Sunday, October 19, 2008

Independence Day Challenge

Well, it has been a week since the steroids were running through my veins.  I am feeling much improved.  Walking again, if still a little slow, and occasionally unsteady. But on the mend.

Things did not get done this week.  Well, that is not exactly true.  I did get a lot of knitting done and a fair amount of pondering occurred.   

I pondered the events leading to the current exacerbation of M.S. symptoms.  Running on empty doesn't work.  I was taking  my health for granted; purely powered by a heavy dose of denial.  Time to start being more intentional.  

I pondered the coming holiday season.  We have been scaling back over the past few years now. Many of the gifts we are giving  we have made and are modest.  The wee one is getting recycled toys and a couple of nice books.  I would tell you what the teen is getting but he reads this blog. Last year we travelled for both Thanksgiving and Christmas.  This year we will be home for both with some family visiting for Thanksgiving. We will be participating in our churches Christmas traditions ( solstice and Christmas eve potluck and sing -a-long).  Traditions are what I would really like to focus on with the kids this year.  Time together as a family.  Plenty of homemade bake goods.  Sharing our simple pleasures with friends.  And maybe a trip to Portland during Christmas Break.

I stopped pondering all the girations of the stock market.  I don't have stock.  (unless you count all the jars of applesauce in the cupboard)  I am concerned about what all this means for the Main Street economy.  The state of Maine is considering  freezing funding for education for next year to this years level. With increased costs in energy, insurance and cost of living increases, many school districts are going to be looking to cut costs.  Hubby is a music teacher in  2 public schools.  Music isn't football. 

So we work towards independence.  

Planted:  more winter rye

Harvested: kale, spinach

Preserved: applesauce, froze spinach

Prepped: stored 25 lbs of King Arthur Flour, knitting Christmas poncho for niece#1.

Managed reserves: We moved our chicken tractor off the winter squash patch.  This allowed the birds to eat the cucumber beetle larva in the soil, fertilize the soil and till it up before we lay down winter mulch.  We started several hugelkulture this year with mixed results.  I grew potatoes on them. We had great looking plants, few potato beetles, fair harvest and many potatoes eaten by mice.  But when I lifted the brush off the spot where I had put the hugelkulture, the soil was rich loose and wormy.  So for a no tilling method, okay.  Mulched more garden for the winter.  Took inventory of winter squash to check for bad spots.  Will be making butternut squash soup this week.

Local Foods: A new friend gave me a Kombucha mother, kefir grains and organic apples.  Went to farmers market to get a little meat.  We will be butchering piggie next week.  We are researching crops that we can grow to start providing some of our own feed next winter.  Gene Logdson recommends sweet corn that you can grow for humans, finishing livestock on and dry for feed and cornmeal.

Cooked something new: Everything that we had this week was from our own food preservation efforts, local farmers market of stored food.  Made Kombucha with my new mother.

learned something new: nope.


Robj98168 said...

I would think that "researching crops that we can grow to start providing some of our own feed next winter. Gene Logdson recommends sweet corn that you can grow for humans, finishing livestock on and dry for feed and cornmeal." would count in the learn something new category. But then I like to find multiple uses for challenges!

Fleecenik Farm said...

Yeah, your I always have my nose in a book and sometimes forget I'm actually learning in the process!