Independence Days Challenge – Aug 10th to Aug 16th
Posted by supermom on August 17, 2009
For Sharon Astyk’s latest post… Independence Days Update: Summertime and the Living is… Sweaty. Make sure to check the comments section for even more updates.
1. Plant something: I haven’t been able to decide exactly where would be the best place to build my herb garden, so the herbs I bought a couple of weekends ago got transplanted into hanging planters and once they’ve had a chance to adjust for a few days, I’ll hang them from the old gazebo frame we’ve converted to a clothesline.
Over the past week, something got to eating the pac choi and it was looking pretty awful, so we pulled that out, added some compost to the bed and planted beets and collards. We’re still having trouble with one of the neighbour’s cats using our gardens as a litter box, so we recovered the bed with garden cloth and we’ll cut slits in the cloth once the beets and collards are up. There’s enough room in that bed to add swiss chard, which I’m going to experiment with starting inside this coming week.
Bought petunias that had been discounted and repotted them into hanging planters. They look a little scraggly right now, but in a few days they should perk up and look nice. And while they’re not food… they do attract pollinators.
I also divided one of the houseplants that had outgrown its pot. That gave me one plant to bring back into the house and three to trade or sell.
2. Harvest something: Tomatoes from the Lincoln tomatoes. I’m really impressed with the Lincolns and hope to be able to save seed from them for next year. We just have to figure out some kind of temporary covering to keep the birds out. And then over the winter, maybe we can work out a better solution.
Picked up the veggies from our CSA.
3. Preserve something: No
We have discovered that none of us really care for eggplant, so this past Thursday, I traded eggplants for tomatoes from the swap box when we picked up our CSA veggies. With a few of the tomatoes from our square foot garden that the birds haven’t gotten, I may have just enough tomatoes now to make a small batch of salsa.
4. Reduce waste: Dave made our regular trip to drop off the recycling. Conserved water by catching water in pails while waiting for the hot water to arrive. Used reusable bags when shopping.
All veggie matter got composted.
5. Preparation and Storage: Our local fabric store had 50% off on all notions, so I stocked up on cheese cloth, sewing machine needles and thread.
Bought several lbs of various types of dried beans. Wheat and oat bran. And my order of clearjel arrived. I should now have lots enough to making pie fillings and pressure can soups this fall.
Bought four cases of jars; on sale combined with coupons they were a pretty good price. Also bought some replacement lids since those were on sale too.
With the three storms brewing in the Atlantic and Gulf, Dave decided it was time to refresh my memory and teach our son how to start the camp stove. We’re not so far inland that a big storm couldn’t knock out power, so this was a good time to do this.
6. Build Community Food Systems: I mentioned in a previous update that I had volunteered to teach a new friend to can and we’re getting together this week to can some pears she picked from her father’s trees.
Bought eggs from our egg lady and raw milk from a local farm.
7. Eat the Food: I cook most of our meals from scratch, so the food definitely gets eaten. This week we ate a lot of stir fry type dishes in an effort to use up all the little bits of leftover veggies from the CSA.
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