21 February 2021

Gathering the Fragments 21/02/2021

Well another week has passed, and those tomatoes are still green! I'm waiting, but not patiently anymore. I want to make sauce and pasta sauce; I want to dry some and turn the skins into powder for winter.

The capsicums and egg plant are slowly, slowly growing. I picked a couple of capsicum last week and chopped them up and put them into the freezer.

We had mostly salads this week, the weather was just hot. Towards the end of the week the salads were a little odd but that's OK, they were colourful and cold and we ate them. Nothing was composted from the fridge this week, everything was used up.

I made a batch of enchiladas, and the boys ate some for dinner and the rest became freezer meals. Nothing makes me happier than knowing dinner just needs to be thawed, heated and dished up when I'm busy.

I've been saving soap slivers and on Thursday they were whizzed up to a powder and put in a jar to make a batch of Cheapskates Washing Powder when it's needed. I say on the instruction sheet you can use any soap, and you can. Normally a box of plain laundry soap is grated to make the washing powder, but when there are enough soap slivers then they get used too.

Easter is only five weeks away, so I started on the Easter cards and some boxes this week. And yes, I was gathering the fragments to make them!

When I open a new box of tea, I save the white cardboard dividers. This week the bundle that was saved, and some that were cut from off-cuts of cardstock, were used to make bookmarks for the Reading Recovery program at a friend's school. They are quick to make, so when there are a few minutes to spare, it's easy to sit down, stamp a picture and quickly colour it in. This week they were stamped with frogs, bunnies or cars - just what I had at hand.

It's time to pull the zucchini out. The four plants have given more than enough for us to enjoy for the rest of the year, and they keep on producing. Some has been made into zucchini pickles, the rest has been sliced or shredded and dehydrated.

I am thinking of the winter garden. What do I need? A plan so I know what seeds to start. Compost. To check the frost tunnel thingys (they had a proper name when we bought them about 15 years ago but I've long forgotten it) and make sure they are whole and in good condition. Trays. Paper pots. Seed raising mix (I usually MOO it). And time.  Paper pots won't be a problem, there is always scrap paper to be used up, and when that runs out, those toilet roll inners I've been saving will be put to use.

And I need to check our emergency supplies. I've been watching the disaster unfold throughout the USA the last week or so. So many people are struggling, suffering cold, going without water and power. While I don't expect our winter to be quite as cold, it doesn't hurt to think ahead and do some checking.

While it's still warm is a good time to get out the spare blankets and wash them, and dry them in the sunshine. Ditto sleeping bags. Ours have been in storage for a couple of years so getting them and the jelly beans washed and dried will be my job the next bright, sunny day we have. Making sure the candles are where they should be. Making sure the gas lighters are filled, ready to use.  Sending Wayne and the boys out to get a load or two or three of firewood before winter. Making sure the door and window seals are intact to keep warm in and cold out.

It's also a good time to clean out the pantry, check the fridge and freezer and make a note of any larder gaps that need to be filled. Since March 2019 I've been restocking the pantry as we use things, so that it is always fully stocked. It's not my favourite way to shop, I really like once-a-year shopping, but right now I feel the need to keep the pantry full so that's what I'm doing.

The baby blanket is slowly growing. Only a couple of rounds done on it this week, I was busy with other things. Hopefully the cooler evenings this week will encourage me to pick it up and do some each night.

Wow, looking back it was a busy week!

How was your week? What fragments were you able to gather?

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