Sunday, September 1, 2013

Slow Living: August 2013

I feel like I'm recovering from summer and am really looking forward to fall.  Which is sort of strange... it's been a lovely summer, I've just been way too busy to enjoy it fully.

Shearing season finished up early this month and now the Day Job is going into overdrive.  There have been walks and such, but no camping, few day trips and no time off.  Good thing I enjoy most of what I'm doing. ;-)

I'm very happy to write my August installment for the Slow Living Project and looking forward to September.  :-)

NOURISH: Make and bake as much as possible from scratch. Ditch overpackaged, over-processed convenience foods and opt for 'real' food instead. Share favourite links/recipes/tips from the month here.

I have no idea.  Hubba has been doing most of the cooking and I have been eating whatever he puts in front of me. I'm definitely not losing any weight.  ;-)

PREPARE: Stockpile and preserve. Freeze extra meals or excess garden/market produce. Bottle/can, dehydrate or pickle foods to enjoy when they are not in season. Aim to reduce dependency on store bought items especially those known to contain BPA and other suspect additives. Stocking up on dry goods when prices are low counts too.

3 Lug Boxes (54 pounds) of fresh Peaches became Peach Butter, Peach Jam, Peach Pickles and Peach Sauce.

REDUCE/Reuse/Re-purpose/Repair: Cut down on household waste by re-using, re-purposing and repairing. A ladder into a strawberry planter? A sheet into a dress? Share ideas and project links here, allowing others to be inspired.

In canning our peaches I re-used all of our available canning jars and rings from previous years, I only had to use a few new jars.  Of course, the lids are always new.  ;-)

GREEN: up our lives. Start (or continue!) using homemade cleaners, body products and basic herbal remedies. The options are endless, the savings huge and the health benefits enormous.

Oy.  I really need to work on this one.

GROW: plant/harvest. What's growing this month? What's being eaten from the garden? Herbs in a pot, sprouts on a windowsill or and entire fruit/vegetable garden -opt for what fits space and time constraints. Don't have a backyard? Ask a friendly neighbour or relative for a small patch of theirs in return for some home grown produce, they may surprise you!

My garden has suffered from neglect.  It's a shame.  We've had a lovely summer... not too hot, not much hail, a fair amount of rain, soil in good condition.  Really, it was a great summer for growing.  I just did not have the time to give my garden the attention it deserved.  So, I've given up on hoping I will get to it this week and have started planning to prepare them for winter.

CREATE: to fill a need or feed the soul. Create for ourselves or for others. Create something as simple as a handmade gift tag or something as extravagant as a fine knit shawl. Share project details and any new skills learnt here.

With the weather cooling off (occasionally), I've been working on my Wingspan more and finished it a few days ago.  :-)

DISCOVER: Feed the mind by reading texts relevant to current interests. Trawl libraries, second hand shops or local book shops to find titles that fill the need. Share titles/authors of what is being read this month.

I found this text buried in a Peach Jam recipe...  "Oil rim of saucepan well and mixture will not boil over."  Talk about a great discovery!  I've been using the wooden spoon layed across the top of the pot technique for years but it doesn't really work, so I usually end up with the standing there blowing on the bubbles technique.  Not anymore!

I've been reading about pickling.  I have not yet attempted anything beyond the Peaches, but they turned out great. So who knows?

I also learned about the usefulness of Antler for controlling tartar on dog's teeth.

ENHANCE: community: Possibilities include supporting local growers and producers, help out at a local school/kindergarten, barter or foodswap, joining a playgroup or forming a walking or craft group. Car pooling where possible and biking/walking instead of driving. Even start up a blog if you haven't already - online communities count too! Or maybe just help out someone trying to cross the street! The rewards for your time are often returned tenfold.

I had my last shearing client at the 
beginning of the month and have been on the receiving end of kindness and mentoring when it comes to dog shows.

ENJOY: Life! Embrace moments with friends and family. Marking the seasons, celebrations and new arrivals are all cause for enjoyment. Share a moment to be remembered from the month here.

Mr. Gunnison and I have been going to Puppy School.  He and I have been learning how to show properly in a conformation competition and had our very first show this month.


EMMA said...

Wow, that's a big puppy! He's so cute.
Thanks for sharing the jam tip, that's one to remember.
Your wingspan is beautiful. I made one in purple last year for a friend.

MarmePurl said...

Puppy Love (and envy)

Claire Davenport said...

*gasp* What a handsome puppy! And I love the wingspan, well done for finishing it in time for the colder weather :)

Anonymous said...

Oiling the rim of the saucepan is a new tip to me too - but Im willing to give it a try, thanks!

And the garden thing - you know, when life is busy, sometimes we just need to give ourselves a break from the things we feel we should do. We do what we can and Ive given up on feeling guilt about the stuff I cant get to. :)

Cath said...

Oh my, your pup is gorgeous. Your peaches look lovely too.

Natalie said...

Ha ha...I love that you share all aspects. I too have given up on the garden. I trudge out there to find the odd bit hiding amongst the weeds, but really, it's time to just pull up and get the beds ready for winter. I have drastically changed my plan for next year and hopefully can stick with it even when all those seed catalogues start rolling in.

city garden country garden said...

Congratulations on the show results, and on the impending start to your breeding litter. (Did you see the newspaper article a few weeks ago about a Chinese zoo that disguised a Tibetan Mastiff as a lion in one of their enclosures?! They seemed to get away with it until a little boy asked why the lion barked!)

Christine said...

Totally loving your wingspan, Kathryn. This is one pattern I hope to get to at some stage. Thankyou for sharing. :)

AC said...

I'm bummed by lack of camping too!!

The wingspan looks so good. Of course.