Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Humanity & Harvest

I got up this morning to find my mom in the garage surrounded by bags of corn she picked up at Shepherd Farms.  She & Doris had gotten up early to meet the trucks as they came out of the fields.  At $2 a dozen, it was worth it.  They got fresh peaches, tomatoes, pecans... and they were not alone.  Mom reported long lines of cars and mobbed trailers of produce.  So, the two of us sat outside in the cool morning breeze and shucked 122 ears of corn; my feet resting on the galvanized tub. 

It's amazing how human it is to MAKE food.  From the earliest days of humanity, we've been hunters & gatherers.  (Of course, today that translates into list makers & list getters.)  But there is something so absolutely primal about digging into a pile of leaves and coming out with sustenance... and it's catching on.  Over the past few weeks, I've read articles in Oprah's little journal & Newsweek about the influx of small farms.  Stories abound of new farmer meet & greets that doubled or tripled organizers' attendance expectations.  It seems that average farms run 400-500 acres.  These new little farms are 4-5 acres, are trending to younger owners and are going organic.

While in Colorado, Suzi & I used a solar panel for the first time to power the lights in our trailer.  We hauled water from a hand-pumped well.  And you know what?  We managed 2-3 gallon showers & didn't leave the lights on.  While we were traveling across Colorado and Kansas on Hwy 70, I was amazed at the huge wind farms... dozens of turbines in that "flyover" territory harnessing free electricity.  Don't get me wrong, I know they make a lot of noise and disturb bird migratory patterns and make the cattle skittish, but at least someone's trying.

Now, I've not gone moldy green, but I turn off the water when I brush my teeth and I always look for ways to keep paper & plastic out of the landfill.  If we'd all be a bit more conscious of what we're leaving or using, this little bubble we call a planet may keep us afloat just a little longer.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Mountain Livin'

We've hit the road with the boats & the T@B in tow this week to spend some time with Suzi's parents in Colorado.  Every year they head out for awhile to escape the heat of Missouri and we try to carve out some time with them.  On the way from Kansas into Colorado, we caught the tail-end of a summer storm blowing through... It's been nice here, cool and dry so far.

You can follow along with us as we hike around & hopefully hit some water!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Running it out...

Ever had a cramp in the leg and someone suggested you "walk it off?" What happens when you're on a horse and your hip cramps up? What do you do then? "Whoa, there... Let me hobble around here for a bit while the rest of the ride goes on ahead!"
The cramp worked its way out and I stayed with the ride as we trotted around the New Mexico landscape last weekend. We were up for my cousin's (Stuart) wedding in Los Alamos. Amazing country... absolutely amazing history as well. Bonnie took us to visit a family whose house is certified to be circa 1760... but they have records going back into the 1600s!
The wedding was nice, seeing family was great and the ride was, well, a harsh 30 hours roundtrip... but we did it and have pictures to prove it! Click here to goto my Facebook album to get all the views.