Yesterday was The Day of Corn. I’ve put up corn from over 100 ears now and we’ve still got corn coming in from our garden. (I’m continuing to dry all the husks.)
I also processed a huge box of hot peppers. These were mostly sliced and frozen for use in stews, chilis, casseroles, fajitas, and so on through the coming months.
I also set aside enough to make another batch of Hot Pepper Butter, which I’m in love with now and fear running out of before next year’s peppers. I had to make more.
I’m still canning and putting up food in the pantry as well as storing up gifts for Christmas.
Items that must be bought at the store are being gradually stored up, too. Staples like flour, sugar, baking powder, dry beans, rice, and so many other basics (including meats).
I’ll also be freezing some eggs, just to be sure not being able to get to the store won’t stop me from baking! And in case the chickens stop laying right in the middle of a blizzard. (I prefer not to use dry milk, of course, but I keep dry milk onhand also, for emergency baking purposes. Snowbound beggars can’t be choosers.)
As God is my witness, I will not run out of aluminum foil this winter in the middle of a snowstorm.
There is a lot more stocking up to do, of course. We have a few months yet before winter arrives. Every shopping trip is an opportunity to lay in an extra this or that. Buy two instead of one. A little here, a little there. A gradual stockpiling.
We learned a lot last winter about how abruptly–and how thoroughly–we can become isolated. And there is more to survival than food.
A truckload of crushed stone was put down on the driveway yesterday.
Another truckload will come next weekend. Much of last winter, the driveway was impassable. There were many days….weeks….when I had to park at the bottom and walk. It’s a long way up. Especially in the snow. Or if you’re carrying any groceries–which is another reason to lay in supplies. It’s quite likely that 50 percent of the time during the winter, even if I can get down the road and back, I won’t be able to get my vehicle up to the house. Snow plus steep, shaded driveway equals impassable. The fewer supplies that have to be carried up the hill, the better.
The extra layer of stone on the driveway won’t mean it will always be passable this winter, but hopefully it will make it passable more days than it was last year.
The road itself is another thing. It will also become impassable at times.
A “new” old woodstove is set to come in the house.
Chopping firewood is gonna be a popular hobby around here.
And! Most exciting is………
…..a generator!!!!! A generator will keep our well pumping and our freezers freezing, our refrigerator humming and my laptop living, at least in limited measures, in case of an extended power outage. (At least as long as we have gasoline to run it. We’ll have to lay in a supply of that, too.)
The Old Farmer’s Almanac is predicting a hard winter, but that’s not so bad if you’re ready. If you’re sitting by a toasty woodstove, if you have plenty of food and water, if your animals have hay and warm shelters.
There will be snow falling over the hills here in a few months.
I will have dried fruits and spices in a simmering potpourri pot. Squash, zucchini, peppers, tomatoes, corn, green beans, and eggplant to cook in casseroles and stews. Peaches and apples and blackberries to bake in pies. Salsas and relishes, chutneys and jams. Bread in the oven and tamales steaming in corn husks. (And dolls tumbling out of baskets.)
Oh yeah, I will be ready for winter this year. DO YOU HEAR ME, WINTER? I’M THROWING DOWN THE GAUNTLET.
I’m in so much trouble now.