Monday, October 05, 2009

What's Exciting Me These Days

I am ridiculously excited. I may be weird in what excites me. Its certainly not shopping (not even in a yarn store, sorry Sarah) or new shoes or even a new car. This summer my mom gave me her old pressure canner. Its a huge pressure canner - fits 42 1 cup jars or 24 pints or 20 quarts at once. And then I got a source of cheap local salmon. So, of course, I canned it. 24 pints of it. I had no idea how long that would take when I began the task. Me, who likes to be in bed by 10 at the latest, was up until 3am. It takes 110 minutes to can salmon and it takes a long time for the pressure canner to get up to pressure with that much stuff in it, apparently. I can't tell you how exciting that whole process was for me - a kid with a new toy. And then the feeling of satisfaction as I added the jars to my cold storage room. 24 pints of canned salmon.

And then! The kind young (and good looking) man brought me more salmon and sold me a smoker very cheaply. He even filleted all 10 fish for me and didn't charge me extra. So now I have 20 - 40 lbs of smoked salmon in my freezer. I AM SO EXCITED!!! Smoked salmon! I love it! And this feeling that we are not only going to survive this winter, we are going to feast.

I mean really feast. Because the other thing that has been exciting me is bringing in my harvest which I have spent the last 3 days tirelessly doing in preparation for last night's freezing temperatures. I might have complained about how the squash took over my garden, but now with the huge piles of squash strewn around my house (hope we are not going to get tired of squash as decor because the cold storage room is already full of it...) and the 100lbs + of green tomatoes ripening (in my office for now) I am thrilled. The size... the variety... mmmmm, baked squash.... pumpkin pie... Above is the kitchen counter pile.

And here is the entryway pile errr, I mean... seasonal decoration:


And here is what my office looks like although I can't even get all the boxes of tomatoes in one shot...






And then! That is not all! (as the Cat in the Hat would say) On Saturday I had a soap making workshop here at the house. She will be back on the 17th and then I will be making my very own soap. Real soap. Being self-sufficient - knowing how to do things, just damn excites me! I can't help it. To think of us feasting on salmon, lamb, chicken, tomatoes, salsa and squash all winter and luxuriating in long sudsy baths with soap that I made while the snow swirls down around us... I can hardly sleep just thinking about it! What can I say? I come from good pioneer stock on both sides of my family. I think I'm a throw back....hehe.

5 comments:

bum.by.the.sea said...

so neat! your excitement is infectious. Maybe I'll come visit and sample some of that smoked salmon... ;)

Sarah-Lynn said...

mmm, smoked salmon!! I'm so jealous! Mind you, I don't have the drive to stay up until 3:30am to can...I would love to come and can with you sometime though! Mom's not all that keen on teaching me. Oh, and the squash!! I want! Seeing as it's taking over your house, I wish I could relieve you...

laura said...

this makes me tired. whew! i can see it invigorates you though.

Andrea said...

Well, I did fall into bed at 8 last night and slept right through until 6am this morning... And there were times during all that, I felt so tired, I was dizzy but the thought of the frost stealing squash I had started from seed and weeded and watered kept me going. As for the 3am salmon, well, I had no idea it would take that long and once you are started, you are kind of committed. I started at 8pm... I thought it would be an hour job, tops...hehe.

And I say, c'mon up and sample my salmon... I might even let you have a squash... My goal this year was to grow a year's supply. I think I may have succeeded...

sheila said...

You know, we had a friend come over one day and call me a throw-back. At the time I kind of laughed it off, then later felt sort of irritable about it. Now I think "Well, maybe I am!"

You've beat me in the canned tomato dept. I have only 48 quarts of salsa down there. Hmm. Must go pick more tomatoes! They are currently drowning in the rain...