August Check In

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This topic contains 25 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  Crow Bar 6 months ago.

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  • #21296


    Hey, everyone! What are you up to in August?

  • #21299


    Hard to believe it is Aug. already. This year has flown by.  I made salsa to can as well as canned spaghetti sauce for this winter. Still no green beans nor butter beans. They are full of blooms but no beans. Garden has been a real flop this year. It was just way to much rain and with having to replant what we could, I think it was a bit to late. But we gave it our best shot. We have been getting some cherry tomatoes and cucumbers. That has been it for this year. Hoping next year will be better.

    Having to depend on farmers markets in North Carolina this year.

    I have slowed it down a bit on decluttering and getting things done. Guess the office was a bit much as I am really tired now. Need to rest a bit and then get another room done.

  • #21309

    Mama cando

    Yup, Rain was just too much for our little garden. That and DH forgot to have the plants watered when we went to see the grands down south. Looks like all we’re going to get are the Gypsy Bell Peppers, for some reason they re just going gonzos. Looks like I’ll have to hit the farmers market again.

    Oh Chip and Miss Chloe are getting along well now. She isn’t hissing or growling at him UNLESS he gets too close to her WHILE she’s eating, he tries to “steal” her food while she’s chowing down but that’s because he was in the cattery with about 10 other cats and they ate together from common bowls. He’ll learn, he’s a smart one. He’s already learned not to get up on the sink and table. Well at least while we’re awake, DH says he knocked a couple of my battery operated candlesticks over and the runner was mussed up a bit the other night, LOL

  • #21324


    Mama cando, glad to hear your kitties are now getting along. I have been filling freezers with meat as it goes on sell. Hoping to start canning more meat within the next 2 or 3 weeks. Going to head to market to get potatoes, sweet potatoes and corn to can soon.

    Still working on getting windows washed and the rest of house cleaned up. Trying to move furniture around to make the rooms a bit more functional. Not that easy to do. And Thanksgiving and Christmas will be here before we know it. Time is flying by faster and faster. I really cannot believe we are now in August.

  • #21336


    Yay, Mama cando! Thanks for the update on the kitties!

    August in Texas– ugh. I’m ready for cold winds, and gloomy skies, and autumn smells. Forget this heat and relentless sun!

    Garden was mostly a failure this year. No squash or cukes, a few tomatoes and a few peppers. Not many pollinators at all. Plus the squash blossoms wouldn’t set fruit even when they were pollinated. Odd. The elderberry cuttings are starting to leaf out. If I get at least eight viable ones, I’ll keep four here and put four down on the land.

    I’ve been reading up on how to get my technician’s license for ham radio. It’s a bit slow going right now, but it’ll be worth it to keep talking to my friend. We really think this will work for her— learning Morse code and feeling the key as the letters come in.

  • #21345

    Mama cando

    Thanks Little sister Sounds like you’re  keeping busy. I know what you mean about arranging furniture. Ya can only put it in certain spots in the rooms and hope the traffic pattern goes well. Do have one bright note, My friend picked up the chair and footstool to re upholster AND she says it will be back before our cousin comes end of the month. WHOO HOO!! She’ll have somewhere to sit now, HA HA HA!

    Rufusj,  Thanks, I think the calming collar has been good for her too. It looks like she’s stopped over grooming herself and the bald spots are coming back.Sorry about your squash and other veggies though, what a shame. Good news on the elderberry plants though. Elderberry jam (wine;)) YUM!. Hope everything else does better. As for the heat,you could come to Michigan and have ice and snow and ice, just kidding. It’s been really hot this summer and it looks like it might not be a good winter for us. All I ask is that it snows on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Makes DH’s efforts in the yard looks so good for the grands coming. Three live down south and LOVE coming up here to play in the snow. Were disappointed last year, cause there was barely a dusting. Although they got about 6-8 inches last December so they could go out and play in it with the baby sister down there.

    Just bought a new stove today. Went to Lowe’s to do a color check on some blinds we need (ordering on line, it’s cheaper and they do free delivery) and went to the appliance area to look around. OOPS Mistake, LOL. Found a REALLY great deal on the gas stove we’ve been looking at, so DH said let’s get it, it’s too good of a deal not to. So I’m getting my gas stove sooner than I thought Yippee!! Won’t have to haul out the camp stove this year for pressure canning, YEAH!! Stay safe and pray for those in El Paso, Dayton.

