Us

On Marriage
Love one another, but make not a bond of love;
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another your bread but eat not from the same loaf.
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each of you be alone.
Even as the strings of a flute are alone though they quiver with the same music.
Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together.
For the pillars of the temple stand apart.
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.
-Kahlil Gibran

Sachs Wedding

We’ve added another year of marriage to the book. In our six years now we’ve bought a house, adopted a dog, bought two vehicles, had a kid (a pretty awesome one if I say so myself) and said good bye to one of our cats.  There’s been traveling and family nights at home. We learned how to play dominoes and found ourselves up at 2 am just trying to end the game! We’ve had ups and downs. Dealing with home ownership craziness and the struggle with the love/hate relationship of our home. And we can’t forget the movie nights in dark basement.

We’re far from who we were when we first met and started dating.  We’ve grown into our own person and striving to be who we want to be in life – no excuses – holding each other accountable (most days. ha!). Even though we’re different people from who we once were – we’re still here cheering each other on – wanting to see each other succeed. Constantly developing a life for us and our family. We’re here. We’re now. We’re living our dream – or at least planning it and moving towards it. We’re not perfect but perfection isn’t us. Here’s to us!

I Heart Local Food

It all started with half dead produce at the grocery store. I would bring the produce home and it would whither within a few days. I never gave eating locally grown food a thought unless it was summer time and the signs at the grocery store said, “LOCAL”. At this point… what did I care where my fruits and veggies came from – at least I was eating fruits and veggies!

Really, if I think back to it, my journey with produce in general really started to grow when I started making my own baby food for Connor. Then Kevin started P90X and followed the meal plan. I was overwhelmed with alllll this produce on the grocery list. Slowly but surely the processed foods made their way off my list. The more I read about processed foods – the more I didn’t realize what I was putting in my body. I mean, I grew up on the blue box of Kraft Mac n Cheese and Tyson chicken nuggets! I was healthy why would I question it??? But that’s a whole other thought for a different post.

At the beginning of this year I read, “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life” by Barbara Kingsolver. All I can say is it lit a fire under me. I didn’t go out to my back yard, rip up the grass and plant a garden. I have commitment issues with plants and gardens upkeep.

What did I start doing then?

Well I started looking at where things were made.  Kingsolver mentioned the waste of resources that comes with buying things from across the country. Sooo if I were buying things I was checking to see how far away these items came from and trying to get something that came as close as possible.

I didn’t realize that store brand stuff in my store was coming from Oregon! Across the country!! Rather than buying Chips Ahoy cookies I buy cookies from the bakery in the store or the red/white checked bag from a bakery in Baltimore, MD. I didn’t realize how much they taste more like a cookie than Nabisco’s.  When Connor wants Mac n Cheese I pick it up from the deli at the grocery store. They’ve made it that day and its way better tasting then anything out of the blue box. Is it healthier? No clue. I will say that it’s fresher.

THEN I started researching Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) and Farmer’s Markets. The summer before I started researching it but I never did anything with it.

The more I looked at CSA’s the more I realized it wasn’t in our budget to afford an CSA up front. I wanted to but at this point who knew if this was just a new “phase” for me like Pinterest was when I first discovered it. After talking with a friend she told me about the Bear’s Honeypot. They did CSA’s that you could pay for by the week. I was sold!

BUT THEN I discovered the Farmer’s Market. I fell in love. Like seriously in love. I have loved watching what fruits and veggies come into season as others fade.  My first trip out there was this spring. April. It was COLD. I got there right when it opened. I don’t know what I was expecting but it was so low key and early in the season. Just some greens, onions, potatoes and few things. I waited and waited for the GOOD stuff. Week by week the Farmer’s Market got busier and busier. More and more options.

We saw asparagus come and go, strawberries come and go, swiss chard come and go, and now MD tomatoes, cantaloupe, watermelon, ears of corn, summer squash, zucchini, peppers, peaches, nectarines slowly fading and every kind of apple you can imagine, pears, winter melons, winter squashes and sweet potatoes starting to come into the picture. Just as I start to get sad over one of my favorites going away another is right there for me to get excited.

