Thursday, December 24, 2009
Install a new seat on the tractor
Put the chains on the tractor tires (I know - we should have done this about a month ago!)
Begin 'shoring up' the foundation of the barn
We are coming home to Chicago on Wednesday and on Thurs we are getting a dumpster and removing the demolition from the apartment we are remodeling.
A week full of work and projects!
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
1 ¼ cups brown mustard seeds
1 cup yellow mustard powder
1 cup water
1 cup white vinegar
¼ dup dry white wine
7 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons white wine
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon sugar
¼ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
¼ teaspoon ground mace (I left this out)
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon (I left this out)
Soak the mustard seeds and powder in the water, vinegar and wine. Soak 48 hours, then add the garlic and spices. Mix in a food processor or blender for 5-6 minutes. Cook on low heat in a saucepan or crock pot for 4 hours to mellow out the flavors. (I only did this for 2 hours.)
Age 3-4 weeks in the refrigerator.
Monday, December 21, 2009
It seems that Mr. Goetsch believes that CAFOs (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations) are a good thing for the state and for the rural populations. Mr. Goetsch has continually put the desires of large agribusiness before the concerns of public health of the citizens of Illinois. Mr. Goetsch is behind the improperly permitted large CAFO trying to open in Nora, IL. Read more here.
Industrial agriculture is not sustainable.
Illinois citizens support traditional farmers and family farms - not corporate facilities.
Industrial agriculture destroys our clean air and water.
Agribusinesses destroy rural communities.
Call, email or write to Governor Pat Quinn:
Kate Tomford, Director of Sustainability
Office of Governor Pat Quinn
100 W. Randolph, Chicago, IL 60601
312-814-4083 fax 312-814-4864
Monday, December 14, 2009
The smaller building on the left is the current house which we are repurposing into a studio, office, commercial kitchen and garage.
The building on the right is the newer one. They are connected by a breezeway. Passive solar and solar heated radiant floors are in the house, the breezeway and the commercial kitchen.
The new building is 24' x 30'.
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Today is my in the kitchen day. I have started the mustard, brewing some homebrew (that is a gift to Bill and me - not for others :) ) and I'm trying out my new sourdough starter than my cousin gave me yesterday. I love homemade gifts! I killed my last starter (note to self: use and feed it weekly!). I vow to not kill this one.
My brew is a Vienna Lager. I am a novice brewer so I mostly use kits - I was surprised to see that this kit contained corn sugar. I've only tried one non-kit and it was pretty hop-py. It was good. I've been brewing for about two years - it is enjoyable, tasty and more reasonable to purchasing good microbrews.
In this photo, you can see my wooden bread bowl on the right, the homebrew boiling on the stove.
My supervisors. Gracie (black) and Georgie (white tabby also female).
Friday, December 11, 2009
A little history first. Six months after we got married, Bill and I purchased a multi-unit building in Chicago. Local vernacular in Chicago calls multi unit buildings "flats" - like they do in London. Our building is a 3 Flat which means that it has three apartments. To say this is a fixer-upper is an understatement. It was crawling with cockroaches and in one of the bathrooms, the bathtub was about to fall through the floor because of leaking water and rotten walls and floors. Anyway - I won't bore you with all of the work we have done, but we have been working on it and living in one of the apartments consistently since 1997.
About 8 years after purchase, the building started to very slowly, bit by bit, make us money instead of consistently costing us money (in repairs and rehabs). After almost 13 years we are now at the point where it has given us the financial freedom to pursue our farm dreams. It has been a long road full of late nights, weekends full of work, and frankly still living in an apartment in our mid-40s but we have always believed that our sacrifices would eventually pay off. The income is now finally able to pay for the building and the farm.
But back to the farm. Our 20 acre farm is very hilly. We are in the driftless region of Southwest Wisconsin. We don't have much flat area on our farm. Enough to put growing beds in areas and allow for crop rotation, but it is not at all like the prairie in western IL where my grandparents farmed from fenceline to fenceline. One day after purchasing our farm, I said to Bill, 'I think we should name our farm 3 Flat Acres - it fairly accurately describes the topography, but it also pays homage to our 3 flat in Chicago that has allowed us to pursue this dream.' He readily agreed and that is how our farm was named.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
In other news, our farm class focused on a $10,000 farm start up last week. It was sobering. In the study we did (egg layers - which are of course not really a money maker) showed how little money the farmer made.
