Okay, I’ll admit it.

I get all giddy when it’s canning season … this is only my third year of canning but I just love it! There’s nothing like opening your own jar of preserves or canned tomatoes in the dead of winter … very satisfying.

And very yummy. If you have never canned before, you really should try it this year. And I think jam is the easiest thing to start with!
So with the luscious strawberry season in full swing, it means JAM time in our house!
First we start with bribing the local help to pick the fields …



However, you may have to fire them if you see they are eating into the profits.



This year, I asked Lacey (8) if she wanted to help me and she was very excited to make jam with me … I let her do most of it, except the cutting or dealing with the boiling water.


Bring home your bounty … put on some fun music, fling open your kitchen windows and starting by washing the berries.


Gather the sugar.



{and in this case, we added some fresh rhubarb from a generous neighbour … thank you, Chris!}



If the day is lovely, do your hulling outside … one day, I will have an outdoor kitchen and I will do all my canning outside. That is a dream of mine. Nothing fancy. Just a stove/oven, counter and a sink. And you will never catch me indoors all summer long. Trust me.  I have even canned on the BBQ before.



Wash your canning jars in steaming hot water.  {We did do bigger jars, but these are the tiny ones for gifts.}


This year, we tried a new recipe from SB Canning  for the strawberry rhubarb jam … and yes, it’s delicious!


Strawberry Rhubarb Jam
3 cups dice rhubarb
1 1/2 cup chopped strawberries

1 cup water
1 cup sugar
2 T. lemon juice
1 pack pectin


Mix the berries and rhubarb together in a big pot to cook.  We squished up the strawberries and rhubarb together while it was simmering. Bring it to a boil and then add the sugar and lemon juice.

Once it’s brought to a boil again, add the pectin while stirring.
While you are doing this, your jars should be sitting in a sink of hot water, all cleaned and ready to be used. My grandma once said that the key to canning is always have a pot of boiled water ready – and that is definitely handy, I must say!

Your jam needs to be ladled into hot jars … so when they are removed form the sink, line them up on the counter and get ready to start filling the jars with delicious, hot sticky jam. Just remember to leave a tiny bit of head space at the top of the jar (I generally fill till the first line at the mouth of the jar) when filling. I have a handy dandy funnel from my great grandma to use. Makes things less messy, that’s for sure.



Lacey really did do a lot of the work in this jam … 


Once the jam is in the jars, wipe the rims of the jars with a warm cloth to ensure the jars are clean. They have to be clean or they won’t seal properly. Place the tops on the jars and screw the lids on (not too tight, but not too loose).

Place jam-filled jars into the pot of boiling water (I forgot to mention to have this pot boiling ahead of time …. but you’ll quickly learn that this pot needs to be hot and ready!). Make sure the water covers the top of the jars. Close the lid and wait 10 minutes with your pot still boiling.



After 10 minutes, carefully bring your jars out of the boiling water to cool and wait ever so patiently for the pop-pop-popping sounds of  your lovely sealed, delicious jam-filled jars.

And that’s it!

Homemade strawberry jam is amazing.

Truly. You must try to make your own this year!



It always amazes me at how pretty it is – so red and wonderful looking {compared to store bought!!}.



And put it together with your other varieties and you will have lovely little gifts for teachers, friends, grandmas & neighbours this fall or Christmas.



{strawberry, strawberry rhubarb and blueberry jam – homemade with love}



Making her mommy proud … eight years old and making jam. {sigh}



Top her day off with a toast slathered in her own delicious jam while swinging the sunny afternoon away … all the more wonderful…!!





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June 28, 2012 - 8:30 am

admin Hahaha, Jen, well if you look behind Lacey, Lyla is wearing purple and poor Lucia, who is cut off in the photo of Lacey and me is also wearing purple! 🙂

June 28, 2012 - 8:17 am

Amelia Gillian, your pictures take my breath away. Love the picture of your little baby all wrapped up against you. And Lacey is simply gorgeous. Thank you for sharing.. you made my day!

June 28, 2012 - 8:05 am

Jen Awesome!! I love all the photos that went along with the story! 🙂

But seriously… you need to let your kids wear another colour… I’ve never seen them NOT wear pink… it creeps me out a bit.

June 28, 2012 - 6:52 am

Swann Mitchell and Ness Jersey Fantastic post, can I have a copy?

June 28, 2012 - 6:44 am

Hines Ward Jersey I love this post, it is great!