New blueberries

We went to Dexter Blueberry Farm again today to pick our first batch of blueberries for this year. It's at $1.60 per pound this year. There is a lot out there begging to be picked. If you live in the area, we strongly recommend this farm for blueberries picking. It's huge and clean. We picked enough to make a couple of batches of jam, a few blueberry pies, miscellaneous cooking and baking, and for munching.

I have washed and dried them. I have one blueberry pie cooling on the counter, a couple of bags of pie filling measured and in the freezer, a couple of bags for miscellaneous use in the freezer, a batch of jam already in their half pint jars, sealed and cooling and another batch of jam cooking on the stove. I put some berries in a container in the fridge for munching.

A batch of jam cooking.

This is the blueberry jam without pectin recipe that I used last year. We really liked it, so I made it again for this year's reserve.

The first batch sealed and cooling.

Ah... I just heard the first loud ping from the jars. Sweet. Oh..there goes another!

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7/30/2010 Update

The garden is doing well. Everything is growing. We have a few eggplants bearing fruits. We have two cabbages of decent sizes. I have one zucchini log and a few smaller ones. And cucumbers.

We also have a lot of grape tomatoes ripening. The celebrity tomatoes are growing like granny smith apples or golden deilicious apples sizes. They're huge.

We have to thank the lady who lived here about 2-3 decades ago. She worked the soil well. We haven't fertilized nor spray anything on these plants. It's all in the soil.

Other than gardening, I have been sloooowwwwwly working on the diapers orders that I have. Received another sizeable order since last week. I'll be mailing these out tomorrow so that'd make room for the new order.

For this order, the customer sent in the fabrics and 5 diaper cut outs that she had. She asked me to sew them for her. :)

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Using up frozen fruits

A few weeks ago, I finished another round of the Anne of Green Gables book. The author sure put in a lot of mouthwatering food in the story.

One thing stuck out to me.

Raspberries cordial.

For one thing, raspberry is one of my favorite fruit. I also love cordials. We always have orange cordial when I was growing up.

So it got me to wondering what a raspberry cordial would taste like.

I googled (what a wonderful invention it is!) Raspberries Cordial. Lo and behold, it pulled a LOT of Anne of Green Gables Raspberries Cordial recipes.

We have one bag of frozen raspberries left from last year's season. It turned out to be the right amount needed for the recipe I was using.

1.25 lbs of raspberries, unfrozen
1 and 1/4 cup sugar
4 cups boiling water
2 lemons for juice

Boil the berries and sugar together. Mash the berries. Once the mixture is boiling and is watery, strained the mixture to get rid of seeds. Add boiling water and juice of 2 lemons to the mixture. Stir and put in the refrigerator to cool. It should be good to drink after a couple of hours.

It smells good. It looks good. I guess we'll have to wait and see what it would taste like.

Of course now we don't have anymore frozen raspberries. We picked enough last year for a year's supply of jam (stil have one jar left), muffins, smoothies, and miscellaneous stuff. I was hoping that the amount we picked would be enough to last a year and it did. The raspberry season started last week at the farm close to where we live. It's perfect timing.

We did go out this morning and picked only a couple of quarts. There's plenty of reds but plenty more of white berries on the vines. We are planning on going back next weekend and pick for our yearly supply.

We'll do the same with blueberries too. I have a half bag left in the freezer. We'll pick to stock next weekend, too.

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Lightening up the work load?

Surprise! In the middle of May 2010, we found out we were expecting another child. It was confirmed last week with an ultrasound.

A few more days and I'll be in second trimester.

I have been slowing down since finding out in May. Which is one reason why this blog rarely gets an update regularly during the past month or so.

I did what is necessary in the garden. That's it. I am still sewing but only sewing those custom orders. I haven't sewn any extra.

I very much want to make a couple of dresses for my daughter. I have the fabric. Just trying to squeeze out the energy to do is a bit beyond me at the moment. However, the fatigue phase seems to be passing by. I am slowly getting back more energy. So maybe the dresses project is not yet a loss cause.

I went out to the garden while waiting for the grill to heat up tonight. The beans are coming in heavily. I picked a couple of handfuls, washed, dried and put them in the freezer. In two to three days, I should be able to pick the rest to fill a big bowl.

Sarah has a couple of cucumbers ripe enough for picking. A couple of eggplants have blooms. A few zucchini buds, a few more cucumber buds.

Now, the tomatoes.

I guess the new strips aren't daunting to the plants. They're growing taller and taller. The stems are laden with fruit. A lot of fruit. Yes! I will have lots of tomatoes to make sauce with later in the season.

I picked a cucumber and a handful of grape tomatoes for tonight's salad.

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Reaping what we sow

No, it has nothing to do with qouting the bible. Not in that sense, anyway.

We had the kids picked a few red roma tomatoes today:

I grilled most of them for dinner tonight. Yummy!

We worked in the garden a bit more today. Just weeding, tying up tomato plants' stems so they are off the ground. It looks like there will be a lot of tomatoes ripening soon. We have a decent size cucumber growing right now. I'll pick it in a couple of days. Sarah has two cucumbers growing on her plant. She's stoked about it.

These pictures were taken this afternoon.

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Another birthday

My son turns 3 today. I made him a cake even if we're not having a party. It's only fair since I've always made one for his sister.

Now, it's really hot and humid today. It really makes it hard for the heavy whipping cream frosting to stay stiff! I pretty much just slapped the frosting on the cake really quickly, wrote happy birthday, made a couple of cars and put the cake in the fridge. Just so the frosting wouldn't melt off the cake. :D

It's orange cake. The frosting is just whipped cream frosting (3 cups heavy whipping cream, 1 tablespoon sugar, half a pack of instant vanilla pudding mix). Not too sweet. Which is good. This is our favorite kind of cake frosting.

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Bread and butter

I am always on the look out for bread recipe. I found this recipe at Joy the Baker. The recipe is for two crusty brown loaves.

It is incredibly easy and only needs 4 ingredients; water, flour, salt and yeast. That's it.

Dough ready to be set aside for rising.

Waiting for the oven to be ready for baking.

All ready, piping hot.

We sliced one loaf almost immediately. It's so good!

That loaf is already gone.

I never used specifically labeled "Bread Flour" before but this time I did. It made a world of difference. It is worth it to spend $2 more per sack of flour just to have good bread at home.

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I have been really busy the past month or so. I haven't updated this blog much. :D It's good being busy though.

At the moment, I have two orders of 15 diapers (diapers and covers) each.

It's also summer. My daughter is out of school at the moment. So, the kids takes presidence over anything else.

The garden is a bit neglected but it is growing. We harvested a few tomatoes already. We haven't been weeding as much as we should. It's a busy season at work for husband and myself. I guess that's what we will do this weekend. Weeding and weeding.

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