  • #21348


    Greetings from the sunshine state.

    Yes the sun is still shining, kind of. Its been a rainy week but no tropical storms. We do however have a Hep A outbreak.

    Been looking at youtube videos on sewing. Super excited to get started, but I need a machine first. One of the thrift stores gets them in pretty regularly, so I am keeping watch.

    Picked up a pole pruner to do tree work.

    Hope everyone is doing well

  • #21362

    Cecil Beeme

    I found U.S. skinless boneless chicken breast on sale for .89 a pound! I will be canning my little heart out!!

  • #21397


    That is a great price for chicken breast. Haven’t seen it around here for that price in a long while. You will be busy..  I did get some speggetti sauce canned and now have a bunch of roma tomatoes to can. Will be doing that tomorrow. Granddaughter got all four of her wisdom teeth pulled Monday. She did great. Though she looks like a little chipmunk right now.

    Going to head to the farmers market to see if they got anymore peaches in. I want to get some to can. I am about out of the ones I canned 2 years ago. I canned 2 bushels back then. Going to do the same amount this year.

  • #21491

    grannyj smith

    This month I am continuing on with making this house a minimalist home and then moving on to prioritizing what I need for six months worth of food and supplies.

    I am moving towards turning the farmhouse kitchen a commerical kitchen in hopes of making some extra money on weekends, but that will take time and money which I had to have the dryer repaired and then order propane this month and that took what money I had left after buying food and paying bills.

  • #21566


    More inventory as I have been hitting the BOGOs at the market, and reading Daisys book tips and tales from the Frugal kitchen.

    Had an endoscopy for my GERD. Got polyps but they are benign.

    Got smacked with a big medical bill from OT. They just combined 5 months worth of services and said due now. Worked out a payment plan, but gosh I was there 2x a week, they could have checked and I could have paid some each visit.

    Ordered a Wonderbag and a cast iron dutch oven. I like the idea of not having the slow cooker plugged in, plus having a hot breakfast ready in the morning.

    Some local flooding due to the rain, but all is well.

  • #21569


    Corsaire, Glad things went ok with the endoscopy. I also have GERD and have to have those now and then.

    You will like the wonder bag. I have one and have tried it out a couple of times so far. Works great.

    We are getting green beans now. It has taken forever for them to start to produce. Will be ready to pick by end of week, so will now be able to teach my niece and a friend how to can.  I did make spaghetti sauce and salsa to can but don’t want to start out teaching how to can with something that would be a bit harder. Green beans are the easiest to start out with and then go from there.

    Going to start canning beef soon. I now have a freezer full to can. Have been trying to build that up for canning.  Thought I would have had that done by now but things kept getting in the way.

    Watching for sales on chicken now but so far nothing.  Hoping they will put it on sale soon.

    Grannyj Smith,  You are doing great with down sizing. I still need to get rid of a few more things. It’s going slow but I will get there. I like that idea of using the farm house for cooking for people. I really think that is a great idea.

  • #21509


    Hi, all! I went through a bit of a bump in the road recently (a couple of falls) so getting back on track has taken some time and effort; but, I’m pleased to say that the road has smoothed out and like GrannySmith I’m seriously focusing this month on getting rid of absolutely everything that I don’t need! Doing the Marie Kondo thing, ie. if the item does not spark joy it’s gone. 🙂 I’m just about finished with category 1: Clothes…lots of bags of good stuff to our local thrift shops.

    I’m still working on my longterm food supplies, getting them stored where I can reach them and all the other prepping items I’ve purchased since starting this program last October. Wow. Where have the months gone? But I feel so good about how well I think I’ve done to be better prepared for living independently no matter what’s going on elsewhere.

    My gardening efforts have produced only a small amount this season, in good part because of the excessive rain: but I remain extremely enthused about gardening as an excellent activity to keep me involved and moving about everyday! My handyman neighbor is going to help me clean out the raised beds and try some fall crops that normally do well in our area, for example turnips which I love and their greens. I’m also going to set out a lot of garlic that should be ready for harvest come next June. And, I’m going to grow spinach in the shed all winter long as I did this past winter. Yeah!

