Daryl told me years ago that he read in a novel that September was “the month of winds and magic.” That has always stuck with me and while I kind of hate September for signalling the end of summer, I kind of love September for a hundred other reasons.
(Of course, this year September has really been the month of winds, with the hurricanes and tornadoes. Tornadoes even hit our area of Minnesota last night. My heart goes out to everybody affected by the storms.)
We’ve been super busy with homesteading this month, as always. September is a month where lots of garden goodies are ready to harvest and when we forage large amounts of some of our favorite wild foods like acorns and elderberries. It’s also when we forage less than wild foods like apples and pears that are free for the picking, literally. We have friends and neighbors who let us pick from their trees (we keep the ground underneath clean and often bring them goodies in thanks) and there are a lot of public places where we pick, too.
The nursing home in town has a huge pear tree that bears delicious fruit that they want no business with and also has a row of elderberry shrubs that are only there for a windbreak. Daryl has permission to go picking there and we get gallons of elderberries and bushels of pears every year. There’s also a pear tree at a rural park that bears delicious canning pears (too firm for fresh eating but perfect for canning). You can always tell where homesteads were years ago because even though there is no sign of a house anymore you will find apple trees, pear trees, peonies and other long-lived plants that once blessed the people who lived there.
We’ve also been busy with Daryl’s birthday and our wedding anniversary. As I’ve talked about before, we get married in a different way every year around our anniversary and this year we had our first back yard wedding. We made it a zany theme with lots of color and silliness. It was simple and fun.
And in other news, Jack (15) has his first job! He was hired by a local farm family to help with the harvest. He was originally hired to work 4-6 hours a day during the day just until the end of harvest season in October. Then we found out that homeschoolers under 16 are not allowed to work during public school hours even if they homeschool during other times and they’re not allowed to work more than 3 hours on a public school day, so we’ve had to change his schedule around. He now works 3 hours “after school” most weekdays and longer on Saturdays.
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Working man! Jack (15) had his first day of work today. He's doing farm work at a local family farm. Today he washed and loaded bell peppers, pumpkins and jalapeños. He's planning on doing about 5 days a week during harvest season, about 6 hours a day. He'll homeschool around his work time. Proud of my boy. 💙
It’s hard work but he is doing a great job and he got his first paycheck yesterday. His boss also told him yesterday that he was his best worker and that he’d decided to give him a raise! I could not be more proud of my boy. 🙂
The weather is turning cold and I’m doing my best to embrace it and not yearn for lake days and sprinkler weather. Snow will be coming way too soon here in Minnesota but for the most part we’re too busy to focus on that anyway.
The rest of September and October will be very hectic. I’m giving an acorn foraging presentation at a library by the Twin Cities in early October, then we have Fiona’s birthday and the week of History Fest, which is a crazy but wonderful time. And then there’s processing hundreds of more pints and quarts of applesauce, pears, spaghetti sauce, salsa, and so on.
Oh yeah, and this homeschooling business.