Relief, the sale is over! I was concerned about the heat and the humidity, being a creature of air conditioning this summer. I survived it well, thanks to the shade tree they carefully selected for me in back of our tent location. Our new set up worked well, giving more space to our customers. Lucky for me I could sit in back of the tent where it was cool, and Hannah, my daughter just inside the tent with the tent walls rolled back for the morning. We enjoy our contact with customers and friends, a bit of a reunion for us, and for me add to it the excitement of getting out of the house for a whole day and taking in all the new creations of our friends!
We returned home early, weary and a bit wet after being rained out in the afternoon. Seventy-five pounds of tree ripened peaches greeted us. Their sweetness was divine, and worked well to revive us, though I went to bed early, so I could be up and ready for canning in the morning. “No rest for the wicked”, my mother used to say, and I know that I must fall into that category as no matter how I try, my energy doesn’t seem to go far enough to do all that I want to do. Perhaps it is my greed for living life to the fullest that is my problem!
Our canning was over in about four hours, thanks to the “many hands making our work light”. Hannah was in charge, dropping our peaches into boiling water. Then after plunging them into ice water, I took over, popping their skins. Delighted to see that their beautiful blush remained, I placed them into another bowl laced with lemon juice until they were sliced by my husband. Back into their lemon water bath, the slices remained until Hannah packed them into jars and poured hot syrup over them, and then finished them off with a water bath canning process. Hannah and I love to can, or perhaps that should read that we love the idea of putting up beautiful fruit to be enjoyed all through the year (39 quarts). Perhaps we are part squirrel?
Our favorite peach recipe has been a fruit crisp. Hannah pours the light syrup from the canned peaches over the other frozen unsweetened fruit that she combines with our peaches; sometimes strawberries, sometimes rhubarb, or blueberries, adding their tartness to her crisp. A mixture of sugar, oatmeal, butter and flour is then added to the top. There is occasionally an extra dish to have for breakfast in the morning! Aren’t fruit crisps or pies really breakfast food? And to think of the hours I spend planning my weight loss diets! The point?
Hannah doesn’t tell us, but she has frozen a tray of sliced peaches to make into homemade peach ice cream. What is a dieter to do? Certainly, I am not to forego this extra treat!
Our Little House is now suffering from our wares spread about in the basement and dining room, drying out from the extra humidity from our day out. Though it poured rain in the afternoon, all but our tent and bunting stayed dry. But our quick departure means a bit of reorganizing before putting our wares on the shelf and no matter how I try, I am not fast enough to keep up with getting everything done.
No, after a sale it is time to sit in my Vacation Chair, made beautiful by its recent addition of a Vacation Chair Pillow made by my friend and fellow artist, Maria Wulf. We were so blessed to have her and Jon make it to our show in the nick of time, as the rain shortened our day.
It was a planned rendezvous where Maria and I were to trade our wares. I so admire her artistic free motion-quilted pillows, among other things. They are story pillows, and she took my Vacation Chair Story and beautifully quilted it into my pillow. I will let you read this pillow yourself, before I go on to tell you the story of my Vacation Chair. In fact, the future telling of my story will likely be redundant, for her pillow tells it all! Thank you Maria, I love it!
Do visit Maria on line at www.fullmoonfiberart.com and be sure to meander through her blogs! You are in for a treat, and don’t miss her husband’s blog at www.bedlamfarm.com/blog. Jon Katz is a New York Times bestselling author and you will soon prefer reading his daily blog news each day, to the news of our wild and wicked world.
Jon’s news makes me reflect on what is really important in my life’s journey. I find his readings gentle and soothing to my soul. It is so delightful to discover another favorite author, and I look forward to packing in more of his books for my winter reading feast and getting better acquainted with his thoughts! I am only sorry that I have not discovered his works years earlier!
Both Jon and Maria are lovely and kind folk that will touch your heart as they have touched mine. Their rural country life style combined with their tender love of their animals and neighbors will warm you and make you feel secure, much like Fred Rogers did when he would put on his sneakers and sweater. Jon welcomes you to his and Maria’s farm and openly and candidly shares his experiences and struggles and validates all that it means to be a truly loving human being.
Their move to their new and smaller farm right down the road is going to make for more delightful reading to be sure! I am glad that my daughter didn’t see Maria’s contest to win the terrifying shower curtain. Like Maria, I prefer something a little more friendly to greet me in the night, like my yellow ducks or rose theme bathrooms. I am enjoying their sharing of their new “old” home decorating experiences! It calls to mind us re-doing our rented farmhouse of years ago, combining our furnishings with the built in history of an old farm house! We are eager to pay them a visit after they get settled, and on-line, Jon and Maria will welcome us all to their new location!