Such a nasty day, too, being cold, damp, and cloudy. Luckily, we had lots to do inside! As our final harvest was hauled inside, in a hurry, much of it is sitting all over the house. I’m hoping the health department doesn’t stop by … I mean there’s scarcely room to squeeze by crates, pails, and big pumpkins. Will couldn’t get the biggest Atlantic Giant in the house. Hey, it weighs somewhere around 200 pounds! So, he took a bucket, removed the top then scooped out all the seeds and guts. Guess who got to pick out all of those wonderful, fat seeds? Yep, me. We’ve found a very quick, safe, and easy way to cut our squash and pumpkins open. We use a battery operated DeWalt reciprocating saw. So much better than using a knife!

We have our harvest all over the house!
Check out these huge pumpkin seeds out of our 200+ pound Atlantic Giant (That’s not so big; the world record is over 2,700 pounds from an Anoka, Minnesota grower!)

Will is busy pulling the dry husks off the boxes of Glass Gem popcorn that our friends, Jesse and Lynn grew out for us this year. There is a very good crop this year of this wonderfully colored corn that also pops deliciously. Earlier today, our friend, Alisha, who used to be our apprentice, dropped by to visit and help. Right now, she’s living in Idaho. We haven’t seen her for quite a while, so it was great to catch up on what she and her boyfriend, Clyde, have been doing. She showed me pictures of her garden and all of the seeds she’s been saving plus all the food she’s canned up. We were very impressed with this hard-working gal! She helped seed out several varieties of squash and wants to come back tomorrow. We’ll be very glad to have her help and see her smiling face again.

This is just a little of the wonderful crop of Glass Gem popcorn Will shucked tonight.

I look outside and see an inch of snow stacking up and sure hope it melts as I’ve still got some bulbs to plant before the ground freezes solid. It’s supposed to warm up a little on Wednesday, onward, so I hope the weather forecasters have that right. Yes, I should have planted them sooner! — Jackie


  1. love the cozy look of harvest, home and shucking corn! it looks so comfortable. definitely not the way our grandmas might have. i think it a site easier than trucking out to the cold sheds or barn to husk, clean out squashes, only to have to traipse back to the house to dry the seeds.
    that corn is definitely a great looker!
    getting our first heavy rain now. glad to be out of the 20’s for a spell. Hopefully it will clear enough to get those bulbs in. take care.
    Mary pacific northwest-the drier side of

    • I think my grandmas would have died to see their houses so messy!!! lol We do love our wonderful Glass Gem popcorn. Opening every ear is like opening a Christmas present.

  2. We haven’t had snow yet, but I had 16 degrees this morning. Brrr! I’m so glad Alisha was able to stop by and visit and give you a helping hand. That is a great idea you have for cutting the tops off of pumpkins. Looking forward to a warn up this weekend. I hope you get your bulbs planted. Prayers for a blessed week.

    • We had 5 degrees two nights ago, but today, it’s 35 degrees F, so I’m hoping tomorrow I can plant the bulbs when the snow leaves.

  3. Lovely basket and lovely corn! In SE Idaho we’ve had flurries. The dogs didn’t know what to make of it. Biting at the snow coming down or the frozen grass, they were so funny. I’m going through all the sites for seed catalogs. Now I needed dig out seeds that need to be cold stratified. I’ve got a bunch of seeds that about three years old. Supposedly expired. But I came across a way some people have gotten old seeds to sprout. They mix a tablespoon of old fashioned molasses in a cup hot water and stir well. Let it cool to lukewarm, put about 10 seeds on a paper towel, then pour the molasses water on the paper towel. Fold up the paper towel, place it in plastic bag and put it in a dark warm place. Check in about a week for sprouts. If not give it another week.
    Has anyone else come across this method? I ended up with these older seeds because I got too sick to garden.
    Jackie have you heard of anything like this method? My seeds lived in sealed tub inside the house. I’ve got to replace the tub it busted during the move. Here at our new house I have about a half acre and plan on a large garden. Including up in the front yard. Grass yards are overrated 😆.

