canning mania

Time for my yearly full-pantry picture.

I have 7 full shelves and 1 shelf partway full of jars. Each shelf holds 33 quarts. But a couple of the shelves are double-stacked with pint jars. I am guessing I have over 250 jars, plus about 10 gallon-sized ziplocks of dried tomatoes, apples and apricots. It feels wonderful to have so much stashed away for later. But it is probably also very easy to tell why I am SOOOOOO very sick of canning at this time of year.


Related links:

Grape Jelly, step by step

Spicy Salsa


Apricot Jam

Strawberry Rhubarb Jam


  1. Wow, that’s great! Congratulations on using your time and energy so well.

  2. Ok thanks a lot – now I’m feeling hungry for some homemade goodness like I see in your photo!

    Wow! what a bounty!! Now you can just enjoy the fruits of your labor – literally!

  3. I see a lot of applesauce and a lot of tomatoes! I would be sick of canning, too!

  4. There is something so satisfying in seeing a pantry full of food and knowing that your hard work is providing for your family! Congratulations!

  5. Wow – that is a lot of canning! Where do you find all of your jars? I’ve bought a few over the years but it is expensive to buy a bunch to get started on canning. Your blog has inspired me to try a few new canning recipes though.


    And my garden is only a fraction of the size of yours and I have only a fraction of the amount of children you have.

    You still amaze me my friend!

  7. Wow. So when our country’s economy collapses and we are all carrying wheelbarrels of cash to get a loaf of bread, you’ll be set with your pantry.

    I’m jealous! It looks AWESOME! 😉

  8. WOW!!! I don’t know much about canning, but I am so impressed with your pantry. I wish I knew someone local who could teach me more about the process. I know you must have that warm fuzzy feeling knowing the great stores of healthy food you have quick access to. Thanks for sharing your journey for the last 30 days… it has been inspiring!!


  9. One of my goals for the upcoming year is to learn how to can and your bounty of goodies is inspirational. My husband even said he can’t wait till we have a pantry full of canned yumminess. AWESOME!!

  10. Wow! Amazing! I am very impressed!

  11. There is nothing quite so lovely as canned goodness all lined up in rows!!!!!

  12. That is one impressive pantry. Great job Owlhaven family!

  13. WOW! Wish I knew more about canning. I got most of the supplies this year with the intention of trying it but never did. You did an awesome job.

  14. Your pantry looks like a page from Pottery Barn. Lovely!

    My friend and I grew up semi-poor. We only had food and houses because where we lived was so cheap. We were talking a few years back about how we considered ourselves rich if our pantries were full because we knew we could feed our kids.

    You are obviously a very very rich lady.

    I just love you!

  15. Holy Cow! I can only imagine how many hours you put into those jars. And how much love.

  16. Came across this post (actually the photo) from someone I follow on Twitter (@typeamom). I am a fellow-canner and totally get the notion of being DONE with canning by the end of the season. Every weekend since the Boulder Farmer’s Market opened has pretty much been spent canning. I feel your pain! And also the satisfaction. Amazing work you have done there, lady. Hats off to you, your hubby, and your ten kids (I hope they help you).

  17. So colorful, your foodstuffs. Looks like more than 250 jars to me.

    Someone asked about how to acquire supplies. Check yard sales and thrift stores–most have boxes full of jars, and then all you have to buy new are the lids and rings.
    It does take a bit of capital upfront, but jars can be used again and again.

    I’m smiling because I have given all mine away in the last few months, and the storeroom looks so big now.
    I’m hoping we don’t fill it with odd stuff very soon.

  18. Amazing, what an inspiration you are!

  19. Goodness sakes, here I was feeling so DONE and I’ve only canned a few dozen… I bow down to you!

  20. Would love to have this in my pantry, but wouldn’t know where to start. I remember having this as a girl growing up though.

  21. That’s Awesome! How big of a gardening plot do you have? I think We need to make ours bigger, much bigger, b’cuz we just have enough to eat every year, and I would love to put some things back to enjoy on those cold winter days!

  22. That is so cool. I know NOTHING about canning and just reading your last 30 days of canning has exhausted me. You have inspired me, however. Not only with the 30 days of nothing (which I plan on implementing once a year with my family) but through your harvest. My 2 1/2 year old and I ‘harvested’ 50 lemons from our lemon tree today and made strawberry/lemon streusel muffins, homemade lemon and I’m using the rest tomorrow to make lemon curd. We shared our goodies with two neighbours (we just moved here so we’re still getting to know people – and what better way to do that than to bring them muffins). YUM!

