I've been hesitating to write this post. Several of you have asked to see a list of the garden preserving I've done this year - as well as where I store it.
I love visiting my shelves of jars or poking my head in the freezer just to enjoy the bounty that God provided. After a very dry summer, I am surprised at how much we were able to put away this winter.
But I don't want to sprout some sort of super-woman cape. I know how easy it is to read a blog and feel inadequate. I know - because I do it far too often.
I'm not sure why we ladies fall into the comparison trap. While it may be okay to learn from each other, to be challenged in our calling as homemakers, so often I've become discouraged by feeling I don't measure up to what another is accomplishing. I have to constantly remind myself that my calling is to serve my family and husband, in my way with my set of gifts, talents, and skills. Gardening is my thing - couponing might be yours.
So, I'm going to share the stats on our harvest this year - but please don't add "garden, can, and freeze food just like Gina" to your list of things to do next year!
And there is no way I could do this all alone. Ed helps me so much in the garden and yard. I don't even know how to run the tiller or lawn mower. He does all the tilling and mulching and most of the planting and weeding. Most weeks this summer, we spent at least one evening working together in the garden.
Plus, for most of the summer, one of my sisters came and helped me for a day each week. Believe me, I planned my major canning days for the days I knew they would be here! Working together while gabbing made the day fly by quickly and (almost) effortlessly. One of the things I missed the most when I married was working together with my sisters and mom. Many hands really do make the work light. My daughter is learning to help and I'm looking forward to having her assistance in future years.
So, if you promise not to compare AND remember I had help, here is the 2010 list.
peas - 58 pint
asparagus - 3 bags
broccoli- 9 bags
green beans - 28 bags
corn - 29 pint
tomato sauce-22 pint
canned tomatoes-10 pint
tomato juice-25 pint
pizza sauce-62 pint
salsa - 10 pint
vegetable soup-27 quart
chicken soup-17 quart
All vegetables were grown in our garden except 1 bushel of peas bought from a neighbor and the corn which came from my parents. A "bag" is a meal's worth - somewhere between a pint and a quart.
strawberries - picked 68 quart, froze 60 pint
strawberry glaze-13 pint
strawberry lemonade-8 quart
fruit slush-11 quart
apple chutney-6 pint
apple cider- 20 quart
All fruit was purchased except the strawberries.
And for a tour of the basement... watch your step, I don't usually allow visitors down here. There is no telling what you may find! First, my two favorite closets in the whole house. They are right at the bottom of the basement step, handy to the kitchen. I don't know what the original owner used them for, but they are perfect for canning jars. With the doors shut, they stay reasonably dust free.