I'm also reading a case study published by Center for Integrated Agriculture Systems and the finances are just astoundingly poor, to be frank. Market gardeners with less than 3 acres in vegetable production (not including cover crops) make on average $4.96 per hour. This report is from late 2005 so maybe money has gotten better...? Here is a link to the study: Grower to Grower: Creating a livelihood on a fresh market vegetable farm. I haven't read the whole study yet, but I look forward to delving into it further. I need to really do some self-reflection to determine whether I can mentally be OK with working that hard for less than minimum wage. Lots to consider.
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Last night we had squash quesadillas.
Heated up several cups of squash. Added a small amount of honey and a lot of garlic. Meanwhile we carmelized some onions from Two Onion Farm with some chipolte pepper (this was a canned item).
On flour tortillas we spread some squash (thinly), topped with the onions and lightly with some cheese (mozzarella from Roelli Cheese - not organic, but local - I shredded it myself) topped with another tortilla and popped into a 325 oven until warmed and slightly browned. Topped with homemade roasted green tomato salsa and some fresh greens from the yard.
Quick and delicious!
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Then we visited a pastured based chicken farmer. They had these neato portable pens which are moved to fresh grass every day. They have ropes on the front and little lawn mower wheels on the back to allow them to move. They do cover these with tarps and face them appropriately with the sun and the wind so that the pens get the cross breezes. I also liked how they shorted the side so that they aren't as low to allow easier access to the birds without having to bend over so far into the corners. She raises cornish cross. It was interesting that she said that her customer base didn't want/like heritage breed.
This week's homework for class is writing a mission statement for our farm. We have also had exercises where we are drawing our farm (everything: house, growing beds, greenhouses, washing stations, coolers, housing for help, alternative energy) - it was a fun and thought provoking exercise. We have also been asked to think about finances. One worksheet had us actually qualify how much money we want/need to make at farming. That is a really hard thing to do. We settled on between $750-$1000/month. I'd love feedback on that number if anyone has any thoughts. It seems like not much - but like Bill said, if we were interested in the money we would just keep our current jobs and stay in the city.
All in all, we are greatly enjoying the class, hearing stories from real farmers and networking with other students.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Joel Salatin, "This industrial food experiment, historically speaking, is completely abnormal. It’s not normal to eat things you can’t spell or pronounce. It’s not normal to eat things you can’t make in your kitchen. Indeed, if everything in today’s science-based supermarket that was unavailable before 1900 were removed, hardly anything would be left. And as more people realize that this grand experiment in ingesting material totally foreign to our three-trillion-member internal community of intestinal microflora and -fauna is really biologically aberrant behavior, they are opting out of industrial fare. Indeed, to call it a food revolution is accurate."
Thursday, November 5, 2009
We found this Find at the El Junque store on Western Ave in Chicago. It is a guy that deals in cash only and buys from scrap trucks that cruise the alleyways of Chicago.
I've been wanting a two person glider for quite a while. Every time we drive past, we keep our eyes peeled for what is on the sidewalk. And one day there it was! Asking price $25. We ended up paying $18. It doesn't glide but Bill will fix that.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
And the best part of the class? Oh my gosh. Meeting the others that want to do what we want to do! Bill and I are often the ones that no one seems to understand. "you want to do what?" "You make your own bread?!" "You can just buy bread at the store." "You want to live in the country?" We were surrounded by like-minded folks. And there was every age group represented: young parents, some fresh out of college, father-daughter teams, pre-retirees and plenty of mid-lifers looking for a change (like us).
We took Friday off and spent the weekend in Wisconsin. Our accomplishments were pretty minor but fun.
Our insurance company is threatening to not renew our policy for the farm/church-house if we didn't put railings on the steps. We have made steps out of huge local boulders (3 to 4' in length) - many stacked on top of another. Bill wasn't wild about the idea of taking away the beauty of his natural steps - but you gotta do what 'da insurance man' say.
He stopped at one of the many architectural salvage stores around our neighborhood in Chicago. He found some cool victorian iron scroll work but gheesh, it was over $400. No way.
So we drove up on Thurs night without much of a plan but we did have a bunch of tools. He kept saying - we'll just go over to the farm in the morning and I'll poke around the junkpile. (Every farm has a junk pile, right?)
