Saturday, July 21, 2007

being a local hero

i've been slacking on my blogging to be sure. it has been a busy summer!

i've been really enjoying El's entries on her participation in one local summer. since i'm in the middle of writing my thesis, i have hardly spent any time in the kitchen or the garden this summer. but, i did want to post a bit about how living on 5 acres in a ruralish town has allowed me to begin to depend less and less on things from very far away.

we've been raising our own eggs for years and i have not bought eggs forever. in fact, i have an aversion to 'outside' eggs. i sell eggs to my entire department, neighbors, my vet, even my therapist! it always strikes me how much people 1) really LOVE fresh eggs, and 2) love getting eggs from someone they know who actually cares for the chickens. they like supporting me and my efforts to raise happy chickens and i get satisfaction in providing them with a product that i put my own time and effort into.

even though our town is right on the outskirts of a urban center, it is still quite rural. in fact, we are so very lucky to have a dairy right on our street! fresh milk in glass returnable bottles--i love it. it is one of the absolute best things about living here. recently, while i was stopping to get some milk the dairy owner noticed i almost had a flat tire and offered to pump it up for me. i pulled around back and he noticed the hay i had in the back of the truck. i usually buy my hay from the local feed store but the hay is imported from canada--it isn't local. he told me that he bales and sells his own hay and showed me some. i was sold! so now, right on my street, a source for local hay! here is a shot of louise enjoying some of it:

i've been getting my meat for years from a local farm. it is quality, fresh, naturally raised meat. you can see the animals and the family who raises them. i go once a month to buy my poultry feed from them and while i am there i stock up on meat. here is our booty from today:

and finally, my three sour cherry trees produced a small crop of cherries this year! it was our first fruit ever and to celebrate i made a small cherry pie. i am really looking forward to the next few years when we really start getting some fruit production and i'll be able to dry it, can it, and store it for the long winters. in the meantime, i am starting to buy lots of local berries to start canning preserves.

now, if i could only get these two hitched to a wagon so i wouldn't have to fill my gas tank so often!


Donna said...

Talk about reducing your carbon footprint! I buy local whenever I can, which is pretty easy around here.

El said...

Hey Rooster! My daughter was sitting on my lap yesterday when I went to visit your blog and she LOVES Louise and Parsnip and I forget the name of your other donkey. She kept scrolling to see them, so I couldn't read your text until today!

I can't agree with you more re: this lifestyle. (And I am insanely jealous of your dairy down the road!) But it really makes a ton of sense to eat local, especially when you live in the middle of nowhere, as I do: just going to a store and seeing all that crappy packaged food puts me in the deepest funk.

I wanted to wish you well with your thesis. So many distractions, having to write one in the summertime. And I am glad to learn you're "playing along" with the one local summer thing: it's a fun "challenge," and it is life-changing for some of the folks who are doing it. A good thing.

your pie, though, looks to die for. YUM.