Sunday, August 15, 2021

Yard WORK - A Family Endeavor

When  CoRielle brought the girls home for berry picking, they and Jamin stayed to help with the fun we were having!  Jamin eventually went to show a house; CoRielle stayed for dinner. It turned into a fun and productive day for all. Compromises are fun...I'm still hoping for another berry picking trip. 

Michael and Alex were clearing brush and trimming the limbs from the bottom of the trees they planned to fell - all dead from spruce beetles. 

Grandpa was enjoying time in the sun. 

I had begun harvesting the garden. My hope is to make way for some of the slower growing plants to thrive. It's a race to see if the beets and beans will produce. I planned to turn one of the current beds into a lasagna bed...My no-dig lasagna beds are producing much more food than the traditional raised beds. This raised bed was about 1/3 full of dirt and so I'm filling it with layers of green and brown compost and giving it a better chance at production next year.  I had cleared it and harvested cabbage (lots of leaves for the lasagna bed) when the crew showed up. 

I weeded around the beds and discovered lots of slugs hiding in the chickweed preparing to broach the walls of the beds. Dastardly pests. Benny arrived in time to happily  help spread Epsom salt around beds and plants. 

Alex dragging brush to the woods behind the garden. Michael plans a big bonfire when the snow comes. 

Yes, I DID seem to grow a lot of the garden for the chickens and rabbit. This cabbage DID have lots of slugs...seemed fair to let the girls enjoy it...which will produce wonderful eggs for us. 

Michael is a great grandpa. He took the time to fashion a little bunch of brush Benny could drag just like Uncle Axe. 

It's hard work. 

Some of the tree felling/clearing crew...
Alex, Stacia, Allie, Michael 

I feel  this is not safe...Michael is trying to convince me it's normal. He stepped back, lost his balance and fell, and turned the chain saw off when he landed. I, of course, kept taking photos while helpfully yelling, "Turn the saw off! Are you ok?" Yes, we have had plenty of talks about buying chaps and such...what's a wife to do? There was lots of laughter. Sometimes its best to simply laugh. 

Michael and Alex 


It's like he deliberately made a spot for this little one....

Benny discovered tree sap - and was not impressed - at all. 

I pulled vines and brought them to Dad. He harvested the peas for us and then took the vines to the chickens. 

Benny was impressed with the sprinkler INSIDE the greenhouse. To his left are cucumbers, to his right the new lasagna bed. He is getting "rained" on and LOVES it. 

Today's harvest included cabbage, chard, broccoli, cucumbers, radishes and KALE. 

After I sent things home with CoRielle I still had lots of kale left. I planted 1/2 the plants I planted last year. I thought about it and decided to try drying kale. I dried 7 trays. We'll see how it turns out.  This is todays contribution to the #everybitcountschallenge.

We were so very thankful to our kids here at home, and Jamin and CoRielle for their help today! We still are NOT going to get all our home projects done - but we're making progress. 

*Note - the kale is great. I was able to reconstitute it and it tastes like fresh kale. I threw some crumbled kale into Grandpa's avocado toast and he didn't notice it. I think it will be great to use for breakfast scrambles, soups and maybe I can sneak it into smoothies too. It's much less offensives when dried and crumbled. LOL 

Berry Picking 2021

 It has been raining a LOT.  

Fall is probably here near.   There is absolutely NO WAY we will get our projects done before winter. We accept that. However, last winter, the snow caught us before the garden was fully harvested, all the dead trees felled, or yard furniture and toys put away for the season.  We have had a busy July and, fish camp,  one wedding and another by the end of August.... We planned to spend this week working around our place...and it RAINED...all day....every day.  We've had appointments for Michael or Grandpa in the rare breaks of rain. 

Church was cancelled on Sunday.  Sunshine was predicted.  Alex would be home to help. Michael began to plan to fell  trees. No one should work with chainsaws in downpours. Safety first and all. 

BreZaak suggested a blueberry picking trip Sunday afternoon. I SO wanted to go. I also KNEW why Michael wanted us to work and that he would not go berry picking. We reached a compromise. I stayed home (this is a help in itself as he could focus solely on work and not divide is attention between work and caregiving). Grandpa can't climb around the mountains picking berries. We sent the girls with the berry picking crew. This allowed us to get work done AND get berries...and they enjoyed the time in the mountains with the family.  

They had a great time. Thanks to Arielle and Bre for sharing these photos. 

Soon it will start to go to seed and fall will be here

Danny's first berry picking adventure

Cousins - Benny, Gideon and Bella 

Stacia, Allie, BreZaak in the distance, Bella
Benny, Jamin 

Bre, Jojo, and Izaak 


Jojo's first berry picking excursion 

Annie - may be her first berry outing too


I have plans to make more blueberry jam. I hope to get out to pick some more this week. We shall see. I needed quick right now...these berries went into the freezer to be used later for smoothies, snacking, pancakes, muffins....

I'm loosely participating in an instagram challenge....#everybitcountschallenge. The idea is to preserve something every day of August.  While I'm not going to make the daily challenge (started late) I do love the focus on putting just little bits away - and it adds up. This was Monday's put away.