The first spring my husband and I were married we planted a garden. I continued to garden when our children were little and I was a stay at home mom. When I returned to college to get my teaching certificate and even in my first several years of teaching we planted a garden and harvested beans, tomatoes and corn. Ironically, the year we decided that the busy fall season of education and canning our produce just didn't work for us, I was laid off. That year I could have easily preserved anything we’d grown. By then our former garden was now reseeded to grass.
In past years several friends have offered us their excess tomatoes. Some years I decline, but this year our friend Ron offered, and after refusing them, I changed my mind. When we picked up the crate of tomatoes he had kindly included freshly picked eggplant, peppers and a red cabbage.
I spent Monday night in the kitchen. I reminded myself of how happy I’d be to have a shelf full of wonderful tomatoes. I trudged off to bed far later than my usual ten p.m., glad I was able to finish the task in one night. The tomatoes are now sitting pretty on a shelf in the basement.
The rest of the week was busy, with several meetings, an unplanned dinner out of town, and only one home cooked meal all week. Saturday, as I began cleaning I told my husband it must be fall; because I was sure we had a dead mouse. We felt silly as we walked around the kitchen sniffing but he agreed it must be true. The putrid smell couldn't be ignored. We pulled out the stove and other than the shock of the filthy side of the stove -- nothing! With the side of the stove now clean and the stove back in place Wayne headed off to the golf course. I wondered how difficult it would be to pull out the built in dishwasher, and did I really need to wait until he returned to do it?
I continued to clean the kitchen; I moved the neglected cabbage still on the cupboard, thankfully before I pulled out the dishwasher. Next year ALL produce will go in the fridge.