|My Grandmother Ford’s Pantry|
|My Grandmother, Lona Ford, sealing syrup cans|
Well, fall is in the air here in West Central Louisiana. As it does every year, my thoughts turn to memories of times past. My grandparents had the only syrup mill in our area, so we (meaning they) stayed busy making cane syrup. They grew their own cane and helped others mill theirs. While some that I have found comes close, nothing ever really tastes like theirs and I am sure memory has played a trick on me there.
The harvest is just about finished. Still getting okra, some cucumbers, but the fall garden is up and going well. I will try to dehydrate some of the greens this year and see how that works.
My pantry looks nothing like my grandmother’s in this photo. As children, we just don’t realize how much work goes into gardening and preserving the harvest. I have grown to appreciate memories and photos like these more and more with the passing years. I have a photo of my first cow, given to me by my grandfather, Oscar Ford, when I was about 8 or 9. Maybe I can find it and share it with you some other day.
When my children were young, we started reading the Little House on Prairie series as part of our study of pioneer America. It just happened to be the fall of the year when we started the books. We used it as a reading lesson too, so every evening we would sit together and read, each taking turns. We all enjoyed it so much we did it again the next year, and the next, and the next….
As the boys grew older, they would do the, “Aww…do we have to read those again!” But the one year I started reading them on my own, they were very quick to ask, “Are you reading without us?! It’s a tradition now. You can’t do that!” So it was, every year in October or first of November, we began our reading.
So guess what I will be doing starting next week? You got it. I always get a new piece of information to research, or learn something (remember it probably), and I enjoy the read. Just last week, my oldest and I were talking about the nip in the air and I said, “Well, I guess you know what time it is?” “Yep, you’ll be reading I guess.”
Do you have such fall traditions? I know we all begin perusing the seed catalogs and getting our orders ready; planning the garden layout and enlargement, studying for those things we plan to add to our homestead, farm, or yard. Yes, even though I spend a great deal more time inside, the fall and winter are busy months and seem to fly by. What about for you?
Safe and Happy Journey,