Last year I planted a garden with the hopes of having a big harvest to make pickles. I planted Lemon Cucumbers, I had read somewhere they are good for pickling, what I didn't read is that you have to pick them when they are small or they are no good. A lot of them were too big, making them seedy and slightly bitter. My Mom and I made pickles with them and some smaller pickling cucumbers that we bought from the local farmer's market. We also made pickled green beans. All summer long we have been saying we need to get cucumbers again to do our pickles. We did not do it. We are going to do the green beans again, and if I can find a farmer's market this late in the season we will do pickles too. I am very excited about that.
The point of this is that I had so much fun doing all of this I have been dying to can something, anything!! My Mom has been making jelly (jam), she made peach and is working on her grape right now. I love peach and I will like the grape (because the grapes are from my Aunt's garden and my Mom made it) although I am not usually a big fan of grape jelly. My favorite is and always has been strawberry. So I decided last week I was going to make me some strawberry jelly! And yesterday when I was grocery shopping I bought everything I needed. I was a little scared. I had to take care of two kids (Morgan does okay by herself but Carter isn't old enough to understand taking care of himself. What is wrong with 7 month olds these days?) and stir the strawberry juice and sugar constantly. Let me tell you, my kitchen looked like it exploded, but it was worth it. I ended up with 14 jars and the jelly turned out fantastic!! See how pretty it looks. I am so happy. I already gave a jar to Matt & Krystal (brother and sister in law) to try. Krystal was pretty excited because all she has been eating lately is peanut butter, jelly and honey sandwiches (sounds wierd to me but I am not pregnant and due in 2 weeks).
We are planning to do the green beans this week (hopefully pickles too). I will let you know how that goes.