Chipped Jars

The Pantry.JPG

It has been rainy the last couple days so it seemed like a good time to start organizing the pantry. I have been lax on doing that during the produce picking and canning frenzy that is typical of this season.

I discovered this was becoming an urgent matter when I went to put away some of the jars of salsa and tomato juice that I had canned yesterday. My shelves were a disorganized grouping of empty jars mixed in with filled jars and there wasn’t a whole lot of rhyme or reason to jar placement. I totally needed to do some organizing so I would have room for more filled jars.

I decided this would also be a good time to set aside the jars of produce that will go to the kids. (Ulterior motive was that it would free up more shelf space for the rest of the stuff  needing to be canned and preserved.)

As I moved things around and moved empty jars to more accessible locations; I thought I should probably check the rims on those empty jars. Some of the jars are pretty old as they came from my grandma, mom and mother in law……heirloom jars?  Some of those jars are even the old blue ones!

During the years of canning they eventually tend to chip on the edges and need to be weeded out. I might have to take a look at Pinterest to see what I can do with the slightly chipped jars in my possession. I am open to any crafting suggestions!!

Chipped Jars.JPG

I hate it when I find those chipped jars by the method of them not sealing. That always seems like such a waste of a good lid……so today I thought I would get a jump on the rest of the canning season.

Some of those chips were pretty hard to find and the only way to discover them was to run my index finger around the rim. It seems my fingertips are better at finding chips than my eyesight… age is showing????

The chipped jars got me to thinking. Sometimes we, as people, are chipped jars. Some of our chips are big enough that others can easily see them. Other chips need the gentle finger of the Master to find.

Sometimes it is hard to even realize that something in life has put a little chip in our life. We cannot understand why it happened or sometimes even how it happened……all we know is that it did happen and we are left wondering what to do with a life that now looks different than we thought it should.

My brain then journeyed on to the thought that when someone has a chip, large or small, as a fellow human we should treat them gently. It also got me to thinking that the Master is the authority on repurposing and using our chipped lives for something different than what we thought they would be.

I never did totally get these thoughts untangled as I worked in my pantry. I have a feeling that this is a concept I will have to ponder on a while longer. Maybe a long while longer.



I am hoping that while I ponder chipped lives – mine and others – I treat those around me with a gentleness that eases the pain of being chipped.  I hope I spread the thought that a repurposed life is a life of living, not just surviving, and a life filled with great hope…..a life of second chances to be lived differently than we had initially planned, but equally useful and beautiful….if we are willing to be repurposed.




“[When it comes to God]
We can’t run out of second chances…
only time.”

Robin Jones Gunn



32 thoughts on “Chipped Jars

  1. kindergartenknowledge says:

    What a wonderful post! You have really spoken to me directly…many other people too, I imagine. When we lost our son at age 26, I believe that I became chipped. I tried to carry on the same as before…for Mike and for our daughter. I remained joyful because of my family including my nieces and nephews and their young children. Some were born after we lost Justin. I also found direction, joy, my identity through the children at school. You can’t imagine how much I cared for those children each year. Now that I have retired, I am missing the laughter that they brought me each day. You have given me my answer. I am repurposing and finding other ways to immensely enjoy life. Thanks be to God for bringing me such a joyful message…through you! And your pantry is so organized that I may have to stay up all night to work on my pantry and about four closets!

    Liked by 2 people

    • thechickengrandma says:

      I am so so sorry for the loss of your son. The thought of that makes my heart hurt. I am also grateful that you have allowed God to “repurpose” your life!
      My husband and I were just talking this morning about children and how they live life to the full. They feel the highs and the lows and maybe as adults we could learn from that.
      I also have closets I need to organize :).

      Liked by 1 person

      • kindergartenknowledge says:

        Thank you! I didn’t want to send you a sad message. That is not normally me! I just related so strongly to your post! Justin was hit head on…he was going to the farm for a few days before returning to Austin. He had been in Oregon for several weeks for a workshop on sustainable living. He studied Permaculture (agricultural ecosystems). Anyway, it was raining and the other car came over a hill and lost control. Justin definitely lived life to the fullest and so do our daughter/
        son-in-law! So thankful! I am going to work on closets today…like mine!! Your pantry looks huge! My mother had one like that!!! My pantry is just regular…there is a coat closet next to it. We should combine them!