    • Very few seeds have to be cold stratified and no vegetables I know of. Your three year old seeds are most likely fine. Most seeds remain viable for at least 5 years, even stored on a shelf somewhere. I’ve never done the molasses thing but do suspect it’s more the hot water than the molasses that makes older seeds germinate….or the seeds weren’t all that old, anyway. (Remember I started out with 1,500 year old Folsom Indian Ruin beans, which had been buried in the sand, in a clay pot.) That’s unusual, but, obviously, the conditions were perfect.

  4. Here in Copper Basin Alaska we haven’t had a high above freezing in about two weeks. Ground is frozen including frozen puddles in the driveways from rain and snow melt a couple weeks ago after an eight inch snow dump then. A few fluffels since with no accumulation. Canned up the second batch of sauerkraut the other day and will probably can the last of the ripening tomatoes in the next day or so. Got all the root crops up.

    • We had 5 degrees, but, surprisingly, the weather has warmed to the thirties in the day. That is very unusual for us. Usually, the first snow we get stays till spring. I’m going to can up some carrots this afternoon and, hopefully, get to planting those bulbs tomorrow.

  5. I live in the City in Northern Alberta and always plan ahead with my groceries. It can blizzard for months, and we are stocked up . I just love this site, and have learned so much from Jackie’s columns and this site. Grew up on a ranch, and stocks of groceries were always done for the winter. Think they should be done for the summer now too. Who knows what will go on. It is comforting that one has looked after ones family.

    • That’s for sure Louise!! We keep our basement as our store. The prices never go up, there are no chemicals in our food and it’s always right at hand. We feel so blessed!

  6. Beautiful corn! Light snow here Southern Wisconsin, I too have bulbs to plant. We’re cozy with wood stove going. Still have outside work to do and am hoping it warms a little to get that done. Do you roast any pumpkin seeds to eat?

    • We do roast pumpkin seeds. Our favorites are Olinka, which doesn’t have an outer shell. With my diverticulitis history, I try to avoid coarse triggers like pumpkin seed shells. We’ve also got stuff to do outside and am really, really hoping we’ll get a thaw. That’s very unusual around here, though…..

      • Jackie, How do you dry your glass gem corn? Do you leave it in the field to dry or is it picked and brought inside to dry?
        Yes, that snow was a pain in the backside, but I like your hope of 40 on Saturday. I just looked and at least it is going to be sunny. Hopefully warm enough to bring the forgotten hose inside.

  7. Snowed here as well today, about 2 inches, just enough to have to do some shoveling. The geese are unperturbed by it, but the chickens are not happy at all. Fortunately, we had a couple of weeks of pretty good weather so I was able to get the garden cleared out and everything mulched before the snow so I’m feeling pretty good right now.

    • Wonderful!!! Our snow is still on the ground although by Saturday, it’s SUPPOSED to get to 40 degrees. (Liar, liar, pants on fire!!) But, we do hope.

      • We’re in for a couple of days in the upper 40ºs by the weekend so this will all be gone, at least until late next week when more snow is on the menu. Gives me a chance to take a quick walk around to look for the odd hand tool someone inevitably dropped somewhere over the summer/fall. There always seems to be one or two hiding in the grass and leaves.

  8. We had snow too – enough to barely cover the lawn/leaves and make the deck slick.. for a while that is. Nasty wind made the temp feel 10 degrees cooler. Didn’t deter our count them on one hand trick or treaters. Never had any at our prior home and most we’ve had at this home is maybe eight. Regardless, we always have plenty of candy (the initial count is always lower than actual count) and make it fun for the kids. When we and our sibling/cousins were growing up, the community made it fun for us. We do the same thing. Our kids trick or treated with friends or family so we contributed to the “base” houses treat supply.
    The corn looks beautiful. When operated safely, reciprocating saws have more than one use in life. Nice Alisha stopped by and as with those in the circle, helped out. As the saying goes, many hands make light work. And catching up makes the work and time go faster.

    • Yes, it does. We were amazed at photos of her gardens and harvests! We never have trick or treaters here, with our mile and a half long driveway through the woods. But, as David’s daughters get older, we’re hoping!!

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