Off The Grid

Living off the Grid on a west coast island

afternoon painting jars


The canning is done. Thanks again to RW for her pressure canner. It was a major time (propane) saver. Thanks to RS on the farm for her extra fruit. Thanks to my son for the new preserve book filled with great new recipes. I have whole pears, apple sauce, apple plum jam, apple plum cranberry chutney, rosemary infused apple jelly, apple chocolate mousse, blueberry conserve, green tomato relish, tomato sauce, french beans, beets, and strawberry jam. 

Parsnips, squash, carrots and potatoes are waiting in the garden for winter soups. There are thirty bottles of homemade wine hidden away with the Scotch, Port and Baileys for medical emergencies. We have our propane, diesel and firewood topped up and it should do us until Christmas. We are set..

Nothing to do now but our fall projects.  E is going to replace the clutch on our truck, build me a greeenhouse and chalk paint the bedroom furniture. I am going to finish the quilt and probably start another one. Add a few burn piles into the mix and it will be a very pleasant few months. Two very large sea lions swam by yesterday hinting at another winter’s entertainment.

I rarely get out to shop in stores other than Home Depot and Canadian Tire, but recently spent an afternoon wandering through some gift stores and thrift shops. I bought an old birdcage and small chandelier for the garden in the thrift shop. The birdcage will be painted red and modified for the birds to freely access in the garden. The chandelier will be stripped of wiring and hung near the table and chairs near the pond.

I have very few original ideas so need these occasional trips for inspiration. 

I buy bird seed in forty pound bags. One bag lasts me a month. Once the bag is opened, the smell attracts mice so I have to put the seeds in containers awaiting their turn in the feeders… I was using old cranberry juice bottles, ten of them sitting in my tv room beside the laundry. In an effort to upgrade my house decor from casual junk to casual chic I stole this idea from the gift shop. I painted my leftover mason jars with some of my chalk paint. Eight painted mason jars topped with cloth samples from the quilt  now line my bedroom window sill.

My sister in law recently retired and is going to spend more time here this winter. She came over yesterday and had to walk past the jars and paint out on the deck to come in for a cup of tea.  E asked her if it had sunk in yet that she was retired. She responded “it hasn’t” and then looked at me laughingly and said “and it probably won’t until the day that I have the time to spend an 

afternoon painting jars” 


Author: Off Grid Islanders

We are a retired couple living on an off grid island on the West Coast

4 thoughts on “afternoon painting jars

  1. Boy, you sure have a good start on the seasons coming! I haven’t even got my houseplants rounded up from the front porch yet.
    I’ve been trying to get some housecleaning done before all the plants are brought in, but keep sitting down with a magazine I find or get an inspiration for a new project, or the dogs let me know the hens are coming to the house to beg for more food!
    But if the animals and birds around here are any indication, we might be in for a now-rare hard winter.
    So, busy I will get!

    • It is easy to get distracted isn’t it? Especially for chores which mark the end of summer. I’m hoping our winter is as mild as last year. We haven’t really had a bad one since we got here but I know it is only time til we get one.. I am hoping we aren’t tested to see if we can live on jam alone!!!

  2. Looking forward to seeing pictures of the birdcage and chandelier in the garden. The jars look great. You are so inspirational to the rest of us!

  3. Very impressive – all the canning and the cute jars! Sounds like you are all set.

Leave a Reply