Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Sale Day, Four o'Clocks, Green Beans and miscellaney

At last, a good night's sleep!  Up at 3:45 AM (that's good for me) .  Our weather remains beautiful and cool but I do understand a possibility of a freeze is near.  I must remember to dig up my rosemary and put it in the barn.  The sweet potatoes look to me a total failure....all tops and no roots.

The only thing that is doing well in the garden:

I remembered the Foodsaver this time .   Some  were over a quart and some under.  This 9 brings my total to 18. 

I still have to finish picking this morning.  I did the others late in the day and stopped  when my tub was full and I was tired.  I will probably get about half what it did.  Now if frost takes them, so be it.

While I was doing the beans, I poured a gallon of cider in my Maslin pan and began the reducing process.
It went down to this,

The talk about using it as syrup makes me  wonder......mine reduction is very tart!


DH got someone to haul the calves  this time since our trailer won't hold over 10.  They picked them up at 5 yesterday evening and took them into the sale barn.  DH will go in this morning to watch them sell.  I am keeping my fingers crossed for good prices.

We hear  the farm news daily and it doesn't sound good for any of us, farmers and consumers alike.  I would be stocking up on pork for the freezer now.  Predictions are that pig farmers will dump the market because of  the high price of corn; market  will be flooded; prices will go down......temporarily.  Then lookout!  The same could be true for beef.

Then have you heard the talk about the price of milk?  Predictions are off the charts until and unless the farm bill is signed!

All the news  makes me so grateful to be living a pretty self-sustainable life here on the farm.  I could milk my cow feeding her only grass and hay alone.  She wouldn't give as much but she could support the two of us and her calf.  Same with chickens.....if I let them graze they could get by for about half and maybe less than they do now.  We could also eat grass-fed beef or milk fed baby beef (up  to 7 months old). 
My sympathies are with everyone else.  That is why I encourage people to plant a garden even if it is just a 10x10 plot in the yard.

Also remember gardening doesn't need all the input we are using.  I bet my Grandparents never spent on anything but seeds now and then.  Just build up  the soil by using leaves, spent plants and keep it mulched. 


A friend recently was talking about broken colors and 4 o'clocks and I realized that is what my little clump is,

I guess, technically, this wouldn't be a broken color but it is edged with an apricot color.


  1. Good Luck on the sale and "Thanks" for the heads up on pork and beef prices. We don't eat a lot but I usually stock up the freezer in the fall.

    I hear ya on the good nights sleep...

    1. We did have good luck. I have sold calves at all prices and consider the prices now extremely good. You won't catch us complaining if they are a few cents below the week before!

    2. We've been talking about stocking up on many things because I've been hearing that prices are going to soar. There have been some good buys on pork lately and I've stocked up a little but need to do more.

      A good night's sleep? What is that? Your 4 o'clocks are so pretty!
      Good luck at the sale!!

    3. Sorry, somehow my first comment ended up in the wrong place!!

  2. Hope you get a good price for your beefs today!

  3. Hope you get a good price for your beef. It is scary what is going on with the food prices. We have been cutting back on meat consumption, eating more beans and rice and veggies.

    Love your 4 o'clocks.

    Enjoy the rest of your week ~ FlowerLady

    1. Maybe all the good wishes helped; prices were up slightly today.

      I try to cook a pot of beans weekly. I learned cheap cooking from the champion of how to stretchy a Mother!

  4. I hadn't heard that milk was going up. But it doesn't surprise me.
    We dug our two hills of sweet potatoes that I babied all summer , last night. We got 4 potatoes from 2 hills!!! Not even big ones either, not quit a meal. We pulled up the tomato plants. 34 is predicted Sunday morning here.
    I love the flowers!, I have my coleus all dug up and I planted pansies there last week. I love the little surprises of color they prove during the dark winter.
    Happy Wednesday

    1. We heard this morning that market price was up so retail will be sure to follow.

      I had to pick beans so didn't get a chance to venture into the sweet potato jungle.

  5. I think probably prices for everything will be skyrocketing this winter! The drought was so widespread. A shortage of our feedstocks increases the cost of meat and anything those animals produce, like milk, eggs. I wish we were more self-sufficient.