      • thechickengrandma says:

        My pantry is pantry on one side and coat closet on the other so it does double duty. I find that I have been slowly taking over more of the shelves for my produce. It also catches anything that needs to be hidden when company arrives unexpectedly :).
        And you did not send me a sad message but one that shows hope and life. I love the fact that you allowed God to send you in a different direction where He could use your love and joy to impact a lot of children! And where they could impact you.

        Liked by 1 person

    • goldenbrodie says:

      I am so sorry for your loss. I guess we are lucky when we manage the chips and work on not being shattered. Blessing on us as we walk through each day. My last career was teaching lower school. I have enriched my life by tutoring ESL students, Spanish as a second language, working with them to gain confidence and become emergent readers. They give me so much. My chips are forever found among my edges…my losses have shaped me and my heart aches for you. Peace be with you and also with you chicken grandma.

      Liked by 1 person

      • kindergartenknowledge says:

        How kind of you to send me such an uplifting comment! Thank you! I intend to substitute in elementary school one or two days a week…in schools where I have taught and still have friends. I plan on tutoring ESL students…most likely reading and perhaps writing. I had ESL classes for the entire time (18 years) that I taught in public schools. Very rewarding! My last school was nearly 100% Hispanic…the children were so very polite and so very needy in many ways.! Back to the chips…yes, they are forever present. Faith and friends carry us forward with hope and joy!


  2. Jessica says:

    Oh my, how I love this. You are so brave to run your finger around the jar’s edge- literal and imaginative.

    Seems like many times we are simply stuck in trying to live “just so” that anything less is hard to imagine. Your analogy is perfect.

    Only a little ways into the reading, I had a light bulb moment of -this sounds like humans. 🙂 Excellent post. Absolutely love it. I learned so much. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. peggyjoan42 says:

    Beautiful pantry. I have done a lot of canning in my life. When you see how much you have accomplished through much labor – it is a very good feeling. Nice way to think of chips and apply chips to life. I have many of the old green canning jars I inherited from my mother-in-law.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. goldenbrodie says:

    Your pantry is a picture of hard work, dedication, knowledge, enjoyment, labor of love and excellent eatings come the winter months. You are amazing..and yet again, you have given me my memories of my grandmother’s pantry.. Root cellar, dirt floor, but organized and clean and oh boy, I knew where those watermelon rind pickles were lined up! and her peaches…and oh I could go on. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. thecobweboriumemporium says:

    Ohhhh I WISH I was as organised as this. It puts me to shame.
    We don’t really do this ‘canning’ in the UK. I think that perhaps because our homes aren’t really built with enough space for a cool larder to store everything in.

    I think you’re brilliant Chicken. (But then … you knew that already! lol)
    Sending oodles of love and squishy stuff ~ Cobs. x


    • thechickengrandma says:

      I waited to take the picture till after I had organized LOL.
      You also maybe do not have as large of an outdoor area to have a garden I am guessing? I just come from a long line of gardeners and food preservers.
      Not everyone around here does this….some of us just hang on to the old ways :).
      Love and squishy stuff back at you! – Chicken

      Liked by 1 person

      • thecobweboriumemporium says:

        Long may you hang on to the old ways, Chicken!
        I think you’re right … our gardens, on the whole, aren’t as big, so the food we grow ourselves is only enough for the here and now, and sharing any excess with friends and relatives.

        Squidgiest of squidges and love ~ Cobs. x ❤

        Liked by 1 person

    • thechickengrandma says:

      When we moved here I told my husband I needed sturdy shelves for canned goods and he made them to order. We repurposed lumber and shelving, painted them white and woo hoo — pantry! We have modified in the last couple years by adding a couple extra shelves as the pint jars did not need all the extra space above them and I was running out of room.
      My flowers are some of the last blooms of the season – Russian Sage, Stella del Oro lilies, and hydrangea. I could not resist popping them into one of the chipped jars.

      Liked by 1 person

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