Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Our Local summer

This summer we have had fun working at eating local foods as much as possible. I especially inspired to do that after reading Animal, Vegetable Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver. Local eating probably comes a lot easier to me than to many as I was raised by parents who raise their own meat, milk and eggs and grow large gardens, enjoy berry picking and have their own maturing orchard. That said I still did a lot of buying at the regular grocery store including much of my produce. Though I cook mostly from scratch there was still room in our diet for getting rid of preservatives and other stuff that isn't so great for us. I am not out to change the world or to say that I think everybody should eat only local but I thought I would explain some of the reasons I wanted to try heading that way:
  • You get fresher food! No fruit that ripens as it travels to you or sits on the store shelves.
  • A lot of times either you are the producer or you can visit with the farmer to make sure that you are getting food that is chemical free.
  • You support the local economy.
  • If you train your way of thinking you can eat things that are in season and save money.
  • Getting food without hormones. This is something I am really working on for my maturing children.
  • Less gas is wasted in transportation.

I had planned on being fairly strict in my eating locally this summer. That didn't quite happen (I did still go to the grocery stores every so often though I didn't visit Walmart from the beginning of June to Sept.) but I did make progress. Here are some of the ways we eat locally:

  • We have ordered (from a local farmer) 1/4 of a steer that is hormone free and grass fed. We are getting for around $2 a lb. so I think we are getting a good deal.
  • We get most of our milk from either my parents (goats milk) or a local dairy (which is hormone free). I have tried some to make my own cheese. I have also made butter and ice cream a few times. We regularly have homemade yogurt. (lately I have been spoiled because my mom has been making it for me!)
  • We have a garden and also have been frequenting the local farmers market. We have also been blessed with friends and family sharing produce with us.
  • We picked lots of wild berries!
  • I have started using more honey which I bought from local beekeepers.
  • We buy local grain and grind it ourselves.
  • I talked to a friend that loves to hunt and he said he would be glad to share if he gets a lot, we will pay for his tags.
  • Today we picked a bunch of apples that I got after posting on Freecycle that I would be interested in any apples that people might let go to waste.

That is some of our methods of eating locally, what do you do?

1 comment:

Kate said...

We tried so hard to do this all summer, but it seemed like our plans were thwarted every way we turned. Places were too far away or the price was just too high. I'm not giving up yet though! Thanks for the inspiring post.

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