    People might be surprised at how little they need to survive, though. There are so many people in the gyms and workout centers, working off the calories they've consumed, when, really, isn't that excessive on many levels? (waste of food, waste of physical energy, waste of time, waste of electricity) Our ancestors would laugh at our walking, running and stair-climbing on machines just to burn calories. They'd say, "Eat less!" "Walk to someplace you need to go!"

    But yes, do stock up on everything you can. I'm with FlowerLady, beans are good eatin' and good for you. Remember that calcium, which we normally think of only in terms of dairy products, is in green leafy plants. That's how it gets into the cow!

    Love your 4-o'clocks. My neighbor, Claire, has promised me starts of hers this fall. I seem to be unable to grow them from seed.


    1. Don't give up on the seeds; I tried for several years before I finally got two plants.....then lookout! I am trying to save seeds but they pop them out quickly.

  6. I am in Glenda's corner for stocking up. I am trying to do what I can with what little I get. Where I have the problem is with the men in the family, meat and potato which I am telling them that will be coming to a halt very soon. I have not heard of milk but that will go hand in hand with grain. It is soooo dry here, and we have had no rain, we are 12 inch below normal here.
    My garden was a total bust except for cucumbers, squash and hot peppers. The rest was a waste. I have been blessed with one of the house neighbor's sharing the rest of her tomato harvest including green and reds. I am planning on relish and Ilene's chow-chow recipe. I am waiting for it to get cold. Its supposed to get down into the low 20's by the weekend, and 40's for the highs, so I can fire up the stove.
    I think potato chowder or ham n beans in on for the weekend.

    1. Is potato chowder the same as potato soup. I didn't have ham for my last pot of beans; just seasoned them with butter.

      Mom always told me Dad had to have meat on the dinner table.....not my husband. He will eat almost anything I fix.

  7. I got 3# of sweet potatoes from my one plant (in spite of the deer!). I'll grow more next year.

    You paint an alarming picture there, Glenda, and it does not bode well for us who do NOT live on a farm or enough land to grow anything (or are infested with deer (thank you bleeding hearts and your laws!). I got no harvest to freeze this year and prices at the stands are ridiculous. Looks like a beans'n'mac kind of winter. They are predicting FREEZE 2 nights this weekend. So early! Yikes.

    Hope the sale goes well.

    1. I don't mean to be an alarmist and I know everyone can't have a lot of land. I still think most could have small gardens and all of us could refrain from packaged foods and mixes. Maybe my mantra is real food cooked from scratch which is better for you and not nearly as expensive.

      I didn't get much garden stuff either other than peppers and green beans.
      We will need to watch for sales on everything.

    2. Y'know... I wouldn't mind the deer sooo much -- if I could start the winter with a freezer full of venison! As for real/whole foods, that's what I do most all of the time. I buy/grow ingredients, and try to avoid buying 'food products' as much as possible. I'm so glad you got that many beans! Are those the 'lazy housewife'? They look luscious.

  8. We have all our freezers full, the market is going to do just what you are saying. Meat producers have no control over the price of feed, they have to pass it along. I grew up in a family that stocked up so it's second nature for me, but for many who don't have wiggle room in the budget, it's almost impossible. In the Ozarks we know how to knuckle down and pinch our pennies, good thing because I'm afraid the last 4 years are just a sampling of what the next 4 are going to be. I hope I'm wrong...

  9. I'm praying you get fabulous prices on your cows :-)
    This past season, I planted sweet potatoes and regular potatoes. Using compost and just sitting the potatoe pieces on top of the compost and covering them with straw. The sweet potatoes grew like crazy, the regular potatoes not so much. Next season, I will use tires to plant potatoes and see how this works.
    Yes, prices on many things will go up with the way the economy is going on top of the weather.

  10. Glenda
    You mentioned your lovely mother's stretch a dollar recipes. Can you share some on a blog post sometime. I love cheap, and stretch.

  11. I was so glad to see those Four O'clock s, Glenda! The seed I planted here made it and I'm thrilled so I look for seeds each morning when I'm outside with the dogs!...)JP