Friday, October 4, 2013

It is what it is

                So….It’s kind of funny how life can change in an instant.  One day you are thinking you have everything you could have ever wanted….and then you wake up and it’s all gone.   Or so you think.  All of a sudden you can’t see past today, hey your lucky if you can see past the next 60 seconds.  Your brain goes crazy, and your heart starts skipping beats…you start losing weight, you don’t sleep, you look where ever you can for answers…..and find none.
                That my friends, is divorce.  When you have no idea that it is coming, and you think that everything is okay.  I now know first hand what people go through…and I wouldn’t wish it upon my worst enemy. 
I guess the worst part of it for me at least, is the midget pygmy’s.  I still see them, but it’s not the same….its weak substitute for being in their lives on a day to day basis.  I guess it’s for the best.  Why should two of the best things in my life be with two people who suddenly after supposed bliss can’t stand each other?  I won’t point fingers; I won’t play the blame game.  Its life, it happens, it’s not pretty, but what can you do?  You suck it up, wake up every day, put a smile on your face, and try to make the best of what you have been given.  And guess what…pretty soon things do look better, and they ARE better.

                So…I have talked about the worst part of it.  My cousin Mo......kind of a crusty salty soul…told me when this was starting…hope for the best and prepare for the worst.  He kept telling me to put myself first…work on myself.  It only took close to 9 months.  I’m finally there.  So…the best part of this…friends and family.  People who you knew would be in your corner, and there for you.  Also…family that you thought was just family on paper…who all of a sudden are engrained in your life.  That’s the best part.  You go for years and know you have family. But you don’t really connect.  Then all of a sudden…you connect…like you had in years past.  That my friends are the most wonderful feeling I have felt in a long time.

                I have taken a break from blogging…that much you can tell.  But…I have not been exactly been dormant.  I have been spending time working on my wood working, well programming at least.  Not too much time in production, but hey it’s something right? 

Then…I was like hey.  I want to set up a Facebook page for my woodworking.  So..Please, seach for me and like me.  Smith And Sons Signs.  Its new…I’m working on it.  Then WHAMO!!!  I have orders for signs. 

Then out of the blue, I have someone who wants me to make their branded Jams and Jellies.  This would be a whole sale, but it gets me back into the game.  And right now, anything that gets me into, or keeps me in the game is worth doing. 

Also…something happened to wake the slumbering jelly giant.  My sister asked me to help her with her wedding favors.  90+ ¼ pints of blackberry Jam.  Yeah….one day, one fell swoop…and it was done.  I went to bed EXAUSTED that day….but the next day woke up feeling refreshed.  Something had started to wake up.

My Blog, my life, my cooking, are not where I want them to be.  It kind of bums me out, and then I get depressed, and I don’t do anything about it.  I have a feeling that’s about to change.  There is only so long someone can sit on the sidelines and watch life pass you by.  If you wait too long it’s going to be impossible to jump back in, and do what needs to be done.  So my friends, this is the turning point.  I don’t know where I am going to start, or what I am going to do, but I have to do something.  Going through every day putting one foot in front of the other isn’t working for me anymore.  For a while I was proud that I could wake up, get dressed, ride to work, and have it appear that I am okay, and my life is going good.  I have come to the realization that no, my life is not good, and no, I am not doing okay.  And that, I am proud to say.  We all have people in our lives that pretend that their lives are together, and we all know they really aren’t.  I refuse to be one of those people.  For my two midget pygmy’s, my friends and loved ones, and others in my life that have come into my life as more than friends, more than acquaintances…I owe them fealty.  And it is time I start paying that price.

                After months and months of bad news, worse news, and are you kidding me news, things are finally starting to move me back towards the surface.  For the longest time I was treading water, and I started to fall beneath the waves.  But, there is hope for me.  =)  It took all these months to realize that I have never quit at anything.  I may have surrendered a time or two, but I have never given up, nor have I given up fighting the good fight.

SO….the good news of all of this…is I will be blogging more.  Hahaha.  Good for me…but you guys have to read what I wrote.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Back again?

Hmmmm....Last post on August 27th.  That's like a lifetime ago.  Many things in JellyMan's life has changed, but Many have stayed the same.  I really haven't cooked anything as of late...when I cook its been the same ole same ole.  Enough of that.

I, JellyManKelly has branched out, and have started new things.  Some of these new things have kept me out of the kitchen, and more time in the workshop.  Although, as of late, I haven't even been in there.  Signs.  Wooden Signs, with witty sayings.

My Shark CNC is probbably my newest best Friend.  Well....other than my Kitchenaid, or my Spring Form Pans.  It allows me to do sooo many cool things.

Wood that has been painted, and covered in contact paper waiting to be airbrushed and cleaned up

Stack of signs for craft fair

A nice Cut out

Witty Wine Signs

A couple of hours planted in front of the computer to program it, and then some more hours prepping the wood, and then 15-20 minutes in the machine and out comes magic.  Almost like making a cheesecake!

I truthfully have not done much since early November when I sold my wares in a craft fair.  I have to admit...I did pretty darn good. 

Other than that, JellyMan has been pretty inactive.  Not doing a whole lot, just playing with the Midget Pygmy's, and doin what I can do.  =)

Midget Pygmy #2 Playing Baseball at the Evans's
Midget Pygmy #2 Wanting to play Army
Midget Pygmy #1 with a crazy helmet at the Evans's

Checking out Motorcycle Gear at Cycle Gear
Yeah...Midget Pygmy #2 throwing Horns

WHAT???  What could this be?  Oh Yeah...its my baby.  2007 Yamaha R6
Om nOM!!!  Elixer...Blue Cheese Burger!

