Everything in a Day

There was much to do yesterday with all the produce from the Farmers Market. After spending some time stitching on Buelah, I got straight to work on the canning. The Sweet Cherry Barbecue Sauce needed to cook for a while. It pretty much makes itself. All you need to do is mix it up and then give it some time.

It cooks, lid on, for about 20 minutes, and then it's allowed to cook down until it's reduced by about half. That took about half an hour more. The Spicy Dilled Carrot Spears are a raw pack...only they aren't...I forgot I was supposed to blanch them for three minutes before packing them into jars. Doh! It didn't matter. They process for 20 minutes, and (having already tasted them) they turned out fine without blanching. (Blanching is recommended, however.)

My yield was six 12-ounce jars. About the time those were finished, the barbecue sauce was ready to be pureed and packed into half pint jars. It's really very good. My goal is to make as much of our food at home from fresh ingredients, and so I'm happy to find this recipe. It's pretty easy, and since it's cooked, I don't see why frozen cherries wouldn't work just as well as fresh. My yield was 5 half pint jars, and that should keep us in barbecue sauce for a good long time. 

Now I'm anxious to get some boneless, skinless chicken thighs and grill those babies up.

While that was processing, I got to work on the raw pack Pickled Radishes. These are positively addictive. After having made them last year, I was anxious for the radishes to return to I could make more. Aren't they pretty in their jars?

My yield on those was 7 half pints. So yummy.

By then, my feet were tired. I took some time to ice my knee, and then I was ready to get started quilting Snips and Snails.

First I needed to decide what threads to use. The quilting isn't going to be at the forefront of this, and so I wanted to choose some colors that would fade into the background. Starting with the overalls, I kind of liked this variegated thread from Coats & Clark.

I'm documenting this next label as much for myself as I am for you. Sorry that label isn't a little easier to read. That's the downside of storing your thread spools on pegs.

Here's what the color looks like, and it fades into the background pretty well on the overalls.

They are outlined all around and then just quilted with some wiggly lines.  It didn't take long to finish them.

Frankly, my heart wasn't in this. I was tired after canning. The sun was shining and I wanted to get outside for a bit.

Apparently, the squirrels are just barely tolerating us these days, especially since we put the kibosh on their partying. This one sat perfectly still, apparently believing he could fool me into thinking he was just a little squirrel statue. 

Amazingly, he let me get very close to take his picture. This one is going into a line-up where I'll ask the other animals of the land which squirrel was guilty of chewing through the seed bin.

Smitty had a bead on something.

Shush! You're blowing my cover!

The squirrels like to squeeze under the railing on the deck here and drink water from the rain gutter below. This one was head down, tail up, and didn't hear Smitty creeping up on him. Imagine his surprise when he turned around.

Mike thinks Smitty and the squirrels have worked out some kind of truce. This one just turned tail and ran and Smitty didn't chase after it. He was really just curious and sniffed at its tail before the squirrel noticed him. Sadie watched all of this from the Big House.

Walking around the garden, I noticed that a few of the echinacea are getting ready to bloom.

I'm absolutely amazed that these survived our cold winter, having been just seedlings last year. Also, the daylilies are starting to open.

As I rounded the corner, this squirrel greeted me, not seeming the least bit concerned about my presence.

When I went back in the house, I noticed Sadie was in a rather pensive mood.

She's sensing a ripple in the Feline Force of Portland. Have you heard? Molly and Buddy have moved in across town. We're all wondering how this will affect things in Catlandia.

This morning I took the final stitches on Buelah. She looks less scary now that she's been covered in thread.

She's supposed to have some scissors hanging on the lanyard around her neck. Checking my button supply, I didn't have anything appropriate and so I went perusing the buttons on the Chickadee Hollow Designs website. She has scads of cute buttons. I found three sets that would be appropriate. 

I couldn't make up my mind.

They were all cute.

Figuring I'd use them eventually, I bought all three sewing sets.

The next time I work on the Bag Ladies (beginning July 1st), I'll be stitching Mildred. Does it look as if she's wearing Birkenstocks with her socks? How positively Portland of you, Mildred! When I was an employed social worker, Birkenstocks were practically part of the uniform. 

If you're stitching along, please stitch whichever bag lady you like in July.

And now, we return you to your regularly scheduled embroidery block, already in progress.

Mike and I have as a goal to get out and do some walking today. Since it's already 10:15 a.m., you can see that we're not exactly jumping out the door to get started. As I'm writing this, I can hear him downstairs snoring. Morning naps are a favorite part of his retirement agenda. When I get up from here, I'll do a little banging around and get him rousted out. Walking...we're really gonna do it. After that, I'll get back to my quilting.

12 comments from clever and witty friends:

Judy H said...

I agree...retirement = morning naps! I am up early 430-5 am before the rest of the house. I do my 'computer' stuff, fix breakfast, get the rest of the day going for the rest of the household and then nap!

Kristin in Alaska said...

I have a spool of thread like that, so I took the stickers off and placed them lightly on the thread, just in case I need the info at some time.

Debbie said...

Smitty and the squirrel gave me a big giggle.....a real stand off for now, but one day it will be Smitty 1/ squirrel 0! All your canning is so pretty and brings back lots of summer time memories.

Lyndsey said...

Your canning looks very colourful and is going to be delicious to eat. Thank you for identifying that chickadee Hollow have the scissor novelty buttons.I'd been trying everywhere in the UK but they always came up too big. Not that I'm at a point of needing them yet but by the time they arrive I'll be finished. You really have got some very bold and cheeky squirrels in your garden.

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I love pickles and variety of pickles, but not enough to start canning Thank You. Your wild outside cat (BOB) must have another territory or you wouldn't have that many squirrels. I am behind on my ladies - need a week dedicated to hand stitches only.

Dana Gaffney said...

I love the picture of Smitty and the squirrel, I expected a different end to the story and almost stopped reading, maybe just his presence will deter some of them although after finding such a great party house I think you're in for a war.

piecefulwendy said...

Oh my, that food you'e prepared looks tasty! I hope to try the radishes and the carrots this summer. I haven't canned in years, but why not? Smitty and the Squirrel is a great shot -- I can't believe there wasn't at least a chase! I'm not sure whether I'd be amused or annoyed at the little buggers for being so at home with you all. Mike might need a bb gun for fun and games. Your quilt is coming along nicely, and I like Mildred's Birkies (my shoe of choice)!

Goofin' Off Around the Block said...

All of your canning is making me hungry this morning...especially that cherry bbq sauce. Love your snips and snails quilt. It's adorable! It's been fun looking at all your project updates. --Andrea

margaret rosenbrook said...

Judy, you need to get Mike out there shooting those squirrels. They make a mighty tasty meal.

Brown Family said...

Your squirrels are bold little beggars! Smitty must have some agreement with them to get that close!

Your canning looks so pretty. Did you post the recipe for the barbecue sauce?

That thread looks great on the overalls.

My husband is finishing up the quilting on another quilt tonight, so I guess I will be binding tomorrow!

Kate said...

The cherry bar-b-que sauce sounds amazing and looks great. You'll definitely have lots of color in your diet. Seems that Mike has really embraced retirement. Hope you are enjoying it too.

quiltzyx said...

Oy! The squirrels are getting cheekier & cheekier!! But it does make for nice photos for us to see at least.

All the canned goods do look good, especially the cherry BBQ sauce. Mmmmm.

Great thread for Snips & Snails overalls indeed.

One thing I miss about being unemployment is napping during the day!