Reasons for Everything

Last year when I was doing so much canning  – about 180 quarts of tomatoes, tons of jams and jellies, and everything else I could find to can – several readers commented that we would never use everything I was putting up.

I knew I was canning way more than I canned in normal years but little did I know that the move would be happening this year and I would be canning nothing in 2011.  With the canned food being stored in the basement, I don’t hesitate to keep it for two years.  If I had canned only what we would use in one year, we’d be smack out of stuff.  The movers would probably be happy but I’d be using storebought jelly and storebought canned tomatoes til next year and that would not make me very happy.

We never know what the future holds and sometimes when opportunities present themselves, such as all the tomatoes from the garden last year and all the fruit that came across my path, we just have to act on the opportunity and not ask “why” or “what if”.

In the last few weeks I’ve gotten emails from the local strawberry grower and now the local blueberry grower that it was time to pick the fruit.  I’ve used up all the strawberries that we froze last year and still have a few blueberries left.  Yesterday morning we had blueberry pancakes and this weekend I’ll make blueberry muffins.  All our frozen foods must be used or given away before we move.  I’ll move the canned goods but by this time next summer, all the home canned foods will be gone and I’ll be so looking forward to finding garden’s bounty in Texas!


  1. 1

    Hilary McDaniel says

    Judy, we’re at 10 days over 100 so our garden has all but burned up. We will turn everything over and feed the soil, let it rest, and wait until Sept. to resume gardening. You’ll find, gardening in Texas has its challenges. We get going in the fall and have full production until June, then it’s just too hot for anything to set fruit. We’re in extreme drought and no outside watering is allowed, either, so a garden is forbidden. We’re in the country, but no well, so our co op put a stop to outside water. Only livestock is allowed to be kept in water.
    So, it’s not easy here, but you’ll pick wonderful salads this winter when your friends are shoveling snow. It has its pluses.

    • 1.1


      I saw where they’re limiting the water use. Both properties we’re considering have ponds that currently still have water so hopefully they would be enough to keep a few things growing. I so hope that drought is over soon.

  2. 2


    I love when you show you canned stash! Definitely worth the trouble of moving all of that goodness! Couldn’t store those that way in CA, though; too many “foot massages” and those would come crashing down!

  3. 3


    Why can’t you move the freezer full? We have before, we purchased dry ice and away we went. Worked great.
    (Note to self, next time using dry ice, don’t put 25 lb of fresh unfrozen ground beef in that same unplugged freezer with dry ice. It made one BIG hamburger patty)

    • 3.1


      We’re given a list of items the movers will not move and frozen food is one of them. Freezers must be emtpy, off, clean and dry.

      • Diana says

        We always rented a u-haul and moved our very full freezer along with houseplants and things needed to get moved in to the new house. Our moves always tended to be in the fall after the gardens were done and the food was put away or right after hunting season and there was meat in the freezer, not to mention meat from the farm. We did have one very grumpy packer who thought he was going to be driving the truck not packing the canned goods in the basement. It was funny listening to him grumble about his lot in life tht week.

  4. 5

    Toni in TN says

    Civilian moves are so different from military moves. We could never move anything in glass jars, even had to hand carry my perfumes! But we did have a door to door move once [no time in storage] and they took our refrigerator with frozen items. Strange how they work this.

  5. 7


    I love seeing your canned goods, makes me want to rebuild our ‘stash’, which we relied on heavily while DH was out of a job. Now it could probably all fit into the kitchen pantry.

  6. 9


    Love the picture of the “food stash”. I like to can too and there is nothing like using your own canned food. I had home canned peaches with my lunch today! MMmmmm) Our daughter, Jill, has started baking rye bread for her family. The other day her son, Max (10), called and had a question about it and then he went back to helping knead it. Glad the next generations have learned how to do it! Mine is almost ready to go into pans.

  7. 11


    I was thinking about that house with the swimming pool. Don’t be so against it since in a dire emergency, it can be used as a water source – just get a good water purifier. I bought one as part of my prep kit along with some foldable 5 gal water jugs. So, I have a 13,000 gallon supply, just in case!

    In addition, it can help with fire management if you have a pump!

  8. 13

    carol c says

    103 today, 12 days of 100+ heat
    tomatos have to be watered early am and pm, theya re all I have left
    going Saturday to get screening for them of some sort so they dont
    burn up.
    Have to plant earlier next year
    each year it gets higher heat than the last year by about 8 degrees
    and no rain so far, you are a better gardener than I am, I am lucky to have these so far. Best of everything Judy

  9. 14

    Suzanne says

    Hi Judy ,
    If you need to you could always can the blueberries for pie…or any of your other fruit into jams. My mom in law also cans stewing beef and sausage…that way you could take more of your own foods with you. You know you could do this in your spare time between boxing stuff to move,cleaning, knitting, and sewing….what was I thinking!!!