Friday, July 15, 2011

random reflections

happy friday! i had to ask three times what day it was. when you don't have a set work schedule, the days blend together. no more longing for the weekend. it's grand.

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!


  1. i made it through, awesome that you kept everyone posted on your happenings! You're a busy lady, and your hobbies are so admirable. regular folks could learn a lot from you ;)

  2. I not only "made it thru", but I was ecstatic that you opened up your mind let us get to know you better.

    I hope you can stay with your yoga. It is a wholesome discipline. Poor Jimmy prolly just needs someone to listen occasionally. God bless.

  3. I not only made it through the post but enjoyed every word of it...although I'm not too sure I could conform to that particular yoga position.:) Love what you said about freedom, both your new found freedom and your thoughts on true freedom...very well said.

    Good job on all those canning jars...they might be worth much more than you paid for them one day soon. So glad to hear your garden is doing well...Jimmy was probably just looking for fishing worms in your compost bin.:)

  4. I made it through! Not *everyone* just skims the pics and leaves a comment just so their blog name can get out there :) You are too nice to your neighbor, I may or may not have grown impatient with him a long time ago... lol

  5. What a great post. Growing your own food is a great job, and in the long run probably more valuable than a paycheck. Providing fresh, healthy food for your family is so awesome. I really admire your gardening skills and your motivation to tackle the art of preservation.

    Also, I have a soft spot for nosy, older neighbors (coworkers, relatives, etc), haha. How hilarious that you caught him in your compost bin.

  6. Congratulations on all you're doing! I've been slowly buying freezer proof mason jars at the local market (who knew some of them are made specifically for freezer use!), and then I use them for everything (drinking, counter top storage, refrigerator storage, etc.). LOVE mason jars! ♥

  7. I am here for the first time via Michelle, lovely blog, if you don't mind I will put it on my blogroll so that I don't miss any posts :-)


  8. aww thank you everyone!

    clint, so sweet of you to say! sometimes i fear what people will think if i share too much. silly, i know! yeah, jimmy is just a little lonely. he lives with some younger guys and he hasn't got a misses. but he does go fishing a lot with his buddies.=)

    mr. h, thank you. i bet you could do it with some practice.=) yes, i've noticed the price of jars going up, so i guess it was a wise investment. ha, maybe jimmy was looking for bait! so funny.=)

    michele, he means well, and he's really sweet to our cat. i could do without the snooping though!=)

    nikki, thank you. i was so stressed and unhappy working for a paycheck that this lifestyle is much better for my health. i had gray hairs at 25!=)

    ms. a, thank you dear! yes, mason jars are great for everything!

    hello and welcome, alessandra! what a beautiful name you have. i'd love to be on your blogroll. thank you!


  9. Hi Kelli,

    Such a great post! I loved hearing much more about you! I find it so inspiring to find out what you do--with food, yoga or anything!You have many gifts, that is clear!


  10. I was laughing sooo hard reading about your neighbor!! Mr. H is probably right...he just needed worms.
    Peace & Raw Health,

  11. I made it thru the post! ;) Silly girl. Of course, I'd read it. Funny neighbor but interesting guy too! I love our food saver and I'm hoping to use it more like you have. All the zucchini, my goodness! And canning - that'll be awesome.


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