Saturday, July 3, 2010

When one wakes up in the morning, you have a basic idea what you would like to get accomplished for the day. You know, be productive. When I woke up this morning the sky was blue and clear and sun was beaming through my bedroom window. I thought 'yes!! bonus...get some yard work done, play with my girls ( girls being my jerseys) and make some more strawberry rhubarb jam and maybe go back into the bush and get more willow to make a chair. But one phone call to the hubby to see if he was going to start heading back home today from Banff and the morning is gone.

Madeline started her job on the first, being a trail guide for Warner Stables in Banff, to the guests aka tourists. Dad is having a hard time leaving her behind. He feels like he is abandoning her. I keep telling him, we have to let them go sometime.

Well that phone call lead to another. This time to the son-in-sin, Mike. Need his help finding me a good deal on a pay as you go cell phone for Frank, Jr. I figure since the boy got his driver's this past Monday, he needs a phone so he can phone home. Than I talked with Cassierae. I told that I took the plunge and started a blog. Her being my creative girl, and savvy on the net, she is going to help me get this blog looking the way I want. Told you before, I am not that techie.

While I was talking with Cassierae on the phone, I could hear in the background her cell phone beeping. Her friend, Angel is going to take her out driving today. Cassierae doesn't have her drivers yet. And I think it is about time she gets them. Mike isn't a very good teacher, and I live three hours away, so it has been left in Angel's capable hands. Good luck girls. The oldest girl was also texting Cassierae. So I made another phone call. I have had my new cordless phone I think almost a year, and this is the first time, I talked it to death. The phone starting beeping-it needed to be recharged!

I couldn't believe how fast the morning flies when you sitting in your jammies, drinking fresh perked coffee, and chatting. It was 11.25! I hadn't started my laundry, or my jam and I wasn't even dressed! Now, that is totally not me! Sometime during all the chatting on the phone, the sky clouded over and the wind picked up. Now I don't mind the overcast sky, however I am getting tired of its teasing. Either rain or clear up! We are so in desperate need of moisture! Unlike the rest of the province.

I got my jam made. Yes, I cheated. I used certo. But I did make strawberry/rhubarb jam the 'old' way, without certo, last week. It sure is darker than the batch made with certo. Oh, but it sure is yum yum!

I also have a loaf of bread on the go in the bread machine. Yes, another cheat. The oven on my stove gave up the ghost last fall. Yup, almost a year without an oven. Sure do miss homemade bread, biscuits and the cinnamon buns. I started my job on the 3rd of May, and I bought a washing machine with the first paycheck, and the second paycheck bought a stove. I ordered them through the Brick. My stove should be here early part of next week. Can hardly wait!

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NO-PECTIN STRAWBERRY RHUBARB JAM

9 cups of rhubarb (chopped into 1/2 inch slices)
12 cups of sugar
9 cups sliced strawberries
3/4 cup lemon juice

-Combine rhubarb and sugar into a large pot, let stand 2 hours. Sterilize your jam jars.
-Add strawberries and lemon juice and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Increase heat to medium-high and boil rapidly, stirring often for about 20-25 minutes until jam is slightly thickened. To test if it is reading to put into jars, place a small plate into the freezer until cold. Drop a teaspoon of jam onto the cold plate, the jam should slowly run when the plate is tip sideways- you know what 'thick' jam looks like.
-Remove from heat and stir for a few minutes. Skim the foam off the top with a spoon.
-Pour into hot sterilized jars and seal.
-Process in a water canner for about 10 minutes.
-Let the jars cool and let the jars sing to you with their 'popping'
-If they don't seal, just put those ones into the fridge and use up first.



NOTE:
This recipe is from Mary Anne Dragan's Well Preserved Cookbook. Which by the way is on my wish list. I have to admit, that sometimes I don't follow directions all that closely. My strawberries were crushed. I also started this recipe in the evening, so I let my rhubarb and sugar sit in a bowl with a lid on thru the night. And it took me a while to 'cook' my jam to the right consistency. But it was well worth it. Now, if only I could grow strawberries!

Happy trails!
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