Hello, friends!! I hope your day is going well (do I mention enough how much I appreciate your taking time out of your day to stop by and read whatever I’ve got up on AOC? Because I do – you guys bless me with your presence!).
This week has basically been work and pack, highlighted by texts from our daughter in Colombia. She’s doing wonderfully and enjoying living with a host family that has two adorable kids. We saw a picture of the room they happily gave up for her, complete with a “welcome to Colombia” sign on the wall – so sweet. She’s finding it a bit harder to understand the Spanish, since there’s some sort of accent there, but I’m confident she’ll improve a ton after 6 weeks there.
On to this week’s things I’m loving – and the links I think you’ll love! (Some of the links I provide are affiliate links.)
Strawberries in late July. If you follow me on Instagram, you may have already seen my basket of lovely strawberries that I picked a few days ago. But want to know something else? I picked a whole other basket full just yesterday!
How do you get strawberries like this after the “season” has past? Plant everbearing strawberries! You can have an entire bed of them or just plant them at the front of your borders and you’ll eat strawberries on-and-off all the way until frost some years. They are all different sizes, unlike the larger main-season berries, but some are big and all have an incredible flavor! Even if you only have room for a container, get the largest you can and plant some of these next year – it is SO fun to pick them and pop them in your mouth even as the leaves start changing. 🙂
Looking forward to seeing Odysseo by Calvalia. Have you guys heard of this show, a sort of Cirque-du-Soleil-meets-horse-show that’s being held in Portland, Oregon right now under a huge big top? (They say is the world’s largest – and was pretty big and castle-like when we drove by it a couple weeks ago.) I’m sure the Oregonians reading this haven’t been able to escape the many billboards, ads, and social media mentions over the last weeks!
But oh, does this show look amazing! We’ve talked to a few people who’ve already seen it and have heard nothing by rave reviews. Brian and I get to go next Thursday and I’ll be live-reviewing some of the show on Instagram and Facebook, as well as getting some selfies with the beautiful horses. I know! So cool, right? #lucky
I’ll be sharing some pictures on next week’s Three Things, too, if you miss the live-reviews. They’ve recently added more shows since they’ve gotten such good turn outs for the shows and will now be in Portland through August 14. AND I’m able to offer a 10% discount for AOC readers (valid on all evening shows for Gold and above ticket categories) with the code SOCIALPDX (click to go to the promo page)!
Canning last year’s tomatoes…finally. So, how do you can lots of tomatoes before tomato season has officially hit? (I’ve yet to see a ripe tomato, and in the past we’re lucky to get a bowl-full or two by the end of July.) By finally using up the many, many bags of tomatoes I froze last fall when I couldn’t deal with one.more.tomato. I meant to take care of them in January or February like I’ve done in the past by making pizza sauce. But…well, here we are in July and I’m just using them, so you can see where that went, huh?
I did can some pizza sauce and also canned a batch of addictive tomato chutney, lots of plain tomato sauce to become the base for soup and sauces, and the chipotle BBQ sauce I shared yesterday- though I used fresh tomatoes for that to try out the new HarvestPro Sauce Maker. Here’s what I wanted to share with you, though:
The sauce maker worked just as well with the thawed tomatoes as the fresh! It was a bit more messy (think partially frozen tomatoes bursting as you push them in the shoot), but not by much and it made 13 quart freezer bags FULL of tomatoes into sauce in just about 30 minutes! (I know that’s a lot of tomatoes- they just seemed to be stuck everywhere once I started looking…)
SO YES – remember to enter to win one of these sauce makers, I promise you will LOVE it. I’m looking froward to trying it with apples and other recipes they recommend. (In case you’re wondering about me moving – this will be at the front of the storage unit for easy access!)
Links To Check Out:
The photos of the U.S.’s ugly food waste was startling. Let’s not be afraid of ugly produce!
Do you think we’re eating phony food?
“We have to remember what we already have is a gift. We don’t need more.”
Handy baking substitutions.
Creamy pesto goat cheese eggs.
Why later crops taste better – have you started your fall garden yet?
Grilled tandoori chicken – my fave.
Did you know there are alternatives to Google Maps if you have no wifi? (think when you’re camping, etc.)
Interior photography tips for bloggers.
Homemade chickpea flatbread – whaaat? I must try this!
Like these links? I’m always pinning these and lots more – follow me on Pinterest for more inspiration and ideas!
Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links and by clicking on them you help support AOC at no extra cost to you – thanks so much! Plus you can trust I’ll only share what I love. (You can always read our entire disclosure page here.)
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