Fruit Leather and Pineapples

I’ve been contemplating food storage lately; canning and freezing are great ways to preserve produce from summertime for winter, but they aren’t very easy to store. I garden quite a bit in the summer, and then store up garden food for the rest of the year. Last year I filled a few shelves with canned jars (glass isn’t the most convenient to store or move), and completely packed my freezer.

Last year I canned: Chili, Green Beans, Applesauce, Raspberry Jam, Blueberry Jam, Blackberry Jam, Strawberry Jam, and Pasta Sauce. In addition, I froze: Sweet Corn, meats, breads, and some Green Peppers.

We went through the Corn, Green Beans and Pasta Sauce lightening fast (note to self: prep double the amounts for next year!) and I still have plenty of Jams and Chili left over. That tells me about what I will need to do differently this summer in preparation for next year. The Jams made great Christmas gifts last year, especially as a “hostess” gift for the places we went.

But this year I’m adding a new dimention: Dehydration.

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Painted Polka Dots

I am forever confused between my plain silver keys. This may sound ridiculous, but I have three of them on my key chain that are similar in size and seldom needed. Whenever I do need one, I have to try 2 or 3 before I find the right one. I thought it might help if they looked slightly different. Today I decided to “upcycle” them into new versions of themselves.

First, I picked out some fun colors of nail polish that I already had on hand:

Then, I painted the keys.

  • The green colors needed 2 to 3 coats to show up, but the blue only needed one.
  • The lighter colors should be painted on first, because they won’t cover the dark colors as well as the dark colors will cover them!
  • Stick with large patterns (like polka dots, or filling in segments of the key) unless you have the designer tip nail polish (I do, but only in the wrong colors!)
  • Wait for layers to partially dry before painting new layers on top (about 5-10 minutes)
  • Paint one side at a time, waiting for the entire first side to dry before painting the opposite side (about 1 hour)

Here is my result:

I worked on them while doing other projects during the dry times. They didn’t take long at all to paint, but they add an extra bit of personality to my (otherwise boring) key chain!