Ketching Up

Two weeks ago I was feeling domestic and nostalgic. My dad used to do a lot of canning, but since his stroke 7 1/2 years ago he hasn't been able to do it anymore. When my mom mentioned that they finally have used up the last jar of one of his favorite things to make, I decided I wanted to give it a try and carry on the family tradition.

What do you do with 14 pounds of ripe tomatoes, a half dozen green peppers and 6 medium onions?
If you add spices, vinegar and sugar and cook for 3 hours, blend, strain, and cook for 1+ hours longer, you get something very yummy...
12 pints of delicious Grandma Kettler's homemade ketchup.

This recipe came from my Grandma Kettler, my dad's mother. Dad made this many times when he was able to do canning. He wrote the recipe, and several variations, inside of an old recipe booklet my mom sent away for shortly after they were married in 1953. The booklet is a treasure, but even more so with my dad's handwriting inside. The booklet also contains the recipe my dad followed to make saurkraut and one variation of corn relish. Unfortunately, this variation is one my mom wasn't too fond of and she can't find the other recipe. If she can locate it, I'll give it a try.

Now to the knitting portion of our show. The other evening I decided I wanted to watch my middle daughter's volleyball practice. I took along one of my UFOs. Another mom sitting next to me asked if what I was making was for Ed. When I answered they were for me, she got a rather puzzled look on her face. She said they look like they could be for Ed but doesn't know why he'd need 2.

They aren't what you think! I have to admit, though, they do look awfully funny. It never occurred to me what they looked like until Diana said something. Ed got a big kick out of the story when I told him. Later that week when he ran into Diana as the school, he told her that they were too little to be for him.

What they really are: socks, toe-up, two at once on one circular needle. A couple years ago, a friend and I took a class on how to do two at once on one circular needle. I loved the technique because you get the pair done all at once. No strays laying about. Some time after the class, I came across the pattern for toe up socks in and fell in love with the pattern. The socks fit perfectly, so I decided to see if I could make it work with two at once. It worked out fabulously. This is actually my second pair done this way. I doubt I'll go back to making one at a time.