Market Day!

A wonderful way to start the day.

A wonderful way to start the day.

It’s a cool morning.  After the blistering heat and humidity we had here last week, I’m a happy camper.  The van is loaded and we’re off to market in a little more than an hour.  Our market is small, it’s in an old converted barn (my stall is actually a stall) but it’s got a real sense of community.  We’ve been together for a few years now, us vendors, and we look forward to catching up each Saturday as much as anything else.  Lawson and Juanita make me breakfast, Katherine gets my coffee ready in exchange for a giant cookie.  Monic is next to me and her pies are to die for.  Alan and I talk about gardening and homesteading.  Jonathan and Maureen not only have lovely painted glassware, but are two of the most wonderful and kind people I’ve ever met.  It’s a real pleasure hanging out there on Saturdays.  

My booth at the Upriver Country Market in Bass River.

My booth at the Upriver Country Market in Bass River.

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My friend Natalie Richard, from Nourish Moi Health Nut. She’s a holistic nutritionist and sells a variety of local products from New Brunswick producers like Speerville Mills.

One of my most recent projects was wedding favours.  How cool is that?  My friend Helene’s daughter got married and I did mini jams up for her guests.  It was a lot of fun.  I also learned that putting little lid toppers on takes a lot longer than you would think.  But they turned out great.

Tiny jams, ready to be wedding favours.

Tiny jams, ready to be wedding favours.

There they go!  175 mini jars of jam.  Congrats Pam and Mark!

There they go! 175 mini jars of jam. Congrats Pam and Mark!

My vacation time is nearly up and I’m back to work next week.  Doesn’t it feel like you always need another two weeks off?  I have just started getting all my projects done.  The first week was almost just veg out a little and catch up on lost sleep.  The second week is where I start being productive.  So many projects to do outside and summer is so short!  My garden has been hit or miss this year.  Some things are doing well, other things haven’t come up at all, which is kind of frustrating.  We had our first feed of lettuce last night, and the potatoes plants look like they are doing really well in the new potato boxes.  What a neat thing!  I promise pictures and an update on if growing potatoes in boxes works as well as advertised.  So far, so good. 

Time to finish off my cup of tea, wake up the troops and head out.  Hope your day is as full of promise as mine is.  

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Early Morning

 

Beautiful New Brunswick morning

Beautiful New Brunswick morning

It’s a quiet morning.  It’s five am, I’ve had the canner pot heating up now for about a half hour, a load of laundry is on the go.  My husband left for work an hour ago, the kids are sleeping.  I’ve got a sink full of garlic scapes waiting for me to pickle them.  Tomorrow is market.  So, a lot to get done today, hence the early morning.  I used to be a morning show radio announcer, early mornings are not new to me.  But they are beautiful.  Something you tend to forget when you don’t see them for awhile.  The edges of the sky are tinged with pink this morning, the sky is pretty clear, a few birds are singing.  Today will be gorgeous, warm and everything a summer day should be.  Another day to be grateful I live where I do and have the life that I do.  

 

I’ve got a lot of canning projects to work on over the next few weeks.  This morning, pickled scapes.  I am thrilled that it’s time to put fresh things in jars.  I got two bags of scapes yesterday, so into the brine they go and they’ll be ready in a few weeks.

Freshly picked garlic scapes.

Freshly picked garlic scapes.

 It’s not my first fresh pickling session so far this summer.  A friend was generous enough to give me 8 pounds of fiddleheads.  15 pints of pickled fiddleheads later, I’ve only got one jar left.  I also got a hot tip on a great fiddlehead picking location for me to check out next spring.  Bonus!!

Fresh fiddlheads, waiting to be pickled.

Fresh fiddlheads, waiting to be pickled.

The finished product, pickled fiddleheads.  They look pretty!

The finished product, pickled fiddleheads. They look pretty!

 Rhubarb was excellent this spring, and not only do I have lots in the freezer for jam, but I tried out a new recipe and have rhubarb bbq sauce.  Sweet, thick, sticky….perfect for ribs.  

 

Rhubarb bbq sauce in the making

Rhubarb bbq sauce in the making

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A present from my dad. He picked me a garbage bag full of rhubarb from Memere’s patch.

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Rhubarb bbq sauce, canned and cooling.

 

Next up, white wine jelly, dill pickle relish and, well, it’s strawberry season.  I picked a flat yesterday, and will pick probably 4 or 5 more before next week is out.  

Strawberries are ready!

Strawberries are ready!

There is lots to do this time of year.  I’ve got markets on Saturday mornings in Bass River.  And I did one last Saturday in Rexton at the Lions Hall.  We had a post tropical storm, and people still came out to the market.

At the market

At the market

 Maybe because we were one of the last places with power?  Our home phone is out and will be for a few days yet.  But we are much better off that others.  Our power at home was out for 24 hours, but friends in Fredericton won’t be connected again until next Wednesday or Thursday.  That’s nearly 2 weeks without hydro.  Wow.  A long haul.  

The sky is much lighter now. I can see that today may be the day that my lillies open, the pods look like they are nearly there now.  I suppose I should get my jars washed and the brine ready for the scapes.  My hands smell like garlic from trimming the ends.  I’ve got laundry to fold, bees to check on, giant cookies to bake….pitter patter, let’s get at ‘er.