Okay. I know it’s silly but I do like to come up with clever names for my blog titles but some days it’s a challenge. Yesterday was one of those good days, bad days in my preparedness life. First the good news.

The good news. I put up 7 jars of pickles. The bad news. I had one and they are sour. They are supposed to be bread and butter but these were just not sweet. Not such a tragedy. They will still taste great on a burger.

The good news. I put up 14 jars of spaghetti sauce. The bad news. My canner top is warped! I can’t get it to close properly. I still have my old canner but I need this one for the canning workshop I am teaching on the 17th of September.

The good news. My friend, the peak shrink came over to pick up the jars for my milk.  The bad news. I had to feed a gallon of regular, store bought milk to the pigs because my kids like the raw stuff so much that they left the store stuff and it was going bad. My DH bought it without knowing I had a milk delivery scheduled. I can buy farm direct milk for $2.50 a gallon. The store sells processed milk for well over $5.00 a gallon. It is a sin what is happening to our milk farmers. In the coming hard times, that sill be something that changes.

The good news. After dinner, I was hot and cranky. I had literally stood over a hot stove all day so Bruce suggested we go hiking at a forest preserve not far fro our home. We came home with a gallon of blueberries and a sack of mushrooms. The bad news. There is no bad news. I am munching a blueberry muffin right now and the rest are in the freezer and tomorrow night we will have my kid’s favorite meal-homemade pasta with mushroom wine sauce.

It is supposed to be really hot this week. I do so hope that some of my garden will come along. As it stands now, the melons aren’t happening, with the exception of the delecata, the winter squash is worse and I have little hope for pumpkins. Lat year we harvested 30 pumpkins, this year, I think we will lucky to get one. This has made me look at my cellar with a very critical eye, especially with so many looming crisis ahead. I developed a shopping list to fill in the cracks that are usually supplied by my garden. Canned pumpkin is a terrific food for storage. It is loaded with important vitamin A and makes a wonderful bread that is a meal in itself with added raisins and walnuts.

I have some wonderful friends. We have a bunch of plans for the coming months. We are planning a cheese fest a couple of times a month. We all use raw milk and are busy learning all we can about turning it into cheese. I happen to live a couple of miles fro the Cheese Queen, Ricki Carroll, the author of Home Cheese Making. I asked Bruce if he would make me a cheese press as this is necessary for making hard cheeses. A good hard cheese will last just about forever, especially when waxed. We also plan to get into wine making in a very big way. We will do some foraging as long as the weather holds and do as much cooperatively as we can.

When it comes to being prepared, goodfriends are worth everything. I mentioned in a post that I was looking for stewing hens that I can afford. My friend, Kathy, called and said she was getting some chicks delivered and would raise 10 for me at cost. How to you count the value of friends like that? You can’t. You can only be grateful. The good news.

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