Posts Tagged 'strawberry jam'

For Your Entertainment

Happy Friday night!  We leave for Nashville in the morning, and I am not even close to ready, but I’m still excited!  After hitting up the gym tonight, I picked up Panera for supper and then got started on that second flat of strawberries.

After I posted the jam recipe earlier this week, Kimberly suggested that I do a vlog tutorial.  Well, what else would be more fun on a Friday night than making a fool of myself and putting it on the internet for all the world to see?!  Daniel was so sweet and capped all the berries for me, but for some reason he didn’t want to be featured in the vlog.

I have no idea how to work the movie editor thing, so the videos aren’t edited or anything.  Maybe one of these days I’ll get a handle on m-swag.  This tutorial is in three different parts.  I’m not going to lie – it hurts my pride a little bit to publish this post.  I won’t go into all the things that I nitpicked about myself as I watched the videos, but let’s just say there were quite a few things I noticed that made me cringe a little bit.  Oh, and about the outfit choice – I never changed after I got home from the gym.  Sorry!

Just fyi, in the first video, I kept saying I was going to get started, but never actually got around to getting started haha.  I also jumped around from one topic to the next, sometimes even without finishing my sentences.  I blame it on the fact that I have Friday brain right now!  Before watching, promise me we’ll still be friends even after you see me being a total dork.

Without further ado, I present to you your Friday night entertainment – the strawberry jam tutorial vlog. 🙂

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Are you sick of me talking about jam (or just talking in general) yet?  🙂

Have a wonderful weekend!  Much love!


Lower-Sugar Homemade Strawberry Jam

Growing up, my grandmother and I were extremely close.  I was the youngest of all her grandchildren (my brother and I are about 15 years younger than the other grandkids), and we had a very special bond.

I used to love to go spend the night at her house (which is now the house Daniel and I own – incredible sentimental value in this place for me), and there were always a few things I could count on when staying at Mamaw’s.

1. Playing games – dominoes, checkers, cards, crooked words and crossed answers (I think this one was her own invention, but I loved it)

2. Zebra cakes – she always had a secret stash of snack cakes, and there was always a special pack of zebra cakes saved just for me (at Christmas it would be the Christmas tree cakes) – we rarely had snack cakes at home, so this was a treat for me

3. Stories – every time I spent the night, Mamaw would rub my back and tell me her original story “Clydie and the Lighthouse” – I can still tell this story word for word

4. Pimiento cheese – this was a staple snack along with some saltine crackers

5. Breakfast – homemade biscuits, bacon, and homemade pear preserves or strawberry jam

I used to think that Mamaw had a secret strawberry jam recipe, and that it was some crazy complex process.  Well, friends, this was her secret: the recipe on the back of the sure-jell box. 🙂

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to hang out with my parents and make some freezer strawberry jam.  I had some today, and man, it was good.  My grandmother would probably be shocked that I reduced the sugar to a very minimal amount in this recipe, but I think she would be proud.

Lower-Sugar Strawberry Jam

1 box lower sugar sure-jell (the pink box)

6-8 cups fresh strawberries

1/2 cup Truvia

1 cup granulated sugar

Start by rinsing and capping the fresh strawberries.

Measure out 6-8 cups of berries after they are capped.

Lightly crush or chop berries (I leave them in large chunks since they cook down so much).  Add berries and box of sure-jell to a large pot over high heat, and bring to a rolling boil, stirring frequently.

Add sugar (or in this case, Truvia and just a little regular sugar) and boil for one minute.  Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes.  Skim the “foam” off the berry mixture.  Transfer jam into clean jars (I use a mug as a ladle and a funnel to help keep everything clean).

(you can see my grandmother in the center of this picture in a framed picture – she’s wearing one of those funny glasses/nose/mustaches)

Top jars with lids (soaking in boiling water) and rings.  Set aside to cool overnight, then transfer to refrigerator or freezer.


I would count this recipe as “one batch” of jam, and using one flat of strawberries (8 quarts), I made three batches.  By following this lower-sugar recipe, three batches equaled about 28 jars.

It is a little time consuming, but I promise it’s not hard!  In my opinion, it is definitely worth it to make your own jam – every time you have a bite, you are reminded of the work and love you put into it.  And for me, it’s always a reminder of my sweet Mamaw.

I hope you have a wonderful Wednesday!

So tell me…

Have you ever made your own jam/jelly before? If so, what kind?



Busy Doesn’t Always Equal Productive

Happy Monday night, blog friends!  I hope that you had a wonderful weekend and a marvelous Monday!

My weekend was pretty busy – two birthday parties, one bachelorette party, church, a bridal shower, and time with out-of-town family.  It was a good one, but there wasn’t much relaxing around this house.

I took off work today and had a full to-do list that I wanted to tackle.

Some things that were on the list:

  • do all laundry and PUT IT AWAY

  • go to the bank

  • grocery shopping

  • call consignment shop and set up appointment

  • work on new choreo for classes

  • prep food for week

  • write out meal plan for lunches and dinners

  • plus about ten more things.

Guess how many things I marked off that list?  ONE.  (Hey, it’s better than none, right?)  I did manage to go to Kroger and buy groceries.

Before you start thinking that I lounged around in my pajamas and ate bon bons all day (I don’t get this expression – who really does that?), let me explain.  I did sleep in, which was much needed after the weekend, but then I spent a good hour playing on the computer.  Oh wait, that’s not helping my case much, is it?  Moving on, I got a call from my parents that they were headed to Green Acres farm to pick up fresh strawberries.  This place has the BEST strawberries, and during the season they sell out every single day.  In my family, fresh strawberries mean one thing – JAM.  After talking with parents, I quickly got ready and went to the grocery store then headed to their house to start making jam.  My mom made  78 jars of the “regular” recipe, and I made 28 of a healthier, low sugar recipe.  I only used half my strawberries, so it looks like I will get another 28 jars made sometime this week.  I’ll have my lower-sugar recipe for you tomorrow, along with some strawberry pictures!

After making jam, I rushed to the gym to teach cardio dance and abs, then went to another gym to teach zumba.  I kept finding bits of strawberry jam on me during classes (on my hands, my arms, in my hair…), but I just used it to refuel.  Kidding. 😉

Daniel cooked a delicious dinner of fish tacos, and I’m about to head to bed.  I’m meeting some people at the gym at 5:30 in the morning for an intense workout – I’m excited!

Even though today felt pretty busy, I wouldn’t say it was extremely productive.  Maybe one of these days I’ll actually get my laundry put away…

So tell me…
What was the best part of your Monday?

Was it a productive day for you, a busy day, or a relaxing day?


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