Feb 10, 2017

Perserverance Pays Off

Here we are... almost halfway through February.... and another month closer to Spring... warmer weather.  Ahh!  I cannot wait.  Even though, my area has not had much snow this year (thank goodness)....

 
In addition to having the perseverance year after year to deal with the cold and snow, over the past few months I've been dealing with a challenge of my own stupidity making.  I came across a recipe that called for apple molasses.  I'd never heard of it before, so of course I Google'd it.  Ten dollars for a small jar... are they crazy?  In retrospect, it may have been cheaper if I'd just paid the $10.  Why you ask?  Read on:
 
Long time readers know how I'm into DIY.  Again, Google was my friend.  I found out I could make my own apple molasses by boiling down apple cider. Growing up, my Dad and uncle made maple syrup by tapping maple trees and boiling it down so I knew what was involved.  Piece of cake.  This journey started last fall.
 
As I was boiling down the cider on the stove, my brother called me and said he had time to replace the brakes on my car.  When bro calls and says he has time, I have to go.  I decided to put the cider in the crockpot and let it boil down -- safe enough and I didn't have to "babysit".  The next day was a Monday, so I had to go to work.  The cider was soooo close to being done, but not quite.  Since I had a doctor's appointment that day, the plan was to let it cook in the crock and stop at home on my way back to work to shut it off.  Well..... I forgot.  When I got home that night, I found this:
 
 
What surprised me was that when I left the house in the morning, there was only about 3" of liquid in the bottom of the crockpot.  When I got home, there was an expansion of crusty, crunchy, sponge-like blob in the crockpot!  Ewww.
 
It was all I could do to get the solid part out of the crockpot. Then I soaked it. Guess what?  No amount of soaking will remove burnt on apple cider!  Barkeeper's Friend... Nope.  Softscrub... Nope.  I tried all the obvious cleansers to get the stuff off to no avail.  I Google'd burnt crockpot and found a blog... Yes, a blog! Vinegar and baking soda.  It took a long, long, LONG time (perserverance) to get all the burnt out of my crockpot, but it worked!  Big thanks to The Acid Truth
 
 

What else have I been up to?  I've been stitching, but there isn't anything I can show since both projects are for exchanges.  What I can show is my finished "masterpiece" watercolor painting.  I kind of chuckle when I say masterpiece because it's far from, but that's what the instructor for the class I took referred to our project as.


This painting is based off a photograph I took in 2002 of the Pecatonica River near where I live.  I don't think I did the photograph justice, but I'm pretty happy with how the painting turned out seeing as I'm still a newbie.  I'm a much better photographer, lol.

Until next time....

 

27 comments:

Vickie said...

Well your pot looks sooo much better now! Your painting is beautiful Meari.

Anonymous said...

So did you ever get any apple cider molasses??? LOL Too funny and you were even brave enough to show us pictures! Painting looks great - definitely some hidden talent there. Glad you are having a 'good' winter (is there such a thing?). Judi in Phoenixx

Sandie said...

I must admit to being a reader, but not always posting a comment Meari. I loved the description of your molasses adventure. And also the fact that you finally managed to get the crock pot clean again!

Cindy said...

I'm glad you were able to clean out the crockpot. Are you going to try again?

I think the painting came out very well.

Donna Pheneger said...

I enjoyed your update - and egads! What a mess with the crockpot! So gla you were able to get it clean! Kudos to you for not giving up!

Patricia Green said...

Crock pot adventures! Imagine all the library books you'd have had to consult if you were struggling with your apple molasses back in 1980.

I love your painting. You really have an artistic eye and talent to back it up.

DJ said...

Ooooh...I'm so impressed with your watercolor! Having worked in a frame shop and seen many novices coming in to frame their pieces, I can honestly say yours is fabulous!! I love it all, the subject, and your painting! So glad you were able to salvage your crockpot...I hope you are able to finally make your apple molasses, it sounds yummy!

Carm said...

The DYI is not as easy as they sound sometimes. I hope you don't quit blogging as I look forward to read each entry! Keep on painting as practice makes perfect. Looking forward to when you show the exchanges

Sue said...

