at their peak and I also love it! - carol

Jewel said...

Hi Emily,
Hurray for the harvest time of year. We're picking cabbages today for making sauerkraut and kimchee, and have been picking blackberries, oregon grape, and the fall strawberries and raspberries. I'm freezing them all for making jam in a few weeks. We still have lots of kale, greens, and root crops. I'll wait to harvest many things in early October.

That is so cute about your daughter wanting a broom and dustpan for her birthday. I read it aloud to my youngest daughter who's 10, and we both thought that was sweet.

This summer has been our summer to get goats, we have 4 now with one more coming. One is a Lamancha, and we just love her, she gives almost a gallon a day of the most delicious milk. One is a nubian and 3 are nigerians. I've learned so much about goats reading your blog, thanks. It's nice to see your updates, Happy Fall!

Anonymous said...

Crunchy Alder leaves. And salmon in the river. Spider webs too. I come in from morning chores with a face full of spider webs.... Yuck.

Unknown said...

Fall is crunchy sounds instead of swishing as I stride through the brush, hunting for elusive reds in our golden-colored forest, finishing up chores in the dark, and the fecund scent of bucks in rut - we have 5 of them. *phew!* How did THAT happen?!

We have harvested 200-300 pounds of potatoes and pulled up all our green beans last weekend. Carrots, beets, and onions still in the ground. Eyeing the chickens with a day of massive culling in mind - don't want to feed a bunch of freeloaders all winter!