Thursday, July 21, 2011

Busy critter

Good Morning Everyone,

Well,  I finally caught this little guy.  This possum has been around here for a few months and I finally caught it.  It wasn't a happy camper either, when I took the photo, it was growling and hissing and have general ill will towards me.  I will take it this morning down the road from my house to an area that has a creek and pastures and he is big enough to live on its own.  Glenda,  yours is bigger than mine, LOL.  If you check out Glenda's blog at  Living and Gardening in the Ozarks, you will find she trapped a possum that I'll bet was getting in the corn. 
Well, that is it for this morning's frivolities,  I will water a little, and then I have got to get to this house and all the work that is in here, AFTER I take this little guy back out into the wild, first.
Have a great day,

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Tarragon harvest

D and I just got done with stripping Tarragon leaves that I dried.  I dried the entire Tarragon bush, and cut it clear back, it may sprout a few more but with the heat, I really doubt it.  I hung this Tarragon under my carport and it took about a week to dry, it really helped with the very hot air we have.  So now I have Tarragon in the freezer for winter for my fish and chicken recipes.
I like my herbs dry but not to the point where they do not have their green color.  This Tarragon is just right for me.
Take care all and I will see what else I can come up with.  I need to pick Basil, so I may do this and process this and post photos.
Take care and don't get too hot in the garden.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Look Ma! I didn't blow up the house

Good Morning Everyone!

I hope that all of you had a wonderful, productive weekend.  From the blogs I am reading, it looks like summer is in full swing with drought, and hot and everyone trying to keep everything going.  First its cold now hot, go figure.

Well, with the encouragement from several "mommy" bloggers I have, I took the big step and bought a small 6 qt pressure cooker, and about a week later, I bought a larger 16 qt pressure canner.
They are both Presto brand, and I have used the small 6 qt for several things to ease into using this "scary" equipment, or so I thought.
I did potatoes for potato salad Sunday afternoon, wow, just a few minutes and done!  No heating up the kitchen or anything.   And I DIDN'T BLOW UP THE HOUSE. 
I think that in a earlier blog posting I mentioned that when I was in Jr high, in home ec class, I put a very large commercial canner lid into the ceiling tiles of the school kitchen.  I should mention that it wasn't all me that did it, but a general fear of the canner in general, in which I was the one put into the position of handling it as I was the only one in my class that had any knowledge of canners simply because I helped my grandmother can, but I was not an experienced helpmate, I was just learning too, but you know 13-14 yr old girls, no one wanted to touch it, so I was the sacrificial lamb so to speak, and since then, I have been so terrified of them.  And this school canner was an antiquated one at that, what do you expect in 1973.
I bought the 16 qt canner through Amazon, for 64.76 + the 12.00 shipping.  My Ace Hardware had the same thing for 114.00 without tax which is 7%.  So I did save some money. And Amazon had it here in 5 days  by FedEx so I was pleased.
I am planning here in a few days to fire it up and give it a test run to check pressure, and then I am planning Zucchini, as I have it running out of my ears now, and then sometime next month, I am going to get some of my beef from the processor in a small town about 60 miles from me.  I am just ordering ground beef, and meats I can use for stew and soup and a few briskets, and that is about all I use.  I am not a big steak fan, I usually grill small steaks on the Holidays and birthdays, but that is as far as I go with beef.  I really do not need a whole beef or half beef, but feel I buy what I use and I don't waste anything.  And I am going to can a lot of this beef for Mexican cooking and stews and such.  I don't have a lot of freezer space but I will put some in the freezer and can the rest.
I will be making taco/enchilada fillings mostly, and some seasoned ground beef for some other recipes, and then seasoned stew beef for soups and stews.

The garden is doing ok, it is so blasted hot now, it hit 99 here yesterday, (Sunday) but the heat index was in the 105 to 108's which is pretty hot for us here,  I know my southern readers get it worse, so I do all of my work in the am, mowing and watering and then I work in the house in the afternoon.  That is about it.
My cucumbers are slow, I am getting a few but nothing major.  I am slowing getting tomatoes but nothing to toot my horn over either, but the plants are really loaded, and so are the cucumbers, so if they do grow, I will have them coming out of my ears also.

Just a recap of the neighbors from hell update,  the one NFH to the north has been kicked out, the NFH to the back of us has been kicked out, but the b**** next to me is still here. Damn!  I am hoping as all of us are, that she will move as her b**** sister who was in the north trailer who is now gone, she will follow her, so we are keeping our fingers crossed.  I will keep you all posted.

Other than just trying to stay above water to pay bills and keep everything going, everything is fine, I quess.  I lost 2 chef clients, as they were having problems too, so my extra money was cut off somewhat.  I am somewhat depressed, with all that has been going on, it seems the budget crisis, and just things at home, just trying to keep a roof over your head, it takes all of your energy, and with it being so hot, it makes it worse.  I keep the tv off quite a bit, as I am so very tired of hearing the political crap you hear, it  just wears you out.  Its the same, day after day.  I am trying to keep my parents calm, as they are so worried about their social security,  I have no answers.  I guess, just stand fast, and damn the torpedoes and full speed ahead.

Well, I had better get outside, I need to mow real quick and then water a little and then I am done.  Then I will move in the house and put potato salad and slice some zucchini to get them ready to process in a few days.
I wish everyone a wonderful week, hang in there, and I will post later if I can.

Hugs to all