Striking for Equality

Do you remember the day women across the country went on strike?  Me neither.  I was four months old when it happened, but it was the largest protest for gender equality in U.S. history.

Betty Friedan and the National Organization For Women organized the nationwide Women’s Strike for Equality on August 26, 1970.  Ninety major cities and small towns held rallies that brought together women from across the political spectrum to demand equal opportunities in employment and education.  In New York City alone, 50,000 women marched down Fifth Avenue.

The strike achieved its goal of bringing attention to the status of women in the United States.  The New York Times even published their first major article on the feminist movement due to the events on that day.

A year later, Congress approved a bill, introduced by Bella Abzug (D-NY), declaring August 26 of each year as Women’s Equality Day.  That day is not only the anniversary of the Women’s Strike for Equality; it is also the anniversary of the day women got the right to vote with the signing of the 19th Amendment by Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby in 1920.

The strike and the creation of Women’s Equality Day marks a turning point in the efforts of women in the U.S. to be treated fairly under the law.  For those of us who were born around 1970 and later, we do not know a time when women were not allowed to vote, were not in the workforce in large numbers, or were not in the halls of Congress or state legislatures.  We have always worked in an environment where the 1963 Equal Pay Act held employers accountable for paying us equally.  We have always had women ahead of us proving that we could be anything we wanted to be when we grew up.

We watched women storm the boardrooms in the 1980s with big shoulder pads and even bigger hair.  We watched Sally Ride fly into space on the Space Shuttle Challenger in 1983.  We watched as women like Carly Fiorina took the helm as CEOs of major corporations and as Madeleine Albright took the post of Secretary of State becoming the top diplomat of the U.S. government.  We watched as Sandra Day O’Conner was appointed the first woman on the U.S. Supreme Court.  Just last week, we watched as the first two women graduated from U.S. Army Ranger School.  There are still more firsts to conquer, but we are getting there.

Now we watch Mad Men and giggle at the blatant sexism of the 1950s and 1960s as we cheer for Peggy Olson breaking down barriers in the advertising industry.  The idea that a woman needed to be a pretty office ornament as well as a competent typist seems so quaint.

Today women make up more than half of the work force.  Women earn more than 57 percent of the bachelor’s degrees, and 60 percent of the master’s degrees.  Women are small business owners and executives in large corporations.  It is no longer novel to have a female doctor.  Here in Georgia, we lead the nation in the growth of women-owned businesses.  The suffragists who fought for our right to vote and the women who stood up for equality in the workplace have created a culture where today’s young women have a world of opportunities available to them.

Even with all the victories we have witnessed, there are still barriers to break down so all Georgia women can take advantage of these opportunities.  Women are woefully underrepresented in the lucrative STEM fields.  Women and girls are trapped in poverty at higher rates than men are.  Georgia is at the bottom of the heap in the number of women in elected office, and women’s access to healthcare in the state is just as bad.  We rank 49th or 50th in maternal mortality and 45th in low birth weight babies.  Forty of our 159 counties have no obstetrical care providers.  Atlanta also makes a dubious list as one of the top places in the nation for Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking.  We still have much to do.

Today as we remember the debt we owe to the women who came before us, let’s dedicate ourselves to creating a better world for the women coming behind us.  We may not need to take over the Statue of Liberty and hang forty-foot banners from her crown or stop the American Stock Exchange ticker tape as women did in New York during the Women’s Strike for Equality in 1970.  However, we can encourage young women to consider careers in STEM, identify talented women for elected office, or advocate for better health care for the women of our state.

Happy Women’s Equality Day!


Karla Jacobs is a member of the Georgia Commission on Women.  She lives in Marietta with her husband, two kids, a dog, and some fish.


Dreams of Summer

CleatsI am a soccer mom.  Like soccer moms worldwide, I watched the Women’s World Cup with my daughter this summer and talked with her about how those women on the field were once youth soccer players just like her.  Little girls with big dreams worked hard as they grew up and became young women living those dreams.

At thirteen, my own daughter’s dreams seem to be of the scientific sort.  She wants to make the big discoveries and advance human knowledge.  Her Women’s World Cup moment may be publishing her research in a major scientific journal or landing a coveted university faculty position.  It will come if she believes in herself and works hard to get there.  She is also thirteen, so her dream may change.

Whatever path her life takes, participation in sports will prepare her for success.

Taco Mac was our viewing venue of choice for the Women’s World Cup games this summer, and almost every game found us there ensconced at a table and ready for a raucous evening.  We were never disappointed as everyone in the room hung on to every play and cheered or groaned depending on what was happening on the field.

