The pumpkin vines are all black and withered, and we can, at last, survey our haul, and oh my, what a lot of pumpkins we have.
On Saturday afternoon we spent an hour pumpkin picking. We have a heap of cute little nugget pumpkins. They look so pretty, that I just pile them up around the house. They aren’t the best for eating – rather floury, but I think they may be good for making into gnocchi, and scones because they are quite dry. I am just going to cut them in half and roast them in their skins, and then scoop out the flesh once it is cooked.
We also have so many Queensland blue pumpkins. Hannah counted 47, but some are a bit squishy on the bottom, or a bit too small and green to eat – the pigs will enjoy them. Despite the squishy ones, there is still way more than we can hope to eat.
Country Boy is planning on getting another couple of piglets to raise. It has been a great experience for the kids, being responsible for feeding the pigs and chickens. We have gone out collecting acorns from under the oak trees to feed to the pigs (apparently acorns make pork taste really good – and the pigs love them too!). Country Boy even got some old sheets and spread them under some trees to catch the acorns – he is quite committed to tasty pork! The pigs also get all our scraps.
I love the way our scraps aren’t wasted. They go to the chickens, pigs, or the worm farm. Our animals have a pretty fine life here in the country. I love the way I can trust our food here too. We have grown so much of our own produce that the freezer is heaving, and I have had to clear out a shelf in my cupboard where I keep all my work stuff (all teachers have one of these) to fit all the jams/pickles etc that I have made.
Country Boy is taking one of the pigs to the abattoirs today to be processed. I was a bit concerned about how the girls were going to take this, but they seem unusually matter of fact about it. I over heard a conversation where they were talking about how you would chop up a pig. Hannah was sure the easiest way would be to chop its head off first. It was hard not to jump in and try and ‘steer’ the conversation, but I need to let them process this fact of life with out my projecting adult concerns on to them.
We get the meat on Thursday or Friday, butchered, and ready to eat. It will take a couple of hours to package it all up, and freeze it. We will be eating pumpkins and pork for a while to come now!