I believe that the energy of humans who touched those beans goes into the beans as well. They become vibrant because of the handling. This vibrancy is something that a machine or harvester doesn’t have. From my standpoint… I believe that if food is grown and prepared with love… infused with love… well, it can be the humblest of food, but because it’s prepared with love, it’s special.
~ Valerie Phipps
Let’s take a little walk around the garden and the meadows while I check in with you again about my experience this summer with the CSA that M and I joined.
It is Week 20, and the latest share includes acorn squash, red and green bell peppers, beans, eggplant, garlic, kale, and tomatoes. No okra, thank goodness!
M and I decided several weeks ago that we will do this again next year. We have been feasting on beautiful, nutritious, and delicious vegetables for 20 weeks. Not everything was on my top 10 (or top 20, for that matter) list of vegetables I like to eat. Okra, for example, is something I wouldn’t mind never seeing again although I can eat some if it’s roasted for 30 minutes at 400°F with a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar on it to sweeten the deal.
During the 20 weeks of eating all those lovely, locally and organically grown vegetables and fruits, I have lost 3 lbs. Yeah, I know. It’s not much. But you have to realize that for most of those 20 weeks, I wasn’t trying to lose weight. I was just munching right along pretty much as usual except we had increased the number of servings of fruits and veggies we were eating. You see, I was determined not to waste any of the food we received from the CSA.
In those 20 weeks, my blood pressure has gone down without medication. Yesterday I got the results of some blood work, including cholesterol numbers, and my cholesterol numbers are, as the nurse put it, fantastic.
So, there have been big and small improvements in my health. That alone is worth the price which, by the way, is reasonable when you spread out the cost over the weeks of the growing season.
I have grown tired of some vegetables and herbs. Cucumbers were overly abundant this year, as well as redundant since we had our own abundance of them growing in our garden. Basil got to be too much (and it’s still coming in), also redundant because we grew our own. By the time cantaloupe and zucchini season were over, I’d had enough. Tomatoes continue to
plague us come in, both here in our garden and from the CSA. Luckily, there are several different varieties in our garden and from the CSA, including heirloom tomatoes.
I turned my nose up at the spaghetti squash the first week we brought one home, remembering a time when I tried to cook what I thought was a spaghetti squash. I was young and inexperienced, and it turned out I had cooked a honeydew melon. Have you ever smelled a roasting honeydew melon? It’s pretty terrible. I know now that a honeydew melon looks nothing like a spaghetti squash, but at the time I thought the sign in the grocery store must be correct (even if it DID look like a honeydew melon to me, and boy, did I learn a lesson about trusting my eyes and my instincts!).
Determined to use the spaghetti squash (and the three that followed in the subsequent weeks), I found a recipe for spaghetti squash pancakes, and they were oh, so good. In fact, the pancakes convinced me to try spaghetti squash the way a lot of people eat it, as a substitute for pasta. I made a sauce with roasted tomatoes, onions, garlic, and peppers that I spiced up, and we spooned it over the spaghetti squash, sprinkled on a little Parmesan cheese, and had a wonderful feast. We are now on our fourth spaghetti squash, and I am not yet sure how I will eat it, but eat it I will. I’m thinking of using it as noodles in a miso soup since I have some bok choy from last week’s share that needs to be cooked. Bok choy is always good in miso soup.
In other news…
The lifestyle changes I’ve been making include embracing some things (more vegetables, for instance), and letting go of others (habits that are not doing me any or much good). The embracing is fairly easy. The letting go, though, sometimes leaves me feeling as if there is a lack of something, or a hole that needs to be filled.
I’ve taken some time to think about the sense of lack. I have lived a good chunk of my life thinking there might be something about me that’s missing. Call it a hole in my soul. It’s that thing that other people have that makes them feel secure in who they are, who they want to be, and what they want to do in life. I’ve tried to fill the hole in various ways, some of them not particularly healthy. Today it dawned on me that maybe that hole is not meant to be plugged the way you would patch a hole in a wall. Maybe the purpose of the hole is to be an opening to life, to the present experience, to the moment. You let the moment in, you release the moment, and that creates the space or opening to allow the next moment in, and so on and so forth.
What an amazing and freeing concept that is. There is nothing to patch or fix because it is that hole that lets in the light, the joy, the dark, the sadness, the shadows, and all the other experiences of life.
I reckon that’s enough from me and from the Wabi-Sabi Ranch on this gorgeous September day. Have you ever noticed the auras of spring, when the trees get a reddish glow about them? Then a green glow appears, and about two seconds later the leaves start to unfurl, and that’s how you know spring has arrived? Today I discovered that autumn has an aura, too. I’m sure it’s been there each and every fall, but I was blinded by the spectacle of the color changes of the leaves and failed to notice that there is a brownish-golden aura that settles over the trees and meadows just before the foliage begins to dress in its autumn colors. I saw it today while I was out on my walk.
Thank you for stopping in today, and taking a little stroll with me. Be good, be kind, be loving. Just Be. 🙂
Today’s joys: Epiphanies of the eyes and spirit; buzzing bees filling the meadows with their song; the fluffy white flowers on the sea myrtles; bluebirds sitting on the fence near the office window; movement and stillness.