Ready for the Big One

All I can say is this: If the Cascadia Subduction Zone decides to do its worst, it's good to know that we'll have pasta sauce for an army. Yesterday's day-long task was to finish up the last of the tomatoes. There were enough left for another double batch of pasta sauce and one batch of salsa. That gave me a total of 18 quarts of pasta sauce and 11 pints of salsa. Not bad for three days' work...I guess...it's hard to say. Surely it will be worth it when we're eating that bright fresh tomato-flavored sauce in the long cold dark days of winter. 

Here's how it looks on my pantry shelf. There's enough for us and plenty to share with the kids. And I'll just say that sharing with the kids is worth the work right there.

While the last of the salsa was processing yesterday, I made another batch of Mike's favorite refrigerator pickles too. No processing for them, other than putting them into the refrigerator.

I had in mind to do those from day one, but the all-encompassing work of processing multiple batches of sauce really took me by surprise. It's the largest pile of tomatoes I've ever processed at one time, and I was naive about the level of effort involved. It kept both hands busy for many, many hours. Nevertheless, when you see all these beautiful jars of canned goods on your pantry shelves, it is very gratifying. The pints of salsa are there in the middle.

On the left are jars of tomato jam and tomato chutney. Next to those are various flavors of fruit chutney from last year. Then the salsa and the dilled carrot spears I did earlier. The salsa verde is hiding behind those. Then to the far right are this year's jars of zucchini bread & butter pickles and some zucchini relish from last year. 

Someone asked me what was next, and I was kind of stuck for an answer. We'll have more tomatoes coming on our own plants, and I think I'm just going to dice them up and can them as plain tomatoes for soups and sauces. That won't happen for a week or two, however. 

So, here I am with my hands free. I was awake at 3:00 a.m., and I'm not kidding when I say I've been peeling, seeding, and chopping tomatoes in my sleep. Since I couldn't get back to sleep, I was up at 4:15 a.m. doing needle work. As long as I'm awake, I might as well be doing something. I read my email and checked in on my Facebook friends. When Mike left for work, I fell over on the couch and slept for another hour or so. 

Today is a CSA pick-up day, but aside from that it's NBS (Nothing But Sewing). It's the first chance I've had to attach the 97D foot to Big Bertha. As you can see, the quarter-inch measurement is spot on now. The left side of the foot is a little wider than the previous foot. This is so that it covers the feed dogs on that side. Apparently that was causing a problem with the fabric pulling, although I hadn't experienced that myself.

While I'm giving myself an NBS day, there are a few other things I want to do. For one thing, I've been Jonesing to make an apple pie for two. That was another thing I was thinking I could squeeze in while processing the tomatoes. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. I'll get at that in a little while. What I wanted to do most this morning was make some more leaves for the Blushing Aspens table runner. The next one on the lightbox was this one (remember that I'm working in reverse). It has an extra seam on the left.

I wondered why that was necessary, and so I took a look at Frieda Anderson's creation in the book. You can see that she turned her fabric 90 degrees there. She's working with a gradient fabric, and it seemed like my print wasn't going to make much sense beyond giving me an extra seam.

When you look at the picture of the finished table runner, you can see that there are green pieces in the split leaves.

I decided to try putting the green there, just for grins. I can always change it later if I don't like it. So I made the second leaf, and then sewed the two leaves together. Here's how it's looking. I've included the layout from the book so that you can see what I've done.

There are a few little "filler pieces" scattered throughout the piece, and I'll use green in all of those. 

And that's my morning so far. Time to get back to the sewing machine and the pie. My feet are going to thank me for an easier time of it today.

8 comments from clever and witty friends:

Vroomans' Quilts said...

Your pantry looks wonderful! And nothing better to enjoy those 'fresh' veggies into the winter. The Aspen project is coming along nicely and it is your piece, so play with it in how it makes you happy.

Doreen Auger said...

Your shelves are as gorgeous as your table topper project!!! We have not had a garden for several years and am finding that the farmers' markets around here work out perfect for us. I love that runner pattern!!!!!!

Auntiepatch said...

I love the fabric you are working with! Where did you get it?

Barbara said...

Auntiepatch...you are set at no reply, which explains why I never respond to your comments. Email me, and I'll tell you how to fix it. In answer to your question, it's been in my stash for years, and I do not recall where I got it.

quiltzyx said...

I think the little green 'spacers' are going to look terrific in the runner - good idea!

The pantry does look great. I was wondering what else you might do with the upcoming greenhouse tomatoes - plain ol' tomatoes for soup & chili sounds just fine!

Mrs.Pickles said...

Wow you have been canning up a storm

Kate said...

Wow, you should be set for a while! That's a lot of effort, but I'm sure well worth it.

I love your leaves and that green is just the right color. Hope you've had some more time to stitch.

Brown Family said...

A full pantry of canned goods makes a nice photo!