Sunday, August 28, 2011

Fresh Tomato Juice and A Surprise Birthday Party

It has been my fascination how many different items Greg has canned and frozen. I asked him if he might be able to tell me how to make tomato juice from garden fresh tomato’s. He decided today that he would not only show me, but let me help him!

Two 5 gallon buckets of tomatoes, washed and being cored.DSC_3439

Greg and Charlotte explained how they have a “system” and explained the several steps involved in making the very best Tomato Juice. First we went out into the garden and picked tomatoes. Enough to fill two, five gallon bucket’s!

After cleaning, then coring the tomatoes, it was time to grind them up in the food grinder.

I load the food grinder with tomatoes as Greg operates the grinder DSC_3449

Greg explained that it takes 2 grinds of the tomatoes before all the juice is extracted. He also knew from experience that the 2 buckets of tomatoes should produce at least 5 gallons of juice or more.

After all the tomatoes were ground twice, it was time to wash off the equipment used outside and then move inside the shop for the cooking and canning.

Tomato Juice on the left, V8 on the rightDSC_3452

After boiling the juice, and pre heating the jars, Greg showed me how he fills the jars. It wasn’t long before I was given the opportunity to fill the jars to get the hang of it.


They were all placed on the table to cool and wait for the “pop” of the tops indicating the jars were sealing properly.

Tomato Juice at the rear, V8 in the front two rows. DSC_3468

Greg actually gave us all that we made to take home! My goodness Greg, we were not expecting that at all! Just wanted to learn how to do it so we will be able to can juice next year. But Greg wouldn’t hear of it. He is just that kind of a great guy. I won’t even go into all the extra items he and Charlotte ended up giving us to take home. Let’s just say the Motorhome was full going back home! Thank you so very much Greg and Charlotte!

Later that evening we were going to a restaurant to meet part of the family to celebrate Aunt Dean’s 80th. surprise Birthday party.

Some of the family gathering prior to entering the restaurantDSC_3469

There must have been close to 50 members gathered in a special section in the restaurant waiting for Aunt Dean to arrive.

She was totally surprised by all of us there to celebrateDSC_3479

What a great place to pull off a surprise get together! If the family would have all met at someone’s home, Aunt Dean would have known as soon as they arrived by the amount of cars that something was going on. But at a restaurant, that was eliminated! Great plan family, she was totally surprised.

Daughter Linda gets the first hugDSC_3482

Wilma, her niece, was nextDSC_3483

Followed by her son, DannyDSC_3486

Everyone got a “Happy Birthday Hug” from Aunt Dean. Then we all enjoyed a delicious meal before watching her open several gifts that were brought for her.

From the restaurant, a few decided to meet at Aunt Dean’s home.

Wilma, Linda, Aunt Dean and her dog TinyDSC_3534

Mark, Eddie, Beth, Ed holding Tiny, and MyselfDSC_3541

We all had a great time sitting in the yard until the mosquitoes started biting.

Happy 80th. Birthday Aunt Dean. And we wish you many many more to come in the future!

Until next time, be safe and God Bless

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