My mom has a wonderful sour cherry tree and this spring it was so fun to see it fill up with bright red cherries. They invited us over to pick the fruit. The kids and I piled into the bed of the truck that my father parked underneath the tree and we picked until we were more than sticky. Isaac struggled keeping balanced on the hill and Eliza wanted to put everything in her mouth, including the sour cherries which puckered her up.
Anna, on the other hand, was a diligent helper picking and noticing then pitting the whole 2 gallons. She’s a hard worker. Pop Pop actually found two cherry pitters in his food storage area so both Isaac and Anna pitted for a while. MeMe and Eliza were on top of quality control.
My parents made a cherry pie out of their fruit. And I brought mine home to make jam. I was so excited I couldn’t not. Jacob blended them up in our wonderful vitamix. Then we heated it through while adding pectin and sugar. I had cleaned and boiled the jars and Jacob and I worked on filling them together. I love having so many projects to do with him. We make a good team. Soon we had our 8 cups of cherries turned into 5 pints of jam. I felt so accomplished. My heart is really opening up to the homesteading kind of life. Yeah I made candy (or straight sugar it tastes like, ha) but it is so amazing. It tastes great, it feels great and I am grateful to have the knowledge, tools, skills, and beautiful produce to be able to make such treats in my home.
In 1 Nephi 16, Nephi breaks his bow and his family goes for a while without food, after he makes a new bow and again goes hunting he speaks of his return to camp. Verse 32 reads:
And it came to pass that I did return to our tents, bearing the beasts which I had slain; and now when they beheld that I had obtained food, how great was their joy! And it came to pass that they did humble themselves before the Lord, and did give thanks unto him.
And I felt that way the entire time we were engaging in the cherry harvest. My heart was filled with gratitude while picking and being able to notice firsthand the beauty and bounty of Heavenly Father’s creations. Then I was filled with joy as I took charge of the actual making of the jam. Did I mention that I love chemistry and cooking? And the pride of having a family staple to put in the basement food storage made with much help from my family, nothing beats it. I made the jam with the best tasting fruit I’ve ever had. Bring on more harvesting, Summertime!
Now off to water the apple trees so fruit can always bring me this much joy.