After picking berries last week we put most of them away in the freezer to use in our favorite fruit salad throughout the next year. The kids also love snacking on frozen blueberries, so a lot of them will go to that as well. But we also made two jams that were firsts for us: raspberry and blackberry. Both recipes were easy, standard jam because I didn't remove seeds.
This morning we decided to go ahead and buy more strawberries and attempt a big batch of jam with those. Somehow we never made it out to pick them this year and I knew I would regret it if I didn't make strawberry jam while good berries are still available. All the big kids helped wash and mash and we all love to wait and listen for the pings that mean our jars are sealed. My favorite part is lining up the completed jars of jam on the shelve in the basement and feeling like we somehow sealed away part of our summer sweetness, that we can open up throughout the winter whenever we need a dose of sunshine.
Margaret is busy crafting away this summer. She just mastered the classic weaving loom and is making some fine looking pot holders. She is taking color requests and will part ways with them for 100 cents each (because they are really special).
I am loving this relatively unmessy craft. Margaret works while I cook and there is no spilt paint to clean up!
Our summer isn't complete without at least one hot day of berry picking at Blueberry Hill. We had really decent weather this morning- hot and sunny for sure, but a breeze made it bearable. The kids and I picked a nice flat of blueberries and 4 pints of raspberries all while Nathan sat pretty happily nearby. He sampled more berries than I care to think of and was thrilled to play with everyone's water bottles. Thank goodness he was up for it all. Last year he sat in his seat and complained a lot so I don't think we even got a bucket of blueberries. In comparison, today was a breeze.
It was made even better because we met Grandma and were able to pick together. That is always more fun.
It was also great to have this as our snack when we got home. What a great morning! Thanks Gma!