Friday, October 8, 2010

Time of Plenty

This is such a great time of year, isn't it? It seems that everyone is talking about how this is their favorite time of year and I have to agree! I was born in the (late) fall, I met my husband and married him in the fall and I just love the cooler nights, the beautiful colors and the return to more baking. I must admit that I do seem to 'love' each season in its own time and have found that I do even more so since I've made a more conscious effort to eat seasonally, but fall is extra special because I do not want it to end!

I find myself spending more moments than I should paused down in our basement looking at all the jars that are full of food I've canned. I loved the different colors of food, sizes of jars and promised recipes they all store. On a whim I decided to get a rough count of jars and there are approximately 230 jars of tomatoes, pickled items, vegetables, soups, salsas, jams and fruit stored in our basement. I had no idea! No wonder I keep running out of jars. I found 5 more at a very quick rummage sale stop yesterday and will have them full shortly. I've got a big bag of green tomatoes to continue to use and just need a few more jars... I can't tell you how many times I've told my husband that I just need a few more jars, a few more jars. He asked when I'll have enough. When I'm ready to start downsizing canning after the kids leave home was my answer. I (kind of) believe that you add jars until you start subtracting jars. I also figure that more jars I have, the more I fill, the more I can share if the moment strikes, the more we can use any and all produce gifted to us or found inexpensively. And the more we have to get us through winter!

We are also waiting on our 1/4 of grass fed beef. It will be ready in a week or two (is at the processors) and the freezer is waiting! It has been a struggle to get the freezer empty in a time when I want to be filling it. I would have frozen many more vegetables this year, but we only have a smallish chest freezer because our basement door will not fit any other size. And normally that would still have not been a problem. However, I have been pumping milk 'just in case' and have about 1000 ounces of milk stored as well. The milk takes up a lot of room, but it gets priority over the vegetables since it can't be replaced at the grocery store! Here is hoping that I won't find my milk gone at 6 months and that this frozen milk can be used much later or donated to someone.

I find myself more and more content (from staring at all my jars) during this season of plenty. It reminds me of something that Laura said in one of the Little House books. I don't know the exact quote, but basically she was always so happy in the fall when the house was full of things to get them through the winter. I feel the same way! This is definitely a Finer Thing.

Have a great weekend,

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