Monday, August 30, 2010

The Simple Woman's Daybook 8-30


Outside my window...It's a cool refreshing morning with a blue sky.

I am thinking... about the "Restoring Honor Rally" that we attended. What an amazing event. The media did not get what was going on, why we were there. Not a political rally, not hijacking the civil rights movement, but a call for this country to return to prayer, to God to it's Judeo-Christian root and values.

I am thankful for... grace and salvation though the Lord Jesus Christ.

From the kitchen... not much food because we returned from DC. But I do have some tomatoes to can and elderberries in the freezer.

I am wearing...a green sleeveless knit dress and am barefoot

I am creating... I'm sewing little cotton bags to hold gifts of champagne for our CDP clients.

I am going...Elderberry picking. I want to make elderberry wine, elderberry syrup and elderberry pie. I need at least 40 pound of the cleaned fruit

I am reading... the morning paper, and a biography of Jonathan Edwards, the 17th century preacher

I am hoping...that I will be able to pick some tomatoes at Candella farm. The U-pick prices are better that the prices of a b bushel of tomatoes.

I am hearing...a blue Jay

Around the house...some clutter from the trip, piles of laundry to be washed, dishes in the sink and several newspapers in the living-room

One of my favorite things.. essential oils. One of the ways I use them is to put a few drops on a small corner of a paper towel and feed it to the vacuum cleaner. Makes m look forward to cleaning.

A few plans for the rest of the week...make elderberry wine, process the windfall apples.

Here is picture for thought I am sharing...


A picture from the "Restoring Honor Rally", 500,000 people attended this event at the foot of the lincoln memorial.


Monday, August 23, 2010

A simple Woman's Daybook -August 23, 2010



Outside my window...A nice late summer morning, crisp and bright.

I am thinking... happy thoughts.

I am thankful for... the camp I inherited from my mother. How wonderful it is to get away in the solitude of nature. Swim when and where I like without big brother (a ranger or life guard) saying I can't.

From the kitchen...left over chicken, rotini romalade, and brownies from yesterday's dinner, zucchini candy, bowls of elderberries and chokecherries for winemaking, peck baskets of tomatoes, a windfall bushel of apples, and pepper-steak with rice for lunch.

I am wearing... a blue and black sleeveless pull over dress, deck shoes

I am creating... cloth gift bags to hold champaign - client gifts.

I am going... shopping for school clothes and supplies

I am reading... the Utica daily newspaper, winemaking websites and forums

I am hoping...that more of the country will wake up and see that our liberties are being taken away from us, that this country is being fundamentally transformed to something they won't recognize as the USA

I am hearing... Glenn Beck on the radio, the sound of my son Danny vacuuming a back room, Katie and David helping to clean and de-clutter the house.

Around the house... the clutter of too many harvest projects and laundry piling up from a busy summer schedule.

One of my favorite things... scented roses. A few years ago my brother and sister-in -law gave us a dozen or more David Austin Roses. I am dehydrating some petals foe herbal tea.


A few plans for the rest of the week: Canning more roasted tomato garlic soup, picking elderberries and going with the family to The 8-28 rally at the Lincoln Memorial.

Here is picture I am sharing... the kids and friends having fun with rope swing at the lake.

You can read the daybooks of other women here.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Another way to use up Zucchini

I was visiting one of my favorite forums harvest@garden web ( and came across a recipe for candy made from zucchini. This gave me the excuse I needed to run out and buy a food dehydrator. I made a batch using cherry cool aid. The verdict? It tastes like gumdrops with a tiny taste of zucchini. I think it will make a novel gift for a neighbor.

There's the recipe if you're interested.

Zucchini Candy

10 cups peeled diced zucchini 1/2 inch cubes or strips about 3 inches long and 1/12 inch thick and wide.

3 cups water

2 pkgs. unsweetened Koolaid

2 1/2 cups sugar

Peel zucchini, and
dice or cut in strips, removing seeds. Mix the liquid syrup together. Add zucchini. Bring to a boil and them simmer for 25 min. Drain. Put on dehydrator trays. Dry 14 hours at 125 degrees. Turn pieces over and dry another 4 hours. This will feel dry and not sticky when done. Store in jars or other tightly sealed containers.If you dip in sugar when you turn them, they will be more like "gum drops" on the outside.

You can do the same thing with the zucchini
but use 48 oz. pineapple juice
2 T. pineapple extract
2 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice

Posted on Gardenweb by Linda lou


Monday, August 16, 2010

A Simple Woman's Daybook -August 16, 2010


FOR TODAY Monday August 16, 2010

Outside my window... Cool and grey

I am thinking... About the trip we are planning to take to DC on 8-28 for the "Restoring Honor Rally"

I am thankful for... An abundant harvest and my food pantry shelves filled with jars of wonderful things.

From the kitchen... Baskets of tomatoes to be canned, 8 quarts of roasted tomato garlic soup, a 5 gallon jug (carboy) of blackberry wine fermenting, 4 liters of homemade root beer brewing, left over beef vegetable stew made with garden veggies, a sponge for bread and the smell of coffee.

