My freezer is next to my washing machine. One day recently, well maybe a few weeks or months ago, I took my clothes out of the dryer and hung them over the washing machine until they could be ironed. I tend to iron as I need things or if I’m having a gathering at my house and I need to have the counter across from the dryer available for food, desserts and things like that. I haven’t had one lately, so the pile has gotten rather large and overflowed to the washing machine. One day I went to get something out of the freezer and one of the pants legs of one of the slacks got caught in the door. The result when I found it a few days later was a huge icing inside of the freezer. I’ve been putting off defrosting until a cold wintery day.
I usually plan an open garden brunch in the spring to make myself clean house, another chore I dislike. If it’s pretty, I’m outside working in the yard or driving around taking nature photos. I’ve been doing a lot of that lately and the dust bunnies are getting to the point that I’m embarrassed to let anyone in the house.
Since we were having freezing rain I needed to go and get milk and bread this morning, but thought it might be better to stay home. I wanted an omelet and toast for breakfast, but only had the end crusts. As I looked at the two pieces in the bag, I could hear Mom telling me that “I would have loved to have that while I was in concentration camp”. We always got that story instead of the poor starving children in India story when we didn’t want to eat something. Don’t tell Mom I said that.
I went to the freezer to get some orange juice and with all the ice, I had trouble finding it. Oh, one quick kitchen hint for those with arthritis, I keep a nice pair of needle nose pliers in my kitchen for pulling off the tabs on the OJ cans. Since it’s a yucky day, time to do a yucky job, defrosting. I went to the hamper and pulled out all my dirty towels, man, I must have two washing machine loads, and dropped them in front of the freezer. I also put down two pairs of slacks that have gotten two embarrassing to wear to work. I went out to the garage and brought in a couple of coolers and started pulling stuff out the freezer. Four loaves of bread, three homemade and one that I had gotten buy one get one free. 2006 must have been a good year for tomatoes, as I still had a few bags of them. Strawberries, blueberries and green beans from 2008, did I use the fresher ones first? Why spend all that time putting things up if you don’t use them? All of these go in the sink so I can take it to the compost pile. Bags and bags of figs that I’ve frozen with the intent of making fig wine. I needed five pounds of frozen figs for a recipe I found. All of them go into the coolers and put wine yeast on my grocery list. Several bags of corn from last fall also into the cooler.
Next I pull out a container of Brunswick stew Mom had made and had given me one for now and one for later. Supper for tonight! Two bags of brown sugar, well that’s special as I just bought a bag. Next three bags of chicken parts for making soup. Next week is supposed to warm up and is not soup weather, but there’s no room in the coolers with all the figs and corn. So into a pot with garlic salt and an onion, bay leaf and celery to make broth for chicken noodle soup.
Back to the freezer to try and pry out a few more bags frozen in the ice with damaging the freezer. I found a container that I’m not so sure what it is. I keep a sharpie in the kitchen and I had put the date on it, but not contents. I’m not sure if it’s a dish with a layer of grease on top or grease that I put up for making bird suet. Go and get a dry pair of socks and throw the others in the floor to sop up water. Turns out this was cooking lard I saved to make bird suet with.
Next out comes bags and bags of flour, sugar and applesauce. I have trouble with fire ants coming into the kitchen after sugar, so I keep it in the freezer. I use applesauce for baking instead of oil. It has 2008 on it, so I guess it’s been a while since I baked. I find a grocery ticket frozen in the ice from Schnuks grocery in Illinois. Blame that one on Mom. She must have dropped it when she put the flour she bought on sale in the freezer after visiting my sister. I find a couple of bags of freezer burn meat. Hooligans will eat well today. A piece of cranberry pound cake is well freeze dried. Don’t think even think about it. Into the compost bin it goes. Next a fantastic find, what I thought was a pumpkin bread loaf turns out to be banana nut bread. I grab a cup of coffee and have brunch.
One last bag dated 2008 still frozen in the iceberg; I can’t tell if it’s peaches or sweet potatoes. By this time the iceberg in the top starts melting and chunks of ice start falling. I grab a Frisbee on top of the freezer to catch the stream. A friend had given it to me for the hooligans, but they wanted to eat it instead of playing catch. I finally found a use for it. The lights go out and I step in a puddle of water. Another pair of dry socks and the pulled off ones are thrown in the pile of towels.
I haul two loads of the 2006 and 2008 out to the compost bin. Bags of strawberries still look good; a strawberry smoothie sounds good right now even with cold feet and all. After thinking about how old they are, into the worm composter they go along with a couple of bags of 2008 blueberries. Oh the tragedy, good muffins lost.
After five hours, I still have block of ice large enough to sink the Titanic. This might take a couple of days. Wonder how my figs will stay frozen in the cooler?
On the Hooligan front, not much going on with them. I’ve been trimming my Heritage birches in the front yard. I wanted to get them early this year. Last year I trimmed on limb off after the sap had started running and finally had to put a tourniquet on the end to keep it from bleeding to death. Since the yard is so mushy from all the rain, the branches are still around the trees. The Hooligans have drugged them all over the yard and driveway. I put out some of those sticky traps in the garage to catch mice. Blackie keeps stealing them mouse and all. I had put one next to a mouse trap in the garage that apparently was hard to trip; this afternoon, one of the sticky traps had a mouse stuck on it. I didn’t realize that Blackie had gotten behind the barricade I set up and all of a sudden I hear a snap. First time I’ve seen Blackie decide she didn’t need a mouse that much.
Besides defrosting my freezer, I’ve been trying to get a picture of some of the Bald eagles staying along the Tennessee River. One Saturday, I got more than I bargained for. With all the rain we have, the spillways on Wilson Dam have been pouring close to two million gallons of water. I happened to be near the dam when a fisherman’s boat was found and later him. I took pictures of the rescue for the Quadcities daily http://quadcitiesdaily.com.s140587.gridserver.com/?p=69223 an on line newspaper I contribute too. They think may have had a heart attack. No eagles yet, but I’ve been able to get some of the local nature. Check out my gardening blog for those: http://rosedalegardens.wordpress.com/2013/02/02/photography-no-gardening-part-i/
Oh I finally got finished and everything back in the freezer at 1 AM.