As I made my fourth batch of pickle relish this summer, I came across a thin binder pushed deeply back on my recipe book shelf. I vaguely remembered it; it’s where I started keeping my canning information many years ago. I flipped through the pages and found this page:
It’s my hand written record of what I canned and froze every year, beginning in 1980. I read that in 1980, I canned 30 pounds of cherries that cost me 60 cents a pound!
In 1990, I canned approximately 220 pounds of fruit, plus 50 pounds of tomatoes. I wonder how I did that, since I had a 6 month old baby, a not-yet-two-year old, and a six-year old. And we started homeschooling. I must have been incredibly busy. Or dumb. For sure, I had more energy than I do now!
I skip a year here and there in the records, but for the most part, I canned at least something most years. And then there is a gap of 11 years. It looks like I canned nothing from 1999 to 2010. But I know that’s not true; I still canned but I did less of it. In the busy-ness of life, I guess I forgot about keeping canning records, because in that 11-year spread, we lived overseas, we finished high school for all three children, they all started college, two graduated from college, and we had two weddings.
Now I’m happy to say that 2011 is filled in: I canned 6 half-pints of sweet pickle relish, 10 pints of dill relish, and 9 pints of bread and butter pickles. I also froze 9 pounds of blueberries that I picked. The pantry’s looking good!