Tuesday, April 28, 2009

the farm tour! (PIOG)

we are whole-heartedly embracing local/organic food (back story posted below), doing our best not to re-bankrupt ourselves in the process. this weekend there was a local farm tour, sponsored by the local "local" market, among others. we had a BLAST touring farms within 30 miles or so of home. there were about 60 to pick from in the "triangle" area - all the way toward raleigh.

the first farm we went to was a cow farm. they did a neat tour on an open bus-type ride, pulled by a tractor, in amongst the calves and cows, and steers, and within sight of the bulls' paddock (but they were off in the shade so we couldn't see them). it was interesting, educational, and fun! LaLa said "COW! hi cow! hi cow!" a lot. tried to climb down whenever the farmer would stop the ride and talk. we distracted her with the camera and i'll try to upload later. picked up a couple of roasts at $5/pound (for grass-fed, organic beef). picnicked on leftover pasta salad we'd packed for the ride in the cooler they advised we bring for bringing home products of the farms. yes, i'm feeling virtuous.

then we went to the prawn farm. prawn are freshwater shrimp. they showed us how they farm them, told us what they feed them, but it was over 90 saturday and the kids were getting peaky. so DH did most of the tour while i distracted the overheated children with sodas and learned about prawns. brought home one pound of prawns ($10) for dinner. (could've used 2 pounds but we were trying not to blow the budget)

then we went to a farm that had a little of everything. we'll be going back out for strawberries to this one soon! they aren't very far from us, and they showed us the greenhouse for starting baby plants and the herb gardens. #2 son had really overheated and waited in the car for us to look around, and #1 son was sweet and stayed with him. LaLa loved the herb garden, plucked a nasturtium. the lady farmer said "now that you've picked it you have to eat it!" so she stuck it in her mouth. (she had previously mentioned they are edible, good on salads, a little like radishes.) LaLa spat the petal right back out, but i felt that if she tasted one, i should too. they have a nice clean crisp taste, with a sharper ending flavor. they would be nice sprinkled on a salad. we bought some hamburger for dinner sunday.

finally, we wanted to see a farm that was just a couple of miles from home. it was really neat. they have in the last two years totally reclaimed a worn-out farm, designed it, and are providing organic produce and meat to local restaurants. the map really didn't work for this one and despite its being very very close to home we had to go around it at least once to find the turn that was marked wrong. but the kids played with their australian collies until they were bright red and flushed. working dogs are FUN for littles and mediums! they kicked the soccer ball for the dog to retrieve and just had a blast. we didn't buy anything here.

then we came home and had a BIG nap (LaLa). DH cooked up the prawns in a garlic sauce with red pepper and they were fabulous. right up there with scallops. they are supposed to be protein-rich and very healthy, and easy to cook b/c they take on the flavor of most of what they're cooked with.

sunday we went to church, worked, played, and had hamburgers for dinner. we wanted to get an idea of what the meat tasted like on its own. it was slap-your-momma good! like burgers used to taste. we slurped them up.

the driving around was one of our favorite kind of things to do, so it was a great weekend. if we had had room in the apartment for our chest freezer (sold when we moved) we could really stock up on some local and organically-raised produce and protein. as it is, we'll have to drive around on a somewhat regular basis - darn!


i swore i'd never do this. i couldn't even think about it b/c of the expense. but...

the back story: DH borrowed The Omnivore's Dilemma from a guy at work who read it in a book club. he read it and passed it to me, has recommended it to my veggie aunt, and we both recommend it highly. (click the link for more deets than i can give)

it is a book about the industrialization of our food supply and how terrible it is ecologically. also presents alternative sources but doesn't preach. still, reading how our food is raised, and how the industrial and political controls it, rather than nutritional or ecological, we have changed our purchasing pattern already, and we plan more improvements.

the goal is to eat local foods whenever you can. organic local is best. but if your organic food has to travel far to reach you, it has wasted the ecological benefit in fuel consumption. you will never want to eat a chain hamburger again after reading this book - and that's a healthier change already!

we have changed our dairy and produce purchasing and are working on meat (baby steps). when we eat local and organic food several days in a row, i can tell the difference in how i feel. deleting hormones from your diet can make a huge difference! extra hormones just aren't good for us - especially those of us who battle depression!

Thursday, April 02, 2009


it's been quite a year, hasn't it? i just keep coping, keep on keeping on, and doing my best to cope.

well, i kinda feel broken inside. there are parts of me that really feel happy every day, enjoy the best of life. there are parts that are just getting by. and there are parts that want to cry all of the time and can't get over the hard things that i didn't have time to do more than just barely cope with.

it's so hard feeling all of these emotions all of the time. and i don't know what to do about it.

life is good right now. but i think things are catching up to me. and my hormones are trying to balance themselves. and i'm kind of lost.

any suggestions?


who loves the dentist? don't everybody shout at once!

i've never minded going. i'm 39, i've had 3 fillings. i could've prevented only one if i flossed.

now, who flosses every day? again, don't deafen me?

this is between two back teeth, and it has given me problems since it was first filled. the filling broke (bad dentist), i had it fixed, and the tooth has remained somewhat sensitive. i felt plenty of guilt b/c if i would floss, it would never have happened. and i keep trying to resolve to floss more often (twice a year is a LOT!). but it doesn't happen.

well, i went in yesterday for a cleaning, no worries, figured no cavities.

the tooth NEXT TO the one with the old filling now has a cavity on the surface facing the filling.

damn it. i REALLY have to start flossing! it's just a little cavity, minor fix. but if you've ever had back teeth worked on, it's really uncomfortable. and i'm so dang MAD!

now, who's going to start flossing after hearing my experience? yeah, that's what i thought.

panic button

so, while i was typing my LAST entry, LaLa managed to get herself in a fix.

she had a pen i had found in an OLD box. it's probably 17 years old. roller ball, still works, no worries.

well, i looked at her 1 minute later and her lips are navy, her tongue is navy, and she doesn't have the pen anymore.

apparently the seal broke and her chewing the pen got ink all over her mouth.

YES, i called poison control. immediately. (scrubbed her with wipies as best i could first.) i was ON HOLD for 5 minutes. i wasn't worried about immediate effects, just whether i had to take action. imagine being on hold for 5 minutes if she'd ingested something scarier! just wow.

so, they said, yes, pens are toxic. no, there's not enough of the bad ingredients in a WHOLE PEN CARTRIDGE to worry about. even in a 25-pound toddler.

however, she will look like a maori for a week. pix to follow!


i'm a wicked, wicked mother; wicked Zoot!

my son will complain his joints hurt. "oh good, you're growing!"

lately, it's been extreme frustration with being clumsy. "oh good, you're growing!"

he's almost 12, and the frustration is just beyond his capacity to deal. he's always been very coordinated and athletic, and now he's walking into walls and stubbing toes. it really does mean he's growing (he's grown about 2 inches this year already!). could i be nicer about this? maybe.

but this is the mom he's got, the mom he knows, and how things work around here!

wicked, wicked zut!