a word to the nay sayers


I went to a local specialty store to buy dill seed for pickles. This conversation was had while at checkout:

employee: So do you have any fun weekend plans?
me: Well, I'm going to try making pickles. I've never done it before.
employee: Are your cucumbers already full size?!!
me: Yes! Beyond full size. I had no idea how fast they'd grow. They're huge!
employee: They won't work. You've waited too long. You maybe could use the ends of each cucumber.
me: Oh, that's good to know. If they're too watery, I may just cut the seeds out this first round.
employee: Yeah, you definitely waited too long.
me: Well, you know, it's just a fun project for the weekend. The worst that can happen is that we'll have soggy pickles, I suppose.
employee: It's so much work though.
me: But I've got to start learning some time.

I signed my receipt as fast as I could and left the store in a hurry.

This woman said nothing encouraging. Nothing along the lines of, "good for you! making pickles for your first time!" She said nothing helpful. She said nothing worth saying.

I hadn't asked her advice. I hadn't asked her opinion. I just wanted to buy the seeds.


It's a funny world of nay sayers. We have run into them with many a project on this hobby farm. When we first told a friend our plans to tap our maple trees, he scoffed, "what a whole lot of work." People have huffed at the size of our garden. Gasped at the number of apple trees we planted. Worried about ideas before we even started a project.

I think I'm most sensitive to these words because I can get caught up with worry to the point of inaction too. But I married Rory. And Rory is all action and can never fathom the concerns that are voiced.

He often will comment that what is work to one person is play to another.

So I came home, told Rory about the conversation and then made six quarts and five pints of pickles. And for sure there is nothing better than a pickle you canned yourself, but let me tell you these pickles are incredible. We cannot stop eating them. They are crunchy (maybe they'll get less crunchy over time?) and have a teeny bit of heat to match the dill. I am so tempted to bring a jar down to the local specialty store.

I'm so glad I spent an evening after the kids went to bed making them, even if my cucs were too big!

And! If you have ever wanted to try your hand at pickles or canning I CANNOT ENCOURAGE YOU MORE!!! It is surprisingly simple. It involves a bit of labor, but not if you start small scale. And there is nothing more empowering. To learn something brand new that appears daunting is so exciting. And then to have the veil of unknowing lifted and to realize it's not as difficult as you imagined is one of the best feelings in the whole wide world.

Here is a sneak peek of the process. I took pictures step by step just so you can see that it's just not that complicated:





I made mine without a waterbath, so they will stay in the refrigerator. And I found the recipe I used here.

So be encouraged! You can do this! You can do anything! Let no nay sayer tell you otherwise!

3 comments:

Emily said...

You go Becca! Way to keep a great spirit. And those pickles look delicious.

Kandi said...

I LOVE Rory's saying! So true. I'm going to keep that in my back pocket for future reference. Way to go Becca.

Brenton Balvin said...

Wish I would have tried one today!