Loving Lately #1: My Local Farmer’s Market
I think it is vital to support your local farmer’s market. Buying organic produce is ideal, but don’t count it out if they don’t proclaim to sell organic goods. Talk to them, ask questions. Many vendors aren’t “organic” but still have much healthier practices than produce you can buy at your local grocers and their goods are likely much higher in nutritional value! Here is a list from the Michigan State University Extension of the top seven reasons to buy from your nearest farmer:
• Locally grown food is full of flavor. When grown locally, the crops are picked at their peak of ripeness versus being harvested early in order to be shipped and distributed to your local retail store. Many times produce at local markets has been picked within 24 hours of your purchase.
• Eating local food is eating seasonally. Even though we wish strawberries were grown year round in Michigan, the best time to eat them is when they can be purchased directly from a local grower. They are full of flavor and taste better than the ones available in the winter that have traveled thousands of miles and picked before they were ripe.
• Local food has more nutrients. Local food has a shorter time between harvest and your table, and it is less likely that the nutrient value has decreased. Food imported from far-away states and countries is often older, has traveled and sits in distribution centers before it gets to your store.
• Local food supports the local economy. The money that is spent with local farmers and growers all stays close to home and is reinvested with businesses and services in your community.
• Local food benefits the environment. By purchasing locally grown foods you help maintain farmland and green and/or open space in your community.
• Local foods promote a safer food supply. The more steps there are between you and your food’s source the more chances there are for contamination. Food grown in distant locations has the potential for food safety issues at harvesting, washing, shipping and distribution.
• Local growers can tell you how the food was grown. You can ask what practices they use to raise and harvest the crops. When you know where your food comes from and who grew it, you know a lot more about that food.
Loving Lately #2: Cute Drinking Glasses
I have a problem not buying kitchen gadgets and ware. I realize that it’s more Martha Stewart than “chef” in general, but I can’t help it, I love the stuff. I like juice in juice glasses and milk in milk glasses… And I already admitted it was a problem. How adorable are these? (I wish the cow would have shown up better so you could see it more clearly.) The best part was I got them at Homegoods for $1 each, which is practically like buying them at garage sale prices! Right? At least that’s how I justify it to myself. (My husband is awesome in that department by the way, he never needs justification.)
And just look at these! The bee glasses are perfect for honey colored drinks like iced tea. I prefer mine unsweetened, but how much more adorable would it be if I actually sweetened the drink with honey? The whole thing is practically enough for me to want to have a bee themed party! Seriously, I need to think about that…