A lovely 4-day weekend for Thanksgiving! I don’t technically get the day after the holiday off, but I took it off because I wanted to get some things done, and also I wanted 4 days off in a row– who doesn’t?
One of my fun tasks was making shower discs, which make a lovely aromatic steam when you pop them in under the hot water.
They’re dead simple to make: baking soda, a little water, and some essential oil, dried in the oven in a muffin tin. I used a combination of eucalyptus, rosemary, and lavender oils. Some of these will undoubtedly become Christmas present add-ons, since I got kind of excited (story of my life) and made 24. I’m also thinking I’d like to try bath bombs and maybe even toilet-cleaning bombs, though I don’t know about giving anything toilet-related as a festive present. (Though I’m tempted to do that and add a tag that says, “Yay, poo!”)
My biggest task, which I thought of in the small hours of Sunday morning, after Lily woke us with a howling dream, was cleaning out my new wine space:
. This is a funny little area behind the kitchen and above the weird scary back stairs to the basement. The wall on the right was the original back of the house, before the addition was somewhat randomly stuck on. The space had been a strange pile of junk, mostly canning jars and the like. In fact, I see now that there’s a single leftover canning lid on the left, standing upright against the wooden wall. The black box on the right is a stackable wine rack. Alas, it’s alone now, unstacked and slightly sad (possibly just because it’s empty), but I plan to ask for some more of them for Christmas– and, of course, to fill them as soon as I can. The bottles here are the cleaned empties. I have a few more out in the back shed, but it’s kind of amazing how many one needs. Each US gallon fills five, and since I have so many wines going, it adds up! In fact, here’s what I have going on right now.
These are the bottled wines so far: rhubarb, cherry, redcurrant, and dandelion, if memory serves.
And these below are the ones still in their secondary fermentation– plus the 3 gallons of apple and the 5 of peach. Jolyon rightly points out that I should have taken this photo in the daytime, since the various colors are so pretty, but I didn’t think about a photo until last night. Anyway, this is two Concords, a crab apple, two apples, a mead, a peach melomel, and an apple cider. I’ve also taken the last grapes out of the freezer for the third batch of Concord, using the third kind of yeast, which is one of those numbered ones I can’t remember. The Concord wines start out this sort of strangely lovely pink color, and then darken to the color of a light red wine, which you can kind of see in this picture, behind the crab apple. And, somewhat charmingly, you can also see one of Rose’s kibble toys on the floor: a glow-in-the-dark ball that she pushes around with her nose to make it drop the bits of kibble. (Lily has some too, but hers are harder to get the food out of, since she’s kind of violent with hers.)
Still waiting for the crab apple to clear sufficiently for bottling. It’s getting there, though!