    Learning about and using essential oils has become a new area of interest for me. Lots to learn but I’ve bought a highly recommended book and few basic oils and a diffuser to start. I think the health benefits are worth the money and time.

    Family news: Fairlight (age 16) who has spent the past month in Rome studying Latin will be returning. It will be good to have her back in the States. Hannah graduated from college in May and has landed a full-time job she’s excited about. All the others are headed back to school or college.

    Hoping others will begin to post again as I’m always eager to read about your lives. Where’s oldMountainWoman these days? Have I missed her posts?

  • #21596

    grannyj smith

    Still dealing with nerve pain from the virus I had, if I could just get a good night’s sleep I wouldn’t be so tired during the day, it seems I just get to sleep at night and the alarm goes off to get my daughter up for the school bus.

    Now we have great grand babies placed in our home to care for,  I want to get them on a schedule in hopes of making things a bit easier for meals, napping and bedtime, so I have some free time to get things done In the house.

    Went shopping at Walmart the cashier gave me a Walmart coupon for twenty dollars off while checking out with diapers, pull ups and wipes and some for ten percent off when I order the babies clothes online.  It’s a small Walmart and we have shopped there since moving here,  so it doesn’t take long for everyone to know a change has taken place in our family.

    Things are going slow on getting the farmhouse kitchen turned into a commerical kitchen, two things they said I need,  a three compartment sink and a hand washing sink.  I have the food handlers permit and the state sales tax number, just need to get the sinks in.

    Been using HEB’s digital and yellow coupons and I get HEB’s weekly sales ad emailed to me, so I am finding a few ways to save me time and money. I had the land line phone turned off and just going to use a cell phone, that is almost a seventy dollar per month saving, so each month I will looking for more ways to save money.




  • #21678

    Mama cando

    granny j smith, fantastic progress. Sounds like things are moving along.Nothing much to report, got the first pepper off the plants, was delicious,have several more ripening. Have lost the tomatoes.  DH put calcium in ,did a good soil mix and test but looks like all the tomatoes have blossom rot on them. third year in a row. We’re not sure what the heck is going on.

    DIL2 is starting her pre back to school training this week so we’re going to have the grands for 2 days, can’t wait. Either she or Son2 will pick them up after they get out of work. Going to see if they want to stay for dinner and have the grands “help” make it. Grson2 says he does real good on cooking dinner and his sister does good on making desserts. That is a true statement, we went to dinner and she had made brownies. They were excellent. Their puppy dog is getting big and he’s a coffee hound. Seems DIL2 spilled some coffee once and he slurped it up before she could mop it up. He LIKED IT!!.  I had my travel cup full of coffee when we went to dinner at their house and he just wanted so bad to help grandma drink it up, LOL.

    Oldest Granddaughter turned 14 on Sunday and it was dad’s week end with the kids. So she got to spend it with dad.  She is on the schools volleyball team and they had a tournament Friday. They won one but lost two. Son1, DIL1, GRson1 and baby sister were in the stands cheering her and the team on.  Then they all went back to GA for the week end. Just kicking back and getting the house ready for our cousins visit end of the month. Stove is due to be delivered sometime next week, I can’t wait. I’ll need next week to “play” with it so I don’t ruin dinner when cuz comes LOL. Stove is gas, been cooking on electric so I’ll need the (re) learning curve.Hope you all stay safe and have a great Labor Day.

  • #21707


    Looks like everyone has been busy and time is flying.  Thanksgiving will be here before we know it and Christmas right behind it. I am behind on some of the things I need to get done but working on it.  I wanted to go out to pick green beans, but it is thundering and more rain coming. It has been very hot the last couple of days. Heat index of 101. Hoping to get the beans picked tomorrow or next day. Also need to pull up cucumber plants as they are done and the tomato plants as they are doing nothing. Have been getting just a few green peppers but not many. Butter beans are just starting to form, So hoping to get something of that crop.

    I really hope and pray that next years gardens will be a great one for next year. These past couple of years have been really bad.

  • #21766


    I am really bad at checking in.

    Getting over a particularly fun bout with the flu. Really need a little sleep sometime this month.

    Got the eldest dropped off at college, the youngest is starting high school. As if I wasn’t feeling old enough.

    Not even close to ready for winter, too much to do.

    But after three months of a completely screwed up work schedule, we are returning to the old ways, and things will settle down finally.

