Tuesday, September 6, 2011


Every now and then Cali takes a swat at my sacred cows. 

One time she mimicked the hero in one of my favorite novels.  My sister Rachel and I were retelling the most romantic scene.  The one where the hero’s best friend tells the damsel in distress that the hero has loved her all along even though he has been aloof and even scary at times.  Cali laughed at our admiration.  She had no respect as she quoted the hero in a sing-song tone: “Damn your wagging tongue, Paddy.”  

I cried, “No, no, nooooooo!  That was not how he said it.”  The book reads that the hero said it ‘tight-lipped’ which certainly means it sounded masculine.

Another time Cali came home from church and said, “We sang the corniest song on earth in young women’s today.  It was something about rubies and women.”

My cow twitched.  “Caaaallliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii, THAT song is based on scripture – Proverbs 31.  Don’t you dare make fun of it.  (Pause.  Long pause. Then quitely,)  Besides . . . it’s one of my favorites.” 

Proverbs 31:10   Who can find a virtuous woman?  For her price is far above rubies.  (Of course I’d like that scripture; my birthstone is rubies.)

Proverbs 31:14   She is like the merchants’ ships; she bringeth her food from afar.  (I do love shopping at WinCo and it is 73 miles away.)

Proverbs 31:15  She riseth also while it is yet night . . . (I hardly ever miss a sunrise.)

Proverbs 31:17  She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.  (If I take this literally it’s a suggestion, yea permission, to buy a girdle.  [I remember my grandma’s, do you think they’ve improved?]  My legs are strong, but my arms are terribly weak.  I could definitely improve there.  I haven’t done a push up successfully in . . . well, a very long time.)

Proverbs 31:27  She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.  (I’ve lumped all of those homemaking tasks that I love to do in this verse – cooking, baking, vacuuming, making things, organizing, gardening, decorating, cleaning, canning.)

Cali didn’t properly heed my warning that day for she sang selected lines from the song that she could remember without the reverence I thought it deserved.   

But for the last several days, Cali has not only smiled at my sacred cow, she has fed it.  We spent Labor Day weekend eating not the bread of idleness.  We bottled 95 bottles of peaches, 50 bottles of pears, 10 bottles of jam, and 3 bottles of fruit cocktail (it slowed us down too much).  Levin cheered us on from the counter;

Calvin and Ray cheered us on from the shop and gun range (they were fixing and sighting in guns for deer hunting).

Proverbs 31:31  Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.

Isn’t there a poem out there about fruit looking like jewels in the bottle?  Something about the beets looking like rubies, the peaches like amber, the pears like opals?  Well, if there’s not there should be.  Everything looks beautiful, and somehow 99 bottles of beer on the wall does not capture the virtue of it all.


Marie said...

Oh, I love canning. So far I've done my jam, tomatoes, raspberries, and apple juice. (I love how my house smells while I juice) I still need to do my peaches and pears though.

And I'm totally with you - they look so pretty all lined up, they may as well be full of jewels.

Derek-Jenny-Kaitlynd-Ethan-Dylan said...

I am going to miss canning with my Mom this year.

We have only done it for 2 years now, but I LOVE it!

Enjoy the fruits of your labor!

Deidra said...

I think you already know my feelings on this. Marathon canning sessions are simultaneously miserable and incredible. I wish I could can with my sisters and/or mom this fall.

I did a workout a few weeks ago that told me to do modified push-ups (girl push-ups) for TWO MINUTES. I thought I was going to die. Then, a while later it told me to do two more minutes of push-ups. And a little while after that, two more minutes of them. Let's just say I substituted and did crunches instead. And that's why it's been a few weeks since I did the workout!

melanie said...

I love when you post about canning. I'm getting ready for peaches this weekend. I leave my jars on the counter way longer than necessary. I just love to look at them.

Milo would love for me to can pears. I'm never sure on where to find them. I'll have to find a tree that is begging to be picked.

Deanna/Mimi said...

I am impressed. Wow. Used to do that when children were young but my canning days are now over...physically cannot do it. What pride there is in canning and when one can get the family involved it makes for choice memories. I remember my mother canning pears. She added green food coloring to the syrup so we would have green pears for holiday salads. Also just a green pear on a leaf of lettuce with cottage cheese....yummy. As far as exercising goes....well that is out the window too!!

Ande Payne said...

That was a pretty witty closing line. I wish I could have been there.

Cali said...

I can NOW appreciate the scripture about women and rubies... But that song is still the dumbest I've ever heard. Thank you for teaching me and for not allowing me to slaughter your sacred cows, just spook them up a bit.

Tyler - Danielle - Emree said...

I would never make fun of your cow.... :)

michelle said...

I wish I had my mom or my sister here to help me can! Other than grape juice, I don't can anymore because I hate doing it by myself. (Well, I do freezer jam, too. I would love to do cooked jam, but when I have done it in the past it never set properly. So I would appreciate any tips you have on that front.)

That kind of productivity is oh SO satisfying, those jars lined up like the jewels that they are!

Lucy said...

I had to sing that song as a solo once at a stake event and almost lost my straight face when I got to the part about my loins. :)

I have only canned once. It was much, much, much harder than I expected (probably why I haven't done it again) but I loved and was oh-so-proud of those peaches all winter.

Anonymous said...

I just read this a couple of weeks ago to jared...I told him I have a long way to go! But I did make a batch of raspberry jam tonight...made me think of Gramma.

Rachel said...

Oh my goodness Jane, that IS the most darling picture of Levin. We all melted. We all wanted to scoop him up and kiss him. We all wanted him HERE. So cute.

MJ said...

Girl of the Limberlost? I haven't ready that one for a LONG time. I am always in awe of the canning you do. I made jam today. And last week was tomato paste. But never in the gorgeous quantities you achieve.