Every holiday season I battle with the same question. What to give? Between friends, family and co-workers, gift giving can turn a happy wallet into a sad change purse. Who wants to waste their money on candles,chocolates, or other meaningless gifts? So I dug deep (real deep) and found the somewhat warped, frightened and sad Martha Stewart that had been hiding inside.
Last year I tackled terrariums. The finished product looked good but the plants died a few weeks later which was, oh you know... INCREDIBLY embarrassing.
This year I opted for something that wouldn't leave the receiver feeling like a murderer. Homemade Jam. My Aunt, whose inner Martha Stewart could beat the shit out of my inner Martha Stewart and THEN use her skin for an origami project, recommended THE BLUE CHAIR JAM COOKBOOK. This book makes jamming look ridiculously easy and beautiful, (it is not) but I still recommend it. And if you realize jamming just isn't your thing, it's heavy enough to use as an elegant door stop.
Before I had 20 jars of a decently tasting product, I spent 5 Sundays in a row bent over a hot stove, red berry juice covering my kitchen floor and walls, while I tested for jam "doneness" as Bob Marley's "Jamming" played in the background.
Here are some of the concoctions I tried:
red raspberries with rose geranium (too sweet), strawberry with rosemary (yuck), plain strawberry (too runny), cranberry & pomegranate (yummy), and tart raspberry lemongrass (tart & yummy).
In the end my hard work paid off. Sorry Martha but you'll need to find somebody else's skin for your art!