swamped with fresh food

Ah, the end of summer. Finn and I were lucky enough to accompany my mom on her vacation, to the beach. This was taken at Isle of Palms, an island off the coast of Charleston, South Carolina. It was Finn's first time at the beach, and he loved it!

Now that we're back, I'm swamped with homework. And fresh food.
Like local apples! Which called for an apple cake.

I have been doing many things in way of procrastination - laundry, baking a cake, meal planning, even making homemade toothpaste. I'm procrastinating because I have so much homework. I have so much homework because I'm procrastinating. It's a vicious cycle.

Thankfully, I have a blog I can turn to for even more procrastination!
And something to blog about - my green goals. After reading Vanessa Farquharson's "Sleeping Naked is Green" I am brimming with ideas for how to "green" our family life. Here are some goals I'd like to achieve:
- replacing our toothbrushes with Preserve toothbrushes
- when our laundry detergent runs out, go natural
- and more that I can't currently remember

In other news, the farmers' market has been bustling with the most amazing late summer/early autumn harvest. This is what we made away with this week. Note the garden peach tomatoes, a personal favorite! As well as Missouri pecans, half the price and twice the quality of grocery store pecans. Also blackberries, raspberries, arugula, bok choy, cucumber, zucchinis, basil and parsley, fresh flowers, two sweet potatoes, and a lonely red bell pepper.

With tons of produce, I've been cooking quite creatively. Here's the ratatouille I assembled, right before sliding it into the oven to roast.

Here's the plum tart I made for all the elephant heart plums that were on sale at a local natural foods store.

And here's Finn, checking out our pumpkin. This year I'm doing something new - buying a pumpkin purely for the purpose of eating! If we do make a jack o lantern this year, I want to eat it, too. It's silly to waste a pumpkin like that. And pumpkin is too delicious to waste!

What are you doing differently this year?


becoming inspired and challenged

The summer has flown by, and I don't want to jinx anything, but it seems to me that autumn is beginning to grace us with her presence. The temperatures have cooled enough to leave windows open all week, and late summer/early fall produce is making an appearance at the farmers' market.
My summer was a flurry of book devouring, house cleaning/rearranging, vacationing, and preparing for my return to school - to complete my final year of undergraduate college, thank God.
Right now I'm reading "Sleeping Naked is Green" by Vanessa Farquharson, author of Green as a Thistle blog. In her book she documents one year of small changes to her life - green changes. She makes one change a day, which ends up being an overhaul to her entire lifestyle. I'm adoring this book, and becoming inspired and challenged to make small green changes to my life.
I want to make some new rules in my life, easy ones to begin with, such as no more styrofoam. That should be easy, considering I almost never encounter styrofoam. Another thing we can do is to consume locally brewed beer from reusable, recyclable glass containers. I'm slowly running paper towels out of our house, as well as incandescent lights, over-packaged food items, and anything that contains harmful or questionable ingredients, such as shampoo. And when our toothbrushes bite the dust, I can replace them with eco-friendly ones. Maybe I won't be turning my fridge off in the near future, or selling my car, but I can try to make other changes.
For the sake of brevity (or is it too late?) I'll stop here.
In short, I am excited to challenge myself and my family. And in other news, Finn is almost one. year. old. Obviously, I cannot believe it.