End of Summer = Canning

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As if tomorrow being the first day of school (eek!) wasn’t enough of an indicator, summer announced its official end by two important events:

1. My mom driving up to Logan to teach me how to can tomatoes so we can start to deal with the masses of ripe, red maters that are positively gushing out of our garden at the moment, and

2. The morning “chill” in the air that has been the undeniable indicator since my childhood that the new school year is just around the corner.

I think it goes without saying that I’m not quite ready and am a little nervous and paranoid and anxious about school starting tomorrow.

But I’ll say it anyway: I’m not quite ready and  am a little nervous and paranoid and anxious about school starting tomorrow.

But, putting my first-day jitters aside, let’s talk canning.

Before last Thursday, I’d never really learned how to can.

I mean, I helped my mom out when I was a kid when SHE would can (and by help, I mean I would crank the machine that gushed out the apricot guts while I snuck that blushing fruit of goodness into my mouth as fast as I could).

But last weekend, as I stirred up a steaming pot of tomato sauce that had cinnamon and nutmeg in it of all things (DELICIOUS!), I realized a couple important truths:

Firstly, canning takes a LOT more produce than I previously realized. For our tomato sauce, we used fifteen pounds of fat tomatoes, and it only produced two big jars (quarts) and four little jars (pints) of sauce.

Second, canning requires that you put in a LOT of work for only a little bit of product (or so it felt like to me).

But the most important truth was of course my final realization:

There are few things in life as satisfying as knowing that you’ve provided food for your family during the coming months that’s based on produce that you grew on your own, harvested on your own, and canned on your own (well, with help from your mom).

This was a proud moment for me, friends:

Side note: We actually did can more than what is displayed in this above picture, but it wouldn’t all fit on that counter.

Of course, after spending about 8 hours straight to produce what you see above, I realized with a slightly sick feeling in my stomach that our garden produces that many tomatoes in a week, easy.

So the question is this:

WHAT ON EARTH TO DO WITH THE REST OF THE TOMATOES?!

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