Wednesday, May 27, 2009

It's my birthday, I can CRY Stand on my Soap box if I want to!!

Yes. I am another year older. (suck) My 20's are LONG gone. (double suck) It didn't seem so bad when I was just 30. Now that I am 31?? I can't even really pretend to be 29 anymore. BOO.

So, in celebration of my birthday, I have decided to preach to you about food. Stand aside whilst I climb upon my gigantic soap box here. Commence preaching:

My fellow friends and family,

Do you realize the amount of poison you consume on a daily basis? Do you realize the amount of pesticides, hormones, preservatives that they put in our food?? Perhaps you are a crunchy person, eating food that only small woodland animals would eat, wearing clothes made of hemp and only own Birkenstocks. If so, then move along, this post is NOT for you. BUT. IF you are an normal, everyday working class citizen that shops at large chain grocery stores...please take moment to consider this:

The majority of our foods contain contaminants, pesticides, hormones, preservatives....etc. Short and Sweet: We don't know what in the hell we are putting in our mouths most of time or where it came from. In the modern era of factory farming and mass production, people often sacrifice health for the convenience of just stopping by the store/restaurant and picking up a few things/dinner. And we eat this stuff why? Because it's quick, easy and the MIGHTY government tells us it's safe. Seriously...Who do you think lobbies for government reform? The food companies, that's who. So...Because we live in this wonderful land of the free and belong to this free market economy, we do have choices. Wonderful, healthy alternatives!

First, I have signed up for this.

You can have weekly or bi-weekly standing deliveries. It's a great way to get local, in season pesticide free fruits and veggies without having to drive to all the farmer's markets. (For you busy type people) You can also buy organic meats and milk products, bread from a local bakery, and fresh jams, honey and sauces all made from farms right here in Indiana. In addition to my veggie/fruit bin, I also chose to have a dozen fresh eggs delivered. The prices are a little more than you'll pay at the grocery store...but THEY DELIVER (If you live in the delivery location) and you don't have to worry about all the other bad junk in the food.

Second. Start a garden. Yes, it's time consuming..AT FIRST. But once you spend a couple of days preparing your own little plot of land or getting pots together for the container variety, it's relatively simple. There are plenty of sights that offer tips and help so don't let it overwhelm you. Or you can go to your local feed and seed place. They can be very helpful. The kids and I are growing tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash and zucchini this year. It's a great family project and wonderful way to control what enters your body. Plus you might just save a few bucks while you are at it.

Finally, do your own food preservation. Buy a box of Ball jars and lids and maybe a small pressure cooker and CAN your own food. It's a simple process and will only take a few days in the fall to prepare enough cans of food for your family to use during the winter. In the fall, we'll be hitting up the farmer's markets and orchards so that we can can green beans, corn, apple sauces, soups, stews and many other things. Plus, don't under estimate your freezer. Plenty of things can be prepared when the food is fresh and abundant then frozen to be used at a later date. Again, there are plenty of sites that can help you with proper freezing techniques.

I am not perfect when it comes to this. I buy refined, boxed food too. Sometimes, I just need the convenience. And sometimes my kids just want Velveeta shells and cheese. I just long for a time when people ate the fruits of their labor, shopped at local grocers that sold only local meats and produce and foods that are in their whole natural state. It's not an easy change. But if it's important that you consume food that is as close to it's natural state as possible, you can do it.


PS. One important resources that is often overlooked because people just don't know about it...
Your local Ag. Extension Office can provide information on gardening and food preservation. Just look it up in the phone book.

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