Berried Treasure

   I love raspberries, for me they tie in memories of my other grandmother, Grammie Ruth.   Growing up we had a white picket fence, between our yard and the neighbors.  I remember my Dad making it and trying to recruit me to help paint it, in Tom Sawyer fashion.   My Dad was full of mischief.

  The following summer, my Mom noticed the brambles growing on the far right end of the fence.  Soon, raspberries and thumb sized blackberries were ripe for the picking.  I remember the day there was enough to make jam.  My grandmother was coming over and Mom decided to make her favorite, Raspberry Jam.  The day was warm and the perfume of ripen fruit was heady.  I was excited to watch the process unfold.  I helped get the jars ready.  Mom prepared the fruit and did the cooking. She poured the jam in and I sealed the tops.  Now, she wanted to do a water bath.  I was little and confused about the idea of giving jam a bath. She explained why and we continued. 

   My grandmother's eyes danced when she arrived. She shared her memories growing up and picking berries.  She had four brothers and one sister, there were so many berries they would have fights with them.  Her youngest brother, Chandler would eat his share and bring home an almost empty pail.  She would make a pie with what was left of their collected treasure. 

   She smiled with a twinkle in her eye and said,  "Be sure to tell you Mom to save a jar for a winter's day.  On a cold, stormy day, when  the wind gusts so hard it rattles our windows help your Mom make a pan of biscuits. Then spread on a heaping teaspoon of summer's kiss. There is nothing like tasting summer on the worst day of winter."   Then she grabbed a few berries and popped them in her mouth and winked, "but this is the best way to eat them, ripe off the vine."   

   Yesterday, hubby wanted to go to Virginia and shop. Yes, the Bass Pro trip.  I didn't want to go, but the promise of Starbucks lured me to go along.  I decided on the way I would have fun taking Instagram photos of their displays.  Time flew and yes, I did get my Iced coffee ;D.

We stopped for lunch at a place called "TASTE".   Hubby kept saying he wanted to stop and get a sandwich, an Italian sub type.  I reminded him, we haven't had one since we moved to the south.  We went in to this crowded store, there were lots of choices, but no Italians.  I did find a taste of Maine. They had Blueberry soda, called Maine Root made in Portland, Maine.   I had to get some...I bought a few bottles to share with the kids.  I have many blueberry memories.  Yes, Grammie Ruth was involved.  I will share my favorite memory and my Blueberry cake recipe, later on. What is your favorite berry memory? 


Mary Ann Potter said…
I don't have any berry memory, but I surely have lots of my grandma. She used to have baby rabbits right under her garden fence post, morning glories twining up that post, a cottonwood tree in the backyard, little pots of violets in her dining room window, and good baking smells from the kitchen. I miss her. I know I'll see her when I get to heaven!

Our wild, beautiful blackberry bushes here on the farm all suffered terribly from the heat. No harvest this time. Nuts. I'd been looking forward to making jam.
LTM said…
Raspberries are gorgeous, but I don't really like them. Too seedy! But I like the flavor. I wish I had a berry memory as lovely as yours! My great-aunt used to go strawberry picking, but I didn't join her. It seems like I've heard of TASTE. I'll have to try that soda! Thanks for sharing~ <3
Rosalind Adam said…
We had blackberry and raspberry canes in our garden when I was little but unfortunately I can't eat either. They upset my tummy. There is a berry memory about the day I found out about that fact but I'll spare you the details!
Johanna Garth said…
I adore, adore raspberries. Practically live on them when they're in season.

And I had a Grandma Ruth too. Funny, but maybe it's a generational thing. It was probably a much more common name years ago.
shelly said…
Since I live in Florida, my grammy would make orange and tangerine marmalades, and strawberry and blueberry jams. Even blackberries. The grow wild in Florida. The blackberries.

The blueberry soda sounds good!
Wanda said…
I like that idea of a kiss of summer during the cold days of winter.
nutschell said…
I don't have "berry" many memories of berries, but I do love to eat them:)
Hart Johnson said…
I'm jealous you had such hearty raspberries! I love them. My favorite though, and my favorite memory, are huckleberries. See, huckleberries won't grow domestically--You have to pick them wild on a mountainside. We used to pick them when we were at my grandparents lake cabin and then we'd have huckleberry pancakes for breakfast with freshly caught perch. Sounds strange now, but it was big family at the lake weekends and I loved it.
Ella said…
Hi Hart-No, it sounds wonderful~ My Dad use to BBQ at 1 am in the morning. My parents would come home from the Drive Inn and Dad would light up the grill. Most memorable when he convinced the town cop's son to go steal I'm not kidding. Yeah, my Dad was full of it... In reality, it was a friend of his field and he said Dad could help himself. lol I love your memory :D Thank you for sharing! What do huckleberries taste like?!

Nutshell-Berry nice ;D You are cute!

