There is a beautiful place just up the road called The Berry Ranch. They grow so many wonderful things all summer long. I have yet to visit them for anything beyond strawberries, but that will change this summer. For now I have the story of the Little Red Hen in my head. You know...the one where no one wants to help her plant, grow, weed, water, harvest, or bake her bread so she does it all by herself. And while we didn't plant, grow, weed or water these strawberries, the harvesting and preserving of them has caused me to love them so very much.
It all started yesterday when Hadley, Amelia and I went to the ranch, took a hayride to the field, and harvested 17 pounds of pure deliciousness.
Amelia mostly ate a mixture of dirt and strawberries. Hadley busily harvested her very own box. And then this morning she washed and hulled her strawberries... ...and turned them into jam. I told her she could call the jam Hadley's Jam. After all it was a result of mostly her labor and only a little of mine.
Once we finished we sat down together and ate the most delicious treat of plain yogurt with mashed strawberries and jam.
Three bowls. Three smiles.
A very happy day.
In the end we had 6 pints of freezer jam, 5 pints of strawberry rhubarb sauce, 6 quarts of frozen strawberries, and a huge bowl of hulled strawberries just waiting to be pie. Or shortcake. Or ice cream. Or just in our bellies.