Friday morning at the farm junk pile, he pulled out two rusty large farm fence posts that were all bent up. He also found two cedar branches. He fashioned a lovely railing out of these found objects for FREE! The man is destined to live on a farm.
I also learned to chop wood. Yes, with a splitting maul. I definitely do NOT have hang of it yet, but I did OK. It wasn't pretty and I was incredibly slow, but I got some wood (box elder, certainly not oak or elm) split. I will work to increase my confidence in my swing as the winter progresses. This will be our last year buying wood. We just haven't had the time on the weekends to fell, split, season, haul and stack wood while trying to fix up multiple places - especially when we can get a large load from the neighbor for $75 (and he has lots of wood and needs the money).
I am roasting a local acorn squash, wedge fries out of potatoes from my garden and a large green salad from the greens of the last Platteville Farmer's Market. Hello Fall!
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Vegetarian Suppers by Deborah Madison
The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters
Baking Illustrated - Cook's Illustrated
The Real Dirt on Vegetables by Farmer John
Edible Earth by Lisa Kivirist and John Ivanko
Dinner ended up being:
Baking Powder biscuits from Baking Illustrated. No milk on hand so I thinned some of my raw milk yogurt.
Browned Brussel Sprouts in Parmesan Crust from The Real Dirt on Veggies.
Quinoa with Carrot and Garlic. I found this recipe somewhere online but I can't find it so I made from memory.
1 C of cooked quinoa
1 large carrot, diced
Some ginger - I used about 3 T
~3 T of flour
Salt & pepper to taste
While the quinoa is simmering, warm and slightly soften the carrot and garlic. Pull from the heat. Cool quinoa in a bowl until it is comfortable enough to handle. Stir in the carrot mixture. Sprinkle with flour and mix well until the mixture sticks together. Heat olive oil in a cast iron skillet. Form the quinoa mixture into little patties (approx 2") and fry in the olive oil. Serve warm, room temp or cold. I drizzle with some yogurt with fresh herbs. They are delicious the next day for lunch too.
Friday, October 23, 2009
This is a handmade hula hoe that Bill made me for me for my 4oth birthday. It is a white oak sapling.
This is the handle. He left part of the bark on the end. The silver band is a piece of metal from a can of dog food from our dog. He turned under the sharp ends with a metal bender and had carved out a section of the handle where the metal fits. Also, he hand punched a message on the band - it says 3 Flat Acres.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
I made up for it on Sunday by:
- Doing three loads of laundry and drying them outside
- Baking 2 loaves of whole wheat bread
- Turning the compost pile
- Pulling up the Chicago garden and putting in the aforementioned compost pile
- Spreading leaves over the Chicago garden and covering with moldy hay
- Harvesting lots of mint and drying it in the food dehydrator for mint tea
- Cleaning out the garage
- (we did get the homebrew bottled on Friday night)
It was a lovely day.
We start Farm Beginnings this weekend.
Friday, October 16, 2009
Friday, October 9, 2009
Root vegetable washer. This was pretty neat. Attach the hose and fill up the reservoir with water. Put the crop (we did beets) in on the left and plug it in. It rotates and cleans the beets and they plop out on a screen on the other side to drain and for packing.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
I read this on the train this morning.
The Rural Life by Verlyn Klinkenborg
The end of the chapter on September
The weight of the afternoon sun already falls more lightly on my back than it did a few weeks ago. The days seem not only shorter but also somehow thinner too, and every morning that dawns above freezing feels like a morning won back from the inevitable. Nothing is dry yet, of course, but the promise of eventual dryness is in the air. A day will come when every crown of seeds will rattle on the weeds in ditches and fields, when leaves will crunch obligingly underfoot again.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
No deal. The most we can expect to get is 100 - 150 kWH. It would take multiples of decades to recoop the cost that way. That isn't even factoring in the yearly maintenance.
I feel like we just saved $15K+.
We were accepted to the Farm Beginnings class!
Saturday, September 26, 2009
They sell at farmers market, 3 local grocery stores and a montana growers coop.
I learned a lot and worked very hard - 12 hour days of physical labor. It was great!
I will post photos soon.
Montana is really beautiful - but I admit, I am a midwestern gal. This area of MT only receives about 12" of rain per year. They rely heavily on irrigation.
