Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr! It is getting cold out there!

I guess the frost IS on the pumpkin!

pump

I have long finished with the harvesting.

I planted some late summer green beans but hungry bunnies decided they needed them more than I did.  I still haven’t gotten into fall planting all that much. When the days get shorter so does my gardening energy.

frustrated

  Lucky me and lucky family that we DON’T depend on my garden to provide all our food!  I don’t know how those pioneer families did it.  It must have been pretty slim pickings during the winter and by spring they were probably so craving fresh food.  No wonder they were much more eager to eat dandelions and fiddleheads and other spring goodies than we modern folks are!

hungry

Today we pulled up the cana bulbs aka hummingbird magnets, for winter storage along with the gladiolas and my one lonely dahlia.

DSCN0054

  The same pine shavings I use in the coop make a great medium for storing bulbs.  Too much moisture and they will rot but the pine shavings keep them just right.  I put them in a box or open bin in a corner of the basement and they do fine until spring.  The garage got too cold, I had some in there my first year here and they froze, then rotted.

I have brought my elephant ear plants inside and will keep them alive as houseplants throughout the winter.

010

These aren’t even my largest elephant ears. I have a couple that touch the ceiling!

You can also let them die back and then dig the bulbs out for winter storage.  I have not ever done that yet but by next year I may have to because I am running out of room!

Now that the garden is all harvested I can let the gals free range again and they are a happy bunch.

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Some nights I light the firepit and the next day dump the cold ashes in my vegetable plot.  The chooks love to take dust baths in the ashes, and ashes are good for the soil.

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Scratch and nibble, scratch and nibble. I just love my chickens!

The breakable yard art has been brought inside to be stored in the breezeway, the heavier statues and urns are wrapped in quilted movers tarps and then in plastic and left in place.

angel 3

The coop will soon be winterized – there will be an entire post on that soon.

I do these fall/winter chores with a heavy heart.  I always hate to see the end of summer, of gardening season, and being outdoors.

  I am already thinking ahead to spring with garden plans swimming in my head!

Looking ahead is ok but I know I need to learn how to more enjoy the present moment, even in the short, cold,  depressing days of winter.  I am making a list of things to do that I may enjoy.  I will ‘check’ myself if I start to make negative comments or have negative thoughts, and I will make it a point to notice things that I am grateful for.  I will get through this winter with a smile on my face.

I WILL!  I WILL!  I WILL!

 Last winter I was so crabby and negative that I couldn’t even stand myself!

crabby

We will get through it together!

Here is a good cold weather recipe – Serve it with buttered rye bread or cornbread hot from the oven.

Simply Good Bean Soup

bean

3 cups navy (Northern white) beans

6 cups chicken broth

1 cup carrots

1 cup onion

1 cup celery

1 large clove garlic

2 TBS cooking oil of choice

1 tsp black pepper

1 tsp thyme

1 TBS oregano

1  leftover ham bone

2 tsp apple cider vinegar

Soak beans overnight or bring to a boil, cover, remove from heat and let soak one hour.

Drain beans.

Sauté vegetables in oil for about 5 minutes, add broth, beans, ham bone. garlic and seasonings.  Simmer about 2 hours or until beans are tender.  Remove meat from ham  bone and return to pot (discard bone and fat) Adjust seasoning to taste and stir in vinegar.  If your ham was very salty you can add one diced potato to the soup to make less salty.  Another variation is to add a can of diced tomatoes.

Enjoy!

I’d love to hear what preparations you make for winter and what are your favorite winter activities? Share your ideas with me, I’m going to need all the help I can get!

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7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. slcriger
    Nov 04, 2014 @ 14:17:45

    I want some soup

    Like

    Reply

  2. Ema Jones
    Nov 04, 2014 @ 06:07:50

    Yes, winter is here!
    I’m adding in some diced cottage cheese, plz suggest…

    Like

    Reply

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