Why start Best Little Jam House?
When Life Gives You Lemons - Make Marmalade
This little business was conceived during a drastic life change. My father became seriously ill and came to live with us. Of course he needed physical care, but with him also came boxes of family history that need cataloging, and vintage furniture that needs refinishing. I never dreamed how stressful relocating an elder would be. Mountains of paper and photos to go through, doctor's appointment by the score, trying to find one's way through a lifetime of business records. The stress of cleaning out, renovating, and selling dad's house remotely from 500 miles away is an experience I hope I never repeat.
I am now slowly gaining sanity and some semblance of routine. I continue to be busy care-giving, but I also realize that I have missed my hobby of making preserves. I found my instincts as a hunter-gatherer starting to awaken in this stressful time. There is something calming about stirring a bubbling pot of jam, something reassuring about stacking the jars in the pantry and knowing we have plenty, and something prudent about stretching the family budget in a one paycheck family. This blog is a way to channel these instincts and desires into a business. It is a way to continue my profession as a food scientist while being present for my dad in his time of need, and a way to express some pleasure and creativity during a difficult time. Wish me luck!
About The Jam Scientist
Okay - you have professional credentials, but who are you really?
Hi! I’m Beth, aka The Jam Scientist. I have a degree in food science from California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo. I have professional training in canned food safety through the University of California at Davis earning a Better Process Control School certificate. I have many years of industry experience working in canneries and the food/beverage industry.
I am one of the lucky ones. I met and fell in love with a brainy physics professor at a bible study. Our love has never faltered - he still sends shivers up my spine. I am also a mother of twins plus a singleton - now all grown. Our immediate family has recently expanded to include my dad and his large dog Spot. We live in a small town in Southern California. We bought a small fixer-upper home a couple of years ago that we are slowly transforming as we are able, and it still needs work.
I was greatly influenced by my mother and both my grandmothers, and blessed from their talents. The women in my family can cook - homemade pies, cakes, bread, biscuits, cornbread, preserves, jams, pickles, sauerkraut, and homemade sausage. Nobody ever left the table empty. One grandmother lived on a remote homestead in Oklahoma for a time. In the summer she canned quart jars by the hundred. There was little she did not know how to grow, prepare, and preserve. She was a wonderful preserver and sausage maker with a down-home southern style that I will never forget. My second grandmother was an exceptional interior designer with great creativity and flair in all that she did. She was also a sophisticated cook that appreciated and used gourmet touches. Both were strong, talented, and hard working women that influenced my desire to study food science as a profession. From these women I learned to appreciate thrift, style, self-sufficiency, and the enjoyment of all things home.
Feel free to peek into our Family Photo Album .
Best Little Jam House Layout
In addition to blog recipes you will see:
- The Professor's Rating - where my husband's reaction can be found.
- Will the product have a place into our pantry? Not every product will be good enough to earn a spot in our pantry.
- The Jam Scientist's Notebook - where technical issues about the product will be discussed.