September 29, 2016

September 28, 2016

For the Love of Mason Jars


I love Mason jars. I use them to store anything and everything: leftovers in the refrigerator, buttons and paperclips and little bits of ribbon, and dry staple foods.


I do use Mason jars for their original purpose: canning. Whether it's our apple harvest, sweet and sour plum sauce using the plums from our trees, a gift of buckets of pears from our insurance agent, wild blackberries, stew meat from our steer, homemade chicken broth, or leftover Thanksgiving turkey, it will end up in a jar in my canner.


My favorite jars are the old blue canning jars. I have a few of them, in both pint and quart size. I buy them when and if I find them at a reasonable price just because they're pretty. I don't use them for canning; I don't think the color is appealing with apples or chicken broth inside. They're prettiest when the light shines through the empty jar or when they hold a bouquet of wildflowers.


I even have a green-tinted jar with the old-fashioned shoulders. You can see the imperfections in the glass; I think it must be really old.


Friends and family have donated to my canning jar collection. I brought half a dozen quart jars home when my brother and I cleaned out our childhood home. Hubby once gave me a box of wide-mouth half-gallon jars (he knows the way to my heart, doesn't he?) I bought five regular-mouth half-gallons from the thrift store (the dead cricket inside one of them was free).


A couple of years ago I hit the jackpot, and bought 20 dozen used jars for a dollar a dozen from a Craigslist ad. Just $20 for 240 jars. There were some interesting ones in the collection, such as the Pine jar above, this Atlas Strong-Shouldered Mason below, and a Presto.

PickYourOwn.org has a brief history of Mason jars and other brands of canning jars if you'd like to learn more.


We use pint Mason jars as our everyday drinking glasses. It not only justifies my collection, it also means we have enough jars for everyone who is visiting. 

How do you use Mason jars, besides canning?



This post has been shared at some of my favorite blog hops.


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My hope is to inspire you, and to encourage your homesteading plans and your dreams of a simple, self-reliant, God-dependent life. You can follow me at:
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September 27, 2016

A Slice of My Life



Broomweed at sunset



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My hope is to inspire you, and to encourage your homesteading plans and your dreams of a simple, self-reliant, God-dependent life. You can follow me at:
Facebook | Pinterest | Bloglovin | Subscribe via email

September 26, 2016

How Muscovy Ducks Work on the Homestead


It's no secret that I love ducks. We've had several over the years, along with a few geese, and I discovered that I enjoy the waterbirds even more than I like my chickens.

Male Muscovy duck

Currently we have three Muscovy ducks. We started with a pair that were given to us almost three years ago. The third is their young son, Frank.

September 25, 2016

Silver Sunday and Being Thankful


And the words of the Lord are flawless, like silver... Psalm 12:6 NIV


I am thankful to the Lord, my God, for:

- fresh hay in the barn
- rain
- leaves beginning to change color
- and falling to the ground to provide compost material
- cooler mornings
Silver Sunday

When the hay is removed and new growth appears
    and the grass from the hills is gathered in,
the lambs will provide you with clothing,
    and the goats with the price of a field.
You will have plenty of goats’ milk to feed your family
    and to nourish your female servants.
Proverbs 27:25-27 NIV


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