Summer Canning

Our current temperature in Kansas is roughly the surface of the sun with like 1,000% humidity. So why wouldn’t I want to haul out all my canning supplies and heat up my kitchen? I was having some anxiety related to world events and general unrest so I felt the need to make something. That feeling turned into one batch of strawberry rhubarb jam, two batches of blackberry jam, two batches of peach jam and one batch of strawberry jam.

Jellybean helped me off and on saying that he “didn’t like the hot and sticky parts”. Which we all know is almost the whole process. He did like how dark and ruby colored the blackberries cooked down into. All this fruit, except for the strawberries, was homegrown from my families gardens. To me this gave me a grounded feeling and a connection to people I can’t visit right now.

This project did make me feel a bit better. I did have a tiny bit of frustration when my peach jam didn’t set and I had to haul all the supplies back out to re-cook and add more pectin. But the re-do process did seem to work. Now I have some jelly stores for the next year and enough to give as gifts this holiday season.

How is everyone else coping lately?

Bring Me All Your Butter

We spent what we hope was a responsibly safe 4th of July with my parents. We kind of have made our own little “bubble” and see few people but each other up close and within breathing distance. Everyone in my family is getting really good at cleaning…even the littles. And we stayed up WAAAAY too late shooting big fireworks and chasing fireflies.

So Sunday morning, after the 4th of July, I found myself awake with PB with the rest of the house was snoozing. So PB and I raided the fridge to make breakfast. Being good hearty Midwestern folk I made a well rounded country breakfast. I turned leftover baked potato into hash browns, used up the last of the sausage gravy, cooked off some thick sliced bacon and fried a perfect medium egg in butter.

Forget yarn….bring me all your butter!!

Getting A Little Dust On Our Boots

Restrictions here in Kansas are easing despite our cases of COVID still rising. I have opted for my family to err on the side of caution so we are largely doing the same routines we did during Shelter in Place. However, my kids and I really needed to shake things up so we decided to do that carefully. We loaded up the van and spend a quiet weekend at my parents house as a “vacation”.

We opted not to interact with other extended family or public spaces. We played in the yard and around the house with lots of trips around town in my dad’s golf cart to get some wind in our hair and dust on our boots (or bare feet in Jellybean’s case).

One evening we stopped to say hey to the local high school’s chickens. They are definitely missing their kids! We rolled up to their “coup” after they had been put up for the night to protect them from predators. They came RUNNING to us. So the kids and I talked to them and threw in some fresh grass and chicken feed. It was quiet and simple and a nice way to spend time as a family.

Note: These chickens are most certainly well cared for despite schools being closed since March. They are fed, watered and set to graze daily by the ag teacher and her family. They even collect the eggs and hand out to local families in need. No animals were harmed in the making of this blog post 🙂

More Gratuitous Baking Content

Jellybean looked at me this week and said “we should make cookies”. And I said why not! So here is more gratuitous quarantine baking content.

We made pretty standard cookies except for Jellybean insisted on adding the whole bag of chocolate chips. He then put fork marks in them like peanut butter cookies because why not? He also squished the completely flat. So we have very nice and crisp cookies.

They lasted all of 3 days. But to be fair I only baked 1/2 the dough and froze the other half or another baking day. I hope future Rachelle enjoys the work of past Rachelle, lol.

Happy Baking!!

Happy Curls

Today’s post is just a little cheer to share you my blog friends. Because we surely could all use a little more happy in our life right now. PB got out of her bath and let me brush her curls. (That is a rare feat with her having her own opinions about her hair at two years old.)

She has the most amazingly curly blonde curls and they are just so crazy and perfect. I love her more than anything the world.

Meanwhile….social distancing and no school for the next few weeks has my basement like….

Somewhere in that chaos is the remote control to the TV and a milk cup that is souring as we speak. I’m heading in guys…wish me luck!

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends. May your pants be stretchy, your wine glass full and your family be well behaved. I’m helping my dad cook this year while my mom chases the tiny humans. I feel like we both scored a win with this deal. No knitting content today as I’m off to start peeling potatoes and mixing up stuffing ingredients.

chicken close up dish food

Photo by Public Domain Pictures on Pexels.com

I’ll see you guys on the flip side tomorrow….probably with actual knitting content. I have some really cool stuff started!!

Knitting and Pumpkins

It’s fall in Kansas and finally starting to actually feel like it. On a recent trip to my hometown area we went to the local orchard/farm for their fall festivities. It was a bit nippy in the morning so we all pulled on the woolies.

I was wearing my Kindness KAL 2019 shawl and Jellybean took my Kindness Double Cuff Hat because he was “too cold”. They only lasted about 45 minutes before the sun made it too warm but it sure felt nice to be cozy for a bit!

We had a BLAST at the Depot Market. We ran the corn maze, the hay bale maze, picked out pumpkins to carve, rode the hay rack ride, ate homemade ice cream, drank apple cider slushes and pretended to drive an antique truck. We barely made it home for lunch before the grandparents and the tiny humans needed a nap!

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It feeds my soul to get out of the city once in awhile and plant my feet in some real dirt. The air may be filled with allergens but it sure smells good on a fall morning. And pumpkins as far as the eye can see doesn’t hurt either!

 

Crafting In Chaos

 

This is my life. Messy basement, five year old crowding me in my knitting chair, knitting podcast on TV, and knitting in my lap. Not the most ergonomic of positions but I can’t turn down a snuggle…now matter how much he pokes me with his elbow and makes me watch PBS Curious George games.

I’ve add the fifth and final color to my Progression Shawl. It’s the purple end of the fragmented rainbow. Jellybean tells me it’s his favorite. I have a TON of stitches on the needle now so the yarn is disappearing quickly now. I’m optimistic that I can finish this maybe this weekend?

That is unless snuggles get priority. Happy knitting!!

Cake By Jellybean

Jellybean from time to time likes to bake and cook with me. Sp during his birthday shenanigans we made a birthday cake. We made the cake together and then I added the base coat of chocolate frosting.

He then went to town with every color of frosting, every decorating frosting tip I could round up, and literally every variety of sprinkle we own. He wanted to make it look like “trash” and not the derogatory kind. He was thinking a la Oscar the Grouch. I think he nailed it!

Then he proceeded to grab my phone and take “beautiful” photos of it.  He concentrated SUPER and hard and I stood off to the side laughing till I cried. My kid is something else and I wouldn’t trade him for anything. So I’ll just leave you with a few of his cake glamour shots….

P.S. it was also delicious!