Exhaustion finds Peace

The boys used one of the beets that was way to small to make warrior paint.

The boys used one of the beets that was way to small to make warrior paint.

Our evening concluded last night with, Sam falling asleep at the table while eating his supper, and Keith going to bed with a smile on his face. You may be wondering why did Sam fall asleep at the table? You see we ate supper at 9:30 p.m. This is not unlike what I grew up doing on our family farm, or what I know other farm families do.

You see we harvest some of our crops the evening before pick-up (cucumbers, sweet corn, tomatoes etc,) and early in the morning of the day of pick-up trying to avoid harvesting during the heat of the day.

We arrived home from our off farm jobs and the boys activities. All of us were exhausted. We all would have much rather played catch or laid on the couch. But we knew the work needed to be done, so we grabbed a Schwan’s ice cream bar which always brings a smile to the boys faces and headed to the field.

I tried to keep everyone focused and separated to avoid the exhausted brother fights. Once Steve arrived, we split into harvesting teams allowing for one on one time with our kids. Just us and Mother Nature on a beautiful summer evening having good conversation with our kids, marveling at the interesting finds in the garden and enjoying the beautiful color of the sunset.

As we cleaned up for the evening, everyone’s moods had changed for the better. They were happy, peaceful, helpful and calm.

So while I was concerned at the time we were eating supper, all of us felt good at what had been accomplished. As I put our oldest to bed, I mentioned to him how peaceful he looked, and how the exhaustion and angst were gone. He agreed that the time spent together outside brought peace and was a good way to end the day.

So now you know one of the many reasons farm families don’t mind the late meals together after working to accomplish a bigger task. When I reflect back on my childhood, I remember those times with fondness and know that those were the days that built character, good work ethic and team work.

Garden Science

The seed potato can be seen at the base of the plant. So cool to see how the roots and the plant have grown from this and to find the delicious potatoes that it has grown.

The seed potato can be seen at the base of the plant. So cool to see how the roots and the plant have grown from this and to find the delicious potatoes that it has grown.

A young potato is attached and growing from the seed potato that we planted this spring.

A young potato is attached and growing from the seed potato that we planted this spring.

This is what we got when we pulled the potato plant out of the ground. There were a few more potatoes that were in the ground. Look closely and you can find the seed potato.

This is what we got when we pulled the potato plant out of the ground. There were a few more potatoes that were in the ground. Look closely and you can find the seed potato.

Boxes of Produce

This list is prepared before we harvest your share. Some guesswork is involved! We do our best to predict which crops will be ready to harvest, but sometimes crops are on the list that are not in the share, and sometimes crops will be in the share even though they’re not on the list. Remember food safety in your kitchen when preparing, always wash your hands before working with your produce and always wash your produce before eating.

Some of the crops are ran under cold well water to take the field heat off of them so they last longer in your refrigerators. They are not washed – just cooled. So wash your vegetables before eating.

Red Oak Leaf Lettuce – Beautiful red lettuce leaf. A new crop of lettuce and spinach has emerged. Hoping that it will be ready next week.

Kale – I will be trying this vegetable in place of lettuce this week.

Carrots – Here is a good link to carrot recipes.

Green Beans/Purple Beans – A more manageable amount to try to freeze this week.

Sugar Snap Peas – Our third crop of peas was ready this week. Enjoy!

Broccoli – Have you been searching for new things to do with this vegetable. Here are a few ideas.

Kohlrabi – Here are some ideas for using your Kohlrabi.

Beets abound.

Beets abound.

Beets – Some history on this crop.

Yellow Onions – See how onions are raised by farmers in Idaho.

Zucchini and Summer Squash

Cucmbers abound we have Fanci Pak and Slicing Speedway (a lot like Straight 8).

Cucumbers abound we have Fanci Pak and Slicing Speedway (a lot like Straight 8).

Cucumbers – You received both varieties of cucumbers this week. Let us know if you are in need any for canning.

Peppers – a variety abound – enjoy!

Tomatoes – Tomato varieties included in your boxes: Yellow Girls, Honey Delights, Big Boys, Roma, Fourth of July, Big Mammas, Honey Delights, Amish Paste and cherry tomatoes.

Potatoes are like digging for gold. Tons of fun and hard work!

Potatoes are like digging for gold. Tons of fun and hard work!

Potatoes – Kennebecs – You’ll be enjoying potatoes for the rest of the season.

Sweet Corn – One of my favorites. Here is a way to freeze the corn before it gets to old in your refrigerator.

CilantroEnjoy in salsas, fajitas, eggs and more. Learn more about cilantro here.

Variety of flowers abound.

Variety of flowers abound.

Fresh cut arrangement – A variety from sunflowers, Rudbeckia, straw flowers, marigolds and zinnias.

Dill is available for canning, and it helps to draw in beneficial insects.

Dill is available for canning, and it helps to draw in beneficial insects.

Fun Fact

We enjoy reading a lot of children’s agriculture books learning about different aspects of farming. One of our favorites is The Boy Who Changed the World. Give it a read – it’s a great way to get kids thinking about people around the world, and how they too can make a difference.

Recipe of the Week

Zucchini Brownies

Zucchini Brownies

Zucchini Brownies

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup baking cocoa
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil (I substitute with applesauce.)
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Frosting

  • 1/4 cup butter, cubed
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup miniature marshmallows
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, optional
  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. In a small bowl, combine the zucchini, sugar and oil; stir into dry ingredients until blended. Stir in walnuts and vanilla.
  • Pour into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° F. for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes.
  • In a large saucepan, melt butter; stir in sugar and milk. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently. Cook and stir 1 minute or until smooth. Remove from the heat. Stir in chips and marshmallows until melted and smooth; add vanilla. Spread over brownies. Sprinkle with walnuts if desired. Yield: 2 dozen.

Source: Taste of Home

Happy kids and a great way to feed them zucchini and applesauce!

Happy kids and a great way to feed them zucchini and applesauce!

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