Rest

Rest–a very underrated activity.  When was the last time you took a nap?

Nap facts:

  • Naps 20-30 minutes in duration are the most beneficial
  • Napping can help lower your blood pressure
  • Napping can later help you to fall asleep and stay asleep
  • Napping can help you be more alert and less stressed

Meditation helps with being more:

  • Mindful
  • Focused
  • Present
  • Aware

Looking Ahead:

I’m not sure Black Friday is even a thing anymore? There are several times a year that deals are available from all the big box retailers. Most of our shopping is done long before November, and this year and last we’ve purchased most gifts from local small businesses. I know not everyone can do this, but when you can it really is a special moment created for both you and for the small business owner.

Shopping days until Christmas- 71

None of us know what to expect in the coming months–what we do know is that the past nineteen months have been incredibly difficult on all of us. My husband and I are doing things different this year in that we are not necessarily shopping for gifts but rather creating gifts and considering doing things like buying a fall photography session next fall; we would like a professional photo taken, museum tickets or the opera next year (something we haven’t done in several years), and other “experience” type of gifts vs. material items that we can buy any time. The holidays for us this year are going to be very intentional, they will also include whatever we can do for our community at this time, and lots of time together at home creating lasting memories. Whatever it will be for us, I hope it will be safe, blessed, and full of love and comfort for you.

fall

Until next time, be well and be safe.

Simple Gifts

‘Tis the gift to be simple, ’tis the gift to be free
‘Tis the gift to come down where we ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right,
‘Twill be in the valley of love and delight.

When true simplicity is gain’d,
To bow and to bend we shan’t be asham’d,
To turn, turn will be our delight,
Till by turning, turning we come ’round right.

By Joseph Brackett 1792
Shaker Dancing Song

Fall & Winter Stock Up

Pantry Essentials – by Kim VanderWerf

Also:

  • remember the books you’ve set aside & magazines
  • last years seed catalogs until the new ones arrive
  • fall & winter prep lists
  • cozy socks
  • soft warm sweaters
  • good quality tea
  • soup and casserole recipes

This year we’ve decided to do Christmas differently as far as gifts go. I believe we are going to go with more intentional, possibly handmade, custom made/designed or sentimental gifts that may be bought or made or have someone make. But as far as gift lists, or wants, or commercialism–nope that’s out for our household this year. I’m still working all the details out but I will share them here as I come up with them.

Update on our move–that’s complicated as is everything this year. Normally, the person with citizenship would return to their country and start the residency process and then the rest of the family would follow. That is not how things are working right now with our move. The residency requirement vs. how long, because of covid-19 restrictions, aren’t meshing. At this time I cannot stay long enough to meet the requirements so I will be traveling for a few days to meet with our house-sitters/renters who are caring for the home we have purchased. We will be working on winterizing everything and working out winter/spring 2021 details. Hopefully come March 2021 we can begin again–we are thankful to have friends that are helping us to take care of our property. We couldn’t and wouldn’t be able to do it all without them.

Fall Prep–   from This Old Home

 

Stock up Fall 2020 -video on how to stock up for an emergency

Until next time–be safe and be well!!

 

Apple Cider Donuts

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Apples are aplenty this season–we’ve sampled so many good apples from several of our local orchards. This past weekend my husband and I traveled alittle over an hour from home to visit one of our favorite apple stands –Bauer’s Market Place  and loaded up on them.   We also picked up a couple loaves of their famous Apple Fritter bread and two gallons of apple cider.  Sunday  I made some Apple Cider donuts from a recipe I found here.

Since we were near downtown La Crosse WI we decided to find a place along the waterfront to get a bite to eat.

Lacrosse view

While the view was breathtaking–the food, combined with poor service, and the noise level, were not. Two hot sandwiches that were served cold with cold fries for $40.00 was a bit extreme even for waterfront. Worse yet it was during the dinner hour and we were the only 2 customers eating–with one other table of 4 customers enjoying a liquid dinner.

But ah oh yes that view…

Once home I attempted to make my long anticipated apple hand pies with caramel drizzled over the top, but since we were wanting to take them on a picnic the next day–I did not make the caramel to go with them. Also, pressed for time, I did not make my pie crust from scratch. Big mistake. They tasted good but next time I’m going to take the time to make homemade crust and also the caramel–because what’s an apple without caramel?

Best Apples for Cooking and Baking here

Recipe for Cider Glazed Apple Bundt Cake here

Last but never least the final picture of my last two tomato plants–still producing in October.

Most years, just like a lot of other people, when October arrives everything in containers on our deck is basically brown/dead looking. This year is no different. But instead of rushing things I’m letting nature run its course. My plants are still producing tomatoes –they’re still hanging on so I’m going to let them live out their best lives. This coming weekend there is supposed to be frost so time will tell if this years garden season has come to an end and it is time to clean it all up. Everyone on social media seems to be rushing things–first it was fall/halloween mid-August and now some are rushing to Christmas.  At almost 55 I ‘m so over rushing time. Time does a wonderful job of that all on its own. I’m trying to slow time down in any and every way I can. It’s the first week of October for heaven’s sake not mid December lol… Until next time Happy Fall. We are on vacation until the third week of the month celebrating early our 25th (Silver) Wedding Anniversary.

Fall is fast approaching–harvest then cleanup—100 tomatoes this year! 🐛🍅🍅

Happy First Day of Fall!! 🍁🍂🍁🍂🍁

Lots of pumpkins in the store to choose from!!

I bought a hubbard squash and a white, green blue, and orange pumpkin. I plan to carve them out and then feed them while still fresh to the birds and other outside critters.

Last photos of this years container garden–

Last of my tomatoes ripening–

Last summer Farmer’s market haul–

Some pretty good food cooking with fresh produce–

Some interesting things I learned with this years container garden were pretty interesting. I started with three tomato plants planted in organic soil. I bought the plants at a nursery that I’ve been buying plants at for years. I also spent $34 on a large geranium plant that looked dead by day two on my deck. After a careful inspection I found two of the plants in the geranium bush to be rotten so  I replanted the entire large geranium plant. I then went out and purchased two tomato plants from Home Depot and two tomato plants from Walmart of which I did not plant in organic soil. A few weeks later I purchased some herbs and a single geranium plant. Once the flowers were on all my tomato plants I was pretty sure I was going to be seeing some amazing results. A short time later all the plants I’d purchased from my favorite nursery were dead and I was down to five tomato plants, some herbs, and my geranium plant. These plants were planted in potting soil called Expert Gardener and it’s sold at Walmart. It must work great for everyone else too, because it was always sold out when I went in to purchase more. By summer’s end my tomato plants produced over 100 tomatoes—mostly salad and cherry tomatoes. My geranium is still blooming, my herbs were absolutely awesome this year. My butterfly bush and the tropical flower I bought in June are thriving–prettiest hardiest plants ever and to think both were basically dead when I bought them! So mixed feelings on all this as I spent an incredible amount of money on nursery plants and organic soil and had zero results.  On top of that in years gone by having spent an enormous amount of money on fertilizers, soil, and such also very little in the way of production. Yes this year I had more plants so rightly so more tomatoes—in years gone by I had two to three plants and they produced between 10-20 cherry tomatoes in total. I have a lot to think about going forward. This was my last year for growing tomatoes on our deck. We will have one more spring here as our move has been delayed by the health issue I’ve been dealing with all summer. I am getting better but it is slow going. Next year’s garden will be mostly flowers for bees and bush beans!!

That’s it for gardening.

Stayed tuned for my next post about School & Farm : country living in the 70’s.