The Weekly Digs #224

by Becky

Onion Failure

Early in the week, Amy and I worked on preserving onions. So what happened was an onion storage disaster. I started smelling stinky onions a couple of weeks ago and removed a few but knew they needed to be chopped and preserved since they were going bad. 

The stinky, going bad onions happened because I decided to try a new method of storing the onions. 

After many years of pantry tours, I had lots of people tell me in the comments that onions, apples, and potatoes shouldn’t be stored together because they will make each other go bad.

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So instead of storing the onions in the cold room like I usually do, I put them in the dry pantry away from all the potatoes and apples. The dry pantry is room temperature and come to find out onions only last about two months at room temperature.

So the lesson learned here is that onions last much longer at about 47ºF (our cold room temperature), even if they are stored next to apples and potatoes. 

I usually have bulb onions lasting until March. A few here and there will go bad, but overall they are in so much better shape than these were.

Book knowledge is a good starting point, and it probably is true that the apples, potatoes, and onions will last longer if stored separately at ideal conditions. But real life experience teaches that there are caveats, like in the case of the onions.

Getting ready to store freeze dried onions

I have no other cool, dry space to store onions. So Amy chopped all the onions, and I sorted through them to find any firm onions left.

The still in good shape onions went back in the cold room (yes, with the potatoes), and the soft onions were salvaged as much as possible and chopped.

We freeze dried them, but onions are easily dehydrated too. Amy said that’s what she normally does.

Frost is Coming

Amy and family left mid week and we spent the next couple of days getting caught up on cleaning, homeschool, and laundry. 

At some point in those days we were playing catch up, I looked at the weather and realized we were only a few days away from a frost! It’s actually supposed to be 19ºF one of the nights so a hard frost is coming.

Final cucumber harvest

I paused all indoor chores and got going on the frenzy of collecting all the good veggies and herbs before it would freeze. 

We spent a long time today picking, covering plants, and setting up low tunnels. Frost will come tomorrow night and we are as ready as we are going to be.

Tried to get off the rest of the cowpeas. We need to save some for seed.

What I’m reading

While I was in the garden and driving around town over the last few weeks, I listened to the audio version of the book, Building a Non-Anxious Life by Dr. John Delony.

I’m always open to anything to help me feel less anxious on a daily basis. Overall, it was a good book. I will listen to it again, and take some notes next time. 

There were some really good tidbits of information and help for anxiety that I’d never thought of or heard of before that I think would be very helpful to take action on.

One was that too much stuff causes anxiety. I totally believe this and that is why I’ve got decluttering as one of my goals for winter. 

Another thing I felt helpful was the reminder to get enough sleep. I’m really terrible at this. Even now, I’m typing this post up at 11pm. I’ve always been more of a night owl but would love to change that. 

Wild persimmons on our property. They taste good, until you get cotton mouth once and you don’t want to eat one again!

There were definitely some other really good parts but I can’t remember them all! That is why I need to write some notes the next time I listen.

Even though it was overall really good, I think I’ll skip the first couple of chapters since they felt unnecessary and perhaps a little anxiety provoking, haha, the irony!

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Nat November 1, 2023 - 8:27 am

Hi Becky, I would really encourage you to try going to bed earlier- I too used to push myself until late at night. I think it was because it was my only time to myself and I resented wasting it for sleep!
When our family went on a hiking holiday my entire mindset was changed. Everything we needed was on our backs. All the usual things we value including money and bank cards hold no value on the track. There are open huts along the track that you share with others also walking. Out of respect for the other people you share with, you can’t really stay up
late and most walkers start early as the worst weather seems to be in the late afternoon. We got up when the sun rose and went to bed when the sun set and it just felt right. My body really loved the routine and I felt so clear headed and energised. It got me to thinking that this is what the Lord intended for us when we were created – to rise with the sun and rest and sleep when the light disappears. I hope your Winter decluttering helps and I look forward to reading all about your progress. I love your blog and watching your videos 😊

Laurel M. November 9, 2023 - 12:27 am

Sorry about the anxiety, that’s so hard. I think you’re really awesome. I have to keep my glucose steady or I get debilitating panic attacks. And I have to sleep early. I like what Nat said in that first comment. I wish you all the good vibes.

Patricia Gibbons November 11, 2023 - 4:34 pm

Just found your blog. I was searching for a recipe for whole wheat sourdough English Muffins, which looks really good! Can’t wait to try and I will report back when I make them. In the meantime I will check out your blog posts and all the things on the site. Looks really interesting.
On the Anti-anxiety book causing anxiety, I had to smile because I’m a recovering self-help addict…used to read all the self help books to try and fix myself. I eventually realized I couldn’t do all the things these books wanted me to do. I felt anxious trying to improve. I felt guilty that I hadn’t fixed the problems yet. I ended up taking some of the grains of wisdom and left the rest.
I gave myself permission to just be. If that meant I was anxious, depressed, unsettled, I just sat with the feeling for a little bit and then did something pleasurable like making a cup of tea and reading Jane Austen…something to take me elsewhere for a short time.
Not to give advice, just reflecting.

theseasonalhomestead November 12, 2023 - 1:38 am

I love that Patricia! And I’m so glad to have you here!


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