There is something that I’ve been working very hard to remember, a new mantra:
“All in due time.”
It’s the reminder I give myself when I feel guilt or regret or a Should-Have taking hold. There are so, so many things we’d like to do here on the Acres, so many things we’d like to try. Last summer, our first here, taught me that they can’t nor need not happen right away – we intend to be here for a very long time. It’s a lesson in prioritization, in cultivating patience, (that most elusive of virtues!) and in cultivating grace. Last summer taught us that setting out to garden all three fenced-in garden plots was far too much to bite off in the first mouthful, given that we were still steadily climbing the new Chicken Learning Curve.
I had hoped to can peaches last year. Had hoped then regrettably let the intention fall through the cracks of Life. This year, though, I was greeted by a stack of peach cases shouting their Hello as I entered the food coop where we buy our groceries. “What’s that?” I ask. “On sale? Yes. I think I shall.” So not one, but two cases (36 lbs) of peaches found our way home that day. Though I didn’t check, it’s likely we won the Peach Award, to join our Cabbage Award on the mantel of fame. Rock hard, they sat atop the washer and drier for a week or two, (probably closer to two) while they ripened. And precisely 4 days after they were at their peak ripeness, I found a fat sliver of time to process them into Food for the Winter. Better late than never, right?
I was in good company, as I often am, up until the Hot Stove with All the Burners Lit portion of the exercise commenced. The kitchen was enveloped in the heady aroma of ripe, about-to-burst peach essence. I like to think that a little of that essence will remain a part of the fragrant bouquet that is The Kitchen, greeting us as we return home from an extended time away.
And on Sunday we celebrated The Peaches, parading them in all their amber glory atop a waffle float.