Sunday, August 21, 2011

Community Supported Agriculture

Have you ever wondered how fresh your produce is when you buy it at the supermarket? My grandparents had a small farm when I was a kid and I remember how good the freshly picked fruit and vegetables tasted. Someday I would love to grow my own vegetable garden. But for someone who lives in large metropolitan area like LA it is not really an option, at least not for me anyway. So, I had too look for other options.

With that thought in mind we decided to try out the fresh produce delivery from a local farm. This is what they call joining a CSA. I've been thinking about this for some time, talking to people who've done it and just comparing our options online. A number of my friends signed up for Farm Fresh to You deliveries and have been more than satisfied with their fruit and veggie boxes. So I thought why not give it a try? It's all organic produce delivered to your door directly from the farm so it is much fresher than stuff at the stores and the prices are quite reasonable as well ($25 for the small box and up).

I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was to navigate my way through their website. They offer a variety of options and the information on all of them is very clear. Another thing I like about FFTY is the flexibility you get. There are no commitments, you can cancel any time and you don't get charged until your box is delivered. You are able to customize about anything - the size of your box, its contents, how often you want it delivered, and even pick the day of the week when you want your delivery. With your account on the website you choose which fruit and veggies you don't want to find in your box (and that can be changed whenever you want). They also post a list of produce for each week so you know what you're getting and can plan ahead. This definitely helps when planning meals for the week.

Now about the value. I made a rough cost comparison for what I got in my box if I were to buy all that elsewhere. And again, I was pleasantly surprised. At FFTY I paid 31.50 for a medium sized box and it would have cost me around $40 to buy all that produce at the local super market. Besides, most of it would not have been certified organic so I am pleased with the value. As far as quality, the fruit was ripe and yummy, veggies fresh and crisp. We really enjoyed our farm produce box.

One more thing I wanted to mention is the 'community support' part of our decision to join a CSA. Let's say you don't care whether or not your produce is organic, maybe you're very good at finding deals so the price margin is not your problem and let's assume that in your mind the supermarket fresh is as fresh as the produce can get... What can you get out of this whole farm delivery program is you support local farmers. To some people (including myself) this is a big deal.

The bottom line is that I found myself in a win-win-win situation: fresh local produce at a good price delivered to your door and support to the local farmers. It doesn't get better than this :)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Child training anyone?

I saw a video on (Video: Couple says spankings must hurt) which made me very angry. Angry at our society which supports the complete lack of personal responsibility. Why bother keeping people accountable for their own actions when it is so much easier to blame someone else?

So, the story goes like this. There is this book 'To Train Up a Child' which teaches parents to train their children to obey, and the authors clearly differentiate between training children and physically abusing them. There is no instruction in this book that parents beat their children up, the main focus is on teaching them how to behave and obey, not hurt them and discipline bad behavior out of them. So this couple of crooks with a lot of children ends up beating one of them to death (others have vivid signs of abuse as well), they are arrested and stuff like that. Guess what's next… The above mentioned book is found in their home and used as evidence against them. So now the district attorney blames the book author for the insane understanding of 'discipline' that this family had! In what universe does this logic work? To follow this chain of logic - if I knit a scarf and sell it, the person who bought it uses it to hang themselves - I am the one to blame for their death! That is outrageous on so many levels. I am filled with so much irritation at this whole victim mentality that I can't type fast enough to get all my thoughts out.

Anyway, just needed to rant. I am astounded at mass media's partiality as well. They are so quick to promote the victim mentality in our society. This annoys the heck out of me.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Blogs and personal accountability

Bloggers beware, here I come! I decided to start blogging. Being a newbie at this I'm not sure if I'm doing it right, if there's even a right or wrong way. Oh well, this is my blog and I can make it to be whatever I want it to be, even if it resembles a diary more that anything.

Staying home with a baby is a lot of fun. Sleep deprivation kind of gets you in the beginning, when dealing with a newborn, you both learn how to go about things. But as time goes by the baby starts sleeping better, mommies catch up on their sleep debt and things seem to be getting into their places. As months passed I began noticing that laziness creeps up my door step day in and day out. It's so easy to just let yourself dose off here and there, especially when the baby is napping and the house sort of switches into the sleep mode. So I decided to get myself a little more disciplined and start panning my time. This blog seems like a wonderful way of keeping me accountable, well, to myself. That's why they call it personal accountability. Not a very popular notion these days. Same as common sense which as some say is not that common any more (sigh...).

So, here we go! I commit to trying out new things, finding fun stuff to do for or with my baby, saving money while staying healthy, and share whatever I find useful in enriching our lives. In other words, the plan is to get busy, in a good way, to be a blessing to my family. If you think of it, purposeful people are happy people.