    I’ll miss reading about your 30 days of nothing – though I’m sure you won’t miss doing it. No doubt I’ll be checking back often to see how you’re going with life in general. I’m excited about your upcoming books – congratulations.

    Got a question for you out of curiosity – what do you do with all the applesauce? Do you eat it just as applesauce, or do you use it for cooking as well (i.e. substitution in baking)?

  23. How lovely! That’s just a beautiful thing, honestly. Wow…

    I don’t know how well wheat would grow up where you live…or how difficult/easy it is to grow…or even how much it takes to make a loaf of bread, but hey…I’m just sayin’ 🙂 mebbe try that too — you could almost be self-sufficient in a way!

    All that hard work has been worth it. I believe all the wonderful energies that were put into the sowing and reaping and canning will come to warm all of your hearts in the winter to come. It’s all a great circle.

    lovely, Mary…simply lovely

    p.s. I’m jealous 😉

  24. Wow! What a wonderful sight! It reminds me of my mom’s shelves and all the hard (but fun) work that went into filling them. Your blog has been a real encouragement to me. Thanks!

  25. Could you tell us the specifics of what you have there? I’m not quite done myself…we are still waiting on the grapes, but soon we will be done!

  26. Specifics–
    apple pie filling
    pureed tomatoes
    grape jelly
    grape juice
    apricot jam
    apricot halves
    strawberry rhubarb jam
    sweet pickles
    dill pickles
    sweet relish

  27. Sarah Mullin says:

    So pretty! 🙂

  28. And salsa. I forgot salsa.


  29. Okay, I’m jealous that you have a pantry, and that’s before you fill up the shelves with home grown canned goodness.

    I wanna go visit my grandma now. Or you, and raid your pantry. 🙂

  30. awesome!! My canning stash is half the size but I am oh so proud when I look at my finished product.

  31. Yes, one look is all it takes to realize why you are so tired of canning. But oh my gosh….doesn’t it feel good to look at the shelves full of food just waiting to feed your family this winter? I’d like to give you a pat on the back.

  32. Wow!!! How inspiring! I definitely need to plant a garden if we are going to save money on groceries.
    I spent $125 at the grocery store last night for our next week. I didn’t even buy anything that I could make homemade. Sigh. I do not know how you did $200. What did you ‘stock up’ on in August? I know you did not have to buy much produce, right? So that had to seriously help. I spent about $40 (maybe more) on fruits and veggies.

    Congrats again on all the canning.
    I imagine you feel near the same way Ma Ingalls felt every year at the same time. 🙂 But such benefit for your family. *That* must feel GREAT!

  33. Hi! I just read your wonderful post over at Shannon’s and I skipped over here. Let me just say…you my dear are the QUEEN of Canning. That is the most awesome pantry I’ve ever seen!

  34. I want a pantry like yours someday. I’m not joking. and by the way, I’m new here 😉 I just read your post over at Rocks in my Dryer and really enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing.

  35. THANKS Mary!!! I did it……well i think I did we haven’t tasted it yet lol 🙂 I’m working on a post for the morning!! Not much but it’s a start!!!

  36. oh wow!… that’s a beautiful sight. 🙂 but, i certainly can understand why you’re sick of canning… lol.

  37. What a beautiful pantry!

  38. Wow! Amazing job! What a blessing to your family!

  39. That is awesome!

  40. Wow, wow, wow!!! That is soooo motivating!!!! It is Spring here in Australia and I am planning my garden 🙂 And looking forward to all the canning that is ahead of me! I know at the end of it all I’ll be just like you, relieved that it is all over! LOL!

  41. Wow, that is so incredible! Do you have a dehydrator? I am experimenting with drying in my oven but wondering if a dehydrator would be a good investment. Do the dried things last all year in your pantry?

  42. Its such as you learn my mind! You appear to understand a lot approximately this, like you wrote the e-book in it or something. I believe that you could do with a few % to drive the message home a bit, however other than that, that is wonderful blog. An excellent read. I will definitely be back.


  1. […] lots of work left to do. I hope next year that I can post a killer, cool picture like this amazing canning mania pantry […]

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