It is snowing this evening. We have had some lovely sunny days over the last few days, which I have enjoyed no end. There is something soul quenching about sunlight streaming into a room.
We have been getting a lot of freezing rain, ice pellets, snow, and associated bad roads this winter. The freezing rain and ice pellets are particularly tiresome, and dangerous for those who need to travel. The snow, although it seems to keep on coming, also melts back frequently this year, so the accumulations are not overwhelming. We are now well into February, with less than five weeks until spring. Spring, here at Mist Cottage, sends envoys of hope into the month of March. Something to look forward to in the very near future!
Life has been relatively uneventful since my last entry. The days flow by, gently.
One benefit of having to make all food from scratch is that food preparation becomes a vocation, perhaps an obsession.
I am back to baking our daily bread. My bread baking has been intermittent since I was working at several low-paying, short-shift, on-call jobs. That was awful. That is a lifestyle that a lot of young people have to put up with. I have to admit though, adjusting to that kind of work chaos as I entered my senior years was very, very difficult to adjust to. Your stamina does decrease with age. Now I have time to pay attention to the long process of baking bread, and am not exhausted when I am trying to do it. I love retirement, even though I don’t have a pension, and there are a lot of serious financial challenges involved, it is much preferable to working multiple crap jobs at the same time, for less than a living wage.
But I digress.
The reorganization of the basement, which is contingent on the reorganization of the garage, which became feasible just this past autumn with a new roof, is beginning to pay off. The canned food, empty canning jars, and canning equipment are currently all stored in one area in the basement, which makes it so much easier to manage. The thing about having your own canned food is that, when the food has been consumed, the empty jars need to be washed and stored. In order for this to proceed smoothly, organization is required, and has now been achieved to an acceptable level. More thought needs to go into the canning storage areas, but they are functioning relatively smoothly for the moment.
I canned a dozen liter jars of Paula Red Applesauce last fall, and we are down to two jars left on the shelf. It makes a lovely breakfast served with homemade 100% whole wheat bread, spread with a bit of peanut butter. It is extra special when drizzled with 1 teaspoon of maple syrup, a small indulgence, but a worthy one.
The stores of canned tomatoes and Red Pepper Tomato Sauce are dwindling.
The Green Tomato Mincemeat, and the Crab Apple Jelly will be enjoyed for many years, as sugar is not a large part of our diet.
As the winter passes it becomes obvious how much of each type of canned food we will need in a given year. The quantity of some canned foods is just the right amount. Some we will run out of before canning time comes again, and others will last several years before needing to be replenished.
It is my plan to eventually can soups and stews, so that there is instant food on the shelves, but I haven’t gotten around to that yet. Canning takes up a lot of space in the kitchen, and it will still be some time before the effects of the organization, that began when the new garage roof was finished, will be felt all the way into the kitchen.
So, happily, not much going on here at Mist Cottage ,except enjoying the passage of time, and the good things that life brings my way.
FREEZING RAIN WARNING
Date: 7:00 PM EST Wednesday 20 February 2019
Condition: Light Snow
Pressure: 102.1 kPa
Dew point: -5.5°C
Wind: E 17 km/h
Wind Chill: -10
Visibility: 6 km
“The conceit of people, to think that if they’re not reading about you in a newspaper or magazine, then you’re not doing anything.”
Via Alan Light interview in Medium