I grew up with a mom who canned every summer. I remember hot kitchens, and rows of gleaming glass jars, and mounds of ripe fruit. I remember how pretty the rows of jars looked after they were filled, and how much we enjoyed having our canned fruit in the winter.
For all my fond memories though, it never occurred to me to take up canning myself until the year I cleaned apartments in Seattle when I was in my early 20's. At one place, the former occupant had left behind a black enamelware canner and dozens of jars. With excitement I took everything home, proceeded to buy a canning guide and other essential equipment, and proudly became a home canner.
Years later, I am as hooked as I was back then, and I’m proud to say that Amy is as hooked as well. Yes, it is a lot of work, and each year we experience momentary panic as we stare at heaping full boxes of pears, or bulging bags of peaches and think "What have we gotten ourselves into?" But soon Amy and I are up to our elbows in peelings and jars and hot water, and we are hitting our stride
At the end of each summer I still love looking at the rows of colorful fruit filled jars-and I have to whisper "Thanks Mom." You didn't know it at the time, but you taught me well.