Friday, June 20, 2008

Blueberry Pickin' for a Healthy Family

I am very concerned about my families health, what they put in their mouths, and where that food came from. We raise our own meat chickens, buy grassfed beef, have laying hens, and now there are the pigs. I have vowed to put as much fresh vegetables and fruit in my freezer this summer so that means trips to local Farmer's Markets and U-pick farms to supplement my booming squash crop and pitiful tomato crop.

So, we headed out with my good friend Penny to pick some blueberries at a U-Pick farm about 45 minutes away from our house. Of course, I had the Buckaroo's with me and they were big helpers. I kept telling them that they only needed to pick the pretty blue ones but every once in a while the Littlest Buckaroo threw in one that well, let's just say was nowhere near being ripe.

We finished a little bit before Penny did so we went to go cool off under a tree.


The Little Buckaroo decided he had not eaten enough while he picked, so he was going to eat just a few more.

I told him that some of them were not quite ripe and I had not picked those out yet. This was a good lesson in why you should listen to your mom. UGH! Yuck, spit, splahhh!

He composed himself well, I thought he might be an architect, engineer, or doctor, but maybe food taster could be an option. Well, a food taster at a bakery because I have to stuff veggies down him most of the time!
Did you know that each food item in a typical U.S. meal has traveled an average of 1,500 miles? If every U.S. citizen ate just one meal a week composed of locally and organically raised meats and produce, we would reduce our country's oil consumption by over 1.1 million barrels of oil every week! That is not gallons, but barrels.

I urge all of you to check out your local Farmer's Market, be sure to ask the farmers if they use organic methods or synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides. Also, if you do not have a spot at home to grow a little garden to teach your children where food comes from (no it does not really come from the grocery store, there are many steps before it gets there), most farmers at the market are happy to educate your kids on their produce, how they grow it from seed until it arrives at the market in the back of their pick-up trucks.

Eat well,
The Park Wife
(with a freezer full of blueberries!)

12 comments:

pam said...

I love blueberries. We do pick them locally. One time when The Boy was about the age of The Littlest Buckaroo, I let him go with my parents picking. This was big for me, because while I trusted my parents, I didn't often let him go places with others. He can home safe and sound, but with a very vivid story I found out was quite true. They were picking away and were chased out of the field by a black bear! He was very excited. I was less than thrilled. I knew he was safe with my parents, but for it being one of the first real times he went somewhere away from me for any amount of time, I was quite shaken! (I rebounded!)

Amy said...

I love going to our farmers markets and the 'you pick them' fruit places. My favorite is strawberries... I am glad to see someone else watching what goes into their kiddos mouths. Love the pictures!

Flying Squirrel Fan said...

I just thought of a great quote for you. "There are two dangers in life, one that food comes from the grocery, the other that heat comes from the forest." Aldo Leopold wrote that in Sand County Almanac and I just thought of it when I was reading your blog.

Valarie said...

My father-in-laws garden is coming in really well. Lots of green beans to be picked. Little Logan even planted his own little spot. He has pepper, green beans, cabbage, and a tomato plant. It looking pretty good too. :)

Karen said...

That's a great idea for a homeschool field trip (having the owner of a farm market take us on a tour). Good idea!

Tipper said...

I love love blueberries their my favorite! Last year a late hard freeze got all my blueberries-only 2 berries made it. So I can't wait for this years-usually in August here. Really good post. We don't think about the travel/gas factor of our food often enough.

OKGardners said...

You are a wise Mom who wants a healthy family. That is good!

Betty in OK

PS: just back from quick trip to Colorado (very much unexpected!)

Lisa J said...

Awesome. I just saw an ad in the newspaper about come and pick your own things and I saved it. I want to do that to. My husband likes to can and freeze things so I think we might be on to something there. But we will see. Thanks for the info/education.

Jenny said...

There's a blueberry festival at a farm near my house next weekend -- if I had any doubts about going, your post just got rid of them! thanks!

:Jayne said...

Yumm! I think I ate my weight in blueberries yesterday. I am a faithful buyer at our farmer's market. I love ours as they can ONLY sell locally grown produce. I have found not all farmer's markets are like that.
Yummy Blueberries, I think mine are calling me...........

:J

Jill in MN said...

this is a lovely idea. i wish we had a farmer's market, but we do not. at all. ever. it's sad. but it really isn't worth more fuel consumption to drive hours and hours to get it. of course, whenever i've tried the organic spiel on my dad he reminds that it's not what goes into a man that defiles him, but what comes out of the heart that defiles him. tough to argue with that. :) anyway, thanks for giving me a craving for fresh blueberries. i'll probably have to wait years to fulfil it. =)

OneCowgirl said...

Great post. You go girl!!