What do you do when you find yourself up to the ears with extra, with more than you need? For the sake of making my point, I say there are two answers to this question. You can either hoard it, stash it away just in case you need it for when there is a shortage. Or—and, this is the one I would like to emphasize—you can create and share something new with the surplus; use it up because who really knows what the next day will bring (maybe more of the same, maybe less, maybe something completely different, or maybe nothing at all).

Why am I talking about this? Today I found out that my bone marrow is doing quite well—creating new cells and essentially bouncing back from the consolidation chemotherapy I received back in early May. The problem is that it seems to be hanging on to the white blood cells, causing a general shortage in my body.

I have a new plan for dealing with my stubborn bone marrow. I will illustrate and talk about all the good things that come about as a result of sharing, in using up the surplus that one has. I figure that by talking about it, and by acting it out (which is the fun part), that other parts of me will take notice and do the same.

The fun (and tasty) part
So, as is typical this time of year in Minnesota, we find ourselves with a surplus of rhubarb and strawberries. Sure, I can hoard them, stash ’em in the freezer for the those deep winter months. Or…

Strawberries and Rhubarb

…I can make Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

Granted, I’m not doing a whole lot of sharing (Virginia begs to differ), but I am using up what we have. Fresh, warm crisp today sure beats frozen fruit in the winter (although, admittedly that is a nice thing to have on waffles in mid-January—so my illustration starts to break down right about now). But, in general, I’m finding a lot of value in taking what each day brings and creating something with the surplus (be it extra energy, creative impulses, or even with less tangible things like love and forgiveness). Of course, it’s much more fun when there’s an edible result of the abundance.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

Take note (and enjoy), oh body of mine.

Pickles and (take a guess) Socks

Virginia, I’m sad to say, is not going to have a finished big project for the month of July. Life, right now, is taking the driver’s seat, and leaving the projects we’d like to be finishing, well, unfinished. But, such is life, with its many ups and downs. We take it all.

However, I wouldn’t just post to the site without leaving you with some actual scratchcrafty goodness. Even though the big projects are on hold, does not mean the smaller projects are not being completed. These two pairs of socks, for instance, were wrapped up in the last week.

Sock #10 (52 Sock Challenge)

Sock #11 (52 Sock Challenge)

This last one is Mountain Colors Bearfoot doubled up. That means twice the squish, and probably twice the warmth.

For my own distraction today, I decided to try my hand at some pickling. I picked up 6 pounds of organic cucumbers, a bunch of dill and some garlic from the farmer’s market today.

Pickles, part 1

After comparing a couple of different recipes from several locations, I decided on a vinegar/water/salt solution, with added dill and dill seeds, peppercorns, and garlic. The solution boiled and then, after pouring it over the stuffed jars, I processed it all in boiling water for 20 minutes. The results:

Pickles, part 2

I think we’ll be ready for a cold, crunchy pickle in a couple of weeks… very exciting.