    Hope everyone is feeling better.

  • #21810


    Whirlibird, Glad you are feeling better. Summer is no time to be catching the flu. Or anytime for that matter.

    I canned 78 pints of green beans yesterday. I then had to clean kitchen.  I want to get some potatoes to can as I was going to do that a couple weeks or so but never made it to market. But first I need to take a few days to catch up on housework. Never did finish washing windows and curtains. So will start back on that Monday.  Right now I am going to take a day of rest and just read.  DH is at market cooking collards for them today, so that gave me time to get things done early this morning that I needed to do while he was away.

    The garden was not doing well at all this year. But I did get the 78 pints of green beans and enough tomatoes to make spaghetti sauce and some salsa. We still have butter beans that are looking like they might start forming in the pods now, Though it is late in the year for them, I am hoping to get enough to freeze. I am going to be looking at Daisy’s canning book on canning beans. I want to make some fast meals for busy days like the last 2 days were.

    Seems everyone has been busy. Stay safe. And please pray that the school year across the country will be safe.

  • #21815

    Mama cando

    Hi all, It’s official, NO tomatoes again this year and everyone of the green ones that looked like they were going to make it are gone. DH thinks maybe the deer got them last night after I went to bed. So off to the farmers market for me. Stove is being delivered Monday afternoon Yippee!!. Watched Son 2’s kids Wednesday and Thursday. We had a blast, took GRSon2 and GRDaughter 2 to the market with me Wednesday. GRS 2 wanted to have salmon sushi for lunch, GRD 2 wanted pb&j.  Lady making the sushi made a special batch for him as they didn’t have the salmon out and she discounted the price for me because he was a really polite little boy, her words. Very proud of him. Came home and they were still hungry after eating their lunch so we made “magical” pancakes. I made up the ones in a bottle, just add water kind and we put food color in them and then sprinkled them with “fairy dust” ( silver sanding sugar). Told Son when he came to pick them up to not feed them breakfast as we were going to make the pancakes again next morning. Used neon coloring in them this time.They saved one for mom, I hope she could eat it, neon green is not an appetizing color in pancakes LOL. Then we put together a crock pot beef roast for dinner, peeled the carrots and boiled the potatoes. Played monopoly with them till they got bored and wanted to watch a movie. After son 2 picked them up, took them home to let the puppy out, they all came back for dinner. I was teaching GRS2 how to play chess(Wed.) and had made the comment I thought I could still beat his dad . So of course after dinner Son2 and I just had to play,  just so you know,  he barely beat me. I made dumb move and he got my queen and a couple of other important pieces. GRS2 was mighty impressed with that. DH is chugging along with the Census job, verifying addresses, then next year he’ll be knocking on doors. SO be kind to them, please. Thursday I’m picking up GRS2 after school and we are going to make a Caramel apple cake, from scratch,  for dessert on Friday when cousin comes for dinner.He is really becoming quite good in the kitchen. I think it’s one of the few times he’s not bouncing off the walls LOL. Yes he and sis are a bit hyper, Grandma is exhausted LOL. Went to Harbor Freight today got a couple of good tarps for DH, sale /coupon, moving blankets they had on sale/coupon and a metal ammo can (Faraday cage?) for me.The moving blankets will make good insulating/ blackout curtains or blankets for the car. They are thick and a good weight to them.Can’t remember which one of my brothers told me this but I think they were doing “war games” and his unit had to hide, so one of the guys in the unit grabbed a bunch of movers blankets and covered the windows and doors of the building they were in. The opposing team didn’t find them, he said they had their flash lights on but no one could see them, thanks to the blankets. That’s all I remember. So I figured it couldn’t hurt to have a few on hand.

    • This reply was modified 6 months, 1 week ago by  Mama cando.
  • #21848

    grannyj smith

    I went through the pantry at the farmhouse and found about fifty pound of beans and rice along with #10 cans of dried meats and other things that I had purchased in the past that for some reason did not get moved.  Before we moved from the farmhouse dh had installed a dead bolt on the pantry and locked it, I assume that why it didn’t get moved.

    Dh announced we are moving back to the farmhouse in October so he can rent this house out, he says it will bring in more money than doing a food business.  He and our kids are unhappy here despite it being a beautiful house with lots of room it is not home to him, I do love the old farmhouse and miss sitting on the back porch late in the evening.


