Dog Days Of Summer + Pictures AND A Recipe!

We were busy bees yesterday! In the morning, I made my first batch of pickles and some rhubarb jam. I’ll include a recipe at the end which will shock you how easy it is. Ok, if that shocks you, we need to talk. A pickle recipe should never be shocking. Amazing, fascinating, perhaps, but not shocking. Anyways, the ASCS tree crew came out to lay down the black tree liner after lunch. During lunch, my husband mentioned he was going to go out and mow/weed whack around the trees, but lo and behold, we heard a noise and it was them unloading their tractor. Luckily, I had also made some homemade strawberry ice cream for dessert; my husband is a true blue Norwegian and needs his dessert after every meal. It’s a good thing he married me-the girl who loves to MAKE those desserts! When they finished their work, I invited them to the porch and gave them all a treat. I love it when America’s youth works, and when that work involves my farm, I really appreciate it by giving them a treat.  When they left, we got busy with the tractor and gravity box, loading wood chips we had from earlier this spring (wait-we had spring?!) when our tree line was cut down. Hubby drove the tractor, son was in the gravity box pushing down the chips, and I was on the ground, orchestrating where the chips fell. Those last two words are from a pun and it fits well here…In my youth, my siblings and I spent many a day in a gravity box; it was fun to play in (yes, we were desperate for entertainment-this was our version of an ‘X box’) until Dad put some crop in there and then we had to shovel it out. Many times it was old, moldy, and downright crusty. We didn’t like the box so much then. Almost three hours later, we were done, tired, and ready to go in and shower. But wait; the garden was calling my name, so I grabbed some kohlrabi and we fertilized the peppers/tomatoes in the new part of the garden. I almost forgot the most important part of the day; when we heard the crew out there, I realized my laundry was hanging outside. Normally, I don’t mind if it’s shirts, pants, etc, but today was whites and you know what that means-undies and tighty-whities everywhere! The tree crew are all former students of mine and I did not want to see my Hanes on facebook so my son ran out there and quickly took them off the line.  Today all three of us are taking off in different directions; hubby back to work, son camping with a friend, and I am heading to Jamestown for a small business seminar focusing on food. Right up my alley! With that in mind, I better sign off. The pictures at the end are of our son and his dog relaxing in the shade while Dad loaded some more chips.  The second is the operation-my husband backed up the entire time since the gravity box was attached to the bucket; normally one would hook it to the back, but the bush hog was on and he didn’t want to disconnect that behemoth.  The third picture is the pickles; back in the day I used to make a canner at a time which can be a pain if you don’t have that many pickles or time. My good friend, Diane, gave me a recipe which makes tasty, crisp pickles in no time flat. I take no credit for this recipe-it’s all hers and I have no idea from where she got it. The recipe will follow the pictures. It’s already Thursday-the weekend is flirting with us!

5 minute Dill pickles

Per one quart: trim and wash cucs and put in the jar
add two cloves of garlic and a sprig of dill
Mix 1/2 c vinegar with 1 tsp sugar and 1 T of salt-pour over cucs
Fill the jar with water and microwave 5 minutes; while doing this, simmer lid on low heat until ready.
Use potholders to get it out of the microwave, wipe the rim clean, screw on the lid, and flip over for 2 hours. The jar will seal itself. You can reuse other pickle jars as long as the lid is sound. Let it sit for two weeks before refrigerating and eating.