Loco LL

Saturday, April 19, 2008

So much to write about...

It has been so long since I have posted that I am not sure what to write about. Should I tell about our first experience with PROP (paupers right of passage- a poverty simulation that we are leading through mission year). Should I talk about Alexa and Moriah's gymnastics "recital." Or our trip to Indiana. Or should I talk about my last day as a medical/surgical nurse and my new job I started as a Labor and Delivery nurse. Or should I talk about the breastfeeding class I taught on saturday morning in Kensington to hispanic women (some whom are teens) that have a desire to nurse their babies. Ok, so you know why I haven't posted in a while. I have been busy and don't even know where to start. So I will just throw in some pics of a bunch of stuff.
Mostly I feel like writing about this awesome book I just read. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. The author tells about her years experience with her family to live off of the land, only eating food that they grew or that was grown locally. I don't know why, but I have grown more and more passionate about this issue over the past year. I always knew that the produce, dairy and meats that we eat are not as good and wholesome as they were 100 years ago because of the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, and the anti-biotics and hormones. But my mind has been opened to the issue of our fuel driven economy and how much oil goes into a meal. Have you ever thought about how far your dinner has gone to get to your table. Well a typical meal travels 1000's of miles depending on what you are eating. Where do you think the blueberries or asparagus that you eat in february come from?? Eating organic isn't always the answer either since it travels just as many miles. What about the mac n cheese we cook for our kids. Look at the list of ingredients on the package and ask yourself where each ingredient comes from. We don't usually know, but this book made me wake up to this reality. We pay for that fuel in our taxes, not in the grocery stores. That's right, local farmers are struggling because grocery stores will buy up tomatoes from across the country rather than their own home town because it is cheaper for them. But we pay for that discount in taxes!!! It is such a screwed up system, and it is driven by a capitalistic mentality that disregards the health of the consumer, the welfare of the farmers, and the ecosystem that provides for us!! We wreck our soil with chemicals! We push carcinogens on the customer without the blink of an eye. How did our society get to this point. WE are destroying ourselves and our environment!
I am reading Omnivore's Dilema now. It is talking about how we got to the point of the use of chemicals in farming. Did you know these same chemicals were used in world war II to make explosives, and when the war ended, the government tried to find another use for them so that those corporations that produced the chemicals would not fall under. Well, they found another use, and farmers quickly realized these synthetic fertilizers helped them to harvest much more corn per acre, thus much more profit. There is a lot more to this, because now, most farmers spend more on these fertilizers and pesticides, and seeds than they make from the harvest. It is a complex web of capitalistic gain. I could go on about all of this and I have so much more to learn, but it has put a new challenge on my mind and plate. Seeking local produce. The whole way up to Indiana I looked at the farms and thought about what they would have looked like 100 years ago. As beautiful as those huge farms look from a distance, I found much more beauty in the simple small farms of the amish in Indiana. Seeing an old man plowing the fields with a hand plow was a striking contrast to the farm we had passed earlier in the trip where we saw a guy spraying his fields with a high tech truck. I grieve the loss of small farms in this country for all that our society as a whole has lost with it. I am not ready to become amish or anything, but I do want to make small steps. WE visited a family run honey farm while in Indiana.
We bought a lot of honey, if anyone wants some. And I will be planting more this year in our yard as well as seeking out farmers markets that sell local produce. And I want to buy a big freezer so that when I buy the local produce I can freeze it to last us longer.


At 8:48 PM, Blogger MeesheMama said...

Will you buy the freezer locally? =)

I didn't know you taught a class on bfeeding! We should talk more-- and not get cut off by my stupid phones.

At 1:09 PM, Blogger maria said...

I love that you're teaching b-feeding, thanks for helping to get the word out there.

How we eat is probably the biggest issue on my family's plate right now (bad pun, sorry). I loved OD and want to read A,V,M. How to grow more things ourself, and choose responsibly when we can't grow our own... it can be difficult!

Check out Caren's post on Bottomland -- good thoughts, both of you!


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