Why I Can and Why Not!

Except for a shortCanningPoster foray into to town today I have spent the entire day canning salsa.  The house has never cooled down in spite of the air being on full blast so I’m hot.  My back hurts and my feet are sore from standing.  My hands are raw from peeling tomatoes, I darn near cut my finger off chopping onions and peppers and the reason  I went to town was to get rubber gloves so I wouldn’t burn my eyes out.  (Didn’t use them once and was I ever sorry).

All of this and still I still love to can my own salsa and a few other things as well.  Why?  My mother never canned a thing but my grandmother canned everything that stood still long enough to put it in a jar. My aunt still cans enough for her family of six every year though none of their children have been at home for well over 40 years.  (Imagine the stockpile in the cold room.)

The grocery store is full of canned goods.  I could just walk up to a shelf and buy anything I needed, probably for less than the cost of doing it myself.

The man who planted, maintains the vegetable garden and  picked the tomatoes, peppers, garlic, and onions for me doesn’t really like the job but I notice he likes eating the finished product.  He panics when he sees so many tomatoes, afraid they will go to waste.  He even encourages me to give them away which I don’t like to do because I hate running out of tomato sauce in April.

So why do I like doing my own canning?

  1. I like knowing I won’t starve till next June.
  2. I like that I know what is in the jar.
  3. I like that I grew everything in the jar.
  4. I like knowing the stuff in jar isn’t full of chemicals.
  5. I like having it to give away as gifts – it is a very unique gift.
  6. I like the feeling of accomplishment it gives me.
  7. I like knowing I’m not going to run out of something between shopping trips.
  8. I like that I don’t have to do so much shopping.
  9. I like that it feels like I’m doing something valuable for my family.
  10. I like lining them up like soldiers in the cupboard, ready for the winter.
  11. I like to think Grandma would be proud.
  12. I like putting my feet up when it’s done and feeling like I’ve done something valuable.
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About Peggy Guiler

You just never know what show up on my blog. As the name implies it is about the stuff of life just like Spilt Milk. Everyday events spark thought and contemplation. Special events in the community, the country or the world may strike a cord and get me talking. Sometimes it's about people in my life or circumstances, sometimes about my garden, sometimes about a book or a political issue. Always it's about something I am passionate about. In my business, River of Hope Enterprises, I work as an "Associate Certified Coach" (International Coach Federation), a trainer, consultant and speaker. and soon to be, spiritual director. I also drive a school bus to keep the wolf from the door while I build my business. I love the kids on the bus (most of the time). My family is grown and I have three grandkids who thrill my heart but I don't get to see any of them very often. Circumstances of life have made "family" difficult. My son died by suicide at age 16 in 2000 and the strain on our family relationships since has been huge. Mental health is a field where I worked for almost 20 years and where I still do some consulting and training. That combined with my own battle with depression and my son's death weave together to form some of my greatest soap box items: suicide intervention, suicide bereavement and peer support in mental health are right on the top of my list. Social justice is an underlying passion. Keeping the wolf from the door as a single parent was full-time work and my career path as a journalists was augmented with cleaning contracts, cooking, retail clerk, and bartending. I have known hard work and am grateful for the experience and perspective it has given me. My own passion for learning has now taken me toward a new field as a Spiritual Director. I am studying with the Ontario Jubilee Program. This new field I believe puts all my talents with people into one place which and may​ become something I can continue into retirement. Supporting people is what I do best. Woven into all of this is my love of writing. Trained as a Journalist, and having worked in the field as a freelance news writer for many years, I have a great love for writing. This blog is a new beginning for me. As I hone my skills and begin to form a daily discipline of writing I hope it will lead to more writing in the future.
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4 Responses to Why I Can and Why Not!

  1. Ooh you have been busy. It sounds like a comforting activity since it was passed down from previous generations.

  2. Anand says:

    Love that poster you shared. Indians still aren’t much into canned food…so canning something at home is still a distant dream – perhaps in another life.

    • Peggy Guiler says:

      Now you have me wondering if it is something we do only in cold climates where we have to get through the winter without fresh produce. Not like the grocery store isn’t full of fresh produce but there is none in my garden.

  3. Lemonpath says:

    Sounds like a busy day, do you have a receipe for Tomato Sauce.

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