This is the Life

This is the Life

Yesterday I canned three 1-litre jars of tomatoes, and four and a half 500-ml jars of Cowboy Candy. And I baked bread. Today I canned six 500-ml jars of Salsa Verde, and 6 500-ml jars of Dilly Beans. All of the canning projects this weekend were fussy in their own way. The recipes require a lot of measuring and multiple steps to prepare the jar contents for processing. Twelve jars for two days of work doesn’t seem like much of a yield to me. When I consider that all of the things we canned either cannot be found for sale in stores, or if they are available are very expensive, it seems like a worthwhile investment.

The supply of empty 500-ml jars is down to one case of 12 left. There will be more Tomatilloes and Beans from the garden, and more hot Peppers. It is time to choose very carefully what to can, what to freeze, and what to dehydrate.

In July our local grocery store had a sale on 500-ml Golden Harvest canning jars. It was a surprising occurrence, as canning supplies at regular prices are a little bit hard to come by these days. I ordered five cases of a dozen jars each, and none came with our order, sold out. A few days later I checked the store online, and there they were, back in stock. So I ordered them again, and they came! Only one of those cases is left empty now, perhaps I should have purchased more. The jars were Golden Harvest brand. Over the last two years some of the lids that have been included with the Golden Harvest jars have failed to seal. I called the company and complained. The lids on the jars purchased this summer have all sealed, a pleasant surprise. I guess there was enough consumer feedback to warrant attention to quality.

I continue to experiment with Tattler lids. I lazily canned one jar last month, using a room temperature Tattler lid. They are supposed to be hot when applied to the jar, so I did not expect the jar to seal, but oh well. The jar sealed. Days later I tried it again, the jars sealed. I have been keeping them in the kitchen where I can keep an eye on them, and they are still sealed. Yesterday I tried it again, with Cowboy Candy juice, and the jar sealed again. I am hoping that I am on to something good here. If the jars continue to seal using lids at room temperature, and they stay sealed, I will be happy as a clam! Tattler lids and rings are reusable, so that would cut down the cost of canning food considerably, and solve the issue of metal lid shortages. I posted my discovery on a public group, and it did not meet with positive comments, as it is not the recommended technique in the company manual for the lids. I for one will use the lids and rings at room temperature, if they seal and stay sealed. The experiment continues.

Harvest season here at Mist Cottage carries on. We have Tomatoes, Kohlrabi, Kale, Swiss Chard, Green Peppers, Pepperoncini Peppers, Jalapeno Peppers, Cayenne Peppers, and Cabbage to come. There may be Brussels Sprouts, but I have my doubts about them.

Autumn weather has come at last! The days are cool and breezy, with temperatures around 22C. The nights are cooling down, around 8C to 12C. The windows remain open all day long, which I love.

The air conditioning was on until late last week. The temperature in the house remained steady at 25C, and finally fell to 24C yesterday. Today, with the windows open all day long, the thermometer went down another degree to 23C. When the temperature dropped to 10C last night, we retained our heat, and were warm as toast. I hope this bodes well for the heating season.

Well finally, here I am sitting in my easy chair, beverage at hand, feet up, surveying the chaos that is Mist Cottage, and my jars full of lovely canned food, and thinking to myself, this is the life!

A day of canning. L-R Salsa Verde, Dilly Beans



Updated on Sun, Sep 26, 2:55 PM
19 °C
Partly cloudy
Wind 19 W km/h
Humidity 53 %
Visibility 23 km
Sunrise 6:59 AM
Wind gust 28 km/h
Pressure 101 kPa
Ceiling 9100 m
Sunset 6:58 PM


“Some people are born on third base and go through life thinking they hit a triple.”
Barry Switzer
1937 –


  1. Teri

    Yes, this is the life! DH retires on Thursday. So exciting! And what are our plans? So far, we are going to the local herb farm to buy some paw paws. Why? Because their supposed custard flavor sounds interesting so we want to try them.

    We’re also going to the local farm stand to choose some pumpkins/gourds for the front deck. And we may take a trip to the local cidery for an outdoor tasting. Ah, living the good life!

  2. “They swabbed the handles of carts and baskets, payment terminals and conveyor belts at checkout, surfaces around deli counters, and the plastic and metal handles in frozen food sections.”

    Thanks Teri! That is interesting, it seems the staff are doing a great job at cleaning high-touch surfaces within a grocery store! No coronavirus found, excellent!

    Where we live people do not maintain social distance effectively, we have a devil of a time keeping distance if we go for a simple outdoor walk around the block, some people just aren’t keeping their distance, and since they are outside they don’t see a need to, they aren’t wearing masks. We have ours with us at all times, and use them when people come too close. So trusting people to behave considerately in a grocery store is something we aren’t ready to risk just yet. We are more cautious than most.

    From my perspective, until the virus is under control, and the treatments improve for those with Covid, and those with long-Covid, we will be sanitizing our groceries. Community spread is a significant source of infection, rating almost as high as close contact. Community spread cases have no specific origin, or origin unknown. Until community spread is no longer signficant to the transmissin of the virus, we will sanitize our groceries. Who knows if the person stocking the shelves contaminates a product, could happen, probably won’t but it could. Who knows if the person fulfilling our order has asymptomatic covid, they and we would never know if that were a source of infection. Community spread is coming from somewhere, it remains unspecified. It won’t be much longer though, until the measures Canadians are taking will reign in the virus, and all this will fade into memory.

  3. Teri

    Oh, I didn’t mean you could trust people not to come close. I’m just saying the chances of getting covid from surfaces in the grocery are extremely low, not the people.

    We also have a problem with people not thinking about or forgetting about distance. Outdoors doesn’t bother me that much, as long as there’s a breeze. In my mind’s eye I can see the breeze shredding apart any cloud of virus, and I know the large number of virus particles needed to cause an infection are highly unlikely, so I don’t really worry. All the same, I do move back or away some steps if someone gets too close. But indoors, I try even harder to keep a distance, all the while reminding myself that it may not be these people that could cause a problem but that an invisible cloud of virus that someone exhaled earlier could, too.

    I’ve come upon a few stores that have turned up their air circulation so there’s a breeze in the store. I feel most comfortable in those stores.

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