I was also able to attend a discussion group on rural healthcare hosted by Center for Rural Affairs. If you are not familiar with their great work, please check out their website!
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Sunday, September 6, 2009
Saturday, September 5, 2009
Happy Corn Moon.
My summer project comes down!
Monday, August 31, 2009
If anyone has information or experience, I would love to hear them.
Friday, August 28, 2009
I had a huge zucchini in the fridge that my mom gave me. We typically like the young, smaller ones better, but I'm not one to say no to a free zucchini. She actually gave me 3 of them. I've made loaves of zucchini bread and last night I tried zucchini fritters.
We topped them with a dollop of homemade mayo and chopped tomatoes. Delicious!
It was pretty local too. Zucchini from my mom and dad. Bread crumbs were from my own homemade bread (most of the wheat was from Great River Milling in Wisconsin. Eggs were local from Southern Wisc. Garlic, onions, herbs were from my own backyard. Didn't need any milk. Tomatoes (topping) were from my Wisc garden. And a glass of Bauer Kearns wine!
If you haven't tried making your own mayonnaise, I urge you to try - it is delicious!
Zucchini fritters from grist.org
4 cups grated zucchini (1 ½ to 2 pounds), squeezed dry
About 1 ½ cups of bread crumbs, flour, or cornmeal (I used ¾ C ww flour, ¾ C bread crumbs, a ¼ C amaranth grains)
2 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs, beaten
4 scallions, chopped including the greens (I used freshly pulled onions from the garden)
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 cup chopped herbs—any or a combination of parsley, cilantro, basil, mint (I used mint, lemon balm and sorrel)
salt and pepper
A splash of milk or buttermilk, if needed, to give the batter a spoonable texture
Olive oil for the pan
Sprinkle about 1 ½ teaspoons salt over the grated zucchini and set it aside in a colander to drain for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, mix the remaining ingredients together except the oil. After 15 minutes squeeze any excess water from the zucchini and then mix it with the batter. Season with a big pinch of black pepper. Film a large skillet (or two) with 1 Tablespoon or so olive oil. When the pan is hot (on medium heat) drop heaping tablespoons of batter into the skillet. Cook over medium heat until golden brown on the bottom. Flip and cook the second side. Eat while hot with sour cream, yogurt, or salsa verde.Substitutions: grated eggplant, butternut squash, sweet potato, cubes of roasted vegetables
Additions: cheese, other spices or herbs, seeds or nuts.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
We both worked in the garden for about 3 hours on Sunday morning. I dug up the aforementioned potatoes and planted buckwheat as cover crop on the bare beds. Bill restrung the tomatoes. We think we will end up getting a fair number of tomatoes. I brought a lot of green ones home. Our neighbors' tomatoes are all dying. Ours look fine. hmmmm.... perhaps over fertilizing is the culprit? My grandma's tomatoes also always died early but she loved Miracle Gro and never rotated her locations.
I also found out that our neighbors have hens - I didn't get over to see them, but I will when we are back up over Labor Day.
Last night for supper we had steamed fresh edamame pods. I got them from a farmer coop that delivers to my food coop. They were delicious!
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Monday, August 24, 2009
We have to start subsidizing health and well-being by rewarding sustainable practices in agriculture and assuring a safe, adequate and wholesome food supply to all our citizens. And we need to start this reform process now, as part of the national stimulus toward economic recovery."
From Will Allen's (of Growing Power, Inc.) ChangeThis - A Good Food Manifesto for America
Monday, August 10, 2009
Friday, August 7, 2009
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
We were at the farm this past weekend. If you follow the white fence on the right - see the part that is partially fallen down? It is now totally down. Grant County received 2" of rain in one hour and we had a pretty severe water backup. You can see across the driveway from the part of the fence that is falling down there is a culvert. It is too small, partially crushed on both sides and leads to water backup. The water collects on the right into a big pond which flows over the driveway and then has lots of momentum and force. It isn't in this picture but there was a footbridge over this seasonal creek further to the left. The planks were rotten and we were planning on taking it down anyway - it washed away it is further down the creek near the house.
It was great to see because we need to engineer our way out of this. We also had water flow down the hill behind the house. The grass near the house is all flattened and there was silt at the front door. Water in the cellar too. Bad sign. We are actually rethinking our original plans for the house - as much as I hate to admit it. We are considering turning the house into a garage/summer kitchen/art studio (upstairs) and building a new house connected to the old house (which will now be the garage) by a breezeway.
