While playing out in the yard, I discovered a few HUGE peaches (I posted a picture in an earlier post), we canned those and got one canner full of quart jars. Not a lot, but it's more than we had before.
I also discovered that the apple trees had a few apples on them. My Mister picked them and we had a bucket full. Most of them had some bad spots to cut out, but after all that we still ended up with 6 quarts of applesauce.
I've been dehydrating more plums, and made a batch of plum/pear jam. It looks just like the plum jam, but you can taste the pear in it. I like it, but I don't love it so much that I think it's a good use of my small supply of pears.
I attempted pear sauce in the victorio strainer, but ended up with a slightly thicker juice. Not quite what I was hoping for. Searching online revealed the best way to make pear sauce is to peel and chop the pears, then cook them down. Pear sauce was my idea to avoid having to peel them (otherwise I would have just canned the pears). Now I'll either can the rest, or dehydrate them. I'm looking for the easiest option here, since I'm running out of time before the great grape deluge of 2011 kicks in.
When I was picking the pears, I was trying to think of a way to store them so they didn't bruise while they were ripening, and I thought of these cardboard crates the raspberries came in. They worked great. I just wish I had twice as many. If you have any, or ever get any, save them for me! They're not quite big enough for storing winter squash in, so I'll have to think of something else to use them for over the winter, so that I don't have to justify the space they'd take up sitting empty somewhere.
UPDATE: Thanks to the powers of Google, I discovered this blog post that talks about juicing pears in a steam juicer and canning the juice, then running the pulp through the strainer for the sauce. My only concern is that with the juice removed, the pulp will be bland, but I think if I don't cook the pears until there is no juice left, it should work out well.
While picking pears, I noticed that the old "weed" rosebushes are covered in rose hips. I've been reading up on rose hips and am currently deciding what to do with them, they're not ready yet, so I have some time. I have fond memories of eating rose hips while sitting on the roof of the old grainery that used to be behind our family home.
As far as a new camera goes, I've been holding off. I do have my iphone that can take pictures, but I'm currently trying to decide whether I want a fancy camera or if a point and shoot will serve my purposes...