Friday, January 18, 2013

Canning Oranges

We bought a case of oranges yesterday for the purpose of canning oranges.  It was clear full when I started.
First we pealed them and then separated the slices.
I made some orange juice from concentrate and used it as the liquid to pour into the bottles.
While peeling we shaved some of the orange peels to make pot pourie.
Next I packed the bottles and poured the orange juice to within one inch of the top.
Of course we sterilized the bottles first and then as I filled them I put them back into the oven at 250 to pre-heat them for canning.
I then put the lids and rings on them and put them into the steam caner for 18 minutes.

That was a mistake and I had to re-process all of them in a hot bath caner for 20 min. because they were not sealing as they should.  I also put the lids on too tight the first time I put them in the steam caner.  Nice and snug but not too tight!!!
They turned out fantastic!  I was so excited to see that caning oranges was so easy!  In all we canned 14 quarts and 3 pints.  Holly then made some sweet smelling salsa from the peelings and added cloves and cinnamon and put them in a small crock pot to make the house smell very nice.
She also made some orange sweet tea to drink.  It is supposed to be good to get rid of headaches.
I still had about 25 oranges left so I made Orange Julius for everyone to drink.
The kids really loved this part of the project!
And this is what the case of oranges looked like when I finished!
What a fun project!
I can't wait to put them on our shelves and then use them on cold winter nights for fresh caned oranges, Orange Julius or any number of things like putting them into orange jello, or just making a cold glass of sweet orange juice. 
The next day we sprinkled salt on the orange peels, (waited 1 hour) then stuffed them into jars and filled them half full of white vinegar and then the rest of the way with water. We shook them up and put them on the shelf.  In about a month they will be sweet orange scented household cleaner!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

NOV & DECEMBER 2012 - Hawaii 14 Day Cruise

My brother, Jerry and I went on a 14 day Hawaii Cruise
and we had the time of our lives.
We visited four islands; Hawaii, Kauai, Oahu and Maui.
Our friends, Paul and Andrea (center) went with us.
On the left is Gus and Alice.  They were in our dinner group.
The Polynesian Cultural Center was awesome!
Once again we made memories to last a lifetime!
We can't wait to go again!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Make your own Can Food Storage Box.

I will show you how to use most any size box and make it into  a food storage box for your storage room.

How to use and store a Cat tail Fire starter

This is a brief explaination on how to use Cat tails as Fire starters.  I also demonstrate how to store your cat tails.
If you don't have access to cat tails, don't worry.  You can also use dryer lint!

OCTOBER - My DIY Greenhouse

Every Winter when the snow flies I get itchy feet to get out and dig into the dirt.  So I decided to tinker around until I figured a way to build my own greenhouse.  It started out real simple:
Sch 40 1 inch PVC pipe is cheap and as a kid I liked building with Tinker Toys.  So I just started to tinker!

After a few days and several designs, it all started to come together.  I took into consideration the Winter rain and snow and of course the wind.  It had to be strong and yet light enough for me to move it if needed.
I still had to modify and strengthen it several more times
and then figure out how to cover it and install a door.

I used 6 mill plastic sheeting from Lowes, and hinged the door with a latch to keep it closed at night.
Above, you can see where I framed in a window on the back of my greenhouse.
I cut larger size PVC pipe into 2 inch segments and then cut them so they would just snap over the plastic sheeting and the pipe frame.  After a little trial and error I got the size just right and I used these home made clips to secure the plastic sheeting to the frame.

I then secured the door latch and hinges and started to furnish my new greenhouse. Was I ever excited when I put my first plants inside!

The finished size is about 8 feet wide and 8.5 feet deep and 7 feet tall.

I used my magnifying glass to burn some fun plant signs and
then I made one for the front door of my finished greenhouse.

When some guys bug their wife they are sent to the dog house but my wife is so sweet I get to go to my greenhouse where I grow her more flowers!
 Just in time for Winter! Nov 10, 2012 - Picture at 6 a.m. with a flash.
Picture without a flash! You can see I have strapped it down to
the cement and put a solar powered light in to keep it a little warmer.
It really works and my lettuce is 1/4 inch high already!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

SEPTEMBER 23, Second Day of Fall, My Flowers

Today is the second day of Fall and so after attending the Brigham City Temple Dedication I walked around my yard and took pictures of some of my flowers.