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READERS' FEEDBACK: No More Certo Bottles

From: bvirginia76@earthlink.net
DearMYRTLE,
Thank you for this trip down memory lane for me! I watched my mother many, many times through the very process you described, and the canning of many fruits and vegetables from the time I was a young child in Indiana. Things from our garden and fruit from the "wild" and trees of many family members and friends. I ultimately grew old enough to help her. She died suddenly at age 39, and there the wonderful times together ended. Thank you for the stimulated memories of the happy times we had.

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From: DTipp19566@aol.com
DearMYRTLE,
Thanks for a trip down Memory Lane with you on this email. I can remember the vegetable stands at the side of the road in CT. where I grew up and the rides to the country side for the wild blackberries, elderberries, and whatever other berry we could find, not to mention the snakes that would greet us while picking. WOW! That was a scary time and a fun time too. My grandparents did the canning thing and jelly thing and it was wonderful having all those veggies and jellies all winter long. We even have inherited
the homemade jelly press they used for this. Maybe you have motivated me enough now to try it again. Have fun and enjoy!

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From: Jasskirv@aol.com
My dear friend,
You will have a million replies to your wonderful article. And yes, it did bring back memories. Not of me doing all that work, but my mother who really seemed to enjoy it. I was one of those "tasters" ready to help out. Somehow the canning gene skipped me and landed in my daughter. She is not the "domestic type" (has a PhD.) But her skills in preserving food far exceed any her old Mom ever acquired. (Maybe this gene skips generations because I don't remember my mother's Mom ever canning anything!)

Yes, there is nothing like FRESH peaches and yes the commercial world has never found a way to make anything compared to home made blackberry jelly. While I have never made jelly or preserves or canned anything, I am glad that I did have the pleasure of experiencing FRESH fruit canned at home by a loving mother.

Thanks for stirring up pleasant memories.

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From: Sanders922@msn.com
DearMYRTLE,
Thank you. You gave me my first good laugh of the day with your canning story. We used the powered stuff, Jel Well I think it was called, instead of Certo but The memory is the same. 

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From: storknurse7@earthlink.net
DearMYRTLE,
You've described my method perfectly. But, my friends look at me like I'm living in the dark ages when I describe it. They all make freezer jams and jellies. You simply boil the pectin with water and stir it into the fruit for 3 minutes. You pour it into washed jars or plastic containers, leave at room temp for 24 hours and then freeze for up to a year. The taste is like freshly picked fruit, not boiled fruit. BUT, that presupposes you have room in the freezer, which I never do because it is filled with berries and fruit I'll later use for pies and cobblers!

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From: CordeliaD@aol.com
DearMYRTLE,
Oh the memories you stirred in this old head with your descriptions of canning/preserving the fresh fruits of the day. -- Thanks so much for such a great start to this day.

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From: GWINNALICE@aol.com
DearMYRTLE,
Sure enjoyed your memories. You make them seem to be happening right now!

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From: Cloago@aol.com
DearMYRTLE,
Too bad I don't live closer to you, I'm in Naples, FL! I just got rid of 300 canning jars -- no they were not thrown out but taken to my son's farm where one of my grandsons took them to another friend who cans and sells her goodies locally. She was thrilled to have them. I had both wide mouth jars and regular quart jars, pints, and 3 cup jars.

With a farmer son close at hand I have continued to can in "retirement" however there always comes a time when it's necessary to eliminate those chores. I still have the hot water bath with the wire rack inside if you are going to be in this area let me know and it's yours.

I have canned helping my mother since the 1930s and have taught my daughters and sons to can as well. In fact, one of the nicest gifts we got from a son who, at the time, was going to Oregon State University in Corvallis while we lived outside Pittsburgh. I opened this very well padded package and discovered a jar of his blackberry jam. He had picked the Marion berries (an Oregon favorite) made the jam and then packed it into a real Mason jar with a glass top, a rubber gasket, and a wire closure at the top. What a joy to know that all those years of canning was paying off! -- Thanks for the great memories.

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DearREADERS,
Oh, THANK-YOU, for sharing such lovely memories. It is hard work, picking the blackberries among the brambles isn't it? And it takes a lot of picking, since it's 1 for me and 2 for the bucket, right? Also, in days gone by people, had summer kitchens in the basement or out back of the house, since all the "cooking down" of the preserves could easily heat up the house. Living the good life here in the 21st century, I merely put the AC down a notch or two.

MEMORIES are important. Our society has moved from agrarian to industrial and now we're into technology. Little kids these days don't often know that cookies don't come from a package that says "OREO" on the label. The PROCESS for making oatmeal raisin cookies fascinates children. They can help with all but the "oven part" as my grandson TJ calls it. We made blueberry muffins one morning last month and I had a blast. He wanted to "crack in" the eggs, and I let him. How's he ever going to learn? Well, for sure him mom and dad are teaching him many things, but it falls to the grandparents to teach the old ways. As Tevye in "Fiddler on the Roof" would say -- "TRADITION."

And speaking of Tevye's lamentations to his higher power, remember "Would it spoil some vast eternal plan, if I were a wealthy man?" I like that one, but with a feminine twist. Then I'd have more time for genealogy research and making peach preserves!

Happy family tree climbing!
Myrt      :)
DearMYRTLE,
6023 26th Street West PMB 352
Bradenton, FL 34207
http://www.DearMYRTLE.com


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