Day 23: Essentials (and book winner!)

I’m too darned busy this week, but am having a hard time figuring out what I can skip.  Am sick of canning, but the tomatoes keep coming– 14 quarts canned today. Soon it will be cold enough that we’ll have to pick the green ones and wrap them in newspaper to ripen in the garage.  Not this week, I hope!

There’s homeschooling to do, as always.  We made it through almost every subject today except science and history.   Not bad.  Except for the 7 year old and 4 year old, who spent most of their school day building tents outside in the fort.They were on such a lovely play streak today and the weather was so nice that I just let them play.  Time enough to do school when the weather gets bad, especially considering they can do their whole ‘day’ of school in an hour.

Our pool is so green that I’m afraid someone is going to report us to the health department.  One mandatory trip today was to the pool store, to get a shock kit and an algaecide.  It’s too cool to swim and we’ll be closing the pool soon, but I want to get the water clear before we cover it up for the winter.

Another pressing order of business involves my 17 year old SENIOR.  He has a yearbook picture deadline coming soon– which requires we actually GET pictures in our hands.  Soon.  Am hoping they turn out good.  Plus he needs me to finish his high school transcript and a lengthy form because — (proud mom-moment:  forgive me?)  — he’s a National Merit semi-finalist!

Then of course there’s cooking and breaking up arguments and tossing laundry in the washer and….oh, sleep would be nice at some point too. I stayed up til 2 last night.



Breakfast: Oatmeal, apples, OJ

Lunch: Beef stew (leftover, added 2 cups of shell mac), french bread, and bananas

Dinner: Hominy casserole, carrot sticks

Snack: Cookies, bananas


Before I finish for the day and yawn my way to bed, I wanted to announce the winner of Ann Kroeker’s book  NOT SO FAST. has decreed it to be Carrie Callahan, commenter #40.  Congrats, Carrie!


  1. Mary,

    Just wanted to let you know I made your Chicken pot pie last night and it was a big hit…even w/ my picky eater. I’ve really enjoyed your FF book…it’s helped me get back on track w/ my grocery budget.

  2. Yeah for Carrie, congratulations:)

  3. Connie Corey says:

    Congrats to the scholar – woot!

  4. Isn’t it wonderful to see kids play and let them continue. The power we hold ; ) I hope they had a grand time, but lets hope the end to these beautiful days is not too close at hand.

  5. Congratulations to your son! A National Merit Scholarship paid part of my way through college – one of the reasons I graduated with 0 debt! Way to go!

  6. I, too, love your FF book! I was frugal anyway, but I still found some ways to save using your book. Many of the recipes have been a big success with my family (especially the donuts).

    Congratulations to your son on becoming a semi-finalist! What an achievement, and good job MOM!

  7. I can relate to this post so much. Our pool is green also. hubby picked up the checmicals last night but they are still in my kitchen. I have tomatoes coming out of my ears (salsa on Saturday!) and schooling calls. I wrote a short post this morning about “Still I have joy”. I just needed a reminder about the simple things. Blessings today!

  8. Congratulations! My husband was a National Merit Scholar as well. Every little bit helps when paying for college.

  9. congratulations to the smart young man who is a National Merit Scholar – great thing for his resume! I love hearing about homeschoolers – although I had no children it just makes so much sense to teach at their own pace and obviously – it’s working for you!

  10. What an honor! Congrats to the scholar 🙂

  11. you must be button burstin’ due to the honor your 17 y/o has received. Congrats to the scholar…

    On a side note can you shoot me a note off line…I tried to email you yesterday and it bounced back. if you can find the time I’d be greatful…congrats again

  12. Since you have tomatoes and you are tired of canning, maybe you would like to try something my wonderful Tennessee neighbor told me to do a couple years ago when I too had tomatoes coming out of my ears. She said to simply wash them, core them, throw them into ziplock sandwich bags and freeze. The big ones I cut in half. Then when I make veggie soup or chili or stew or whatever, I open a bag or two and drop them in. As they thaw, the skins pull right off or just float to the suface for removal. So easy. Then again maybe you have already been doing this for years.

  13. You might also try cooking with your green tomatoes–they make wonderful bread and cake (kind of like zucchini). I’ve got some recipes on my blog and there are lots out there on the web. I, too, have frozen tomatoes–if you’re going to use them for chili or something else cooked, then they work great.


  1. […] Go here to see the original:  Day 23: Essentials (and book winner!) […]

  2. […] The rest is here:  Day 23: Essentials (and book winner!) […]