Tuesday, July 15, 2008

A Good Summer Day....

I did my run/walk yesterday. It wasn't as good as usual. I am a bit out of the groove from taking a few weeks off so I only ran in 5 minute spurts interspersed with walking. I did 2 miles but like I said - there was a lot of walking involved.

I spent the better part of the afternoon making blackberry jam. I know...lots of sugar in there - but I only use a wee bit on my toast and nothing beats homemade blackberry jam fresh off the bush. There's something about canning and freezing my own fruits and veggies that takes me to a place deep in my heart where I feel connected. To what, I'm not sure. The earth maybe? or perhaps it's that corny nostalgia that lives in me that yearns for simpler times.

When I was a young stay-at-home mom, nothing pleased me more than dragging out the canning supplies, donning one of my grandma's old aprons and working away until I had rows and rows of colorful jars filled with fresh picked veggies & fruits to see me through winter and remind me of summer.

I had a wonderful herb garden at one time too. Four raised beds divided by a mulched pathway with a little white fence keeping it all together. Now it's just a tangled mess. The fence is gone, the mulch has disappeared into the earth and there are only a few rotted boards proving that that there was any order at all there at one time. The oregano has crept into the grass and the lemon balm is still growing in a patch by the shed, but everything else has died off. I should clean the area up, plant some grass and make it look presentable before we sell the house. And I will....but for now I've just let it go. In all it's dishevelment - it's still a reminder of another time.

We have a big garden at the new house. One that takes up more time than we have now. Maybe when the house is finished and we're not doing a balancing act between two homes, I'll appreciate the garden again. For now...picking blackberries and putting up 7 jars of jam was enough to whet my nostalgic whistle.


Kathy said...

Blackberries are never better than when they are picked and prepared close to home. When we were kids, we spent many summers picking wild blackberries and helping Mom can or freeze them for wonderful cobbler in the winter...none better!

Manuela said...

I love jam and only the real thing will do. Blackberries--yum! I did strawberries and may do apricots.

Hope the move goes well and that you'll be in the groove of running again. I agree that's it's tough when you've taken a bit of time off.

Good luck with it!

RunningNan said...

I'm glad you ran and walked. It's better than forcing yourself the whole way. Listening to your body is the way to go. So what about the sugar. Better that than HFCS!

Ready to Shrink said...

I can't even express how much I love blackberry jam. I can't find any homemade around here! My mouth is watering. Enjoy yours chica!

Pattie said...

Phew! Seven jars of jam is a big accomplishment, especially with all you've got going on right now. And you’re right: there's nothing better than homemade.

I would guess part of the connection you feel is not just to the Earth, but to your ancestors, as well. Canning is such generational art, and can’t help but remind us of our grandmas and those who came before. Quilting helps me feel the same way.

Good for you, for keeping the tradition alive!

Mama Bear June said...

Yum on the homemade jam! I've never made it myself. And I'd love to have a garden, but I tend to kill all green growing things that are near me! ;-)

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