29 July 2012


I haven't been posting much lately. As excuses, I can only offer (in no particular order): a term paper, company, a camping weekend with friends, and raspberries, blueberries, cherries, apricots and black currants (yes, all-at-bloomin'-once). Double, double, toil and trouble...

Oh, and speaking of bubbling cauldrons, let me just give you a bit of advice: when you make jelly, like black currant which is one of the best kinds there are, don't follow the instructions on the pectin box insert, but go with the jelly test. You know how when you cook jelly and you pull the spoon out of that rolling boil, when it's reached jelling point the drops run together and sheet off the edge of the spoon? (You don't? Well, never mind then. But you should try it some time, just for the thrill of having seen a rolling-boil-jelly-test. Ooh, aah, wow. We get our excitement where we can. Whaddaya mean you've got better things to do?) Anyway, the jelly test: if I had paid attention to the jelly test instead of slavishly following the instruction of "boil hard for one minute exactly", I would not have had overboiled jelly which didn't set and had to be taken back out of the jars and re-boiled with additional pectin. Blinkin' waste of eight snap jar lids- grmblgrmblgrmbl. Ah well. I saved one of the jars of the runny stuff; it should be delicious on pancakes. So, advice for the day: go with the jelly test, forget the written instructions. (And that sounds downright profound. But I can't be bothered to follow up on it right now; I'll let you do that for yourself).

And then I was sitting in the living room, the lovely hardwood floor protected by a ratty old shower curtain, pitting cherries while I was watching the Olympic opening ceremonies on TV (cherry-pitting is a messy business; by the time I was finished I and my immediate surroundings were splattered with cherry juice in a manner that looked downright gruesome). I was feeling rather emotional that day, so I sat there weeping, while I denuded cherries of their pits (or is that "pits of their cherries"?), at the sight of the little deaf children signing "God Save the Queen" and Rowan Atkinson playing the repetitive bass note of "Chariots of Fire". It was a spectacle worth seeing (the ceremonies, not my weeping).

So there you have it - after this, I bet you're glad I hadn't posted anything in a while. That's the kind of thing my life has been about in the last few weeks.

Life, the Universe, and Jelly Tests. I'll try to come up with better excuses next time.


  1. I can honestly say I've never made jelly. But I remember my mom trying to do it and just being beside herself. :D LOL!

    No worries about being absent. It's summer!!! yay! Take care,

  2. Those peaches look just amazing in that bowl! You're very brave pitting the cherries inside, I take myself and my pitter outside knowing what a mess maker I tend to be at the best of times.

    Black currant jelly on crepes!! My favourite. Sadly I no longer have a black currant bush so will have to hope that I can get some from my mom in order to make some jelly/syrup this year (not 'til winter, mind...I've decided to hold off on as much of my jam making as I can).

    Hope all is well and the weeping felt like a good release. :-)