Years ago I was listening to someone, I cannot recall now, talking about a one year plan, a five year plan and a 10 year plan, this person got my attention.
I began to do this planning. One year is short term goals that you want, five is where you would like to be and ten is being there and looking back at how much you have accomplished.
With each year making new goals you can see how things change.
In five years everything could have changed and you have not a new way to look at life.
I am at the ten year and look back goal, the so called end game, Life is even bigger than I had first imagined, I am further along than I imagined yen years ago.
Now I need to think about the next ten years and where do I want to be.
The Homestead :
I am managing things around here better than expected, the grass is always the biggest pain in the butt.
It has once again this year invaded the garden, I just mow down the rows now, careful not to mow over a plant.
Being the end July its time to think about winter, food and warmth.
I think all things happen for a reason, with that being said the downed trees from last month, and cut up this month, should be taken into consideration. Fire wood.
The old saying is "if you don`t grow it and can it in the summer, you`ll go hungry in the winter." This saying makes me think, if they did it without a grocery store, I should be able to do this too.
From The Garden :
My garden is at the point that I`m not just getting enough produce to stop shopping and is moving into the "I got enough to start canning."
This year the okra is hip/ waist high to me and I have picked and cooked a couple times, I have enough from the last picking to share, but its just beginning for the okra, its always the late summer early fall pleasure and to chop and freeze or make pickled okra.
The tomatoes are small this year, I have no idea why because I have planted several types and all are supposed to be big slicing tomatoes except the Roma. Well, it is what it is so I will make more sauce that chopped stewed and salsa, maybe a smooth sauce with the flavor of salsa?
The bell peppers have been feeding us for a month now and now I am freezing and using them in recipes for canning.
Squash. I am not in love with squash but others in the house love it, its not doing great but is providing summer meals.
I am not sure but I am thinking the cucumbers will be the star of the harden this year. I have ate many cucumbers so far and am now into the canning stage.
Still drying mint, sage and basil. The other herbs are growing so slow.
Figs are beginning to ripen.
The stockpile :
Besides making all the jelly from what the homestead has offered, I have added sweet pickle relish to the stockpile so far, I made six pints just this past weekend. I plan to make six more and that should last a long time.
Speaking of jelly I made something very different, I just had to try it! Corn cob jelly. Since this seems to be the year of making something from the woods or from scraps for the sweet and unusual.
To describe the flavor is actually hard but I will try. It was a soft set jelly and some say its taste like honey but not to me, it has a light corn flavor but the sweetness to me is like a strong corn syrup. Its not bad at all! I just had a tablespoon with breakfast.
The Learning :
I am planning to learn how to make yogurt at home, Tony eats this stuff daily, although I don`t eat much of any dairy I will have a yogurt on occasion. Since milk is usually .98 at Aldi and the Oxford, Alabama walmart store it could be a cheaper way to do yogurt.
I have been working just about daily on the new store stuff but I have to clam up and not speak much about it because I have a saboteur, it was clear she was jealous of my progress because of the recipes she put online for my potential customers to read and she added "why buy, make your own" but that will not stop me because I have kept the best proven recipes for myself, and of coarse to sell. Sometimes the recipes offered online suck and they will not tell you they suck because they are making money with those sites and videos. I learned the hard way and wasted so much because it did not work or was not a product I would not use, much less sell.
I actually have enough made to sell around town. We`ll see how life goes the next few weeks.
How is life on your homestead? I would like to know.
By Andria Perry
Photos by Andria Perry