Today started like any other day. I ran a quick errand with a friend this morning and headed home to get a full day of priorities completed. On the top of that list was preserving the fresh garden goodies that we brought home from our farm yesterday.
So I started off with taking care of the beans since they tend to wilt quickly. I cleaned them, sliced them and got through the canning process rather quickly.
As the beans were getting all cozy in the pressure canner, I turned my attention to the tomatoes. I was going to can some crushed tomatoes. I thought I may have one more bag of frozen whole tomatoes in the freezer that I would add to the mix.
I lifted the lid of the freezer and moved a jar of berries to the side. I knew immediately that something wasn’t right. The berries didn’t rattle inside the jar when I moved them….Uh oh. I started poking around the other items. Soft, cold but not frozen. The freezer decided to take a vacation. Obviously to someplace warm. I slammed the lid shut.
So I did what any other sane person would do. I freaked out. I did laps around the kitchen island as I ran a mental inventory of what was inside the very full freezer. I cried. Just a little. Then I pulled up my big girl pants and told myself that I could handle it.
I started at the top and worked my way down. All of my precious blueberries and raspberries became jam except one…which became mini berry crumble pies. My bags of cranberries transformed into cranberry sauce. I fried off the bacon pieces and will use them later this week. I canned the sausage links. I tossed the chicken into the crockpot. I made Jalapeno Cornbread out of the frozen corn and a bag of frozen cheddar cheese. I cooked up the pierogies with onions and baked some potato wedges with rosemary and garlic. There is chicken soup slowly thawing on the stove and a corn/broccoli/pea combination dehydrating in the oven as I type.
I transferred all of the butter to the refrigerator, along with all of the jars of homemade tomato sauce. (Looks like spaghetti this week!) Along the way, I discovered that two year old frozen Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookies are really good. Really. The things that were lost were mostly boxed veggies. Lost meat included two rolls of hot sausage and two venison steaks. There were also two broken jars of homemade chicken broth.
Did I mention that I broke the chain that holds a pendant from my father this morning? Oh, and I have a sore throat. And my back is killing me. And there is spilled iced tea on my floor. But I only cried twice. Ok, three times. But they were very mild meltdowns. Especially compared to the gigantic meltdown that my freezer went through. I’ve told myself to look at the bright side. I now have more jam than I can imagine and the cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving is already made. Cross that right off the list!