Canning With Grandma

Tuesday, my sister and I strung and snapped beans all afternoon, we made it through half of them. Honestly, that was not something I considered when I planted a garden, but the beans are done for the year. When I got home from work yesterday, the first set of 7 quarts were already in the canner. Grandma had started without me.

I helped finish those 7, and prepare the second batch of 7 along with 9 pints. The last few beans were then placed in the slowcooker by my sister for dinner last night. While the second batch of quarts were going, Grandma taught me how to blanch and prepare corn for freezing. We worked together. My sister picked a row of  corn, only the ears that were ready, while Grandma and I got the last few beans when I got home. Grandma and I cut the kernels off the cob, then Grandma showed me how to blanch it. We got 9 quart bags in the freezer yesterday.

We had not planned for tomatoes yesterday, but they were ripe, and unfortunately when it comes to these things, the clock does not say when you are done, but the work. Grandma showed me how to chunk the tomatoes and cook them before juicing them. We had half a five gallon bucket that were ripe, and got just over 4 quarts of juice.

Very productive day, but by the time we were done, I was ready to be done. I tried to absorb more information than I think my brain could process at once. Next time I am going to take notes so that I can repeat the process.

I have told you all of this, not to tell you what I did yesterday, but hopefully show you that there is great value in spending time with your family, especially your grandparents. There is much to be learned and appreciated about their knowledge of life and life skills, family history and heritage, and fun stories apart from fun itself. I thoroughly enjoyed spending time with my grandmother yesterday. While we were productive, that was just a good excuse for me to put aside other things to spend time with her. I want to learn how to can because not many people, especially my age, know much if anything about it. Grandma has always done it for our family, but it is too much for her and Grandpa now. I made sure to put out a garden big enough to share from. I have gladly given her corn and squash to take home and have with Grandpa.

Love your family, hold them tight and dear. Spend the time that you have with them because you never know what tomorrow is going to bring. Open your heart, let them in, learn from them and carry them with you wherever you go. Family is so important, and everyday I see people take advantage of it. Enjoy your time with your family as much as you can!

Advertisements

Grateful This Sunday

What a busy week behind me! This was yet another full week here in southern Ohio. My weeks through the summer usually are, but I do not mind. Several things got marked off the ever growing To-Do list, I found new challenges for myself and I was given new opportunities to grow. Sundays in the past have always been a good time for me to reflect, on the week past as well as milestones that the sermon reminded me of, and today has been no different.

Unfortunately, I overslept yet again and did not make the service this morning. I am sure Pastor Jim and Pastor Jeff did an awesome job as usual with the message and praise and worship, and while I am sorry that I missed it, my body was so physically exhausted I could not force myself up and moving.

Today, Dad and I took advantage of the gorgeous weather and went back to the hayfield for another round of mowing. The weatherman says this week is going to be dry and beautiful and that means working in the hayfield all week.

The farm Dad mowed on today is so peaceful. I stood there just looking and taking in the scenery. The different kinds of trees, some of which I know others I do not recognize, but they include maple, pine and even apple trees! There are 3 good sized pasture/hayfields. Another that is over grown, but with a little bit of work would be an absolutely gorgeous farm. As I stood there looking around and taking in the sight, I started thanking and praising. God provided for me the hayfields I needed this year. The scenery is a big bonus, but I thorougly enjoyed the farm today, even though it was not my own.

I took Millie with us and she just loves running around out there. The trees make wonderful shady spots even in the afternoon sun. She eventually found a shady spot to rest, only after she had run around and stretched. She always likes to be out with us in the fields and usually stays close to me and the tractor.

Dad called me over to where he was mowing and I hurried to help with what he needed. When I got to the mower, he pointed down to the ground and there sat a Dove that was in no hurry to move. So I gently shooed her out of harm’s way and she fluttered to the tree line out of the mower’s path.

Sometimes it is the little things that makes up appreicate God’s picture for us even more. I am so grateful for the many blessings that I have been given especiallly this week. I hope you can find them in your own lives!

Counting My Blessings

Today at the shop was busy, which is a good thing! I enjoy working when we are busy as the pace is faster, the time goes quicker and my usual coworker and I just get in a groove and go. Today, for some reason, my patience grew shorter as the shift progressed. This is not how it usually goes, but for whatever reason today I was struggling.

I made arrangements this afternoon to pick up a freezer. After having lunch with my 2 wonderful friends Monday, I was reminded that sometimes I need to take care of me. Today, that entailed picking up a freezer. So, blessing 1 was my neighbor was kind enough to ride with me, help me load and unload this huge heavy freezer. Cannot thank them enough as I would never have wrestled it by myself, even though I would have tried.

When we arrived to get this freezer, I called the lady selling it to let her know we were there. She assured me that she saw me and she was on her way out. I looked up to see this lady walking with a walker across the sidewalk of her yard. She was probably at least 80 and my heart softened at once. As I talked with her a minute, she told me that the freezer had been cleaned out of food that morning by the food pantry, because she was storing it for someone that had told her they would not be back after it. She continued on to say that blueberries had spilled in the bottom and she was not able to clean it up.

I assured  her it was no problem and that I would take care of it. But she insisted on taking less money for it than she originally had it priced at. I tried to convince her it was ok, that I would pay the whole price. But she would not even consider it. I still paid her more than she asked and I came home with a working freezer.

Talking with this sweet lady today was such a blessing, blessing 2, as I got to listen to her talk, her primary use for this freezer was helping people. She used it to store food for someone else, and then donated food to the food pantry. There are stains of brown paint, battle scars, from her craft work of making lamps and such from antlers that her taxidermy friend gives her.

This wonderful lady has such a sweet spirit and kind heart. Blessing 3 was getting to see that in her today. Hopefully my money was as much of a blessing to her as the freezer is to me. Meeting her today was well worth the trip itself, the freezer became a bonus. God’s hand had to be in it, because today was the only day this week that I had available to go get it, and it worked out perfectly. God is so good! And He brings us blessings all the time, every day, if we just take the time to see them and appreciate them!

I feel like my eyes have been opened this week and I cannot express my gratitude for that!