For about an hour I peeked under leaves, between stems and through brambles, taking the tiny ruby gems from where they were hanging. For that hour, I was rewarded for my efforts (and occasional scratches); four heaping pints of red raspberries, freshly picked and incredibly fragrant.
I tucked my beauties into the car, settled safely for travel. We hurried home, where I double-checked my recipes, washed my new treasure and started to work.
Six, or maybe seven, just in case, freshly boiled jars - those that are cut to sparkle and dazzle, showing off the beauty of the prize stored within. Six full cups of the washed then drained sun-rubies, along with six cups of the ever-familiar granulated sugar. All mashed together into a fragrant mixture of fruit and sunshine.
For yet another hour, I boiled, stirred, added and mashed until I got just what I desired. Sweet perfection.
Carefully, my concoction went into those jars, then they all took a quick boiling water bath. After the bath, I lined up my prize on the counter to cool, and savor every tiny "ping" that signals a can well-made. Once the evening is done, they are cool enough to label and enjoy. And I have summer red, stored in jars.
What a sweet afternoon it's been.
Note: I wrote and cooked this last year (if you can read the date on the jars, you can see that!), but I never got around to getting anything done in the past year. :( Maybe I'll do better, but maybe when school starts again, I'll fall off the face of the planet again. Who knows?