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Amparo Bertram

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06:54 pm: Feasting with family and friends
Quite a lot has happened in the past couple of weeks. That'll teach me to put off posting updates.

My parents arrived on Saturday the 12th and started right in on the house. One of the first things my dad did was install the window treatments in the living room. The plan was for them to stay and get as much done as possible on the remaining rooms before going home in January.

sara_tanaquil happened to have a conference in the area, so she flew in on the 17th and stayed at my place overnight before heading to the city to check into her hotel. She got a chance to see a bit of my town and she was given the grand tour of my property...as grand as it could be in rainy November, that is. We arranged to meet again on Sunday afternoon, when mangaroo kindly drove us to Japantown for manga shopping and then a lovely meal at a Japanese restaurant.

On the 23rd, my parents received a call informing them of a family medical emergency, so they quickly booked a flight back to Michigan on Thanksgiving. Since they drove here, they had to leave their car behind for whenever they can come back. We had already gotten our Thanksgiving food, so we ate it Wednesday instead. I get to finish off the leftovers.

A neighbor gave us several grocery bags full of fruit (persimmons, pomegranates, and kiwi) right before my parents left. They were able to eat some of it, but now I'm working on preserving the rest. My first experiment was to try to make pomegranate/chayote jelly, in the hope that the pectin from the chayote would be enough to thicken it. It turned out more like pomegranate molasses than jelly, but at least it tastes okay. My next batch was strawberry daiquiri jam with kiwi, and that tastes seriously good (though I probably could have added more rum).

Edit: Strawberry Daiquiri Jam with Kiwi
3 cups alpine strawberries (or regular strawberries, chopped)
3 kiwi fruit, peeled and chopped
Zest and juice of 1 lime
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup rum

Combine ingredients in a saucepan and then simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until it reaches the gelling point. Pour into clean canning jars with 1/4" headspace. Keep in the refrigerator or process in boiling water for 10 minutes for long term storage. (The recipe made 2.5 cups of jam for me.)

I have several more things to plant in the yard tomorrow, which is my only day off this week. The weather is supposed to be reasonably nice, so I hope I can get a lot done.


[User Picture]
Date:November 28th, 2011 03:33 pm (UTC)
Sorry to hear about the family emergency; I hope everything is working out OK with that.

That jam sounds really good! We usually do freezer jam, but this recipe sounds like it's worth a try.
[User Picture]
Date:November 29th, 2011 12:39 am (UTC)
I hope everything is working out OK with that.

Things are fine so far. We'll know for sure in three weeks.

I wanted to ask you if you (or your parents) would be interested in some heirloom tomato seeds for the garden. I just ordered a bunch of seed packets, but I won't use more than about three seeds of each variety. I would hate for the rest to go to waste.
[User Picture]
Date:November 29th, 2011 06:01 pm (UTC)
Sure, seeds would be great! Mom says she would like to try some, and she has at least one friend who could use what we don't.
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