Ch-ch-changes! How do you go from eating very little organic foods, eating out a lot, using paper towels and taking really long showers to being kinder to the earth and to yourself? One step at a time.
However, change is not easy for me. I am a creature of habit. I like to have all my ducks in a row, have a plan and to know where I'm going and when I'll get there (preferably, I'll get there early, too). I find comfort in the details.
This being said, the whole process of our family becoming more intentional about how we can contribute to the planet in a positive way (give back, instead of take, take, taking) can be, at times, a little overwhelming to me. It all feels very B-I-G. What makes it better? Breaking it down into small chunks. Here are a couple of examples of the chunking:
Last fall we joined the Beneficial Farms CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) . We set up an account online and pay $25 each week for our fruit and vegetable share and an extra $5 each week for our meat share (one pound of lean ground beef). Then, each Thursday we pick up our share and enjoy the organic yumminess. Now, what does this do to help us and our planet? Well, we are given the opportunity to support local farms and farmers, eat in season good-for-us foods and get to know like-minded people in the process. We have been so impressed not only with our food, but with the people who run the CSA and the website (full of tips, information and fantastic recipes for all the seasonal items I've never even heard of before) that we chat it up to anyone who will listen. My brother, after hearing all about it, actually asked us to set up an account for him as his Christmas gift last year! Done!
|This weeks share = peanuts, chutney, apples, potatoes, frozen apricots, sprouts & our beef|
Another step we're taking is to slowly move to purchasing and eating all (or as much as is humanly and economically possible) organic foods. This has been an ongoing goal of mine for a long time, but I've always seen it as unattainable on a large scale. We eat only organic dairy and meats, grow organics in the garden and shop at the Farmers Market on occasion, but the rest was always negotiable. However, I read yet another article this week that scared me (a lot) and I am now determined to make the shift. Now, does this mean that we can (realistically) just throw out all of the food that sits in our pantry? Not at all. What it does mean though is that we will slowly start replacing all of our foods with organics. We purchased (thank you Tax Refund!) some glass containers as well as some bulk food items to fill them up with and so now begins the slow shift...We'll eat what we have, slowly replacing foods we've always eaten with healthier/organic versions. Another shift is in our attempts to make more things from scratch that we've never done before (ravioli, bread, tortillas, red chile...). Hence all the flour :-)
|Organic flours, dried beans and soups mixed in with their generic versions that will slowly be eaten and phased out.|
|Organic oatmeal & toppings, rices and popcorn mixed with ordinary cereals that will shortly disappear into my daughter's belly.|
|Close up of our beautiful beans. The tallest empty container will soon hold Pinto Beans. We've already made several batches of these beans and frozen them. It's cheaper, they taste better...especially with Hatch green chile and homemade Tortillas!|
Also, our four little chicks are growing so fast! They're losing some of their fluff and growing in some real (miniature) feathers! Prim (the biggest chick at the front of this pic) is HUGE! Not sure why, but she is growing much faster then the other three and seems to have a bit of an attitude (which is why she is now nick-named Prim). I am hopeful she's just big and not because she is actually a "he". Fingers crossed. And the little blondy in the back (AKA the "broken one") is still with us! YAY! Hopefully she can stay strong and straighten out those wings!
While change is not always a comfortable thing for me, I know that it is necessary. If you're not growing, you might as well be dead, and I've got miles to go before I sleep.