the apple weight didn't work because the fermenting mason jar overflowed this morning. luckily i had the whole setup in a bowl, so the cabbage juice didn't get everywhere. there was nothing to do but to remove the lid, clean the airlock, push down the sauerkraut and drain the excess fluid, and put everything back together again.
i put some leftover chicken corn chowder in a small pot and heated it up for lunch. the rest i put away in 1-quart plastic tubs (enough to fill 2 containers). a day later, the potatoes were still a bit hard, i don't think they're going to break apart anytime soon.
as this was the last day before a 2-day extreme cold spell was due in the area, i took advantage of the relatively mild day (temperature in the lower 40's) to go out and run some errands. at rite aid i picked up 3 prescriptions (i called it yesterday but didn't get a chance to go down) and bought a few things (including chocolates on sale and cotton balls). i also went to the dollar store to look for any cheap electronic toys that had a 4-AA battery compartment; i wanted to cannibalize it just for the battery holder (6v) for use in a servo project with the raspberry.
when i got my parents' place, i rolled up all the garden hoses that'd been outside and put them in the garden. there weren't easy to coil because the rubber material was stiff from the cold temperature, but still better than last weekend, when the hoses were entirely frozen solid. i also wrapped a towel around the outdoor spigot in back of the house. i don't think the plumbing to this faucet has an indoor shutoff valve, and i was afraid the pipe might burst (although we've never protected it in the past, and it hasn't burst yet, but better safe than sorry).
i brought some caraway seeds for my parents to try. they liked the flavor, reminded them of dill but with a strong minty taste, and my father said he remembered tasting this flavor in breads but always thought it was just dill.
after dinner i peddled back home. the temperature was already dropping into the 20's, but i felt fine. i put the bike away in the basement, figuring i wouldn't be using it for the next few days, with the bitterly cold weather following by snow and rain over the weekend. inside the house, i brought in some garden perennials sitting out on my backyard deck. they may be hardy winter perennials, but i didn't want to take the chance and have them freeze to death outside. i'll put them back out once the cold snap is over.
the mason jar airlock seems to be doing well, no overflow since i cleaned it this weekend. carbon dioxide was still being produced because the bell was pushed all the way up to the airlock lid. this is just the first day so some heavy fermentation is to be expected.
i was going to buy a 4-AA battery holder on ebay, but got an MB102 breadboard power supply module instead (around 75¢). the maximum voltage is only 5v but that's enough to operate a servo motor.