Monday, 27 July 2015

Monday Morning Wash Day 'Blues'

I harvested the Garlic this morning.  All the books I've got and the Google pages I've read say to wait until the leaves have turned yellowish and are starting to go over, then leave the Garlic to dry out in the sun until the papery covering is dry and ready to store.

I waited until the leaves were yellow and were going over, then the sun decided not to keep it's side of the bargain and instead the rain fell and fell and fell .....   

My garlic was going soggy!!  So this morning I dashed out during a lighter shower of rain and rescued the lot.  I had to wash it and chop lots of the stem and some of the roots off as they were decidedly soggy.  As you can see I have laid it on paper towels and trays and left it for a while on the Aga to start the drying process.  Once the surfaces are dry I will move it to somewhere more ambient and leave it to dry out some more.

Most of it will have to be used pretty sharpish as the individual cloves are visible and won't store well at all, no hardship really as I will be making some chutneys with our courgettes and the onions I had to dig up prematurely, so some garlic will give a good depth of flavour.  But I might attempt a small braid with the best of it.

My hands smell gorgeous at the moment, I really don't understand these people that search for 'things to stop your hands smelling of garlic' .... I love it, the longer it lasts the better  :-)

As you can see from the picture the Aga is also busy drying the weekend working jeans as well as the garlic, definitely the Monday morning wash day 'blues'.  

There are no other blues ..... here the washing machine does all the work.  With it raining outside there will only be one other load going in today.  

Image result for washing clothes the old fashioned way

Years ago Monday morning meant real hard labour, I know I've been there, years without a washer and two small boys meant back breaking work over the bath washing, scrubbing and then wringing and hanging out.  Clothes, bedding, towels and nappies mostly done daily but I usually tried to give myself Sunday off, so Monday was always a slightly heavier load to do.  I'm glad those days are past.

One tradition I do keep up with though ... is a slumbering dog beside the Aga.  
Suky knows the best place to be on a wet Monday morning.    :-)

Sue xx


  1. I've got wash day blues too. My husband's jeans are hanging outside as it's actually sunny here for now. He has 2 good pairs and a pair will last him all week as he works from home. He's got more tops than me though! Have a good week xo

    1. It's brightened up a bit here, but now the jeans are almost dry I'll not risk putting them out, the towels can go out though :-)

      Have a good week yourself, loving your posts at the moment. xx

  2. Although garlic braids look lovely, I chop and freeze all mine, it's just so much more convenient that way! Have you tried 'black garlic' it's gorgeous, mild, syrupy, balsamicky and wonderful, it's amazing sliced thinly on scrambled eggs. There's a company in London sells it on-line, their name begins with 'B'.
    I've never been without a washing machine, but remember my mum washing everything in the kitchen sink, I used to love helping her put it all through the mangle!
    Occasionally when I feel like grizzling about having to do the washing, I make myself stop and appreciate just how easy it is for us these days, pop it in the washer and forget about it! My washer even has an 'auto clean detergent drawer', how lazy does that make me?
    I think the rain you had earlier is coming our way, it's getting cloudier by the minute, my washing is on a rack in the garage and that's where it's staying for now!
    I'm quite envious of Suky, she looks so warm and comfy!

    1. Oooh .... an 'auto clean detergent drawer', that is actually a brilliant idea. It's a yucky job taking it out and cleaning it and one that I usually put off for far too long!!

    2. My detergent drawer used to be dreadful, I fully intended to give it a quick rinse after every use, but 'good intentions' and all that! It's a real treat now not ever finding 'gunge' in it!

  3. Wash day blues here too. Just wish it would stay sunny to do more.

    I'm with you on the garlic front, nothing nicer than that smell.

    X x

  4. Weather dreadful up here too. We had planned to go camping for our annual holiday but it was too cold and wet almost everywhere in the north so we stayed at home and had days and picnics out and about. Lovely to return home to our own bed at night and also didn't have to spend days drying out camping equipment and washing tons of clothes etc.

    We started off married life with no washing machine - 2 years before we bought a second hand one. Mind you, we didn't have children then so it was a bit easier. We hand washed almost everything. Occasionally, we would take a load of bedding to the launderette x

  5. At the moment my washing's out on the line - keep checking it though as it's gone very black overhead. Shocking wet day yesterday - had washing drying all over the place. We started off our married life with a twin-tub. Don't know how I coped with it looking back!! I then used to cart if all off to he launderette to put in their big dryers. (I also have the same wooden fruit box thingy as you have, the Bethersford fruit one - was at a loss what to put in it so it's turned into our bit & bobs kitchen box where we throw our keys, etc). (Mrs LH)

  6. I'm with you too on the garlic! Yesterday I went to a wedding in Eastwood Nottinghamshire (D.H.Lawrence country).
    To get to it, we travelled north on the M1 to junction 26, onto the A610. I was looking forward to going past some woods on the left hand side.........with the rainy day and breezes, the smell of wild garlic was very strong! Lovely!
    I got a whiff on the way home too!

  7. I wish this rain would stop. We take modern machinery for granted although I had to hand wash for our family of 5 a couple of months ago as my machine broke so I can empathise with your memories. Hope you're going to share your chutney recipes.

  8. Miserable in Essex too. Its the fullest my water butts have ever been! I'm attempting to put out some washing even if its for an hour before it gets finished in the tumble drier. I airer is ok for smaller bits but larger things end up having a strange smell to them. You're lucky having an Aga. My garlic weren't very big but I was super late putting them in.

  9. I don't remember the last time I saw washing hanging on a line within the city. We occasionally see it out in the country at a farm or an older acreage. You would never see washing hanging outside the mega Mcmansions they are building on the small acreages know. I am always amazed when we drive by theses places, you never see a vegetable garden planted and very few trees. I wonder why some people moved out to the country in the first place!

  10. mmmm i adore the smell of garlic on my hands too :) i don't have the luxury of shoving everything in a washing machine at the minute, as ours broke before we moved, so everything is had washed and line dried so i have to choose my washing days carefully for fine or windy days haha luckily there are only the two of us so we don't generate too much washing :) But there are advantages, as it reminds me to put cream on my hands, and it smells so much nicer when it has been out in the full sun. All of ours is washed in a large bucket, rinsed in a second bucket then wrung out by hand (it kills!) but it's saving so much electricity and water so i think i'm just going to carry on and not bother getting a machine haha :) I'm just going to invest in an old mangle and a plunger! xx

  11. I have often thought the wet clothes draw water from the sky.
    They invariably seem to show up at the same time.

  12. It rained all day here, til nightfall and it is raining again at 2 AM! Miserable!

  13. Sweet photo of Suky looking snug .

  14. You can peel and put garlic in oil to store and use as you need. Plus you end up with garlic flavoured oil as well


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