Costs are rising everywhere it seems at the moment. I don’t know about anyone else, but I certainly am not making more money to support the rate of inflation.

So, what steps can be taken to help myself and my family sustain the way of life we are accustomed to? It’s mostly been a modest way of life anyway so a lot of changes shouldn’t be all that necessary, right?

I rarely go anywhere anyway so the pump prices aren’t hurting me all that much. Food, on the other hand, has become a sore spot in our pocketbooks lately.

I love to garden. I have a large garden on the back of my property near the river. My new hip will surely be a help for me this year in getting more planted, taking care of it and harvesting. Green beans and tomatoes are favorites of mine to plant and put up.

Putting the food up is also a favorite pasttime of mine. I have several dehydrators, a very large chest freezer and a beautiful old water bath canner. I have more jars than I probably could ever use. No, wait, that’s a lie. You can never have too many jars. Lids, however, are a different story.

A few years ago, my husband at the time gave me a gift of a brand new pressure canner. It has only been used by both of us and for the life of me, I can’t remember how to run it. The name pressure canner is perfect by the way, I feel a lot of pressure just thinking about it. And, to be completely honest, it kind of scares the bejesus out of me.

There are videos, manuals and guides that would properly teach me how to run the object of my fright but it even terrorizes me to watch the videos. I have heard horror stories about people “blowing up” their kitchens with these machines. I happen to like my kitchen the way it is but I also want to can even more things and I want my family to be able to have access to an even bigger safe and healthy variety of foods.

My ex daughter-in-law, Ashley, current friend and mother to four of my grandchildren, on the other hand, has no fear whatsoever when it comes to pressure canning and wants to get a new pressure canner for herself. I thought about giving her the object of my disdain but darn it, it was a gift and if I would just calm down about it, I would probably fall in love with pressure canning as well as all the other ways I like to put food up.

The more I read about pressure canning, the more attractive it is to me and the more confident I feel about giving it another try.

First things first though, I have to make this year’s garden plan and start my seedlings and/or order seeds and plants. Ahhhh, I can’t wait for the smell of the dirt!

When it’s time to harvest, I will either figure out pressure canning or I will be looking to hire someone to fix and/or remodel my kitchen. I will then take the rest of my wares to Ashley to be put up.

Sometimes it takes a little pressure to find a way to ease the burden.

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