Saturday, July 7, 2012

It's too hot to write...

I am SO glad that we have an air conditioner!!! Our temperatures have been soaring for well over a week now, and I am melting....melting...melting.

We have had some back aches in the house this week, but no sickness. Paul and I are both hobbling around and neither one of us can comfortably get baby out of his crib or into it.

Anyway, it has been a hard week. Not much of anything has gotten done. It never ceases to amaze me that kids will set up a play restaurant in the basement and play all day... while the real-life kitchen and dining room are a wreck. Can someone explain this phenomenon to me?

Garden update:
- squash bugs are destroying my zucchini plants again this year! My arch nemeses! We are trying as many organic repellents as we can. But, we are careful because I LOVE honeybees. And, so many organic repellents/killers will hurt bees.
- even though we started seeds indoors and had tomato plants out early, we have not yet gotten one silly tomato!!! I thought that the deer were eating them while they were still green. I got on my hands and knees and investigated all my plants. NO caterpillars, nothing. Someone was just eating the tomatoes. And, then I realized that the plants were close together and that a deer could not navigate that without damaging the rows of tomatoes. So, then I decided it was raccoons. I ruled out rabbits, because no leaves were touched at all.
Well, last Saturday I was watering the garden and our dog, Daisy, went and grabbed a green Roma. I was so mad that I sprayed her with the hose. And, as soon as we could we put a fence up around my tomatoes! It is not pretty, but it keeps the dog out.

We did not start our new school year yet. Back pains put a stop to everything! A friend sent us Latina Christiana I, so I am going to try that with Rebecca and see how she does.

Other than that... I am just trying to stay cool! We midwesterners are not used to 100degree temperatures for weeks at a time. I think I might be acclimating, but it is a slow process. And, I have NO intention of turning off the AC anytime soon.

I will put up some pictures when I find the camera...


MamaHen said...

Okay, I am soo with you about the heat. It is hot and humid here, but I am very thankful for the rain we have had. It was so dry there for awhile.

And that is super-strange about the dog eating the tomatoes. I have never heard of that.

About the backaches-could you be dehydrated? I know my back sometimes will hurt and I can usually try to double up on my water and it helps. Just a thought.

About the tomatoes. I do can some, but mostly I freeze mine. I dice my in a small processor (skin and all) and they become diced, but there is still plenty of liquid. I like that bc I use mine mostly for soups and salsa. I don't cook mine either, I just freeze them directly into quart bags. When I need them I pull them out and let them defrost. Of course I have to cook them thoroughly, but it is no big deal bc it is for soups or chili. I can't tell you that is the RIGHT way to do it, but its the way I do it and I haven't had any problems. I'll try to get you a copy of the tomato pages from the Ball Blue book and mail them to you.

Bean said...

We have been really hot here in Indiana too, a week of 100 temps, we are also in a severe drought. Keeping our vegetable gardens alive has been a challenge this year. Our yields are down significantly. The very warm spring started things of promisingly, then a couple late frosts really did a number on our strawberries, and we will not have concord grapes this year. Peas like it cool and wet, so our yield was not much. Most plants are stunted, we have watered, but we grow so much it really is time consuming. But this is the all part of the rich pattern of gardening, each year is different, we dream, plan, and then by July have to face reality :) But you know what there is always next year...
As for tomatoes, I can ours, we usually put up about 80 quarts. I simply peel and quarter the tomatoes and plop them into the jars along with a little lemon juice and salt (recipe from Ball Blue Book) then hot water bath them.
I then use the tomatoes throughout the year for soups, stews, spaghetti sauce, salsa, and whatever else might need them. I used to make spaghetti sauce and then can it but found it took a ton of tomatoes.
Now I just grab a quart of canned tomatoes, add 2 small cans of tomato paste, onion, garlic, basil, sugar and a little oil, and voila in about 15 minutes I have sauce for spaghetti, pizza, or lasagna. Salsa, again is easy, dump a jar of tomatoes in the food processor and add onion, cilantro, lime juice, garlic, salt, hot pepper, and whirl it around and yummy salsa is ready to go.
I am thankful to report our temps cooled off, yesterday we had a high of 90, today it will be 86, so much nicer, but alas no rain.

Please pray for rain for all of those affected by drought.


Mama in Uganda said...

Thanks for the update.

Blessings and joy,

Bethany in mid-MO said...

MamaHen - Thank for the thoughts on freezing tomatoes. And thanks for the magazines. They have been fun to flip through. As for my back, I get this bulging disc condition annually. I went to the chiropractor again today and I can walk again now. It is good to be able to move after about a week on bed rest/couch rest.

Bean - Thanks for your thoughts on tomatoes too.