Friday, July 19, 2013

What Fills My Days?

The days fly by. Sometimes, at the end of the day, I wondered what I did to fill in the hours I've been given. Daily tasks of housework and laundry, shopping and errands don't take all that much time. When I stop to take account, I realize I have been productive and have had good times along the way. 

This week I canned dill pickles - the cucumbers are producing more this year than I can remember. Handily, the dill matured at the same time. I also canned Rhubarb Barbecue Sauce, using a recipe from Mennonite Girls Can Cook. I did add salt and chili powder because I thought it lacked some zip. I'd probably cut the sugar next time, too. We had it last night on grilled burgers - yummy.

This spring we put in some fruit trees. I noticed aphids on the new growth of the apricot tree. Not wanting to use chemicals, I searched the internet and found this suggestion for an Organic Aphid Spray to use the leaves of tomato plants. I certainly have a lot of tomato leaves, so I gave it a try and I'm happy to say it worked well. No more aphids on the apricot tree! Best of all, it targets only the aphids and leaves the beneficial insects to do their work. I wouldn't want to hurt the ladybugs! One warning - you wouldn't want to save the mixture for very long - it smells foul and ferments quickly.

Although productivity is good, so is rest and relaxation. Recently, I won a giveaway at Rebecca Sower's blog for the book Art Saves by Jenny Doh. It's an inspiring collection of stories from various artists on how art has enriched and even saved lives.

And lastly, I've been sewing - a dress and a couple of tops for myself. You might see a photo someday, or not. While hand sewing, I like to have something to watch or listen to. I discovered the BBC documentary series Tales From the Green Valley, about reviving a Tudor/Stuart farmhouse on the Welsh border. Each program features a month on the farm. It's available on You Tube and I've given a link to the first of the series. Watching it makes me appreciate modern conveniences like a sewing machine, washer and dryer, and a fridge!

So that's what's keeping me busy these days. How about you? 



  1. It's so hot and humid that even in AC I tire quickly so I am spending more time on the computer. I read a blog and the blogger introduces a completely new to me concept...I've been reading articles on nightshade allergies and now feel that I probably have one. Ai yi yi...the woes of the hypochondriac! So thanks for that! =D

    Now I'm pondering how warm it will be upstairs in the sewing room...

    Happy sewing!
    But I might check out the You Tube link before long as well. Thank you. I love that kind of programming.

    1. Wanted to say that I very much enjoyed the video. I recognized the players from former programs in the same genre...Victorian Farm, Edwardian Farm, etc. And now I know about the term "upper crust." Thanks again!

  2. Hmmm...formatting troubles I see. And I went to great pains to fix it, too.

  3. Yup..time is don't know and the day is over.
    Sending you big hugs xx

  4. Summer sure is going fast. I'm getting ready for our vacation to BC and Alberta with great expectation and excitement. Thankful to have family in both provinces to visit and see something new. Enjoy the weekend. Pam

  5. Your canning looks beautiful and I looked at that tomato leaf spray recipe. Nice to find something safe that works. You have a lot of things going ... so great to be able to!

  6. Congrats on your canning! The BBC program sounds wonderful--I will have to watch it when I get a chance to.
    Blessings, Aimee

  7. Filling your days by filling jars...and being creative! I knnow...there is always something good happening in your corner.

  8. Wow, you are keeping busy! Thank you for sharing the title of the book - going to have to look for that one. I work with grieving families and we use art as a way to help children, teens and adults connect to their grief experience. Works so well and several have told us the art "saved" them!

    My dh is off on a film set for today, tonight, well in to the night, then again all day and evening tomorrow. I've got some counselling sessions to attend to tomorrow, one short meeting and a bit of shopping but not much else, so I might watch the link you shared. Looks really interesting! Did you ever see the Canadian program Pioneer Quest? Here's the link: Neat program and they actually lived on site for the full year.

    Daycamp next week with grieving kids is next on the agenda. Then some reno work to finish around the house so we can sell next spring/summer. Never a dull moment here!! I'm actually hoping once we move out to the country, we will slow down a bit.

    Take care.

  9. Ah these activities sound so rewarding...your vegetable garden must be amazing!
    I love having time to be productive around the's such a gift.

  10. I feel the same way about our yellow beans - more abundant than previous years. We don't eat many preserves or pickles but I always enjoy seeing the bounty of others all sealed up in jars.
    I've been working on a few cards in my craft area in the basement but the humidity even creeps down there.
    Off to a cottage for a week with family, the grands will make sure I don't get bored.

  11. Fascinating recipes you link to! I sent a link for this post to my gardener daughters. Thanks!

  12. I never seem to have enough time in the day either...the gardens take time to water, and so on, and so

    That BBQ rhubard sauce sounds enticing.


  13. Wow! You certainly are productive. Good for you taking care of your garden organically. You certainly are reaping the benefits. Home made products and food are always your best bet. That book looks wonderful and very inspiring! My days just seem to pass so quickly and I can't really tell that I've done much of anything. Have a wonderful weekend. Tammy

  14. That is crazy! I made that same rhubarb recipe from the same site and I didn't find it on Pinterest or on a well known blog. A friend sent me the link I think. You are accomplishing A LOT! I always feel like I accomplish nothing.

  15. You've been so productive! I have to admit that I haven't been doing quite that much. I had a houseful for a week and now that they are gone I'm getting ready to be away this coming week for work. On my return there will be the wait for the new baby. Yes, we'll have to visit the gardens in September!

  16. C'est pareil ici, plein de choses à faire et des journées bien remplies. Merci pour le lien, je regarderai cette série qui a l'air d'être très intéressante ; mais ça va aussi être l'heure d'aller au lit pour moi, alors demain.

  17. An interesting tip. The foulest is Borage herbs left to ferment in water to use as a fertiliser!


Thank you for your comment. I read and value each one, cherishing the connections we can make although far apart. Usually, I visit your blog in return, although if you ask a question I try to contact you directly.

Days at Home

  Last night after dinner the sunshine illuminating the bouquet of peonies prompted me to grab my camera. I love the frilly elegance of the ...