miss madj woke me up with a claw up my nose. a very sharp one. john woke up with two scratches on his nose. she literally demanded four breakfasts. piggy.=)
our meals have been pretty simple lately. much of my energy has gone to gardening and preserving. i'm slowly learning the ways of preserving and what works for our small family of two. after years of consideration, i finally purchased a mini food saver. (well, my mom bought it for me as a bday gift.) before, i had the silly notion that preserving was only for an abundance of produce. now i've been blanching and freezing anything i think we won't eat soon. here's what's in the freezer so far:
3 bags of diced zucchini for making pizza crusts, 3 bags of grated zucchini for zucchini bread and 2 bags for zucchini brownies, 5 bags of sliced zucchini for stir-fries, veggie tacos or side dishes, 3 bags green beans, veggie burgers and zucchini crab cakes.
through craigslist i purchased 120 used canning jars for 65 bucks. she asked for 80, i said 50, and we met in the middle. it was a big chunk of change but now i won't have to buy jars for a really long time. but i didn't consider that i'd need to buy lids. preserving aint always cheap, but it's worth it.
one of the pretty lids
the jars were filthy (so much for "excellent condition") so i scrubbed them out on our deck. three hours, two pruny hands, two blisters and one sunburn later, they were good as new.
while scrubbing, i noticed that brillo pads have the pleasant scent of an older gentleman's cologne. speaking of older *ahem* gentlemen, i was thankful my nosy (but sweet) neighbor wasn't home. he looks at me like i have 8 heads whenever i'm working outside. everyday he asks, "you working?" meaning do you have a "real job" yet? i want to say of course i'm working - i'm growing my own food here! but i just smile and say, "not yet, jimmy." he seems to think gardening is crazy and when i told him i don't eat much meat i thought he was going to throw a shoe at me! he likes that i listen to his fishing adventures which i guess is why he hangs around me. one day i caught the snoop in my compost bin! "looking for something, jimmy?"=)
we are having perfect summer weather - hot but a little breezy with low humidity. we've turned our air conditioner off and the house hasn't gotten warmer than a comfortable 78°. i just love sleeping with the windows open.
fall planting has gotten underway and we have some cabbage, collard and broccoli sprouts. yesterday i planted kale and escarole, and today i'm sowing carrots in the garden (if i'm not too sore).
last night i took a yoga class for the first time in a year. i really enjoy yoga but can't afford the membership fees, so i was very excited when i found a studio that offers discounted drop-in classes. at first i started yoga to gain more flexibility. i'll never forget my high school gym teacher saying to me, "if you're this unflexible now, imagine what you'll feel like as an old lady!" that was a huge wake-up call and ever since i've had the intention of taking good care of this vehicle into old age.
what i wasn't expecting from yoga was the philosophy/spirituality - guidance on being present, shedding fear, expanding into the moment, accepting everything as it is. last night i was pleasantly surprised when the instructor read part of the preamble to the declaration of independence: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
she went on to say true freedom is the state of being ok with what is. in that aspect, no one can take our freedom away. many of you are probably like, "what? you live in america, land of the free, who'd take your freedom away?" well, when you live in a country where you could go to jail for growing food on your own front lawn or for having unlicensed pets, you begin to see you're not as free as you think.
now, i understand people are seriously oppressed in other parts of the world, and i don't take my liberties for granted. yoga and meditation are helping me see everything for what it is and i'm so very thankful for the peace of mind i find in remembering that this is just an experience, fear is merely an illusion, and infinite love/oneness is the only truth.
did you really make it through this post?!=) thank you for reading. hope you all have a wonderful weekend!