The season of Projects

Late summer and early fall are usually the season of Projects in our house. They’re usually of the preserving kind, although as always renovation projects elbow their way in as well. First up (June or July) is the strawberry-jam project, which is later followed by other berry jams and various peach projects (August), then grape juice and grape jelly projects and various pesto projects (September), and lastly tomato-, mint-, apple- and crabapple-related projects.

It’s my Estonian heritage I’m sure. It’s summer! Preserve, preserve, because soon it will be cold and we might die! I have to enter winter with a nice big shelf of preserves and a freezer full of pesto or I feel deeply uneasy. I own an insane number of mason jars and I find it hard to part with them. If I share one with you, you know I really really like you and would very much want you too to live through winter.

But gah, who wants to deal with great vats of boiling water, pots of bubbling jellies or slow-roasted tomatoes when it’s 30 frickin’ degrees out? I made peach butter when it was still over 30 out, and I ended up with spatter burns up and down my arms because I simply couldn’t handle the thought of long sleeves in that heat.

Finally now it’s cold enough to enjoy jelly projects. Good, because my parents left a huge bowl full of crabapples on the kitchen table today before they left…