As I watched my daughter watch the games, I could not help thinking that those young women on the field were once young girls sitting right where she was sitting watching a U.S. women’s national team lead by the likes of Mia Hamm and Brandi Chastain as they won Olympic gold in 1996 or the Women’s World Cup in 1999.  Their parents once sat where I sit on Saturday mornings in the fall and spring watching girls play their hearts out on the soccer pitch.

It was a Circle of Life moment and got me thinking about women’s sports and the benefits to the girls who grow up playing them.

I am a beneficiary of the legacy of women’s sports.  I played basketball through my freshman year of college, and I ran track and cross-country in high school.  I attribute much of my adult success to my early participation in sports.  I learned teamwork and leadership from my coaches and teammates, and the life lessons from being part of a team were priceless.  I learned resilience and perseverance in the face of exhaustion, injury, and defeat.  I learned to set goals and work hard to achieve them, and I learned how to face challenges and meet successes with grace.

I want my daughter to learn these things.  We were completely caught up in Women’s World Cup fever this summer.  We read news articles about the USWNT and followed the players on Twitter.  We learned about the goals they set and about their decisions to work harder than anyone else was working.  We learned how their loss in the World Cup Finals to Japan four years earlier was motivating team members to push themselves harder in hopes of a different outcome this time.  We learned about the times they wanted to quit but decided to stick with it a little longer before giving up on the sport they loved.

Their stories are inspiring, and this is why women’s sports are so important.  Coaches in gyms and on fields across Georgia are teaching our girls and young women the skills they need in life to succeed.  Somewhere a tiny gymnast has fallen off a balance beam, plucked up her courage, and climbed back on it to try again.  Somewhere a softball team has fallen short in a tournament, and the players have vowed to work harder and try again.  Somewhere a basketball player has decided she wants a college scholarship and is putting in extra time at the gym to make that happen.  Somewhere a swimmer has Olympic dreams and is putting in the extra laps at practice to get her there.

U.S. women’s national team member and Georgia’s own Kelley O’Hara told People Magazine, “For me it’s just about that self-confidence and finding what you love and just chasing after it with reckless abandon and never letting anyone tell you that you can’t do something. If you have a goal and you set your mind to it, you can absolutely achieve it.”

The number of young athletes who will become Olympians or play on the World Cup stage is small, but the number of young athletes who will become doctors, scientists, engineers, teachers, business executives, and leaders is enormous.  The lessons they learn on the field, in the gym, or in the pool will be with them throughout their lives and careers.  I encourage all girls and women to find a sport they love and play their hearts out.

USWNT coach, Jill Ellis, summed up the Women’s World Cup win nicely.  When asked at the end of the championship game how she felt about winning the World Cup, she said, “I’m so happy for every little girl who dreams about this.”

The U.S. women’s national team taught us all about living our dreams and striving toward our goals this summer.  I hope our daughters were listening.


Karla Jacobs is a member of the Georgia Commission on Women.  She lives in Marietta with her husband, two kids, a dog, and some fish.  She is looking forward to the upcoming fall soccer season and the sweaty uniforms, muddy cleats, and happy girl that come with it.

A Taste of Georgia at World of Coke

WC BuildingIs there another soft drink besides Coca-Cola?  In Georgia there is not.  When I was a kid, the words Coke and soft drink (or soda, for those north of the Mason Dixon line) were synonymous.  When you went to a restaurant and ordered a meal, you would ask for a Coke to drink.  The waiter or waitress would then ask you what kind of Coke you wanted, and that is when you would specify Coke, Sprite, or Mr. Pibb.  Sometimes, you got the dreaded question, “Is Pepsi OK?”  It was always asked apologetically.  Of course, the only answer to that was, “No.  In that case I’ll have a sweet tea.”

Coke is it.  It’s the real thing.  Coke adds life.  Have a Coke and a smile.  You can’t beat the feeling.  Coke would like to teach the world to sing.

Coke is Georgia, and Georgia is Coke.

Nowhere is that more evident than at the World of Coke in Atlanta, where I recently spent a fun morning with my kids and our cousins from North Carolina.  This museum to one of America’s most iconic brands is a celebration of the history of Coca Cola and its impact around the world.  It also has air conditioning, which makes it a great way to kill some time with the kids when it is hot enough outside to melt asphalt.

