Friday, October 31, 2014


Another month has come and gone again. I can't believe how fast the time goes -- especially when I'm busy.

We had our first snow on October 3rd,

but the weather quickly warmed and St. Luke's Summer gave us about 10 great days for working outside. Tom and I made the most of it.  He built and filled the garden boxes, and I worked madly on cutting back the fire zone.  Tom figures we have room for three more boxes and we'll put them on the to-do list for next Spring.

 I added a grand stack of brush to my hugelkultur bed that now needs to be covered with manure and soil, and there is still a bit more cutting back of brush to do. I managed to get the garlic planted and two of the back yard garden boxes cleared and topped off with manure.  I transplanted the mulberry tree and elderberry bushes inside the chicken run where I hope they will do well next year.  Still need to transplant the rest of the trees I have heeled in the garden box from this past Spring. I have amassed a fair number of small tree trunks to use as posts for my forest garden fence, and I am eyeing more trees to thin out, especially in the forest garden where I want to plant five more apple trees next Spring. I sure hope I will have time to get all the work done. Right now it's snowing and blowing outside like a blizzard! A real Halloween trick for sure!

In the house I cleaned the garlic harvested this year for fresh use and dried the onions I planted after I got off crutches in the dehydrator.  It worked very well for that, but my first attempt at making jerky was a disaster. I didn't think I would like dehydrating, but I do.  It's amazing how much food shrinks up when it is dried. This will be a fun skill to learn.

Cousin It came with her boyfriend and stayed a week with us.  I took them to Bayfield with me, and they had a good time.  I wasn't able to get any pears this year, but I did buy two bushels of apples -- one for fresh eating (we have almost finished them already) and one to can for baking. I bought an apple peeler and another bushel for Cousin It to take back home with her as she is learning to can.  Well, what are Moms for . . . .

And so, I did a bit of canning, too.

I finished knitting my elven rune sweater.  Following the legend in the front pages of The Hobbit  I worked out the phrase, "Walk in Starlight". Then I scoured the Internet for free patterns of oak leaves and acorns. The sweater was knitted in solid dark grey and raglan style, and I worked the runes and decorations in duplicate stitch in a silvery grey color.  As usual, I made the sweater big and wear it like a coat. It's nice and warm.



I have to tell you about the latest book I bought.  It is the single best book about farming that I've read since the first edition of Gene Logsdon's Small-Scale Grain Raising.  It's called Farming the Woods by Ken Mudge and Steve Gabriel. There is useful information on every single page. If you want ideas about how to utilize and farm your temperate climate woods, this is the book to get. I LOVE chewing on the information presented in this book! It's my opinion and I have no doubt that these young people coming out of Cornell University College of Agriculture and Life Science are going to save world agriculture. They get it.

Well, it's late and I need to go to sleep. I'll talk to you later.  In the meantime, Be Well and Safe.