Fourteen jars of tomato sauce, a crock of kraut and a load of canned dried pinto beans and, all I can say is, I’m done, at least for today. I do want to share how I did my beans as I found it easy and it used up something I often have no other use for. I did up a batch of tomatoes in my steam juicer yesterday. The pulp went into the Squeezo and became sauce. The tomato water was really hot. I poured it into a pan of dried beans, covered it and today I canned up the soaked beans at 15 pounds of pressure for 90 minutes. The results look good although I expected the beans to absorb more tomato water than they did. The downstairs pantry is beginning to look quite satisfying although there is still a long way to go.

I got a new book today. Karen picked up a copy of How To Grow Winter Vegetables by Charles Dowding for me. The timing is perfect as I’m going shopping for a few (yeah, right. A few. Who am I trying to kid?) packets of seed this week. I have a wish list going. I want multiplying onions, Claytonia and more Asian greens. I have a goal of eating a lot more fresh greens this year by both using my greenhouse to better advantage and growing a few things indoors. He refers to the “hungry gap”, that time from April to June when the root cellar and pantry get mighty thin and the spring greens are not yet ready. I know we suffer from a “green gap”. We have food but really crave something fresh and crunchy.

I was interviewed by the New Jersey Ledger today. It was focused on storm preparation, something that would be funny if it weren’t so tragic since the ship for preparing for this particular disaster has obviously sailed. I hope that more people will put preparedness on their list of things to do now although there isn’t much you can do when a river takes your house out. Grabbing a bug out bag is about it in that case.

The water has receded around here but it left a trail of destruction and you are still wise to check with the state police before heading out as many of the roads are still impassable. One thing for sure. I am going to update my car kit. Many people got stuck in high water, not able to return home for hours.

I was very glad to hear from so many of you. Congratulations to Gardengirl. She cleaned up at the same fair I go to.

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