Walking Over to Pick Up the Goods

Yesterday I picked up our farm share. We switched this year from Stony Loam Farm to our neighbors who offered shares for the first time this year. We loved Stony Loam but the Needham Family Farm is close enough that we can walk there. It was hard to give up a relationship of several years with some folks who are just plain awesome, but this made sense to at least try. Typically more than one of us walks over; often we all do as a family. But yesterday I went solo since I was the only one around. It was a fine day for a walk.

The Needhams do things a little differently. Instead of a box that we pick up on a certain day of the week, their farm stand is open every day. We go on the day that works best for us. And instead of a particular allotment of produce, we choose from what they have. We get a set number of points each week and can divide those points how we want. The have produce–this week included kale, swiss chard, lettuce, beets, zucchini, summer squash, peas and some other stuff–and they also have eggs (we get these every week), frozen chickens, maple syrup, honey, granola, quiches, pies and other prepared foods. This week I picked up a jar of honey since I was planning to put some in the beer I made today. I got beets and squash. I walked home with a bag full of good stuff.

This is working out well for us so far. We were away last week and picked up our share when we returned on Saturday; we did not worry that we would miss pick-up day. It isn’t perfect–we missed out on the early tomatoes because there just are not many and they are popular, and it is less social than meeting everyone else who has shares on pick-up day–but overall I am happy with the system. Simply being able to walk over makes working with the Needhams a good deal. It may be muddy and it may be dry. The deer flies may be out or they may not. The oaks will be there on any day, however, and the path will offer a mini adventure any day we go.

Heading Through the Woods

Transition Zone

Across the Field

Arrival at the Needham Family Farm

 

More to Pick

Late Summer Bounty

I picked a few more things from our garden today.  The harvest is winding down but we do have more to pick.  I wanted some leaks for dinner (to start off the pumpkin soup) and I had to pick the zucchini before it got enormous. The cucumbers needed to be cut off the vine (they have been getting bitter quickly) and that pepper is going with the roasted potatoes. The melon was iffy.  I am hoping it is ripe as I want to serve it with dinner. If not we have a back up watermelon and a few slices from the last melon from our garden (tastes like candy).

Yet to go: three or four more melons, a few peppers, maybe a zucchini or two, a couple of cucumbers, cherry tomatoes out the wazoo, lots of leeks.  We have several green tomatoes still as well. That isn’t bad for September. And did I mention the basil? More pesto for the freezer (and for immediate consumption) is in the works. Like I said, not bad for September.

A Little Sweat and a Little Work Done

Yesterday was a hot one and we didn’t linger at home.  We visited a bunch of friends on the lake, swimming and eating outside and generally making a time of it.  So I didn’t get much done on my first day off for the summer.  Today I did manage to get a bunch accomplished.  The sun shone and the day was warm.  It was a good one for getting things done.

The first thing I managed to do, after making a couple of perfect over easy eggs for my daughter, was to go for a run.  I haven’t run in far too long and I am finally sans pain.  I only put in four miles, but I felt just great.  If I can keep that up I will be golden.  I managed to sweat only lightly while on the road, but when I got back home I headed straight to the garden.  I discovered that something has been yanking up our corn again.  I thought that problem was solved but it looks like it will require some more trickery.  I also ate a few ripe strawberries.  And pulled some weeds.

I took a shower a little later but was still sweating when I was done with that small task.  So I headed to the garage to stack firewood.  We need to move what we have closer to the door to make room for the new stuff we will get later.  We need to wood that is most dry to be most available.  Plus, once it all gets consolidated there is more room for the lawnmower.  We need to be crafty to fit it all in.  I did what I could but left a bunch for later.  Then it was lunch time.

Since I had only two chocolate chip cookies and two cups of coffee (hey, it had cream in it) for breakfast, I was hungry.  We have tons for lettuce from our share at the farm so I stacked six big fat leaves of it under a veggie burger.  I also added some mayo.  That did the trick.  Oh, and pickle.  And a handful of dilly potato chips.  And another cookie.

My son and I took a trip to town for some errands.  I needed to get a few tools and supplies to get started on scraping paint from the house, and I had this lid to a compost bin that I had purchased way back in November.  It was the wrong size and I figured out I didn’t need it anyway.  So I finally brought it back.  I even managed to save the receipt the whole time so it was a quick transaction.  Then the kid wanted to play on the play structure.  I can’t blame him.  The thing is pretty impressive.  After sailing on a couple of ships, swimming in the shallow water and avoiding a bunch of sharks, I picked out a ceramic pot and we hit it.

I used the pot to repot a plant.  Duh.  We got this plant almost seven years ago.  It was in a plastic pot inside a wicker basket.  It looked good for a while, but we overfilled the pot so many times that the basket was wet all the time.  Eventually the bottom rotted out.  Since the plastic pot just fit inside the basket, I had a bumbling time extracting it.  The extraction involved flying dirt, rotted basket smear on the white T-shirt, and a pinched finger.  After the struggle, however, the new pot served its purpose.  The plant is still a little hurting, but I am hoping it will recover with the fresh dirt and some room to grow.

I managed to get a few other random tasks accomplished as well (cleaned those seedling pots finally) and made up a good dinner.  The dinner used up a good pile of produce from the farm–bok choy, kale, mini turnips–and some other veggies.  All that spiced and flavored with vinegar over brown rice–it was a winner.  My daughter even ate it, although my son pointed to the steaming bowl of vegetables and declared “I don’t like that” as soon as he sat down.  At least he ate the rice.

More projects tomorrow.  And maybe some reading.  I need to yank some weeds from the garden, and maybe plant another round of greens.  If it’s hot, however, swimming (somewhere) will be in order.  We’ll see about the weather.