Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Yesterday, I was a pioneer. Yes-siree!

I tried my hand at the ancient art of canning. (mostly because i was pressured into it by some super over-acheiving, homemaker friends from church.)

Last year we made peach jam. Easy. This year I upped the ante to canning. Not so easy.

It's just kind of a pain in the derriere...rear end, behind, butt, you get the idea. (i don't think the pioneers would have used that kind of language)

I was told it goes like this: You peel, pit, pack, pour syrup, seal, boil, then wah-la...you've got canned peaches. Well, it isn't that easy.

After a kitchen full of skins, pits, drippy syrup, a dozen dirty pans, bowls, utensils, a wasted naptime
(i consider any naptime wasted if I don't enjoy at least 15 minutes of "ME" time), floating peaches, and the stress of hearing the "POP" to indicate a successful seal, I'm just not sure it's worth it...five hours later.

I mean, sure, I do feel a little bit warm and fuzzy inside knowing that I learned a new skill and produced a product, but the other part of me wonders if the $1.20 you pay at the store for a can of peaches just might be worth it?!?!

You can see how Jack feels about the fruits of my labor.

I guess the pioneer heritage runs deep through my veins. How could I disappoint?

Stay tuned for next year's pioneer project...skinning wild game.

**This post is in no way meant to discount the amazing over-the-phone canning coaches who helped me fumble through my learning curve**


Jay & Gwen Sessions said...

There is no greater satisfaction a parent can have as when a child follows your example...assuming it was a good example.

There is no greater shock a child can have than to realize that this is going on.

Gwen is the master canner and should deserve the credit, but she was sick during my canning example. The accountant in me told me to take a pic - the moral - he who records the memory gets the credit - which I do not deserve.

When Ali was dating, we would often show her boy friends the video of her gutting and skinning one of the deers I brought home. Instead of turning them off-they usually liked her more....bloody hands and all.

Needless to say we are proud of her CAN-do attitude.

Love Dad (and mom-the real can-can girl)

kelly southwell said...

I am laughing so hard! as I was thinking about what to comment, I accidentally clicked on the pioneer picture and then saw that it is YOUR face!! that totally caught me off-guard. so funny!
some day, when you can't buy canned peaches at the grocery store (when the world comes to an end...) we'll all run over to your house for some fresh peach cobbler! yum!
good job al, it's done now!

ali degraff said...

thanks dad for your cryptic comments that can only be understood by immediate family.

and kelly...you didn't recognize me in my bonnet?

heidi said...

All I can say is that I am NEVER buying the fruit again when it is offered at our place of worship...it was too much of a task. (I already know I have a place saved for me where the fire burns...)

s said...

Ha, Ha, Ha! I said NO fruit and then got pressure to buy. I stood firm and said no thanks and I'm glad I did! The peaches do look good. Enjoy and savor the FRUITS of your labor.

sheena said...

I'm loading my suitcase with store bought peaches, and then we can switch... then you'll never have to be reminded of your horrible day again.

Lori said...

I made plum jam this summer and had so much fun. It was so easy! So naturally I assumed canning would be even easier. When I mentioned wanting to learn canning from my Mom next, I could tell from her face that it wasn't going to be fun at all. She let me know that canning is A LOT of work. Those jars look so pretty that it makes me want to try it still.