WC Fizzy DanielThe genius of Coca-Cola advertising is on display from entrance to exit.  More than one hundred years’ worth of road signs, wall hangings, and print ads cover the walls from floor to ceiling.  Vintage Coke machines are displayed throughout and brought back memories for me of stopping at old country stores and getting out to get a Coke while Daddy put gas in the car.  A bottle cost 45 cents back then, so I had to scrounge up a quarter and two dimes in the backseat.  My kids had to put up with a constant stream of “I remember that!” all the way through the building.  One room was playing the “Here Kid Catch” commercial with Mean Joe Green over and over.  I made the kids watch it twice.

As a kid, I was always fascinated by the folklore surrounding the Secret Formula for Coca-Cola—only two guys in the entire world knew the formula, but they each only knew half, and they were not allowed to fly together.  Remember that?  World of Coke does not exactly debunk the myth, but they do have the honest to goodness secret formula locked away in a real life vault.  I saw it with my own eyes.  The vault, that is.  The pathway to the vault is a walk through time from the first fizzy glass of Coca-Cola poured at Jacobs’ Pharmacy in Five Points in 1886 through different owners, the rise of copycats, and the establishment of Coca-Cola headquarters in Downtown Atlanta.  There are interactive games to play on your way through the exhibit as well.

WC giraffeThe museum also touches on parts of Coke’s history that are more controversial.  Remember the disaster that was New Coke?  Remember how it tasted like over-sweetened, flat Pepsi?  Remember where you were when you found out Coca-Cola Classic was coming back?  (I was at basketball camp at North Georgia College.)  There is an exhibit to that dark 79 days in Coca-Cola history, and it is one you do not want to miss.  There is also an exhibit of pop art, sculptures made of Coke cans, and an interactive “Design Your Own Bottle” game in the same room to occupy your kids while you contemplate whether Coke generated the controversy on purpose.

The highlight, the grand finale, the pièce de résistance is the Tasting Room.  This room is full of flavors from all over the world just waiting for you to try.  This was my kids’ favorite room of all, and I will admit that it was mine too.  The products are arranged by world region, and flavors run the gamut from fruity sweet to slightly bitter.  When you go, you must try Beverly from Italy.  It is indescribable and must be  sipped to be fully appreciated.  The machine has a sign encouraging you to take a picture of your friends drinking it and then to share those pictures on World of Coke social media.  That is a good indication of what you are getting yourself into with this drink.

Afterwards, we were off to the gift shop, where they have every Coca-Cola logo item you can possibly imagine, including scratch and sniff t-shirts.  We settled for Coke flavored lip balm.

This summer, when the kids are driving you nuts and it is too hot for sane people to go outside, World of Coke is a great place to visit.  It took us about two and a half to three hours to complete the tour.  While you are at it, stitch together a whole day of entertainment by visiting World of Coke in the morning, having lunch at CNN Center, and then spending the afternoon at the Georgia Aquarium next door.

Did I mention it has air conditioning?


Karla Jacobs is a member of the Georgia Commission on Women.  She lives in Marietta with her husband, two kids, a dog, and some fish.

Please Look Again

Did you know it takes only 10 minutes in the scorching Georgia summer sun for the temperature in a car to reach deadly levels?  Each summer we hear heartbreaking stories of busy, distracted parents who accidentally leave their sleeping children in their car seats only to find them dead of heatstroke hours later.  Just this week, we had a near miss in Atlanta with a toddler left sleeping in locked day care van for hours.

It is every parent’s nightmare, and we all need to be vigilant and get in the habit of looking into the backseat each time we get out of the car when we are transporting young children.  To remind parents and caregivers of the dangers of hot cars, the Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning (DECAL) encourages you to Look Again.

You can also watch this video on YouTube.

Water Safety is Making a SPLASH in Georgia

Georgia summers are HOT, and a trip to the lake or pool is a great way to keep cool this time of year.  Water safety is on all of our minds, especially as we play in the water with our little ones.  There were 129 child drowning deaths in Georgia between 2009 and 2012.  That’s an average of 32 deaths a year.  We want to make that number zero.

Please take a moment to review these safety precautions from the SPLASH campaign by the State of Georgia Children’s Cabinet, a part of the Governor’s Office for Children and Families.

You can find more information on staying safe in the water at





Walking for Bone Health: South Georgia Edition

SG Reed Bingham MarkerWhen our post, Walk Georgia for Better Bone Health hit the blog, I got an email from Commissioner Susan Whiddon.  She asked, “Are you still taking trail suggestions?  We need some information on the website about South Georgia.”

