The bounty of tomatoes and pumpkins coming out of the garden makes it easier to not stay mad at everything. Today’s tomato harvest was 2 colanders worth (scientific measurement) . It’s been hard for me to give everything a measurement and value like I intended . Maybe with the tomatoes I’ll measure by the product I end up canning, whether it be sauce or salsa or whole tomatoes. I would say pumpkins the size of these would be about $4-5 each around here. This bunch will be canned.

It’s 3p.m. as I’m writing this. No word yet on the car. Our food pantry is this evening so if we don’t get the car back within the next couple of hours, we’ll miss that. It’s the last one of the month so that will be a bummer.

We also have a school event tomorrow for one kid that he really wanted us to go to. We’ll cross our fingers and everything else that we at least get the car back tomorrow so we can make that. We missed out on a lot of school events during the time we were a car-free family. I try to make it to everything now if it’s at all possible.

This thing tomorrow evening is also a dish to pass (side dish or dessert). I predict whatever I end up making will have either tomatoes or pumpkins. I’m glad I have them to work with. Something else that has stopped me from going to things like potlucks in the past was truly not being able to take anything. Add that to the list of “The Many Ways Being Poor Can Make You Feel Like Crap”.

 

 

 

 

 

Daily Dozen: Garden Dreaming

[contents: seeds,no dig gardening,gardening and farming on rented or borrowed land,pest control,chickens]
I am itching to get seeds started ,even though it’s way too early here. I’m making do with planning and scheming. Mostly.

  1. Tomato Seeds: From My Garden to Yours – one of my faves, You Grow Girl , is selling seeds from her own garden at her Etsy shop
  2. 32 Seed Companies – Gardening Jones – my favorite seed company is missing from this list, so I will add FedCo and make it 33.
  3. how to grow spinach, with tom stearns – spinach is one of those easy indoor greens to grow and this talk with Tom Stearns tells you more than you will ever need to know about spinach
  4. Gutter Gardens – I’m thinking of reprising my  “Lettuce Turnip the Beet” rain gutter garden in the new place. It worked really well to keep slugs and other things from eating my greens
  5. Wine Bottle Reuse and Recycle Week – A Green Garden Border – just because. I don’t even drink wine so Id have to go raid a wine drinker’s recycle bin. Or maybe a bar.
  6. How to Make $100,000 Farming 1/2 Acre You Don’t Own – Lots of inspiration here from Curtis Stone (not the chef) who wrote a book about how to make money from land you’re leasing/renting or borrowing. And in my opinion, this is how food sovereignty and accessibility is going to happen. The problem is, we have landowners who are not willing to allow people to grow food for some odd reason and finding people who will let you borrow their unused land is kinda hard. Here on our Rented Homestead, I have 5 acres (although half of that is a huge ass pond and marsh) and I have no restrictions on what I can do with the land while we live here. My goal isn’t really to make money but to instead provide for my family (which is just as good as cash) and be able to share the harvest-wealth with others.
  7. How To: Reflective Garden Decor from Recycled CDs – I found a stack of crappy CDs when unpacking a box the other day,so…
  8. A Beginners Guide to No Dig Gardening – Indie Farmer – I mentioned a few times that I was “lasagna gardening” at our new place and people were like, HUH?This is what that looks like. It makes the most sense for me since I have all the materials needed for building layers and no real access to a tiller.
  9. 12 Great Uses for Wood Ash in Your Coop, Home and Garden – you guys, I can’t wait to get chickens but for right now, the wood ash is handy as a ice melter and I’ve also used it in my lasagna garden layers a bit.  I have not delved into soap making with wood ash because it sounds like a giant pain in the ass.
  10. Top Ten Chicken Keeping Blog Posts of 2015 -handy reference
  11. Grow Write Guild #32: When the Gardener Can’t Garden – I know it’s a writing prompt but I only need one sentence: It was hell. The end.
  12. The Poor as Folk Garden Party –  I made a Facebook group for low income gardeners of all skill levels. Get and give advice, boast about successes and cry about failures here. (I will change the privacy setting to closed so no one will see your posts unless they belong to the group

Winter is Coming

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Welp. Looks like this is what we’re heating the house with this winter. I haven’t named it yet. Does anyone else name inanimate-yet-productive things that are a daily part of your life? No judgement. I do it. If people think I’m squirrely because of it, that’s their problem.

So,yeah. She’ll need a name.

There’s a brand new propane furnace here but when we called to set up an account w/ the fuel company, they ran a credit check which went like you might expect for us. Since we got a big 0 on that credit check, the company requires a $600 deposit . That is absolutely not going to happen.

So, wood it is then!

It is such a scary,scary thought to be in this situation where we couldn’t set up an account with the fuel company and NOT have this wood stove as a backup.

I’m nervous. This house is wonky as hell. The main part was built in 1825. That corner you see in the pic up there is most definitely mostly original brick from where the fireplace and hearth would have been. It has been added to over the years. You can tell that parts of other buildings and houses were used to make the changes. It’s an upcycled house all the way. I call it The Frankenhouse.  The windows are kind of a nightmare and I am already planning on buying 80 rolls of plastic at Lowe’s to make them less nightmarish. Obviously, no insulation either. Except some spray foam insulation in weird cracks and places around windows.

As I said before, I LOVE this house and property but there are a lot of issues that explain why the rent is affordable for us. This really was the best option for us. Actually, it was the only option.

The good news is we qualify for HEAP and they will help us get a couple cords of wood delivered before it gets cold (usually mid-to-late October is when I absolutely have to turn the heat on) and the rest won’t be so hard to stockpile from local people who sell firewood.  I hope. I’m crossing my fingers this winter isn’t as awful as last winter.

Next thrift shop trip: Blankets and big,bulky sweaters!