I got the call last Friday morning at 7am: a half-bushel of seconds tomatoes was waiting for me at market. Thank God I finished Genevieve's school shopping Thursday and picked the beans several blocks away and in my own back yard. Thank God I sorted the box of hand-me-downs and got caught up with the laundry.
The big kids helped me haul the tomatoes home from market (how I will manage now that they are back in school I do not know). Ben helped with clear-the-deck chores because he wanted to be out with his lemonade stand in the afternoon. Genevieve opted to play until lunchtime, and help with the tomatoes after lunch.
Once I got the market things put away, the bread baked, and the dishes washed, the actual canning could begin. Genevieve peeled all the tomatoes, I stuffed the jars, and then I spent the afternoon running them through the canner. Now I have 17 quarts of whole tomatoes, sealed and cooling. And then I got a text from a friend on Saturday with a bunch of peppers, so I made pimentos. And finally, on Sunday, my in-laws dropped off 10 pounds of Roma tomatoes that someone at their church wanted to get rid of. So yesterday, I made and canned pizza sauce.
This is all going on with camping preparation and the kids starting school, with Genevieve's middle school location and schedule throwing a wrench in the works.
I love this home-canned food, I love preserving food, but you guys: my life feels a little impossible right now. I would ditch the camping if we hadn't already paid for it, and I want to hang with dear friends.
My children are happy which is a big consolation and one of these days, mama's going to be happy, too, when she gets a tidy, peaceful house to herself with no looming projects. One of these years, maybe. . .