Preparing for Winter

We finally had nice enough weather outside to do some yard work. We’ve already been getting frost every night so I was happy to finally get the yard prepared for winter.

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I pulled out the rest of the beets and leeks. Kurt worked the soil a little and then I planted three heads of garlic in that spot.

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We also raked up about a million leaves. We filled two bins so that we can add them to our compost through the winter.

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I also covered the bottoms of our strawberry, blueberry and kale plants with leaves. We are going to try to overwinter our kale. We will see how it goes.

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Lastly, we made a new garden along the side of the yard. We mixed some leaves in the the soil, laid some newspaper on top and then watered it well.

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These are all new things that we’ve never tried before so now we just have to wait for Spring to see if this all saves us any work!

Backyard Update

A third of our backyard is growing and looking beautiful, the middle third looks like a demolition yard and the back third is pretty much all weeds by this point. One out of three ain’t bad.

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We have these beauties popping up everywhere. A bunch of the flowers were destroyed by a sudden rain storm we had a few mornings ago, but by the next morning the plant was covered in flowers again. The honey bees seem to love them too. They leave little pollen foot prints all over the flower. So cute.

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Our kale plants are hilarious. They look like a little forest growing in the garden. I threw the basketball in for perspective. They are huge!

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Our tomato plant is officially as tall as me. The tomatoes are giant too, especially considering we didn’t plant this until July. They aren’t changing colour though. We suspect it might be the lack of sun we’ve been having. Please note Homer in the window.

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The beets are growing weirdly. Some of them have popped out of the ground, but continue to grow. We figure as long as their tails are under ground they should be fine.

And here are some pictures of the wreck (I think it’s to the point now where it can’t be called a pool anymore). I think it speaks for itself.

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I don’t have any pictures of the back yonder, as I call it (starting right now). It’s beyond the thing formerly known as the pool. Right now there are heaps of twigs and things like that as well as weeds. I really just go back there to go through the gate to the river. One day I hope it be a shaded patio area where we can sit and enjoy the breeze and wild flower gardens. Wouldn’t that be lovely?

Loving Fall

Fall is my favourite time of year. Despite the fact that summer ends and school starts back up again. It gets a little cooler so it’s much nicer to be outside. The vegetables that we have spent the summer (not so) carefully tending are finally starting to be actual food. The markets are in full swing so we rarely have to go to an actual grocery store. We seem to eat much more fresh, local, whole foods. There are tons of local community events, such as fall fairs and harvest events. I get to can and preserve our food and feel just a little self sufficient by re-filling our cool room shelves. And of course, my all time favourite, apple picking! I can’t wait!

Canning Season 2013- Tomatoes

The weather hasn’t cooled and we’re getting a shocking amount of rain, but despite all that, canning season has begun. Last week we did 38 jars of whole tomatoes and this weekend we made tomato paste and pizza sauce frozen pucks as well as tomato sauce. This should get us through the year. It was quite a bit easier this year because Kurt helped and we have a food mill now. It was made slightly more difficult because our kitchen is about a third of the size as our apartment’s kitchen was.

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Garden Colcannon

We harvested our potatoes and onions to make room to try some more carrots (don’t tell the bunnies). We weren’t really expecting either crop to do much since they were planted from some old grocery store vegetables that got left in the garage and became rather…dubious. We were quite surprised that we got what we did.

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The onions were pretty tiny, but they tasted really good.

We picked some kale from the garden and made colcannon. It’s an Irish dish that comes as a side at one of our favourite restaurants. It’s basically just mashed potatoes with cabbage or kale. We also added onions and butter.

Delicious, healthy and everything but the butter came from our yard! I love that.

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Two Funny Things…

I came across this post about how to see if any of your pictures have been pinned. So I checked it out…and apparently the only thing pin worthy around here is Homer. I mean, I agree and all, I just thought it was funny. Thanks for the love Abbey K!

In other news, a few weeks ago my mom bought me this chick mug. I thought it was amazing and I knew just what I wanted to do with it. I picked up some succulents at the greenhouse and voila:

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Chickulent Chuck. If he isn’t pin worthy, I don’t know what is…other than Homer of course.

Being Home…And Beets

Well we are finally home for a week or so. Then we are heading back north for Kurt’s birthday. So. Much. Travelling. After staying at my mom’s for a while (or anywhere for that matter) it’s so nice to come back and be in my own space. I really miss cooking for Kurt and I in our own kitchen when we are away for extended times. It’s just so enjoyable to be in my own space. We’ve been eating from the garden and biking to the market just down the street. The corn is ready and it is fantastic this year.

Anyways, we’ve had quite a few beets from the market and from thinning out our own patch. Beets are one of those brilliant vegetables where the entire thing can be eaten. Beets greens and beets are so different, yet both are delicious.

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As for greens they are great in salads or sauteed. Really anything you’d use other greens in works.