gratitude is a miraculous, wonderful thing. it really does turn what we have into enough. sometimes – often, even – it reminds us that what we have is even more than we need. although it’s kind of a “thing” for people to list something they are grateful for each day in november, this isn’t really that. it’s sort of my mash-up of a daily writing exercise i see people do every day in october paired with practicing gratitude. it won’t be the same every day. sometimes it will be a short, quick post, and other times it will be a reflection or recipe. but most importantly, every day there will be gratitude.
today, i am grateful for our CSAs.
* images include the pictures we took of our weekly CSA box this summer/fall, a picture of the cutest
eggs i have ever seen, & some pictures of meals we’ve made using both our produce & meat CSA loot.
because let’s be honest – i don’t think pictures of frozen meat would be all that appealing ;o)
anyone that has been around me for any length of time surely knows that i am a passionate supporter of the farmers that provide our family with summer & fall produce and meat & eggs all year round. we are members of two CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) programs which means that we pay our local farmers directly for produce, meat, and eggs that they grow/raise. since we picked up our produce CSA box for 18 glorious tuesdays this summer & fall, i thought a tuesday night would be fitting for this post.
even just now as i was putting the gallery pictures together, i got lost for a minute looking through the last four years worth of pictures of the produce CSA boxes we’ve gotten for 18 weeks each summer & fall from laura, adam, & the incredible team at loon organics (previous raves here & here). their entire staff is incredibly kind & knowledgeable, their customer service exceeds expectation, & the produce we get throughout each season is out of this world. the quality, variety, and abundance in each box is down right amazing. this year we also were super lucky to score a jar of the honey harvested from their beehives, and we savored every last drop. the heart, soul, and passion that laura & adam – and their adorable son eli – pour into their farm is evident in everything they do, from the incredible produce they provide to their commitment to harvest for the hungry to their farming practices that best steward their land to new ideas they have for growing their farm. i can’t imagine it being any better, but every year they out-do themselves!
after falling head-over-heels in love with the freshness, quality, and flavor of local produce that first year, it took me no time at all to check in with laura to see if there were also local meat farmers that offered anything like a CSA. lo & behold, there were! she pointed me in the direction of two farms. both seemed great, but sunshine harvest farm had a variety that matched what i was looking for and had more convenient pick-up locations. in similar fashion, it didn’t take me long at all to notice the difference in locally raised and prepared meat and eggs. in addition to totally changing our expectations for what meat and eggs can & should taste like, they, too, have exceptional customer service. mike & his family are beyond gracious, generous, and kind. mike greets us with a big smile every time we see him, and he goes out of his way to do nice things like letting us try something new or asking us about blackjack.
last saturday was the first indoor Mill City Farmer’s Market, and as fun as talking individually with Adam & Mike was, it was walking away with our full bags of goodies, past Adam & Mike talking to & getting things from each other, that deepened my gratitude even more. even though we believe in, support & trust our farmers, seeing that they do the same for each other drove our commitment home in a new way. we don’t take it for granted that we have such dedicated farmers nourishing our bodies & taking care of the land around us.