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I picked, I canned, and I picked some more

October 14, 2008

So I had an overly productive past three days.  We purchased an energy efficient chest freezer for the garage to help decrease the amount of wasted food around our house.  It arrived last Thursday so of course we had to have a shopping spree at Costco…okay it was not that much of a shopping spree.  We did get a good deal of organic frozen vegetables and berries, for both our and Z’s consumption.  It is far better than getting fresh berries and losing them in the back of the fridge only to find them 2 weeks later growing a colony of fuzzy mold.  I have now also ended up with various bagged Trader Joe’s  meals that my sister  left in my parent’s freezer, hooray for free mushroom risotto!  Also it gives us a place to store all the baby food I have been preparing.

Sunday we went out to a farm nearby that has pick your own apples and peaches.  We did not expect the variety of apples that we found or the sizes of the peaches, many of which weighed 1lb each.  After getting 10 lbs of each, we went out and bought the necessary equipment to do some canning.  We had already decided we were going to make applesauce and we found a recipe for Peach Almond Conserve, so we figured we would try our hand at canning.  We only ended up canning 6 lbs of the apples into applesauce, which turned out surprisingly good, and I am still waiting on Andrew to muster of the  energy to make the conserve with me.  We now have 4 beautiful 1L jars of homemade applesauce, no added sweeteners with a touch of cinnamon and allspice.  I also made banana bread while we waiting for the jars of applesauce to seal in the canner.  My dad after hearing about it is now asking me to make him banana bread, the recipe that I found in an old issue of Cooking Light came out really good.  I highly encourage others to try their hand at canning, especially if you can get your significant other or friend or child who can follow directions well to help.  It is very rewarding to produce your own canned goods.  You know that there is not a bunch of preservatives, fake sweeteners, and other chemicals are going into the product.

Monday I got to watch over a sick husband who had finally succumbed to a chest cold he had been fighting off with Zicam.  We also had over some designers contracted with Ikea to redesign our kitchen.  Currently our kitchen is a poorly organized mess, we actually use the hallways linen cabinets for a pantry because we cannot fit much in our kitchen cabinets other than utensils, dinnerware, glasses, and spices.  The current cabinets are dark, with a dark green granite counter top, which only contributes to making the kitchen seem smaller than it is.  So we have decided that the safe place to put our money is investing it back in the house with a new kitchen, that we will get to enjoy.  We have picked the Adel birch cabinet doors for the kitchen and are going with a quartz stone counter top in a creme limestone color.  We have also picked out our color palette for the kitchen which includes a light red, golden yellow, and a terra cotta.  Yes I am aware those colors are more likely to make you hungry but I like them so people entering our kitchen will just have to be happy with getting hungry there.

After the visit from the designers, who took measurements and produced some computer renderings to help us visualize what our new kitchen will look like, we decided to actually go to Ikea to make sure this is what we want and see if there were any adjustments we wanted to make to our design.    Of course this just feels like step one of 550,000 steps to go.  We still have to call the design company and confirm our order, send that to Ikea, contact installers, order the countertop, tear our the cabinets, patch up and repaint the kitchen, and the list goes on.  But in the end we will have a new kitchen, which is shiny.  I just will once again have tons of people working on the house while I take care of a newborn and this time around I have a toddler too.  Should be fun, right?

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