Seeing Blessings

The onions are growing and the carrots are delicious. The harvest was rewarding!

The onions are growing and the carrots are delicious. The harvest was rewarding!

As we worked together in the garden harvesting produce, I saw the kids helping and very excited to eat the peas, green beans and carrots. But the blessings I saw were more than met the eye.

As the boys ate the vegetables, they would turn to our dog and feed him some. Yes indeed…our dog likes eating the vegetables! The excitement and enjoyment they displayed for what they had planted and grown was wonderful to witness.

I saw them eager to see how much they had harvested, and how proud they were of what they had grown. They searched the onions in search of the biggest ones, and I told them that this year’s crop finally resembled what our onion crops used to look like. The boys were excited to see the tomatoes, cucumbers and pumpkins growing “baby” versions, and the ornamental corn tasseling.

What I really saw was time spent together experiencing the hidden joys of what God provides to us. You see to me the real blessing of the CSA come in ways you can’t always explain but rather you feel. Its our family time. Time to talk, laugh, get frustrated but in the end accomplish good things together.

Its watching with pride as the boys learn skills, understand nature, learn good work ethic and follow-through and understand the greater power of God and his overarching control of Mother Nature.  As you visit with them and Steve and I throughout the season, we hope in some small way we are able convey some of these blessing of agriculture to you as well.

 Garden Science

The green cabbages are growing like crazy. A fun comparison of size vs Sam's hand.  We have been putting egg shells around the cabbages to keep the slugs away. So far it appears to be working. We had issues with them a few weeks ago and then began putting egg shells around the plants to manage this pest.

The green cabbages are growing like crazy. A fun comparison of size vs Sam’s hand. We have been putting egg shells around the cabbages to keep the slugs away. So far it appears to be working. We had issues with them a few weeks ago and then began putting egg shells around the plants to manage this pest.

 

The potatoes are blooming. You will notice that the different varieties have different colors of blooms. They really are pretty. We still are picking potato bugs and trying to manage this pest!

The potatoes are blooming. You will notice that the different varieties have different colors of blooms. They really are pretty. We still are picking potato bugs and trying to manage this pest!

Boxes of Produce

This list is prepared before we harvest your share. Some guesswork is involved! We do our best to predict which crops will be ready to harvest, but sometimes crops are on the list that are not in the share, and sometimes crops will be in the share even though they’re not on the list.

Remember food safety in your kitchen when preparing, always wash your hands before working with your produce and always wash your produce before eating.

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – One of my favorite garden crops.  Remember to wash your vegetables before eating.

Prizeleaf Lettuce – what a beautiful colored lettuce to add to the salads. Add some fresh strawberries or dried fruit to your salads and Enjoy!

Red Oak Leaf Lettuce – I love this beautiful red lettuce leaf. It adds such a wonderful color to your salads.

Spinach – Remember to wash before eating. A combination of these vegetables will make such a wonderful meal! Some spinach salad ideas from P. Allen Smith.

Beets – One of my very favorite vegetables.

Sugar Snap Peas – Eat the pod and all! No need to peel the pods off – enjoy this vegetable as is! I know many of you look forward to these. We have a few more crops planted – with the hope that you can enjoy them for several weeks.

Sam was pretty proud of how full of peas we were able to get this large container.

Sam was pretty proud of how full of peas we were able to get this large container.

Green Beans – A taste of what is to come.

The first green beans of the season. It is funny how the eating vegetables for breakfast sounds gross except for when you are out in the garden in the morning. It just seems delicious!

The first green beans of the season. It is funny how the eating vegetables for breakfast sounds gross except for when you are out in the garden in the morning. It just seems delicious!

Summer Squash/Zucchini – A taste to begin the season.

Green Onions – Green onions are young shoots of bulb onions, and are milder tasting than large bulb onions. They have a small, not fully developed bulb end with long green stalks. Both parts are edible. Scallions are considered younger than a green onion because they should not have a bulb, while green onions should have a miniature bulb. Store by wrapping in a plastic bag and store in the vegetable crisper section of the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Store away from odor-sensitive foods such as corn and mushrooms, which will absorb the odor of the onions. Can be eaten raw, or you can also grill or saute them.

Cilantro – Fresh cut cilantro can be used in a variety of dishes from salsa to eggs. If you are not planning to use it this week. I would suggest washing and freezing them in an ice-cube tray.

Fresh Arrangement – Hosta Leaves and Tiger Lillies

 

Recipe of the Week

Preserving your produce when you can’t use it when its fresh is always an interesting balancing act. Here are a few easy ways I address this, and it makes my cooking much easier throughout the year.

Onions - dry them or I wash them, peel off the outside skin and cut off the ends and then chop them with my Pamper Chef chopper and simply freeze for later. It makes it much easier when a recipe calls for onion.

Onions – I wash them, peel off the outside skin, cut off the ends, chop with my Pamper Chef chopper and simply freeze for later. It makes it much easier when a recipe calls for onion – no mess and makes preparation much easier.

Wondering how to preserve your herbs for making salsa or chilli? I wash them and place in a small ice cube tray and then place in a small Ziploc bag so I have them when I need them.

Wondering how to preserve your herbs for making salsa or chilli? I wash them and place in a small ice-cube tray and then place in a small Ziploc bag so I have them when I need them.

 

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