I am wearing... Shorts, an old tank top and I'm barefoot

I am creating... Labels for my canned goods. ... "Barefoot Gardens"

I am going... Nowhere today! Mom's taxi gets a day off.

I am reading... Winemaking websites and forums, the morning newspaper.

I am hoping... That I will get a chance to go kayaking this week.

I am hearing... Rain, thunder and the hum of the refrigerator. Everyone else is sleeping.

Around the house... Clutter and boxes for my canning supplies.

One of my favorite things... Birch Bark.


A few plans for the rest of the week: preserve more tomatoes, (save seeds of heirlooms), dehydrate large grape tomatoes, make yogurt, collect and freeze windfall apples for spiced apple wine,

Here is picture I am sharing...

See what other women are thinking and doing at A Simple Womens Daybook

Friday, August 6, 2010

Wild Blackberry Cordial


Pick enough berries to fill a clean glass jar in the size of your choice at least a third, and up to a half, full. I use about two quarts of berries for a gallon of cordial. If those lovely wild blackberries don't grow in your neighborhood, you can substitute raspberries or blueberries. The little wild blueberries will give your cordial a more intense flavor than the larger cultivated ones, but either way blueberries are relatively tough-skinned and you will need to macerate them - crush or grind coarsely - before adding the other ingredients.

Fill the jar to the top with equal parts of maple syrup and brandy. I usually use E&J brandy, but any decent variety of 80 proof brandy will do fine. As for the maple syrup, I like the dark, late-season Grade B syrup because it has the strongest maple taste and contains more minerals than the three lighter Grade A syrups produced earlier in the sugaring season. You can use whatever grade of maple syrup you prefer, but please make it real. Don't use the artificial stuff!!

Put the cover on the jar and shake to mix. Label, date, and leave the fruit to infuse for at least 10 days, and up to 6 weeks. Shake occasionally when you think of it. Strain out the fruit (marvelous over ice cream) and decant the cordial into glass jars or bottles. Keeps for years without refrigeration - but I guarantee it won't last that long!



Thursday, August 5, 2010

simple womands daybook 8/5


FOR TODAY - I spent the night at camp(cabin ). It's only a half hour drive so I can get there at any time

Outside my window... a beautiful view - In between the trees I see the lake showded in fog

I am thinking...about all the things I have to harvest and
put up. Berries for jelly and cordial,- tomatoes, peppers and onions for sauce and salsa, zuchinne for zuchinni bread Also some eggplant, beans and broccoli.

I am thankful for... .My camp. It's only a half hour away so I can get there whenever I want. I want swimming last evening-in the twilight. Slid my cloths off and dove into the mirror like water. I heard few other sounds except for an occasional sound of laughter from a distant camp and the cry of the lone loon. Refreshed , I wrapped myself in a large towel, dried off and made my way in the dark back to the cabin.

From the kitchen... leftover chicken Ciaccatorri made with peppers, onions, garlic and tomatoes from the garden, Five Gallons of blackberry wine fermenting. A peck basket full of garden tomatoes waiting to be canned. A big bowl of wild blackberries to be made into cordial.

I am wearing... a nightgown and cotton blend nightgown - pale pink with a fine black print. A soft short cotton bathrobe - grey and white. The robe was a Mother's Day gift from my husband, for me to wear when I "camping".

I am creating... Sewing things for camp. Two pillowcases trimmed with lace and a large balsam pillow. The Adirondack are know among other things for the scent of balsam wafting on occasional breezes. Our cabin is a bit musty smelling, so curling up with a book or taking a nap with a balsam pillow nearby is so nice.

I am going... Home soon. I'd love to stay, but I have chores waiting for me.

I am reading... Bradford Angiers "Feasting Free on Wild Edibles" Mother Earth News, Adirondack Life

I am hoping...That we can get in one last road trip before the kids go back to school.

I am hearing... A Loon cry.

Around the house... I sould say... around the cabin... It's comfortable and clean (more or less) I have been decorating and it's with a Adirondack Style and its starting to look nice.

One of my favorite things... coming across wildlife when I'm paddling. hiking or foraging. Did this bear want the same blueberries I was after.

A few plans for the rest of the week: Hopefully Matt will take us White Water Rafting. I must also make blackberry cordial and Annie's Salsa and finish the pillows for camp.

Here is picture I am sharing...Photobucket

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Sunday, August 1, 2010

Today while the blossoms still cling to the vines

Today while the blossoms still cling to the vines, I'll taste your strawberries, I'll drink your sweet wine.
A million tomorrows shall all pass away, ere I'll forget all the joy that is mine today.

This is part of a song I learned back in high school. I sing it sometimes especially when I'm berry picking. Now I have another reason to sing it. Walt and I have finally taken the first steps to making wine. Blackberry wine. I picked about 30 pounds of berries. After giving some away and eating some, we still had 20 pounds. So, I took a trip to Bear Pond Winery to buy some basic supplies.

I have some food grade buckets that I obtained from the bakery department of a grocery store. I crushed the berries, added a packet of wine yeast and it's been sitting in my dining room fermenting.