What a day!

Today began with such promise. I woke up at a decent hour and was greeted by a beautiful day. I had a great run (11.75 miles!) and made some delicious sugar-free granola. More on the granola later.

From there, things got…interesting.

I went to the farmers’ market to pick up peaches and tomatoes for the great canning experiment. Knowing they would take longer, I began with the tomatoes. I wasn’t aiming for anything fancy. Just canned tomato halves. Easy enough, right?

Growing up, I hated tomatoes unless the came in the form of ketchup. In recent years, I’ve grown to like them, however, today undid a lot of that progress.

Tomatoes are gross and slimy. Blanching, peeling and coring tomatoes is a dirty business. Needless to say, I won’t be canning any more tomato products until I get my Vitamix (soon!) and can simply puree them into a sauce or paste, skin, seeds and all.

Anyways, I have 3 pint jars filled with halved tomatoes, but I have no idea if the processing worked. Why?

Because as soon as they finished processing my smoke detector started beeping and announcing “Low battery.” Yes, my smoke detector talks to me. It persisted loudly, demanding I do something about the low batteries immediately.

Unfortunately, I am 5″2 and my apartment has 10″+ ceilings. I didn’t (notice the past tense) have a ladder so I dragged my tallest chair into the hall to investigate. Standing on the chair (plus 3 highly unstable books), I was just tall enough to knock the whole thing down including the part that mounts to the ceiling. Thankfully I didn’t fall and break my leg and will still be able to run the half marathon. It was touch and go for a moment or two.

Changing the batteries in your smoke detector should not require more effort than an 11-mile run.

Needless to say, I am now the proud owner of a 4″ aluminum ladder. Even with it, I had to stand on my tiptoes to get the thing back in place. The whole thing made me miss living in China where I was routinely the tallest person in the room. Sigh. I was out buying the ladder as my jars of tomatoes cooled so I missed the oh-so-satisfying “pop” that signals they sealed. I will check in the morning.

By the time all of that was done, it was too late to start on the peaches, but I was OK with that since today was up in the 90°s and standing over a hot stove wasn’t exactly fun. Tomorrow and Monday are supposed to be in the mid-70°s which will be much nicer.

I have pictures of all of this but for some reason my computer won’t let me upload them. Sorry.

On days like today, you just have to count the small victories. I didn’t break any jars. And with 4 pans of boiling water going simultaneously, I didn’t burn myself.


1 September 2012. That's Life.

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