Friday, January 15, 2021

A Journal of My Days: 1/15/2021

Let's start this week's post in the garden where we'll find the following growing (yes, in January) ...

brussels sprouts



All three of these grew slowly through our fall and now into winter months, they're still growing and there's very little work required.  This allows us to have fresh vegetables for eating and depending on how much we plant, some for preserving.  This is a win, win situation.

I spent a couple of days painting the doors in our home, they needed sprucing up.  I didn't get done but I got a good start and hope to get back to them next week.  Getting these doors painted is my January 'house' project.

I added plain flour to my pantry this week and some organic spices that a store was discontinuing (they were on a really good clearance sale).   

A portion of the seeds I ordered last week arrived.  Here's what I received from Baker Creek: King of the Garden Lima Beans; Little Marvel peas; Armenian Yard-Long cucumbers; Long Island Improved Brussels Sprouts and Giant Musselburgh Leeks.  Have you ordered seeds for 2021 yet?

I spent some time this week writing out on paper what seeds I need to get started in the greenhouse the end of this month.  (Having a written plan is such a game changer for me!)  So far I've got:  bulbing onions; bunching onions; lettuce, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, brussels sprouts and leeks. 

Growing bulbing onions has always been a challenge for me, but I've done quite a bit of research and hope to be better prepared for this growing season.  Here's one of the resources I used for researching.  (Our growing conditions are very similar; that's one of the things I look for when researching gardening and growing different items.)  I'm writing out a step by step plan/timetable for getting the onions from seeds to slicing size onions!  He who fails to plan, plans to fail!

Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise.  Proverbs 6:6

My sewing make for the 2nd week in 2021 is an apron ...

This is the pattern that I used.  It was a really easy and quick sew even though I did it over a period of 3 days from start to finish using small increments of time.  I shared more in depth about the process on A Working Pantry Sews Instagram account.

That's it for this week.  I didn't add a lot to my pantry, instead we rotated items out as we used them making space for when we do have something to add.  We very much practice the cycle of add to the pantry, use out of the pantry and repeat ... add, use, repeat!

How has your week gone, what have you done to add to, use or build up your pantry?  Are you being wise like the ant?


A Working Pantry

She looketh well to the ways of her household … Proverbs 31:27

My pantry is intentional, purposeful, simple, practical, frugal and what works for my family.  It’s the food items and household supplies that keep my household running smoothly ready and available when they are needed.  It’s my contribution to our family’s economy and my work-from-home ‘job.'

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  1. Patsi,
    When I saw your picture on IG, I thought "Oh yum! Brussels sprouts!" Happy to see I was correct :) I love Brussels sprouts, but have never thought to grow them. This week I am concentrating on researching when to plant things where I live (I got a very late start last year and it was my first year)and making a list of what I need from my local nursery.

    I'm glad you said that about your doors. Come to think of it, mine need some sprucing up,too. After a mild December, January decided to be cold, so I'll work on it a little later in the year, perhaps March.

    Not much added to my pantry this week. No sales on what I buy to stock up. That's okay, because I know they are coming :) I've just been using what I have to make room! Instead I've been building up my Christmas pantry and have made more dishcloths (all gifts for my Mother and Mother in Law). I've also been working on a birthday gift for Monday and planning Valentine and Easter gifts.

    Have a blessed week!

    1. Jennilee, it sounds like you and I are doing similar things in different parts of the country. Now is the time to plan and get ready for gardening season. Gardening is a learning process no matter how long we've been gardening.

  2. I love your apron, Patsy. The seeds I ordered from Territorial seeds arrived and I'm thinking about doing some winter sowing that I've been reading about. In one of my containers outside I have a lettuce regrowing that has a large jar over it and it's surviving our cold weather. I decided to try to over winter the rosemary and so far so good. It goes out in the sun during the day and into the garage at night and when the temperature goes below 35 it stays in. It's flourishing and has new growth. The only thing that got added to the pantry this week was avocado oil and more homemade gluten free tortillas. Working on valentines, anniversary and birthday cards for February has been the big project.

    1. Cookie, I'm hearing more and more everyday that seeds are getting harder and harder to get ... and we're only in January. I'm glad you ordered early and that your seeds have arrived. Sounds like you're doing well with your wintering. Sounds like it's time to take it a step further and try some winter sowing. Good luck!

  3. How blessed you are to be able to grow produce in the winter (or at least this winter). Your brussels sprouts look wonderful and are making my mouth water, as is your cabbage!!!! I'm stuck with what the local grocer carries -- mostly imported from Mexico and other Central American locales. I've been "shopping" from my pantry staples and freezer, for the most part, and I'm trying to make only one trip to the store every two weeks, if possible, and am replenishing what I use from the pantry when it goes on sale. Love your apron! I've got to find someone who can do a tune-up on my sewing machine -- I haven't used it in years and don't want it to lock up on first use. Have a wonderful weekend!

    1. Lori, we typically have mild winters so with a little effort we can usually grow something all winter. This apron was very easy to sew up, I hope you find someone to tune-up your sewing machine.

  4. Your winter gardening is doing great and is so inspiring to us who just wait for Spring. I really like that style of apron.

    The grocery deals are back here and we have been taking advantage of the chance to stock up for very little. The discount stores have had some great items as well. We added a generator to our pantry this week. We had never felt a need for one before but that small voice kept nagging at me so I found one half price at Home Depot and ordered it.

    1. Lana, it's always wise to listen to that little nagging voice. Glad you found a good deal on a generator and that you have one. Don't forget the gas, in a grid down situation gas becomes a highly sought item and it's not always available.

    2. This one can run on LP and we always have at least two tanks of it here. I specifically looked for that since we find it hard to store gasoline without finding it has gone bad.

    3. Lana, that was a smart decision!

  5. Hi! Newbie here but I am trying to get a pantry going as well. Thanks for the tips, I love your blog!
    I added 5 jars of PB and 5 jars of Mayo (all on sale) along with 12 months of a supplement that I am finding it hard to get. Now I am trying to figure out how to know how much I use in a month....I suppose putting the date on the item?

    1. Patti, it sounds like you're off to a good start building your pantry, good job! Putting the date on an item is a good way to determine how much of an item you use in any given period of time. Welcome to the Working Pantry family!

  6. That is one lovely cabbage! And the apron is so practical - it really covers you and does a proper job of protecting your clothes.
    Not much happening here at the moment as we are in a State of Emergency and not supposed to leave home except for essentials and the occasional walk for exercise. I am trying to shop only once every 10 to 14 days - last trip I got TP and boxes of kleenex on sale so that was what I added to my pantry.
    Otherwise, I'm eating from my pantry and from my freezer - trying to alternate between the two to keep a balance. I ate a lot of salads this week to ensure that I didn't let anything go bad and I had a couple of vegetarian days to save a bit of money (meat and fish are very expensive here).
    To save money I gave myself just half my usual grocery budget for the month - I have my "allowance" as a buffer if needed since there's not a lot to buy other than groceries. The one area where I really save is on transit - normally my monthly pass costs me $128 - these days I usually only add about $25 per month!

    1. Margie, it sounds like you're doing a good job of being aware, making good decisions and staying on top of what's going on!


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