Sunday September 13, 2020

Sunday September 13, 2020

– Balsamic Moon Phase  – release, transform, healing, forgiveness, prepare for the new

– Moon in Cancer – Void of Course 8:05 AM – 11:32 AM – Moving to Leo

– Sun in Virgo 

– Retrograde Planets:  Saturn, Jupiter, Pluto, Neptune, Chiron, Uranus, Mars

– Best Days (from the Farmer’s Almanac) – September 13th – 14th – Cut Hair to Slow Growth, Mow to Slow Growth, Dig Post Holes, Harvest, Pick Apples and Pears, Quit Smoking, Perform Demolition, Wash Wooden Floors, Paint, Get Married, Start Diet to Lose Weight, Entertain Friends, Host a Party, Kill Plant Pests

– Gardening tips  (from the Farmer’s Almanac) –  September 13th – 16th – Clear ground, turn sod, or kill plant pests.

– Aspect of the Aeon Sophia: (Wisdom): All goddesses on board

– Aspect of the Aeon Thelete: (Will/Desire): Kathe, God of the South, God of Experience

– Sabian Symbol for the Solar-Lunar Month – New moon in Leo: “Daybreak — the luminescence of dawn in the eastern sky” (& Earth An ancient pottery bowl filled with violets)

– Sabian Symbol for the Solar-Lunar Year: “A Triangle with Wings”

SUN:  21 Virgo: Royal coat of arms enriched with precious stones

EARTH:  21 Pisces: A prophet bringing down the new law from Mount Sinai

If you remember yesterday as the moon was dancing opposite Jupiter, Pluto and Saturn. Today, they all square to that crazy retrograding Mars that is sitting at 29 Aries – The Music of the Spheres. So for fun, take a look back at what you saw yesterday and put a soundtrack to it.

As for me, the Best Days for yesterday said that it was a good time for canning fruits and vegetables. So that was the plan for the weekend.

The 2020 lockdowns have done much for all of us staying home.  I think we all remembered the shortages of February, March and April. And while we probably cannot make our own toilet paper, many are stocking up on food staples.

We bought a bread maker last April. It was a great idea, except you could not find either flour or yeast to make the bread (got it now).

For my small garden, we had Lettuce, Tomatoes , Peppers. cucumbers, zucchini, Turnips and Cantaloupes. We did not grow enough to can, but enjoyed the fresh veggies throughout the summer.

So we decided to can preserves throughout the summer. We used to do this back about 12 years ago. We stopped after we found ourselves with 3 small children running around the house.

Friday I was out at the Orchard getting apples and peaches. And then on a search for canning jars. This would not usually be an issue, but a lot more people have decided to try their hand at canning. And like so many other companies during this pandemic, Ball did not expect the demand. But we have still done pretty well:

We started canning jams and jellies for the most selfish of reasons. My wife Linda likes Jam. And most of what is available in the stores is crap. She liked Knott’s Berry Farm Jellies until we could no longer find them. I never figured out whether they stopped making it or stopped selling it on the East Coast.  So one year, we decided to do it ourselves.

We discovered a few things. First, you need the right equipment. We found a good canning pot, which helps. But even more is the stock pot with the thick metal bottom. It keeps the fruit from burning.

Second was how much fresh fruit is available here in Eastern PA. We live in a suburb that is like an island in the middle of farmland.

Our first year, we went to Ontelaunee Orchards in Leesport, PA. We picked Strawberries, Blueberries and Sour Cherries. We also found a peach orchard in Tuckerton (you won’t find that one on a map). Neither farm is still there today. We bought most of our fruit at Brecknock Orchard – in northern Lancaster County. The great thing about Brecknock is that they sell a lot of seconds – in a large variety.

So from left to right, we have Strawberry, Blueberry, Sour Cherry (Brecknock also sells these frozen and pitted), Apple Pie Jam, Triple Berry (Strawberry, Raspberry and Blackberry), Peach Sauce, Peach Jam, Grape (we cheated and used juice – not many concord grapes around here), Apple Butter and Apple Sauce.

While this will not likely keep us alive over the winter, it will make sure we have good jam all the time. PLUS, it is great for gifts.

We still have more peaches and apples, so we may be canning again in the next week.