I wrote back, “You’re right.  We do need some information on the website about South Georgia.  Whatcha got?”

My knowledge of anything south of I-20 is sketchy at best.  I grew up in Gainesville, Georgia and have traveled all over the North Georgia Mountains from Cloudland Canyon to Rabun Bald.  Now I live in Marietta and know my way around the Metro Atlanta area pretty well.  Unfortunately, most of my traveling in South Georgia has been on I-75.  We try to venture out a little on our way back and forth to Florida, but we rarely stray far from the interstate.  Fortunately, Susan was kind enough to fill in the gaps for me.

As you know by now, May is National Osteoporosis Month, and the Georgia Commission on Women has been focusing our internet energy on awareness of risk factors and prevention strategies for this disease that affects 4.5 million women over age 50 nationwide.  Leading a healthy lifestyle that includes a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D is important, and regular weight bearing exercise like walking is key as well.  What follows are Susan’s suggestions for great places to walk down in her neck of the woods.

Reed Bingham State Park in Adel, Georgia comes highly recommended.  There are seven trails to choose from ranging from boardwalks over the bottomlands to treks through the surrounding forest.  One trail takes you to a high river bluff overlooking the Little River.  Wildlife abounds—gopher turtles, alligators, and vultures, oh my!—and it sounds like a great place to visit if birdwatching is your thing.  Susan is particularly fond of this park.  She says:

Reed Bingham is a favorite of mine.  It is so peaceful with the wooden boardwalks through the trails.  There is always something to see with the wild flowers growing along the trails, squirrels and rabbits scurrying by, and if you’re lucky a deer might cross your path. Don’t forget to look up now and then because you might spot an eagle sitting on a nest.  Reed Bingham is about 3 miles from my house.  I grew up camping there and boating on the lake.  It holds a lot of memories for me and my family.  Now my grandchildren enjoy camping and walking the trails.


Moultrie Trail, a.k.a. Tom “Babe” White Linear Park, is a more urban walking path, which runs 7.5 miles from downtown Moultrie to the Moultrie Municipal Airport.  The trail is an old CSX railroad bed, one of our many Rails-to-Trails paths in Georgia.  (Whoever came up with the idea to turn old railroad lines into recreational trails is a certified genius.)  Trailhead parking and access are available at multiple points along the route.

Moultrie Trail Map

Moultrie Trail Map

Providence Canyon just south of Columbus is an easy day trip for much of South Georgia.  The colorful sculpted canyon walls have earned it the nickname, “Georgia’s Little Grand Canyon.”  Beautiful rock formations and canyon walls that tower up to 150 feet above the wet, sandy canyon floor make for a lovely walk on a pretty Georgia afternoon.  Trails throughout the canyon explore both the rim and the canyon floor.

Susan’s last suggestion is definitely on my personal bucket list.  Cumberland Island is one of those places that ignites the imagination.  With moss-draped live oaks, the ruins of Dungeness Mansion, herds of wild horses, and breath-taking scenery, what more could you ask for?  To get to Cumberland Island, which is off the Atlantic coast, you catch the ferry leaving several times a day from St. Mary’s, Georgia.  The National Park Service manages the island, and it has over 50 miles of hiking trails through maritime forests, wetlands, historic districts, marshes, and, of course, beaches.  The only lodging accommodations are campsites, which make it a great weekend destination.

Commissioner Susan Whiddon (right) and her cousin, Judy Plymel, on the Moultrie Trail

Commissioner Susan Whiddon (right) and her cousin, Judy Plymel, on the Moultrie Trail

No matter where you live in Georgia, from Tennessee to the Florida line, there are plenty of places to get out and enjoy a walk.  What are your favorite trails where you live?

As we wrap up our blog series on osteoporosis, please keep in mind that it is never too early to take steps to prevent this disease.  Adopt a healthy lifestyle now to protect your bones later, and explore our great state along the way.


Karla Jacobs is a member of the Georgia Commission on Women.  She lives in Marietta with her husband, two kids, a dog, and some fish.  After today, she is committed to getting off the interstate and seeing more of South Georgia.

Susan Whiddon is a member of the Georgia Commission on Women.  A retired teacher, Susan and her husband, David, live on a small farm near Norman Park with two Labrador Retrievers and a Boykin Spaniel.  She kindly provided the photographs for this post.

Osteoporosis Affects Men Too

May is National Osteoporosis Month.  Take steps now to improve bone health for yourself and your family.

