Monday, March 2, 2015

Accidental collector: canning jars

There is just something about canning jars.  From as far back as I can remember, canning jars have been a practical part of our family system.  My mom and grandmothers fed their families by preserving food from gardens and orchards, all in Ball and Mason jars.

Beyond the practical, canning jars are beautiful and fascinating.  I love this article in The New York Times from last August. Canning jars have always been beautiful to us, but they are also suddenly hip and trendy. I am guilty of following the madness, as I am lusting after the new purple Mason jars. And, I may or may not have purchased a t-shirt with Mason jars and the saying, "I eat local because I can."

Canning jars also show up around my house as decor - holding wooden spools of thread, crafting supplies, vintage dominoes, puzzle pieces, and other treasures.  In the kitchen, the jars hold pasta,  muffin cups, baking soda, and other pantry staples, in addition to home canned fruit and vegetables.  I also just have some antique jars as stand alone beauties.

During a trip to Target this fall, I found some Italian jars for food preservation on the sale aisle.  Am I the only person who cruises the sale end caps at Target and gets sucked into the impulse buy? For these particular jars, I picked them up and set them down several times and ended up bring them home with me.  And then, they joined the piles in our spare room. I wanted to do some research on the jars and didn't want to use them for anything less than a worthy purpose.

The Bormioli Rocco company makes these jars - embossed on the sides and just the right size. The jars are so beautiful, I wanted the best possible use for them.

My answer:  sprinkles.

In an organizing frenzy this weekend, I decide that I would put together all of our baking supplies, including our surprisingly large collection of sprinkles.  I realized that I could combine several of the smaller containers and I could use my Italian jars!  I was pretty pleased with myself for cleaning the cabinets and for using the jars and for finding a beautiful and practical way to solve a problem.

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