Your blog is always interesting even when you haven't done much stitching! You spend a lot of time making things for your home; a true "tool time woman". 👍 I cannot believe the patience and perseverance you showed cleaning that crock pot!! I would have ditched it in the trash. Lol. Good job sweetie!
Ma loves you👩‍❤️‍👩❤

Pam in IL said...

I probably would have given up on getting the crockpot clean, lol. So, did you try to make the apple molasses again or buy it? As Hubby says, each day is one day closer to spring. We had snow on Wednesday and it ended up being about 4 inches so I had to shovel, but with today's sun, it's nearly all gone :)

Michelle L writes said...

Hey! it's been a while. Military life was hard but transitioning out of it was way harder. Missed reading though and trying to catching up. I had this burned thing happen to my Crockpot too. I covered the burned parts in dish soap, then cover that with baking soda, then gently poured hot water over an ear with little or no burn so it didn't want the soap and soda away and let it sit for about half an hour. It worked wonders.

Deb said...

Oh, too bad about your experiment. And the mess. Great tip with vinegar. Your painting is beautiful!

Robin in Virginia said...

Glad you were able to get your crock insert clean. I am guessing apple molasses isn't the same thing as apple butter. Your masterpiece is gorgeous. Enjoy your weekend!

Faith... said...

Did you ever get to make the apple molasses? Your crock pot looks amazingly clean, you must have determination. Your painting looks great, it just takes more determination which you obviously have.

Dorrie said...

Wow, Meari, good job on cleaning your crock pot. I'm not sure I would have had that much perseverance. I probably would have just thrown out the crock pot and bought a new one. Glad you were able to salvage it. Great job on your masterpiece. You are one talented lady.

Bette said...

I love the painting! Watercolor is my favorite medium and your painting is just beautiful. And You are far more persistence than I would be. I would have gotten rid of the old crock pot and bought a new one. ;-)

Desiree Ehleiter said...

I am amazed you got the crockpot cleaned! I would have tossed it. I honestly admire that you even tried to make the molasses and completely admire the perseverance to clean out that crockpot! Your painting is lovely!

KimM said...

Goodness, gracious sakes alive! What a Cider Incident! Glad there was a happy ending.....love your masterpiece, too.
xxx

Nan Davis said...

Like many of your followers, I don't always comment. But, I love reading your blog. Please don't stop. Your "adventures" always put a smile on my face and I usually learn something new.
Don't give us.

CatsnCorgis said...

Meari,
After getting caught up in "this day in history" and its links...Of course, I loved it, learned a lot. I already knew about the vinegar and baking soda. Amazing, isn't it. I really like the gauge under your Japanese Garden!

Sally

Carol said...

I'm sorry your apple molasses experiment turned out so badly, Meari! I had never heard of that before, but I know now that I won't ever try making my own :) So glad you were able to save your crockpot!

I love your painting--the way the trees are reflected in the river is so pretty!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Cricket-bug Corner said...

Oh rats!! Thank goodness you didn't have to buy a new crock! Picture is gorgeous - you are so talented!

Jenn West said...

Painting is just beautiful. thought the crock pot was a gonner for sure! Will keep the vinegar and baking soda trick filed away!

Katie said...

Oh I would have been purchasing a new crock pot haha. You are a lot more patient than me haha. I love your painting. Great job!!

CJ said...

The crock pot story is classic. Wow, when are you going to try to make Apple Molasses again?

Glad you are doing well.

CJ

Brigitte said...

Lucky you that you found something to get the burnt stuff out of the crockpot. I will keep that vinegar and baking soda recipe in mind.
I love your painting, Meari, it's so beautiful.

Lyn Nalett said...

I'm glad you were able to clean your crock pot. You learn something new every day!

Your painting is very pretty. You may not think of it as a "Masterpiece", but your instructor is right. You are using every aspect of what you've been taught to make the painting.

Looking forward to seeing your stitching when you are able to post pictures of your projects.