I have been struggling with this. Bill and I always rehab old buildings. We had done three of them to date - and this one was supposed to be our grande finale! I have been dreaming of rehabbing an old farmhouse for years and giving new life, energy efficiency and another 100 years to an old house.
However, by building new... we could build a small 2 bedroom home that could perhaps be passive solar. Lots to consider.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
I had been the week earlier and wanted to purchase some beets. (My beet crop being sorely lacking this year.) I only had $1 and the bunch of beets was $3. I was at a stand that I had never stopped or purchased at before. The nice woman said, oh go ahead and take them anyway. I was shocked - I don't know why - I've experienced kindness and thoughtfulness like this before at the market, but I guess it always just strikes me as uncommon.
I went back yesterday to pay her the $2 that I owed her (and buy more beets of course). I got to talking to her and it turns out that she grew up in the little western Illinois town (Wyanet, IL) next to where my family is from and my grandmother still lives. In fact, her parents live in the town where my parents lived when I was born. Small world! We laughed about it. Her stand was pretty busy so I didn't take up too much of her time and moved on. I'm going to go back next week and talk to her some more. I want to hear about her farm (which is near Kankakee) and her growing methods. Based on her use (or non-use) of chemicals, I may ask her if I can volunteer sometime on her farm.
Bill and I are considering taking the Stateline Farmer Beginnings class through Angelic Organics Learning Center. I think it is an excellent opportunity to learn from current market and CSA farmers and to network with others.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
I listen to WBEZ religiously every day when I get home from work. All Things Considered, Marketplace and WorldView are my daily dose of news and happenings. Those programs are my companions during my downtime doing various things around the house or making supper.
Can you imagine my surprise when I heard one of the sponsors is Monsanto? And on top of that - claiming to be a proponent and supporter of SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE? Say what?!?
I called and cancelled our membership and told them why. The response was polite. I think I will follow up with a letter explaning my disgust.
I will send our money to Wisconsin Public Radio or to Iowa Public Radio instead.
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
We worked at the farm today. I ordered a 20 yard dumpster to fill up with the garbage left by the previous owners and the trash that I took out of the barn. Today we filled it up about 1/2 way. Bill filled the loader on the tractor over and over and over and over. I continued to take down the summer kitchen - until the boards were too high for me to reach. I balanced for a bit on a cinder block but then, well, that just seemed dangerous. Bill cleaned up all of the trash from the barn interior (that I previously emptied) and the cement slab behind the hog house. We were laughing and joking with each other that we always seem to buy properties and clean up other people's garbage. Bill said, well that's our buying strategy! It's true. Garbage, run-down = affordable. Plus we prefer to do the work ourselves (sustainable and in an historic appreciative way). The trash behind the hog house was disgusting. It was a former burn pile so it had lots of rusted car parts, half-burnt, and trash. Literally trash. I found a curling iron. Children's toys. A busted barbell set. A burnt calculator. I could go on and on. You get the point.
We returned to the church/home tired. A chicken is in the oven. It was a terrific day.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
We are in Wisconsin at our old church/home for an extended weekend or mini -vacation (Tues night thru Sun morning).
We arrived tonight at about 8:45 p.m.
We were sitting outside enjoying a New Glarus Organic Revolution (best name ever or what? and check out the cool illustration on the label!).
Anyway, I was sitting outside as darkness moved in and the wind picked up. I said to Bill, "feels like rain."
It began to rain. Bill chose to go inside. I like to sit in the rain so I stayed on my bench near my weed filled (not as bad as last time) garden. I discovered the Symphony of Rain.
This is what I heard:
Raindrops hit the leaves of the sunchokes growing in my garden
Rain gurgle down the gutter behind me
Raindrops splat on the compostable mulch I have on the onion bed
Raindrops pummel the corn stalks across the road
Rain on the road sprattle up from car tires as they drove past
Raindrops making the slightest hush as it fell on the prairie plants
The world is alive with music; we just need to stop and listen to it.
I am so glad to be here. We are going to work at the farm and try to get in some relaxation too.
(p.s. I don't think sprattle is a word, but I think it accurately describes the sound.)
Friday, July 10, 2009
I was also impressed that they want to make sure their workers/producers receive a living wage.
