Tuesday, July 13, 2010

nearly one year

We have been in our house in Winnipeg almost a year. I can hardly believe it. I still feel like I'm brand new here--still learning new things every day. However, I am also seeing signs of home.

About the strawberries--the season has been pretty short. I never even made it out the 8 miles out of the city to do any picking. I didn't feel well and the season was very fast this year. I did buy some berries, and here is a shelf in my basement. New jam --about 7 cups--on the left. Last year's leftovers? On the right. (a true sign I've been here a year!)

We're also joining the Winnipeg masses in having something constantly under renovation. (Winnipeg has a lot of old houses...so we're not alone in this.) This is the scaffolding that has been up on my back deck since June 28th. Yes, that's our chimney, and it will now be shorter than before, with less of a chance of it falling down and killing someone on the street. Someday, we may even have it set up with the gas fireplaces that we found. (the British ones, designed for Victorian houses, that fit in our small fireplace openings...Hurray!)

Our Nanking Cherries are ripe, so I went on a picking spree this morning. There are still plenty to pick later. When I have time, I hope to put these up in jars as jelly or maybe cherry sauce. The container here holds 6 cups, and since each cherry has a big pit, it won't make a lot on its own. Still, I harvested these from our yard and I'm proud of the homegrown crop!

In between teaching classes at the university, editing, and getting ready for houseguest #7, things have been busy. (For those who have been reading the blog a long time, the Norwegian Bachelor Biologist is driving up from his family's Minnesota cottage and coming to town! I can't wait to see him!) So busy, in fact, that I have felt a bit under the weather. However, it was nothing a little bit of antibiotics couldn't fix.

Today, I celebrated the sunshine and our elms in their fancy summer leaf costume! The light dappled through those leaves and I took the dogs on a long walk. We went past the big houses, all the way to Munson Park by the river. It was a deliciously sunny day, with two happy dogs by side. It's good to be here. It's been quite a ride since last year, when we arrived in Manitoba on July 15th, 2009.

Now it's off to grade more papers...

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Blogger PghCathy said...

Hard to believe it's been a year since we were all guessing how many boxes you'd be filling for your move. Wasn't it over 300? How the time flies.

I just put enough sour cherries in the freezer for 10 pies. Hmmmm! No trees around to pick from, but an orchard not terribly far from here gets them. It's so nice to be able to make a fresh cherry pie when the snow is flying.

Feel better & enjoy your company!

July 13, 2010 at 3:51 PM  
Blogger AdrieneJ said...

I have a ton of Nanking Cherries in my backyard, but I never knew what I could do with them until I read this post! Would you care to share your recipe for making them into jelly?

July 13, 2010 at 4:57 PM  
Blogger Joanne said...

Hi Adriene--
I have no particular recipe in mind! Last year, I heated the washed cherries up with a bit of water until they were soft. Then I used a Foley food mill to separate the cherry juice and pulp from their pits and skins. Then I combined what I had left with raspberries, and made a cherry/raspberry jam. (using lower sugar pectin, sugar, and the recipe in the Certo box). This year, if I have enough cherries, I might do old fashioned canning and measure out how many cups of juice, match it with an equal amount of sugar, and go from there. (No pectin is necessary because I'll use a lot more sugar and cook it longer--assuming I don't find some raspberries to combine it with.) I think if you search online for Nanking Cherries, you may also find other recipes. Good luck! I hope this is helpful!

July 13, 2010 at 9:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow! A year that flew by for us as well. Your house looks beautiful and it sounds like you are making a wonderful life there. Enjoy your Norwegian bachelor visit!

July 14, 2010 at 5:58 AM  
Blogger AdrieneJ said...

Thanks for the recipe! I'm going to definitely try it out this year! And, my parents live in Winnipeg, so you could always look them up and see if dad will do some repairs for you...

July 15, 2010 at 12:56 PM  
Blogger annmarie said...

happy 'house'-iversary! :)

July 16, 2010 at 7:22 AM  
Blogger Alison said...

An anniversary already! Celebrating with cherries on top--sounds great to me.


July 19, 2010 at 8:07 PM  

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