Monthly Archives: April 2014

seeds for days: happy cat farm

On a recent work trip to Philadelphia, I was lucky enough to stay near Reading Terminal Market, a place I’d never visited in many a visit to the city. It was so fun to have in my backyard for a few days; anyone that knows me well knows I love a good market — farmer’s market, natural foods market, supermarket, you name it — and I’m the weirdo that likes to walk up and down the aisles to see what’s on shelf (…or what’s new if it’s a regular haunt. Sometimes I really wonder why I don’t pack it in and go work at the Portland Whole Foods. I haven’t ruled it out.).

Anyway, Reading Terminal Market is awesome and includes everything from cheesesteaks to Amish women slinging fruit butters to green juice to cannoli. And in my meandering I came across the Fair Food Farmstand — and a wall of seeds from Happy Cat Farm. I recognize that this is a total case of judging a book (er, seed packet) by its cover, but for good reason. Just look at them! Continue reading

Maine fiddleheads

hot off the press: maine farm to table

If you’re looking for a food-related #longread, you’ve come to the right place. A few weekends ago, the Portland Press Herald published this magnum opus, “How the farm-to-table movement took root in Maine” by Meredith Goad and Mary Pols, as part of the launch of Source: Eating and Living Sustainably in Maine, a new section in the paper.

In conjunction with the Source launch, the PPH hired a powerhouse food editor, Peggy Grodinsky, held what looked to be a great party (at Urban Farm Fermentory!), and has begun to churn out respectable coverage on what it’s calling as “farm-to-table” topics. This pleases me greatly. Continue reading

talking walmart + food hubs.

My dear, smart-as-a-whip-and-passionate-about-sustainability friend, Clare, recently sent me this article from ASAP (aka the Asheville, NC-based Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project) that talks about Walmart’s involvement in food hubs — wanting to create new ones, scale existing ones, and otherwise work with “small- and medium-sized farmers” here in the U.S. and globally — and how that’s probably not a good thing. Clare asked my opinion of the piece, and because I can never seem to be succinct when asked a question like this, below is a version of my rambling response.

locally grown DC-area produce

Dupont Circle Farmer’s Market, summer 2012

Before I go on, a little background. I do not think Walmart is perfect — far from it — though a) I worked at the company after business school (if you go back far enough in blog time you’ll see there are some Arkansas posts; maybe I’ll do a #tbt AR post…) and b) I do not think all of the issues Walmart gets criticized for are exclusive to it, but because it’s such a big target it ends up in the crosshairs (I was going to say bullseye but I suppose Target should get to keep it) more often than not. Continue reading

it’s (FINALLY) spring.

spring in BostonHappy spring. Winter was a long one, no? I for one not only went into a bit of a hibernation with respect to the blog (oops) but also with life in general…but it’s hard not to burrow a little deeper under the covers when winter persists as it has this year. In my defense, I *did* do my fair share of braving the cold and experiencing the great outdoors (I like my sanity, and cabin fever is a disease best kept at a distance), though I’m quite happy to see green things pushing their way out of the ground today. This year more than others I feel like I really earned my spring and summer sunshine; now let’s just hope it’s a banner year in the good weather department and we’ll ride out 2014 a-OK.

The seasonal change to spring brings yet another feeling of new beginnings, but this is different than the fresh start vibes that accompany back-to-school time or January 1. Spring calls for new life more than other points in the year, and even though it’s my least favorite season I’ll be happy for this moment to think about things not starting anew, but starting from ground zero.

In the spirit of new things, here are some previously not-in-my-feedly-feed blogs I found over the past few months that are worth sharing (and if they really prove their mettle, maybe they’ll make it to my blogroll if they haven’t already? I know, I know, The anticipation is really killing you.):

  • Grace Atwood of Stripes & Sequins – who is also coincidentally from Cape Cod, so she gets extra gold stars – lives in NYC but went on a short but relaxing (and WARM) trip to the Papaya Playa Project in Tulum, Mexico. I want to go (see aforementioned commentary on this year’s all-too-recent Siberian winter) asap.
  • Lindsay Souza of The Pursuit of Style reminds me of my past life in DC with her regular ‘Doors of DC‘ features (don’t put away those gold stars yet – she’s from Cape Cod, too) and other nation’s capital comings and goings.
  • Sarah Dussault of Sarah Fit (not from Cape Cod but definitely logs some serious time there) gives me great ideas about what’s going on in the fitness world in Boston, but also shares healthy recipe ideas, including her take on the delicious ginger sauce from Cambridge’s Life Alive Cafe. Thank you x1000.
  • Serena Wolf of Domesticate Me serves up solid recipe ideas – including this root vegetable salad that my dear friend, Amo, made for a girls’ dinner – but I sometimes wonder if Serena’s way of writing is the real reason I read this hilarious blog that also includes a ‘Dude Diet‘ (and for the record, she goes to Maine and not the Cape, lest you think I’m totally biased to my stomping grounds).

Spring has sprung! Get your read on, shake off the dust, scrape off the rust, and be happy you can feel your toes again.