Ryan's mom planted grapevines along the property line years ago. I have always felt guilty that we just throw them away every year. Last year I attempted to make grape juice and it was a disaster. Hand mashing through a sieve and yielding only a cup of liquid, that was super thick and gritty. Wasted a whole day - and after the mess I was left with, I swore I wouldn't attempt it ever again.
But this year, we had so many grapes and they smelled so good that I decided to try my hand at it again. So I researched a few things and found a juicer steamer that was on sale. It arrived this past Saturday so I got at it and did a test batch. After the first round I knew I had made the best decision ever in buying the juicer steamer.
Sunday, we had our nephews mission farewell, but after we got home, we took advantage of the sunny day and we all got to work picking grapes and washing them. In the end we got 14 jars for our food storage and put 3 in the fridge. I never cared for grape juice as a kid - just too sweet and watery. But this stuff, it's the nectar of Gods I tell you. Or as Ryan called it - Mormon wine. Thick, fragrant, and just the right amount of sweet and tart. I am addicted.
The best part for me of all this, spending the time with the kids, side-by-side, in the kitchen. They loved helping out and Finley even said that this was his favorite yard-chore thus far. They cut the grapes from the vines, washed them in the sink, and picked them off the stems. The best conversation comes in moments like these. Berlin had us rolling with laughter, Finley had us wracking our brains trying to remember our science lessons from school eons ago. The three of us standing at the sink picking grapes of the stems, talking about the silliest things and even serious things. I hope that this will become a Fall tradition for us. Ryan remembers his mother juicing these grapes when he was a kid. He used to have to pick them off the vines and stems. I want my kids to have the same fond memories. I will take these sweet moments when I get them.