  • #21862


    Last night as I was dosing off, the “aha” moment hit as I realized I didnt have any lighters for my propane stove. So off to the box store and the dollar store for some odds and ends.

    Gas went from 2.22 a gallon yesterday to 2.39 today. No doubt it will increase as the week goes on.

    Direct hit or not from Dorian, I am ready.

  • #21864


    Yes, Labor Day weekend and the gas goes up. Hoping it will go down again next week.

    bought potatoes and carrots to get ready to can some beef stew. It makes for easy and fast meals. So going to start that in the next few days. Took DH to his heart doctor today. For the most part things are ok. But his not sleeping at night is not good. So Doc. suggested calling his primary doc for a sleep study.  If nothing found then heart doc. is going to do a cath. to see if anything going on there. He only has 30 percent of his heart working and the muscle is weak. So he is going to check into what can be done. Hoping there will be some way to increase heart function, but need to find out why he is not sleeping much. So on that note, we have decided to forgo a garden for next year as I have not been able to keep up doing it all on my own. So next year it will be the farmers markets. Just have to figure out how I want to buy in a way I can get it all canned and then move on to what other foods we need that I want to buy to get canned. If that makes any sense.  I have already started pulling up tomato plants and cucumber plants. Green bean plants I pulled last week. Still hoping for some butter beans. Beans are starting to form in the shell now but not fast enough as this is almost Sept and this is a late crop. Still got to clean out the flower beds as well and get mulch down.

  • #21866

    Mama cando

    Littlesister, Praying for your DH. Take care of yourself too. Don’t get too tuckered out.

    Been reading the Farmers Almanac. It’s saying the winter is going to be a bad one this year for us. Not sure if I totally believe it but am planning on making sure I have more wood for fireplace JIC.Redid the indoor/outdoor rug in screened room today ,pulled out an old toy chest I had stored out there. I thought it was empty but when DH opened it Toys galore., just have to take them out and see if they are still good to play with and whether or not Son 2 wants to take some of them home. The toys are from the 80’s and 90’s. My MIL worked for K Marts and could buy (very, very cheaply) toys that either were missing their accessories or just didn’t sell. Boys thought Grandma was the best. So we have transformers, a couple of the Alien (movie) monster figures and some other generic figures. Hopefully the grands will like them enough to take them home with them Friday. Not sure what to do with toy chest as it’s not a modern one. Maybe turn it into a blanket chest for one of the bedrooms????? We’ll see.


  • #21873

    grannyj smith

    We love homemade pancakes but don’t always have the ingredients for making them, so I am going to cheat a little and order some Krusteaz Honey Wheat and Buttermilk Pancake Mix along with some extra pancake syrup.   Dh and kids call pancakes comfort food and sometimes we have them for supper instead of preparing a big meal.  This week I found blueberries for ninety nine cents a pint and that is the cheapest I seen them all summer so I need to get out to the store before they take them off sale.

    My old rolling pin finally gave out and I went on Amazon looking and found a coupon for five dollars off one and Amazon gave me a month of free prime membership so shipping was free and I also added a sifter to the order for it will not be long before I have to begin baking for the fall and Thanksgiving.   Applesauce Cakes, Pumpkin Pies and Pumpkin Jelly Roll cakes will be what everyone wants to buy for their Thanksgiving.


  • #21880


    Thank you Mama Cando.  I think he will do better once we get him to where he will sleep through the night.

    Grannyjsmith.  Those Krusteaz brand pancake mix is good. Hope you were able to get them at the sale price.

    I am having laser surg. next week on rt. eye and then the following week on left eye. Seems when I had the cat. surg. the film under the lense has clouded over, so they are going to correct it.

    Everyone stay safe that is in path of the hurricane. We should be ok here in VA. as we are out of the cone but will have rain.  We are watching it closely as they have been known to change paths.

  • #21884

    Crow Bar

    Ok. The wife and I moved 300 square bales of hay into the hay loft.
    Have to wait for the new wood furnace before we can get the last of the wood.
    Rained all day yesterday, so I have to move all the livestock to day.
    Just got done moving the adult goats. Took longer as the area I moved them into was dense. Had to bust out the scythe! Cows next, then last baby goats.
    BUT, it just started raining . . . again!

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