Another stack in the woodshed.
Curing in the garden shed.
Carrot Ginger Cabbage kraut fixings.
My fancy root veggie washing machine(s).
Yesterday's pickles...dill chips from Pickled Pantry by Andrea Chesman.
The last (I think) of the green beans, fermenting.
An epic kraut making session in progress.
It was a beautiful weekend of autumn work here, in this lovely pocket of time. After the full days of summer and Mama's little stretch of September busy, but before the rush of holiday and Nutcracker preparation and driving that consumes the last few months of our year. After the black flies and mosquitoes have left and the humidity and heat too....but before the snow covers the ground and the cold slows us down. After the rush of the garden work but before it's all gone for the season. In this window of time, there's a feeling of urgency propelling us each day. Urgency to get that shelter started (on both of our minds). Urgency to haul and stack all the wood (on his mind). And urgency to preserve every last bit of what's coming out of the garden (on my mind most of all).
We have to be careful this time of year - all of us - that the urgency doesn't tip the scale too far. For the plain and simple truth of the matter is that we'll never get as much wood stacked (this year) so as to say, "there! that's done!" with complete confidence. But we'll likely get just enough to get us by this year. I'll never be able to squeeze every last drop out of the garden produce - there will be surplus and waste that I could have done more with, but ran out of jars, time, energy, steam (oh, but the pigs will be happy with it). There will be many trips to the grocery store ahead this winter, but we'll eat a lot of our own. And I can guarantee you that there will be work to do on finishing that shelter (that we haven't started yet) when snow is flying, wooly scarves and hats bundled around us to keep us warm, clumsy numb fingers working hammer in the cold.
Urgent, yes....panic, no. It will never all get done. But we can, and do, wake up each day this time of year - stoking the fire with greater frequency, adding one more layer of wool - and plot out the day with great thought. Fitting what we deem most important into the pockets of time around and within family, and kids activies, daily chores, and work. The good important pleasurable work of autumn that will help carry us through the seasons ahead. Each year, doing a little more for ourselves than the one before. One jar of kraut, one more stack of wood, one day at a time.