Labor Day Laboring

While most everyone else we know is barbecuing and relaxing for the holiday weekend we’ve been working our backsides off inside and out.

Paul’s been playing in the mud rescuing the stream from the mangled tree debris that our less than wonderful landscaper piled there, and I’ve been cleaning, working on lesson plans and making pasta.  There was also a brief time out for the new season of Dr Who.  Because we’re still obsessed, y’all.

We had to install this culvert so we could extend some logs and mud over to stream as a land bridge without interfering with the water.

Did I mention that neither of us has any idea how this kind of thing is supposed to get done?  At least Paul is having fun with the backhoe attachment on our friend’s tractor.

Now all we need is more dirt and maybe some gravel to cover over it all.

The side Paul has finished up is flowing nicely again.  We even saw a fairly large crayfish (crawdad for you Southerners) hanging out on the bank.

See all the debris still on this side?  Don’t you love it when you pay someone to do a job for you and then you end up having to re-do it all?

All I know is it’s getting done.  Paul even thinks we may start fencing next weekend.

What a fabulous birthday present for me!

As for inside the house, there is pasta drying in preparation for the freezer.  September is when the basil in the garden has grown into a giant, bushy shrub and must be harvested before the first frost.  My favorite thing to do is make up a huge amount of pesto and make ravioli with it.  I can freeze enough to last all winter if I don’t get sick of making pasta before I’ve used it all.

I use Susan’s pasta recipe – in fact if you click that link you’ll see my hands creating the last big batch of pesto ravioli we made last year at this time.

Sweet heavenly pesto.  I could eat it for every meal.

Little pillows of delightfulness!  I let them dry on a cheesecloth or clean dishtowel for an hour or more (until they are not sticky anymore) and then toss them into a ziploc freezer bag.  They can be tossed in boiling water from frozen or fresh and take very little time to cook.

For my pesto I fill a blender with fresh basil leaves, toss in a handful of cherry tomatoes, a handful of parmesan cheese, a heaping tablespoon of minced garlic, about half a teaspoon of sugar, a handful of pine nuts, and 3 or 4 tablespoons of olive oil.  These are all approximate values, and I adjust according to taste.  Not everyone likes sugar or tomatoes in their pesto, but I find it gives it an extra something.  You can also substitute walnuts if you don’t have pine nuts, but I prefer the pine nuts.

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One thought on “Labor Day Laboring

  1. My mama used to make huge batches of egg noodles, but with a rolling pin. I don’t think there were pasta machines back then. She put them on clean tea towels all flat and when they’d been there awhile she’d roll them up and cut into strips. Then, they got tossed back on the table and covered and every once in a while they would get tossed around. That was my job. And I’m sure there would have been more completed noodles with a different helper because every time I tossed them, I’d eat some. Raw noodles yum, What eating raw eggs is bad for you? Ooops! 🙂

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