Monday, March 15, 2010

Baby Steps...

No, gardening is not my thing. I leave it to the husband. Our last year at seminary we had a great should have seen the corn! Until the squirrels ate it. Ever seen a squirrel hang sideways off a brick wall to eat the corn right off the cob? We tried to chase them off but they were persistent buggers and the children weren't keen on standing guard. We had great cucumbers, beans and snap peas though. :)

I have been keeping my eye on a piece of property about 35 miles north of where we live now. 28.8 acres. Two gardens. A barn. Pond. It's been on Craigslist for months. We drove by on Saturday. *J* was adamant that he was not changing schools again. I assured him that is not the plan, but that this sustainable lifestyle is a little dream I have. The passion wasn't easily ignited in the 15 yo.

For now, I need to be content with baby steps. One of the steps I can take is trying to cook more things from scratch. It's a fine balance and there are some things that just cannot be re-created...nor should they be...cheese shouldn't be day-glo orange. So instead of buying dinner rolls yesterday, I made easy with the Kitchen Aid mixer. :) <3 that appliance.

It's good to know what is in our food. I recently read a blurb from a family far larger than my own who said they don't bake their own bread because they can get it cheaper from the bread outlet and it's not worth the time and mess. That's their choice. I don't think it's apples to apples comparison. Yes I can get white bread full of "stuff" from the grocery store for 99 cents a loaf, but it's got lots of "stuff" in it. (I still buy it because the boys want "store bread" to bring their sandwiches to school, but at home they eat slices of homemade bread for a snack. :).) The bread I make has flour, butter (the recipes with shortening don't taste as good as those with butter, in my humble opinion) yeast, salt, milk and water. I can pronounce everything and I know what it all is. The mess is a couple of bowls and a pan and the time is negligible in the grand scheme of things. The taste, texture and the way the house smells...a regular extravaganza of mouth-watering scrumptiousness.

Cooking and baking from scratch as I am able...that is a baby step I can take right now toward a more sustainable (and more healthful) existence. I might not have 28.8 acres and I might be lucky to grow some cooking herbs on my counter but any step I take toward that goal is a step in the right direction.


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