Sunday, October 2, 2011

September 2001 in Review and October Preps

September 2011 Preps

What did you accomplish in September? We had amazing weather all month long. We had very little rain or cloudy days and the highs were consistently in the 70s. The end result was picture-perfect fall weather. That encouraged this lazy woman to soak in the sun instead of prep or experiment with solar cooking devices.   

Even our sewage lagoon (our clay soil prohibits a septic tank)  gussied
itself up with a cloak of sunflowers this month. 

I did buy two bushels of apples and canned and dehydrated them. It was the first time I've used my Excalibur 9 Tray Food Dehydratoron something besides herbs and I was really impressed with how well it worked. I ended up with 3 quarts of dried apples that I'll use for desserts this winter and another 2 quarts of apples that I sprinkled with cinnamon and dried into crispy chips. The kids love snacking on those. I also made 3 pints of apple butter and 15 quarts of applesauce. Added to what was left from last year, we are fully stocked with apple goodness.

Our lovely weather is encouraging the garden to keep producing, albeit slowly.

I have enough green peppers frozen to last me until next summer's harvest. There are probably another 50 peppers still out there, so I think I'll try dehydrating the rest of them. We're still getting green beans from our remarkable zombie green bean patch and our raspberries are giving us the best harvest we've had from them yet. Not enough to can, but certainly enough for multiple batches of raspberry bars and fruit salad.

In between furious bouts of leisure and intermittent sprinklings of food harvesting and preservation, I also added some store-bought food to our food storage. I picked up some canned goods on sale at the grocery store as well as more clarified butter, coconut oil, freeze dried fruit, and tomato powder online. We are also prepared to stay warm during a winter power outage. And I'm excited to say that we were able to save up most of what it will take to buy the chicken coop of my dreams.

Oh, we also got one of these:

Christened "Goldie Butterscotch", but mostly called "Bunbun"

Mini Me has been obsessed with rabbits for about 2 years. We broke our "no pets in the house unless they live in an aquarium" rule and bought her this little guy for her birthday. Of course I also had to quickly buy a couple of months of food storage (timothy hay and alfalfa pellets) for the rabbit! That is not to be confused with using the rabbit for food storage. I don't think Mini Lops make good eating and it would definitely not be worth the trauma to our little rabbit lover.

What's in store for October: 

  • I'll be returning to the Sun Oven. I'm bound and determined to cook something properly! I think I'll go for bread next. 
  • After it frosts (Our frost date is quickly approaching ~Sigh~), we'll plant garlic. This will be the first time we've tried to grow garlic. Last spring we bought some garlic starts from the nursery as an impulse buy. They didn't do very well and therefore don't count! We bought a pound of "Music" variety organic seed garlic from Peaceful Valley.
  • We have TONS of green tomatoes out there. I'll definitely have to do something with those before it frosts. I have several solutions in mind, so stay tuned for that. 
  •  Maybe I'll do something with our pie pumpkins. We have about eight of them and while I enjoy using them as decorations, I'd like to try and cook at least a few of them. 
  •  Hubby Dear and I will begin the infamous chicken moat this week. We priced out several options for fencing and discovered that this project is going to be more expensive than we thought. I'm sure it will also be more difficult than we thought, too. That's generally the way projects are at our house. Since we have never built fence before, it should be a grand headache adventure. 
  • I'm still saving up for the chicken palace, but I should have some money in the budget to buy some miscellaneous preps. I'm not sure exactly what I'll buy, but it will definitely include food storage and probably more books. I'll keep you posted. 
So that's me. What did you do in September and what do you have lined up for October? 


  1. I canned 28 quarts of pears, 4 quarts of pear sauce.
    I'm curious about the no septic tank issue.
    We have clay soil here in our area. Typically the county requires two septic tanks. Large one that decomposes the stuff in the first go around, then flows into a smaller one with a jet pump. The leach line is filled with sand and a pipe with holes drilled into it laid in the sand. When the product is liquified it is pumped via the jet pump down the pipe with holes into the deep sand layers. Interesting how different areas have different requirements
    Does your sewer lagoon smell?

  2. Anonymous - You've been busy! Hubby Dear would love it if I would can pears.

    Our soil is pretty much impermeable, so lagoons are common in our area. No, there isn't a smell. Granted, it is pretty far back on our property, but all of our neighbors also have lagoons and I might have smelled a very slight odor once or twice in the four years we've lived here. I get "cow smell" from the surrounding pastures much more often!

    Check out this link
    for more on sewage lagoons.

  3. When I saw the photo of your newest household member (the bunny), my thoughts sprang instantly to the expression: Pets vs meat that Michael Moore captured so poignantly in his first film, Roger & Me. I wondered if bunny was "food storage on the hoof" as our first home teacher often referred to our cockatiel!!! I can assure you. There'd be MORE food storage in bunny than in my old cockatiel!!!

    Thanks for sharing your prep. I've been dealing with health struggles for a couple of months; so prep has been down on my list to things to do. But your posts are so inspiring.......