Think osteoporosis is just a woman’s disease?  Actually, it is not.  In the United States, one in four men over age 50 will fracture a bone because of this disease.  When it comes to men’s health, prostate cancer gets a lot of press, so it was surprising to me to learn that bone fractures from osteoporosis are more common in older men than prostate cancer.

Because more women are diagnosed with osteoporosis than men are, men are not routinely tested for the disease, even after a fracture.  In fact, according to the Wall Street Journal, women over 50 are three times as likely as men to be tested for osteoporosis following a wrist fracture, a common early sign of osteoporosis.  Untreated osteoporosis in men can have devastating consequences, as men are twice as likely as women are to die in the year following a hip fracture.

Risk factors for men include the same lifestyle habits that put women at risk—smoking, a diet low in calcium and vitamin D, little exercise, and too much alcohol.  Some medications such as steroids affect bone density, and any chronic conditions that affect hormone levels, particularly testosterone, put men at risk as well.

As women, we are often the first line of defense in protecting the health of the men in our lives.  If your husband is anything like mine, he does not remember to go to the doctor unless I make the appointment for him.  Encourage your fathers, grandfathers, husbands, and brothers to follow our “8 Steps to Bone Health” and ask for a bone density screening, especially after a fracture.  Better yet, protect your bone health at the same time by adopting healthier lifestyle changes together.


Karla Jacobs is a member of the Georgia Commission on Women.  She lives in Marietta with her husband, two kids, a dog, and some fish.

Walk Georgia for Better Bone Health

May is National Osteoporosis Month.  Take steps now to improve bone health for yourself and your family.

Lace up those shoes, and let’s take a walk!

KMBP SignWalking offers excellent health benefits from muscle tone to cardiovascular strength, but for our purposes during National Osteoporosis Month, walking is a great way to protect your bones from osteoporosis, a disease that affects 4.5 million women over the age of 50 nationwide.  Weight-bearing exercise like walking, along with a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, strengthens bones and helps to prevent osteoporosis.

From the mountains to the coast, Georgia is blessed with a bounty of interesting and beautiful places to walk.  We have mountain hikes, Rails to Trails paths, and historic sites to meet every interest and fitness level.  I asked a few commissioners to share with you their favorite walking paths near their hometowns.

Young spike at Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield Park

Young spike at Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield Park

In the Rome, Georgia area, Commissioner Sharon Baker recommends the Berry College campus and Ridge Ferry Park.  The college sits on 26,000 acres of wooded land that is teeming with wildlife.  If you go early in the morning or late in the afternoon, the fields will be covered over in deer.  The Berry College campus has designated walking, biking, and horse riding trails, so you will want to check out their online maps to find the right spots.  Ridge Ferry Park has tons of amenities including pavilions and playgrounds but also paved and natural walking trails.  It would be a great place to meet friends for a walk.

Commissioner Mia Rice enjoys the Chattahoochee RiverWalk in Columbus, Georgia.  This beautiful 22-mile paved trail hugs the Chattahoochee River bank and runs from Lake Oliver through Columbus to Fort Benning.  It is a favorite of hikers, bikers, strollers, and dog walkers.  Rafting parties float by while you take in the river scenery, and it is entertaining to watch them navigate the rapids.

Illinois Monument - Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield Park

Illinois Monument – Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield Park

I am partial to the Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, which is practically in my back yard.  It is an oasis in the midst of urban sprawl, and once you leave the parking areas, the trails feel as secluded as the trails in other, more remote national parks around the country.  There are sections of relatively flat loop trails on the Cheatham Hill side of the park, but the views of the Atlanta skyline from the top of Kennesaw Mountain are well worth the trek up.  On a clear day, you can see all the way to Stone Mountain, another fun hiking destination in Metro Atlanta.

Although I usually bike it instead of walk it, the Silver Comet Trail is a favorite of residents in Cobb, Paulding, and Polk counties as well as others on the west side of Atlanta looking for a nice place to walk.  A paved path that follows a former railroad line, the Silver Comet runs from Smyrna all the way to Alabama where it joins up with the 33-mile Chief Ladiga Trail.  The many parking lots along the trail make it easy to team up with a friend and two cars for an easy point-to-point hike.

