Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Eating Locally

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One of my interests is local farming. Living in the metro Seattle area, it's getting harder and harder to find any open land left for farming, even though most of this region started out as farming communities. The statistics regarding how far the food we eat must travel before it gets to our plates are frightening. The fuel cost alone to transport our food is huge and surely adds to our country's dependence on foreign oil, while it reduces our personal independence and ability to feed ourselves and our community.

One small way that we can contribute to lessening America's need for oil, while eating healthier and supporting our local farmers is to do our best to eat as much local produce, dairy, meat, etc. as we can. That can be a big challenge, (as you can see in the article which is linked below) but it's a fun one if you take the right attitude.

One way we've found to move towards this goal is by becoming members of a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) group. We get a delilvery of fresh, mostly local, fruit and veggies every two weeks. That's enough for the two of us, but you can order weekly delivery if you'd like. We get organic produce that is fresh and delicious. We are exposed to different vegetables that we haven't tried before and the farmer provides us with recipes and instructions on how to prepare and store them. Plus, we are helping to keep a local farm family working and increasing their business. They also partner with other local people to offer locally baked bread, honey, beef, and organically grown, fair-trade coffee. It's not a lot, but it's a first step towards getting some sanity back in our lives. (Washington is the Apple State, so why do we buy apples from around the world when you can get delicious, locally grown apples here?)

Check out this amusing, but insightful article as a British man trys to eat only local food for two weeks! How I Lived Off the Land

Monday, January 09, 2006

We All Miss The Sun


Our dog, Maggie, is really missing the sun. For all her toughness (she guards our home like a real trooper and is the bane of door-to-door salesmen) she is a total wimp when it comes to the rain. She hates water of every type and when it rains outside, you'd think that she was made of sugar. It takes all I've got to get her out the door to do her business, and inside, she goes stir crazy. This is a shot of her this past summer doing what she loves best, (next to chasing squirrels), that's laying on the warm stones, soaking up the sun and watching for "intruders". It's sounding pretty good to me right now! Posted by Picasa

New Year, New Diary

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Be at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors,
And let every new year find you a better man.
~ Benjamin Franklin

One of my new year's resolutions is to try to keep a diary. I have bought Our Country Diary for 2006, an annual diary from Michel Publishing, (914) 763-2244 ever since a friend gave me one as a gift many years ago. These are lovely, hardcover books with beautiful, old-fashioned, color illustrations as well as wonderful quotations, and sections for photos, musings, etc. While I've been faithful to them for a year or two, normally I burn out on keeping them current. But this year will be different!!!! (I've kept the empty ones simply because they are too beautiful to throw away--thus adding to my clutter issue--but that's another resolution...)

Friday, January 06, 2006

Wow! You've Got To See This.


Over the holidays we had a lot going on, not all of it good. As a special gift to me, my husband surprised me one evening by bundling me up and taking me to see the "Garden of Delights" at the Bellevue Botanical Gardens. This is a wonderful light show that they do every year, and wouldn't you know it, we'd never been before. Well, even though the temperature was freezing, it was wonderful to see the beautiful effects that they had worked so hard at creating. It was pure magic, how they were able to recreate specific flowers using little outdoor lights. One of my favorites was the Pampas Grass shown above. If you get a chance to visit this garden do take it. It's wonderful any time of year--this is just an added bonus! Posted by Picasa

It's Not Just My Arteries Clogging...


This is my next project, the Felt Clogs by Fiber Trends. I bought the pattern before Christmas while out yarn shopping with a friend. I didn't want to spend the $$ for the yarn then, so like a good girl, I waited until after the holidays. I'm going to make them with Cascade Yarn's Peruvian Highland Wool in blue with red trim. I've never felted before, so this will be an exciting project for me. If they work out, I'll make a pair for my hubby, but I'll have to like this one, since he wears a size 13 shoe--that's a lot of knitting! Posted by Picasa