Blood Orange Sunset

Blood Orange Sunset

I took this photo last summer while visiting the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Our home had a wrap-around viewing porch, perfect for sunsets and cocktails.

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How to make strawberry jam

On Saturday my friend Liz and I set out to accomplish something most North Carolina women do in the Spring. I call it the country/suburban woman right of passage. Making homemade strawberry jam. Since strawberry picking  season is in full swing in North Carolina April-May are the perfect months to get your jam on.

I don’t have a clue how to jam so I search online for a few recipes and really liked The Pioneer Woman’s recipe and canning 101 post from a few years ago. It was easy to follow and had plenty of illustrations to know if we were on the right track.

After a few dozen giggles and “are you sure it’s that much sugar,” questions we were on a roll. It was a fabulous way to spend a Saturday afternoon with a good friend. Below are some of my illustrations and mistakes/learned experience moments.

 

 

We used 6 quarts of strawberry’s and it made about 16 8 oz jars of Jelly.
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You’ll want to purchase clean jars. You can pick them up at any hardware store or at your local grocery store. Also, making jam’s and jellies requires a ton of sugar. And every blog that I read said to not try and reduce the sugar or you’ll end up with a strawberry syrup.

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Our beautiful jams! We were some proud mama’s that day. First of that we accomplished our goal and that it turned out. Note to self: Read instructions over and over again!

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Asheville North Carolina: My Love Story

Our Asheville weekend

Since 1999 I wanted to visit Asheville, North Carolina. I had never been there and I’m not sure why I wanted to go.  In fact when I graduated from Western State College in Gunnision, Colorado I had full intentions of packing up my 87 Tercel and driving east with my dog Summit. Destination: Asheville, North Carolina. I can’t tell you what was pulling me there but I can tell you that I never made it. I got a job as a reporter for a small paper in Denver and never looked back.

My husband and I moved to the Raleigh area about 2 years ago and visited Asheville for our 5 year wedding anniversary. It  was a whirlwind weekend of hiking, eating and well….more eating. This started my love affair with the city.

Everything that you read or hear about this lovely gem is true. The food is great, the vibe is brilliant and people are fantastic. In fact I would move there tomorrow. I have lots of little stories to tell about our weekend getaway but will write up some personal reviews about our weekend in another post. In a nutshell, Asheville is a great place to go for a romantic weekend without the kids. But it’s also a fantastic family spot.

This is kind of my push to get that going. *insert* smile.

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