When it comes to the coast, Savannah is my favorite walking city.  Not technically a trail, the city is still a great place to get some exercise, and I love to spend a weekend strolling through the squares and parks and browsing the antique shops.  The live oaks draped with Spanish moss create an atmosphere that is very southern, gothic, and romantic.  It is no surprise that ghost tours abound.  James Oglethorpe, founder of the Colony of Georgia, was brilliant in his urban planning way back in 1733, and now, almost 300 years later, we can still enjoy his vision of the ideal city.  If you go to Savannah, make sure your walk includes Forsyth Park.  The fountain alone is spectacular.Fire Pink KMBP

As spring turns into summer in the Peach State, head outside and enjoy the beautiful scenery of our lovely state.  Your bones will reap the benefit.  To find a trail near you, visit TrailLink, Triple Blaze, or Georgia State Parks.

What is your favorite Georgia trail?


Karla Jacobs is a member of the Georgia Commission on Women.  She lives in Marietta with her husband, two kids, a dog, and some fish.


Sweeten the Pot with Strawberry Preserves

A true Southern woman knows that one can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.  Nellie Duke is a true Southern woman.

Commissioner Nellie Duke

Commissioner Nellie Duke

Miss Nellie has been the chair of the Georgia Commission on Women since 1994, and her sweet encouragement comes in the form of homemade jelly.  Meeting days find her roaming the halls of the Capitol with a box of sparkly glass half-pint Ball jars filled with the sweet, sticky, yummy goodness of Nellie’s Jellies.  If you are lucky, you get to browse through the box to find your favorite flavor to take home.  If you are really lucky, like the Capitol guards who help her park her car, you get first dibs on the offerings.

April and May are strawberry season in Georgia, and I cannot think of a better way to preserve the taste of spring sunshine than in a jar of homemade strawberry preserves.  Miss Nellie has kindly agreed to share her strawberry preserves recipe with our readers so others can enjoy a coveted jar of their own.

Straight from the kitchen of Miss Nellie:

Some of the sweets [Nellies Jellies] are jellies, but others are jams, preserves or apple butter! Strawberry is PRESERVES!

Here is how I do it!

Nellie’s Jellies Strawberry Preserves

3 Quarts Strawberries
13 cups Pure Cane Sugar
1 1/2 Tablespoons pure, 100% fruit pectin (Surejell, Certo etc. may be used if necessary, but see their directions as to amount)

First, you must prepare jars and lids as directed below.Nellies Jellies 1

Remove lids, place in pan of water, and boil for a few minutes. Turn off heat, drain. Place lids aside until preserves are ready to fill in jars, preferably the 8-ounce size. To prepare jars, if you have the equipment, sterilize as directed, drain dry, then fill with preserves and screw lids on tightly. I also turn them upside down while very hot, which aids in sealing successfully. Turn up after cooling at least 15 minutes.

For Preserves:

Remove stems and wash berries. Drain. Cut into halves, or quarters, if large. Place in large, heavy pan so they are not crowded when sugar is added. They have to boil and need extra space. Add sugar and stir until well mixed. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring constantly. (This is very important with strawberries, for they have a tendency to boil over! If you don’t believe this, ask Bette Rose Bowers about the “Jam Session” we had at her farm some years ago.) Cook until berries are soft and somewhat transparent.  (Usually 15-25 minutes depending upon the berries, which, like people, are often different!)  You can tell that they are ready when the liquid “clumps” off the spoon when you stir. If nobody is looking, take a spoon, steal a bite, and decide when it is ready to take up!

I use a soup ladle to pour into prepared jars, screw on tops, invert, and let stand 15 minutes or more to cool. Inverting while hot, or turning upside down, allows the top to seal better. Put labels on jars and store up to two years. (You probably will not have any left that long, but it will be edible even longer if you do!)


For more information on making jams, jellies, and preserves visit the University of Georgia National Center for Home Food Preservation.


Karla Jacobs is a member of the Georgia Commission on Women.  She lives in Marietta with her husband, two kids, a dog, and some fish.  She likes her wheat toast medium brown with a generous dollop of Miss Nellie’s Raspberry Moonshine Jelly.

Governor Deal Signs Safe Harbor/Rachel’s Law

May 5, 2015 continued the celebration of the 2015 Georgia General Assembly “Year of the Child” with Gov. Deal’s signature on SB 8 and SR 7, otherwise known as the Safe Harbor/Rachel’s Law.  Thank you and congratulations to Sen. Renee Untermann, Rep. Andy Welsh, and Rep. Chuck Efstration for your relentless support in bringing Georgia to this day.  Congratulations also to Georgia Cares, Street Grace, youthSpark, and Wellspring Living for your success in advocating for victims.  Your work to repair the lives of Georgia’s victims of Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking is inspiring.  We thank you, and Georgia’s children thank you!