Monday, July 6, 2009
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
After the movie, which was shown at No Exit (the theater space associated with Heartland Cafe in Rogers Park), there was a networking opportunity. It was great to see so many people associated with the local food movement.
Interesting article from Johns Hopkins on the use of antibiotics.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Today at the Farmer's Market in downtown Chicago I bought:
2 kinds of beets: red and golden
beautiful orange carrots
4 year old cheddar cheese
My beets and my radishes have failed to come up this year in my Chicago yard. My neighbors have a large maple tree that grows ever larger and shades out my backyard more and more.
I haven't been to our Wisconsin church/home since Memorial Day so I'm sure that the weeds and grass have completely taken oven the garden. I'm feeling very overwhelmed by work in Corporate America and wondering when if ever we'll get to the farm.
Even if my garden was producing full-on, I would still go to the Farmer's Market because I find them to be a wonderful experience. I am not a religious person but Farmer's Markets bring a sense of spirituality, peacefulness over me. I find them to be an utterly beautiful place to spend time.
Thursday, June 4, 2009
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
I spent Saturday with my parents. I weeded their garden (my mom's birthday gift) and we harvested strawberries and rhubarb.
1. Plant something - lots. Turnips, carrots, onions, potatoes (sooo late!), squash seeds, beets, more tomatoes, beans (all in Chicago garden).
2. Harvest something - strawberries from my parents' strawberry bed (see photo), rhubarb, greens (lemon balm, arugula, sorrel)
3. Preserve something - froze some rhubarb
4. Reduce waste - saw some used wooden fence panels in the alley the night before garbage pickup. Made Bill go with me to see if they were any good - they were cedar! We took them home and will use them on the farm (future animal pens?).
5. Preparation and Storage - I'm combining this with #4 this week.
6. Build Community Food Systems - visited the Platteville, WI farmers market. Bought some greens, a bay leaf tree, some baked goods and talked to a lot of folks. Getting to know my new community! Also visited a local marketstand in Chicago and got some IL chevre. I continue to do outings with Urban Worm Girl.
7. Eat the Food - Rhubarb crisp, rhubarb compote (on yogurt - yum!), homegrown salad almost daily. Local (Southern WI) ribs on the grill on Sunday.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
2. Harvest something – 5 morels from our wooded acreage in Wisc. Otherwise, ditto from last week. [We continue to eat salads several times a week with greens from the Chicago yard: lovage, lemon balm, sorrel, beet berry.]
3. Preserve something- nope
4. Reduce waste- Same as usual. I've been taking my lunch to work at least 3 to 4 times per week. I hung up a sign in our breakroom at work asking co-workers to bring their own coffee mug and water glasses instead of using the paper ones (anonymously, of course, because I'm a chicken.)
5. Prep and storage- nope
6. Community food systems- Worked a table at the Green Festival for Urban Worm Girl. Attended a meeting of my food coop and worked the breakdown of the grocery truck.
7. Eat the food- I can't remember. Is that lame or what?!? Its been a crazy week.
The Green Festival is awesome. If one comes near you, please take the time to attend. Lots of interesting speakers on the environment and social justice and local foodsheds (Amy Goodman, Alice Waters, Laura Flanders, Jim Hightower). And they have volunteers at the garbage stations making sure that every piece of waste is properly sorted into glass/plastic, paper and compost. As usual there was lots of interest in our vermicomposting.
I bought a cool new garden tool. Made in Wisconsin, USA!
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
1. Plant Something- lots. Onions, tomatoes, raspberry canes (that I dug up from my grandmother’s raspberry bed), basil, chard, squash (delicata), cilantro.
2. Harvest something – We continue to eat salads several times a week with greens from the Chicago yard: lovage, lemon balm, sorrel, beet berry
3. Preserve something- nope
4. Reduce waste- the worms in the worm bin is really rocking now so I am able to put almost all of our kitchen scraps in the bin.
5. Prep and storage- nope
6. Community food systems- In my role as an Urban Worm Girl, I attended a fundraiser for wefarmamerica and worked an organic seedling sale at Prairie Crossing continuing to inform folks about the beauty of composting with worms!
7. Eat the food- Continue to eat down the freezer and pantry stores: local ground pork, canned salsa, canned tomatoes are gone, a bag of Wisc cranberries in a cranberry crisp.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
This was the end of the afternoon. Not as much back wall as the beginning of the day.