Canning season has started here on the homestead; but, this year, it’s rather a difficult year for me to have a few free hours so I can focus on putting up.    Why?  Well, the front porch farm stand, for one.  With customers  now coming daily on a sometimes hourly basis, I can’t carve out two uninterrupted hours.   Customers are a good thing; however,  the first fruits of the season beckon and I am waaaay too tired to stay up too late.   So, my solution?   I started my own “homestead”  jewelry collection.  When I have strawberries (or whatever) simmering on the stove, I adorn my wrist with a canning ring.    It’s not that I am trying to start a new fashion (but maybe I will – ha!).  Wearing a canning ring ’round my wrist reminds me that I have stuff on the stove in case I’m tied up for a time with farm stand customers.    Funny, few customers even notice (guess they think it comes with my getup). But some do and I joke that my canning adornment  reminds me that there’s jam on the stove.   All it takes is an extra long distraction and one has a case of serious burnt preserves. I can’t have that on my hands now, can I?

So next time y’all stop by and see my new bling bangle, you’ll know I’m putting up.  Perhaps you’ll even get a taste of my canning creations.

This week , I’ll  be putting up strawberries and apricots and if you like some fruit for your canning or eating efforts, stop by the Front Porch Farm Stand .  (Open Sunday thru Friday 10 AM – 8 PM)  The late cold snap and rains will make it a short season for fruits this season so stock up!

How to you prevent yourself from getting distracted from monitoring what’s on the stove?  Care to share?



  1. Joy Giles says:

    I’ve put up plum jam (farmer’s market produce) and pickles the past three weekends. Hoping to put up some San Marzano tomato sauce if the tomatoes put on a bit more. We have only a small garden.

  2. Ginger says:

    I like to reduce and such using a crock pot with the lid off.

    Your bangle used to be the standard thing around here 30ish years ago. In a bottom kitchen drawer, I kept canning rings, lids, and a few wooden spoons. This drawer was a hit with every one of my babies/toddlers and their various cousins. When my grandchildren come to visit, they also love to play with canning rings and lids.

  3. Chris V says:

    Great a tip that we can apply to anything we have going on in or out of the kitchen (ie. rotating sun oven, checking on bread/sourdough starter, rinsing sprouts, lacto-fermenting, etc.) Wear a canning lid bracelet! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve fallen behind on these tasks or forgotten by being distracted. Thanks Anais!

  4. Dee says:

    Gotta love that New Fangle Bangle!

  5. Kate says:

    ou are very funny and inventivie… answer to the, something on the stove do not burn it problem, a digital timer…

  6. Gigi says:

    “How to you prevent yourself from getting distracted from monitoring what’s on the stove?”

    If I am really involved in another task, I must use a timer.

    If I must leave the house with an item, I use blue painter’s tape, write the info on it (with a sharpie), and attach it to the front door.

    If I must do something out and about, I write the info on blue painter’s tape and fold it over on the strap of my purse. Or I may tape it onto the dash of the car. If I am working in the house, I may tape it to my apron or dress or anywhere that I need a reminder!

    I love blue painter’s tape. When I put leftover’s in a jar, I put the contents and date on a piece of BPT and put it on top of the lid. If I use a jar for storage, I will use the tape to put the label on the side of the jar. I have used it to label frozen goods.

    To my surprise, the tape does not come off when frozen and is easy to remove. It is easy to remove from the tops of jars and doesn’t leave sticky glue.

    Using the canning ring is a very good idea! Thanks!

  7. Nebraska Dave says:

    Anais, how could we expect anything less than canning lid bling from you. Very stylish and appropriate for canning reminder. I have difficulty remembering things as well. However, my reminder is the alert feature on MSN and on my cell phone. Even when I need to be reminded of an event just 15 minutes away, I count on the digital age to help me remember things. In the culture of today, there just too many things to remember.

    I am in process of accumulating jars to use for canning. I don’t have as many as you but then I don’t can as much as you either. I hope to some day be able to store up a substantial amount for winter consumption. For now just a little bit of storage and in a couple years much more. I hope that you can find a storage area for the jars. I know that space on your city homestead is a precious commodity.

    Have a great jelly making day.

  8. Pat says:

    What a great idea!
    maybe I’ll implement this idea myself…If I remember. LOL!

  9. V Schoenwald says:

    I use a timer that I can hang from my neck, and then go out. I don’t leave too far away as some of my canning is done with a pressure canner, so no wandering away. With the water bath, its ok to wander a little.
    Have a wonderful canning day, Anais.

  10. Jimi says:

    Back when I had the time to do such things, a whistling teakettle was good for that. it’s a LOT louder than a timer & if you get the right amount of water in it, it will scream at the right time too…plus then you have hot water for tea!

  11. Mary J. Reneau says:

    Can’t begin to tell you how much I’m enjoying your website and how totally amazed I am at your success of being self-sufficient! My husband and I are 77 and 70 respectively, and although I enjoy gardening immensely, could never attain the heights you’ve achieved. Also, it takes “like-mindedness” and my husband isn’t interested in gardening, and there are some things I do need assistance with. Would love to have a few goats, chickens and ducks as well, however ……………………

    You and your family are definitely an inspiration and I, personally, feel blessed to have come across the “Nightline” video regarding your lifestyle, which led me to your website.

    Thank you for being such a good witness to a world that so desperately needs all the help it can get. You haven’t changed the world, but you’ve changed yourselves …. the only thing any of us really have any power over. God bless you all.


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