The Season of Autumn








“After all,” Anne had said to Marilla once,
“I believe the nicest and sweetest days are not those
on which anything very splendid or wonderful or exciting happens
but just those that bring simple little pleasures,
following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string.”

L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Avonlea



The Autumn wind is gently blowing through the pine trees that line our driveway … it’s one of my favorite sounds here at home … it reminds me of what Heidi would hear up in her mountain chalet with her Grandfather … so soothing, peaceful and strong. The girls and I have been kite flying in the back field this week – the little ones watched with sheer joy as the coloured kites flew up into the brisk, blue sky.



We are studying Orville and Wilbur Wright and happened to have a windy day. It all just came together – so kite flying took over bits and moments of our afternoons.  While reading our book on the Wright brothers, we found it fascinating that kites may be the second oldest “toy” in history (with dolls being the oldest toy). How interesting!



September is a blessed month – the garden needs cleaning up, all harvest brought in (mostly – there are still carrots out there and a few straggling beets) … our sweet feathered friends leave for the South and we now see different birds gracing the tree branches … summer flowers being to fade as the beautiful, vibrant colours of fall begin to appear in the leaves of our trees …

With the last batch of tomatoes, I decided to make a BBQ sauce. Last year, at this same time, I was canning our homemade BBQ sauce the night I went into labour with Loyal. Contrary to what some may think of the night of having a baby, it was a peaceful, beautiful evening. The moon was bright and the sky dark … my husband and I were outside, timing the contractions and working on finishing the sauce … we had oil lamps lit on our outdoor kitchen table and the warm September evening was incredibly peaceful. All the children were tucked into bed … and in my heart, I knew there was an exciting day ahead, Lord willing, for them on the morrow. Indeed, a little baby boy joined our family that night! And while I did not get to finish water bathing all the jars, my memories of this BBQ sauce are fond. 🙂 My mother ended up taking home the last jars and finishing them up for me (thank you, mom!) ….

With that rambling introduction, here is a BBQ sauce, taken from the Keepers at Home magazine:


Homemade BBQ Sauce

32 cups ketchup (2 1 gallon cans if buying)
9 cups brown sugar
6 cups molasses
2 1/2 cups of pineapple juice
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 cup of Worcestshire sauce
1 cup ground mustard
1 1/3 cup sea salt
1/2 cup black pepper
1/2 tsp. cayenne (optional!)
3 12 oz. can of tomato paste (optional)

Mix all ingredients together in a large stainless stell pot. Slow boil for an hour to let the sugars caramelize and flavours meld together. Stir occasionally. Pour into jars and water bath for 10 minutes. Makes approximately 12 litres.




We have also been apple picking lately. Oh, does that not just say “Autumn” in it’s finest way?

The girls helped me can apple pie filling (in fact, they made most of it – as I was busy sorting through the Provision Room, organizing the newly filled canning jars on shelves). I am delighted when the girls learn these skills without even realizing it … they are learning without me hovering over them and being too picky … they know if they don’t wipe the jars properly, they won’t seal and they know if they don’t stir the pot, it will burn on the bottom.

All the little things …. they are learning as they help … it’s wonderful ….we have also made applesauce and apple butter. Our lovely neighbour delivered some more seconds (apples that have fallen from the tree) so we will be making some more sauce and canning apple pieces for oatmeal, muffins or cakes.




The recipe is from the Ball website.

Apple Pie Filling – Canned

  • 12 cups sliced peeled cored apples, treated to prevent browning* and drained (about 12 medium)
  • Water
  • 2-3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup ClearJel® (cooking starch used for preserving)
  • 1-1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2-1/2 cups unsweetened apple juice
  • 1-1/4 cups cold water
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • Ball®(16 oz) pint glass preserving jars with lids and bands



  1. PREPARE boiling water canner. Heat jars in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil.  Wash lids in warm soapy water and set bands aside.
  2. BLANCH apple slices, working with 6 cups at a time, in a large pot of boiling water for 1 minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and keep warm in a covered bowl.
  3. COMBINE sugar, ClearJel®, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large stainless steel saucepan. Stir in apple juice and cold water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, and cook until mixture thickens and begins to bubble. Add lemon juice, return to a boil and boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Drain apple slices and immediately fold into hot mixture. Before processing, heat, stirring, until apples are heated through.
  4. LADLE hot apple pie filling into hot jars leaving 1 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe rim. Center lid on jar. Apply band until fit is fingertip tight.
  5. PROCESS jars in a boiling water canner for 25 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed.



I have many thoughts swirling around my head for some posts, but I just need some time to sort it all out. Thank you for reading and showing encouragement. I am so grateful.
Have a beautiful September day.


October 3, 2018 - 4:48 pm

Gigi Thank you, Shirley! ((hugs))

October 3, 2018 - 4:48 pm

Gigi Linda, I prefer that word – “Preserving” – it sounds more quaint than canning. I’d love to try a spicy plum sauce. It sounds delicious!

October 1, 2018 - 9:54 pm

Shirley What a lovely day outside for the children…so precious.

I really enjoyed your word picture of the pine trees and your birth story.

Little Loyal is a beautiful baby, as are all the little ones.

What a special family!

Hugs from Shirley in Virginia

October 1, 2018 - 3:45 am

Linda Hi Gigi,
I also enjoy ‘canning’ here in New Zealand, although we don’t call it that here. It is generally referred to as ‘bottling’ or just preserving. I love the sound of this BBQ sauce recipe…well all your canning recipes actually 🙂 I make a spicy plum sauce some years, but think I may try this sauce of yours instead if the Lord blesses us with a bountiful tomato harvest. Thank you for such inspiring posts and wonderful photos. It’s always such a joy to stop by.
Blessings to you ~ Linda

September 27, 2018 - 3:15 pm

Gigi Milessa, that sounds wonderful! We would like to visit there, for sure! Thank you for letting us know. One of these days, we hope to do a road trip in the U.S. 🙂

September 27, 2018 - 10:21 am

Milessa If you are ever in the Outer Banks/Kill Devils Island in North Carolina there is the Wright Brothers museum and you can walk the first flights they did. It is amazing and all of it is interesting. And as always your dedication to providing homemade food for your family is amazing. Have a wonder day and weekend.

September 27, 2018 - 9:07 am

Gigi Sure, I will share a recipe! It’s so easy. 🙂 You will love it.

September 27, 2018 - 7:51 am

Our Home of Many Blessings I’m gonna try both of these!! Spring is by far my favorite season but I do enjoy it when the all the seasons change in there right time. I was so hoping you would share how to make your applesauce!Have a wonderful day!

September 26, 2018 - 6:06 pm

Monica Oh the BBQ sauce is so delicious looking…definitely a cause to plant an extra row next year! I love the crocheted tablecloth, so lovely! And well done on all of the canning you have accomplished this month! You have been blessed my friend, and praise God for the strength to lay up provisions for those cold months!