Years ago, I discovered that the cheapest and easiest (well, sort of–canning is hot, hard work) way to have a full pantry was to raise/grow and can, dry or freeze as much food as possible for my family so that we were ‘Food Secure’.

By doing this, not only did I know that I had enough feed to feed my kids but I’ve always known exactly what was in the food my family consumed.

It’s a late afternoon in July as I write this.  The multitudes of birds in the shelterbelt and backyard trees are singing their evening songs as a gentle breeze cools my face after the heat of the day.   Tonight, the sky is clear blue and quiet without the distant rumble of black clouds and the crackle of streaks of white lightning zigzagging across the horizon.

The two latest batches of baby kittens have come out of their hiding places among the peonies and roses to race and tumble as they play games in the front yard–well away from Miss Maggie, the Shetland sheepdog.

I hear our pair of wild Canadian geese talking to each other as they pass overhead, en-route to their nighttime resting place on the big dam below the house.  I haven’t seen any little goslings this year, and I’m afraid that the snapping turtles may have made lunch out of the baby geese. But then, this is nature’s way and a part of our country world.
Many of the ranchers are trying to finish getting the year’s hay crop under wraps (baled up) and farmers are preparing for the grain harvest. Many long days are spent going over and repairing machinery so that when the weather decides to cooperate, they can move.

One thing for sure, each and every day is different living here in the country.  I’ve spent the morning pulling weeds in the garden and the flowerbeds–they sort of got away from me with all the wet weather–but the weeds never did quit growing!  With all the extra rain, I find it hard to use the tiller. It’s just too muddy and I’m too dang old for mud pies!
I do have some tomato plants with tiny tomatoes, and the pumpkins are blooming and running all over the garden and over the fence so I have hopes of a few things.  Anything will be better than last year when we had two terrible hailstorms that took gardens, grain fields, hay meadows and pastures. We do not need that again!

A whole year’s income wiped out in 24 minutes is hard to swallow, and you hope the banker is in an understanding mood when you have to extend that loan for an extra year… Pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again.

When the temperature gets over 85°, I head for the house and concentrate on my much belated ‘Spring Cleaning in August list’. I clean closets, dresser drawers, wash walls, scrub out the ‘crooks and nannies’ (nooks and crannies) and get ready for canning season. The price of groceries keeps going up and up, and once again, the packages are getting smaller and smaller.

Years ago, I discovered that the cheapest and easiest (well, sort of–canning is hot, hard work) way to have a full pantry was to raise/grow and can, dry or freeze as much food as possible for my family so that we were ‘Food Secure’.

By doing this, not only did I know that I had enough food to feed my kids but I’ve always known exactly what was in the food my family consumed–from the grass fed beef we raise, the free range/running chickens and their eggs, the milk and cream when we had a milk cow and of course, all of the home raised vegetables and fruits we put up.

My canned goods, both home-raised and purchased, take up some shelf space in the storage rooms, but I know I can survive for quite a while without going to a grocery store. I may be darn sick of beans and cornbread, but I will survive, with a full pantry and the feeling of being ‘food secure’. How about you? After all, it’s YOUR money!
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(This was sent in by a subscriber–thanks, LP from MN–and contains lots of useful information that works.)
‘Til Next Time,
Paula