My first trip out of the development....I got to go over 45....

HAHA They had never seen an Apple Corer Peeler!

Ain't she a Beaut!

=)  Cant get enough of her!

Whoop there she is!

So Sexy!

Doesn't really fit...but it caught my eye today!
So.  Not a whole lot, but I am alive, I am still here, and I plan on getting back into the swing of things.  I gotta get my cooking house in order.  Cooking is a skill that if you don't use, you loose, and I don't want to loose it.  So...Until next time, Peace out!


Monday, August 27, 2012


So, Its been a while hasn’t it?  I can truthfully say, it has been a long hard 8 weeks!  The department where I worked, closed down, and I chose to realign with another.  Doesn’t sound so bad on paper.  In real life, it has been a rude awakening, an awakening that has left me mentally and physically exhausted on a daily basis.  I have attempted to write a couple of times, but have not cooked anything worthwhile, or newsworthy.  Normally, I would have come up with something to cook and write about, but I would just sit at my blogger screen and stare.  Two things happened, the end of training/transition period….and the best mental health day EVER!!!  Any of you out there down in the dumps?  Feeling blah?  Stressed out?  HAH!  I have the cure my friends…..Paintball!
I was invited to a pickup game this weekend, and at first I looked for reasons not to go.  My back hurts, I just want to sit and read my kindle, blah blah blah!  Give me enough time and I would have.  So I made myself buy boots and pants to go play, packed my gear bag and away I was.  When I showed up to the field, yeah my back hurt, yeah I was emotionally drained, yeah I was physically exhausted.  But I will tell you this.  Once the ref yelled “ Blue Team Ready, Red Team Ready, GAME ON “ that all went away.  No back pain, no discomfort, no nothing.  Just a pure feeling that I can not even explain!  Yes I did things that if I were to attempt again I would probably break every bone in my body, but man oh man what a rush!  Its been a good 13 years since I have played.  I got out of the sport because of some of the politics at my local paint ball parks.  Sold my markers, and said peace out.  I don’t think I will make that mistake again.  Thank you soo much Big Daddy!  You my friend, are a godsend!!
Now.  As I am nursing muscles that I did not even know I had, counting the nickel sized bruises on my body, I figured I would sit down and try to write.  Hey…my back doesn’t hurt anymore, I don’t feel emotionally drained….and my back doesn’t hurt any more.  Imagine that….yesterday was spend acting like I had a 20 year old body that was in shape…I actually have energy, I am not emotionally drained, and I am not in pain ( well other than my obvious war wounds ).  Hmm..something to be said for shooting people with a projectile at 170 feet per second. 

Late night Packing

Two fisting it with Midget Pygmy #2's chest plate

Yeah...I did that to Big Daddy.  Sorry man...shouldn't trip over bushes when you are charging me!
Not too flattering picture of me...but who's gonna see this right??

One other good thing came out of playing paintball.  3 flats of wild blackberry's!!  Last week I was given 1, so I bought 3, and out of that 3 I actually will get 1 and a half.  So that leaves me with 2 and half flats of wild blackberry's!  Now…what do you think the ole Jelly Man is going to do?  Well, I guess you will have to keep reading!

Aint they beautiful!!!

Since I do not want to mess this up, I think I will start off with one of my classics.  Wine Jelly!  As my Aunt has told me from her grandson’s mouth…..” If its not Kelly's Jelly, its not Jelly “.   I couldn’t ask for a bigger fan!  I have been given a couple of bottles of some good wine from a friend that I shoot with, who works at Renwood Winery.  It’s a red wine, not exactly my normal, so we shall make it, and give it to my new official taste tester. The wine I will be using today is going to be 2008 Zinfandel, Old Vine from Renwood Winery!

MMMM Smells good!!

Its my old standby, and nothing went wrong.  It all sealed nicely, and smells great!

Now.  The big chore.  SO right now, I have 1 ½ flats of blackberry's, and a gallon size Ziploc bag of Berry's in the freezer.  I decided to put the frozen berry’s and the full flat through the squeezo.  Whats a squeezo you ask?  Its only the neatest thing since mason jars!!!!  Imagine a meat grinder, with a big hopper, and a screened cone on the end.  You grind and mash the berries up, and it spits out seeds and skins.  AWESOME!!!!

There in all it's glory!
MMM all that gooey berry goodness!
Skins and seeds for the composter!

The rest of the berries, I just mashed with a potato masher, and mixed it all together in my big yellow bowl!  I ended up with 18 cups of juice/puree.  I decided to make one batch today, and the rest goes into the freezer.  All I have to do is thaw it out, add 7 cups of sugar, some pectin, and blam!
Today was very constructive, tried one completely new Jam, and a change to an old standby.  I did a better job of cleaning as I went than I normally do, so cleanup won't be that big tonight.  Hopefully. 
It never ceases to amaze me, on how much better I feel after a day of constructive work.  I have 13 jars of Jam and Jelly, the stuff to make a couple more batches in the freezer, and the feeling of being dead on my feet.  But it was well worth it!
I have spent the last 8 weeks kind of in a blur.  Focusing on a way of life in my job that is no longer there.  I wouldn’t say that I gave up, more like gave in.  I was willing to let everything that was going on cloud, and disrupt what I liked to do.  For a while, I found it easier to live in the clouds of funk, rather than the clouds of steam my pots and canner!  All it took was the people I surround myself with to give me a gentle kick in the pants, dragging me out to play paintball by my ears….and the perfect shot from 25 yards away, through pine branches and huge manzanita bushes, wham!  Straight in the junk from Mrs. Lorna!