Wanda-Thanks, it is kind of enchanting isn't it! :D

Alex-It was and the color is a purplish blue~ :D

Shelly-How wonderful! I use to live in Florida..they have huge blackberries. My son found some on the edge of the playground. He was thrilled, just like grammie's house! :D Sweet memories~

Johanna-Wow, that is fascinating! I wonder... Come to think of it, I only knew one other Ruth. I love all berries, but raspberries have the sweetest memories for me :D
I now want to try to grow some~
Thanks for fun!

Rosalind-I'm sorry! Maybe you need to think of carnival food instead. I'm doing a prompt on carnival tomorrow. :D Sad to hear that...
Think of a wonderful memory regarding your birthday~

Leigh-I know it sounded familiar to me. It was sooo busy...I wanted to stay longer and see all that they offered! :D I am sure you had many other great memories <3 555

Mary Ann-Your memories are enchanting...sounds like a great poem! ;D Maybe a bowl perhaps at the Farmer's Market will cure you~
I love thinking about my grandmothers...yours sounds wonderful~ Thanks for sharing!
E.J. Wesley said…
That blueberry soda sounds delicious, Ella! Actually, I have a major weakness for fruity drinks in general. Juice was THE hardest thing for me to cut back on when I began my healthy-lose-weight kick a few years ago. There weren't as many of the low-calorie options back then, so I pretty well went cold turkey for quite some time. :.(
Melissa Bradley said…
Thanks for sharing such a wonderful memory. My fave berries are blueberries. I will eat them til I turn blue, I swear. :)

I am looking forward to the blueberry cake recipe. Can you post it tomorrow? :D
Sherry Blue Sky said…
Mmmmm, biscuits and jam. I have my grandma's recipe for the best biscuits ever - the secret is 1 1/2 tsp of cream of tartar!

Our blackberries are starting to form on the bushes. Damian and I are going to go berry picking when they're ready. Blackberry shortcake! And some frozen for the gales of winter.
Janelle said…
I have spent many hours picking wild blackberries with my parents and the rest of my family and then making jam from them. We picked other berries too, but I remember the blackberries the most. Maybe because they have the biggest thorns. This summer I picked strawberries and made jam with my kids.
Mary said…
I love the thought: There is nothing like tasting summer on the worst day of winter! mother used to can peaches and make raspberry rhubarb jam. And it was so wonderful to have these tastes on a cold winter day. I can 'taste' them now as I write and feel the 'love' my mother had when she preserved them. Memories live longer than tastes, don't they?
Anonymous said…
We have berry moments and memories all the time. Berries are always in our fridge, freezers, and smoothies. We powered down two containers of blueberries and one of strawberries today at Disneyland.

I guess you could say we had a berry good time. Okay, that's lame. Maybe I had too much sun today.
Daydreamertoo said…
Awww... this was such a lovely read Ella. Grammies sure did know a lot about how to use the fruits and berries that grow. I love the tale of eating a bit of summer on the worst day of winter. That's pure poetry :)
Glad you enjoyed your day out, even if you didn't really want to go. Maine is beautiful. Very much like here. Well, there is only an invisible man-made border which divides the two countries. But, I spent a week once in Lubec, and it was beautiful. I can see why you'd miss it. We grow Bluberries here. Once saw 5 or 6 Bald eagles all in one field eating berries or something. Amazing sight to see!
J Cosmo Newbery said…
Just done the mid-winter prune of my raspberries - high hopes for a good crop in November.
Blueberry soda??? Oh, that would soooo be my thing! I adore blueberries and always drink blueberry juice, but we don't have sodas nor ice cream in that flavour here :(
Ella said…
I will be right back to comment...
ColorGuard camp got out early due to bad weather on its way~ I'll be back!
Ella said…
Dezzy-You could make your own ice cream! OR just buy Vanilla and stir in the berries or my Blueberry cake, which I will share soon! ;D

J Cosmo-I so hope you get to enjoy the fruits of your labor! Yes, high hopes :D

Daydreamertoo-I have been to Quebec and PEI...I love your country~ We are cousins :D
Thank you and I loved what you shared~ I grew up picking berries and living by the bay. I do miss it~ Your country is beautiful!

Stephen-No, you aren't are fun Dad :D Hope you are having a wonderful time~ Ride the Runaway Train for me, lol

Mary-What lovely berry memories you have~ Wow, that sounds amazing!
Yes, our memories tickle our senses and touch our hearts :D

Janelle-I love that you took your kids berry picking! Now, they will have cherished memories, too :D

Sherry-I know that best recipe ;D
Oh, he will love being with you~
How berry sweet it will be! He is precious~enJOY
Ella said…
Melissa-Hi Melissa...I will post it on Saturday! :D I wrote a song about blueberries, when I was young and yes, it was about turning blue!
I have another name for this cake...
The weather must be good, not raining when you make it. You have to whip egg whites, till they are stiff. I will go look for it now~

EJ-I know your pain! When I became diabetic(I have the Juvenile kind)I had to give up juice. I know it is hard, but we are smarter for it ;D I only had a tiny taste of this soda and then had to go walk. I prefer the real fruit~ It was just nice to see something from home!