Not only did I discover local produce but I discovered local pickles (some of the best pickles I’ve ever eaten), locally made cheese, local desserts, local breads and local soap!

Every weekend from my first trip in April through now we have bought almost all local produce for the week. What we need that I can’t find I get from the grocery store (if its really needed). If we were out of town for the weekend or busy, I placed an order with the Bear’s Honey Pot so I could pick up a share for our weeks produce when we return.

Where do I go from here?

The Farmer’s Market is open till mid-December. I’m not sure what will come into the picture at that point. I imagine it will be low key like my first trip in April. I’ve started buying extra summer squash, zucchini and peppers to freeze for when I’m staring at half dead produce at the grocery store and my heart is breaking for the beauty that summer brings.

You MIGHT find me planting a mini garden next summer. MIGHT. We’ll see.

local foods from MD

Morning Conversations

Weekday mornings with the toddler can be stressful and crazy but also humorous.

This morning I went in to get Connor out of bed. He moved from laying on his pillows to on my lap facing his wall with his big Lightening McQueen wall decal.

Connor: I had a bad dream last night.
Me: Really? What was it about.
Connor: Lightening McQueen was in front of me. He wouldn’t talk to me.
Me: That was a bad dream?
Connor: Then he crashed. Bad. His wheels were flat and down. It was a problem.

This kid lives and dreams Cars. He hums the music and races pretty much any toy – wheels or no wheels. I’m dreading the day he can get his license.

Kachow!

Dear Neighbor

Dear Neighbor That is Attached to Our Duplex,

We were very happy to see the for sale sign on your front lawn. Not going to lie… We did a little dance and celebrated. These last few months had us worried about how we could coexist attached to each other. Your banging the walls. Your yelling and arguing in the middle of the night. Your dog barking his head off all day… all night… all the time. We’re not going to miss the ridiculous amounts of weeds and ivy that grows up the sides of your fence and then over to ours. We’re not going to miss your mysterious visitors through out the day. We’re not going to miss you smoking on the front porch and your smoke coming through my kitchen windows.

I won’t say its been all negative. I mean… we’ve learned to tone things out, ignore the crazy and that the police in our area won’t do much when I call them at midnight saying it sounds like ya’ll might kill each other.

Of course, we don’t know who’ll move in next. We hold out hope that they’ll be non smokers and good care takers of their dog / yard and a loving couple who respects each other when they’re mad. At this point we’re just happy to see the sign.

Thanks for all the fun,

Us.

When Buying Sunglasses Goes Wrong

I rarely spend over $20 on sunglasses. For me, something always goes wrong. I loose them. I drop them. I scratch them. I sit on them. About every 3 to 6 months I’m shopping a new pair. Keeps my suburban mom look fresh and up-to-date I suppose.

Last month I had to buy a new pair. I found myself on my lunch break at Rite Aid trying on different pairs. It was between the pair I bought and another. I should have bought the other.

Within two days there was a scratch on the lens. I know… most likely my fault. Still usable but still a scratch nonetheless. AND NOW….. they have stretched. I can’t keep them on my head! They slide off the moment I bend my head. Did my head shrink overnight? I don’t think so.

What’s a girl to do? Buy another pair I suppose. Nothing worse than a bad pair of sunglasses. I’m sure there are far worse things in life but I’m pretty sure at this moment – right now – its annoying as all get out.

At least they look good on me. For now.

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And Then – It Was Fall

Of course  the first day of Autumn isn’t until Sunday but today… the weather is cool but not cold, warm but not hot and the breeze – oh the breeze – is light and crisp and feels clean without the heavy summer humidity hanging around. I’m wearing a 3/4 length sleeved shirt and my closed toe shoes. Camping season is  right around the corner and I’ve already busted out the crock pots and Beer Bread. What could have made this day any more “fall like”? I’ll tell ya… my lunch.

I went to Panera Bread for lunch today and got the half and half soup/salad mix. Today’s soup was the Autumn Squash soup. All I can say is I’ve never had a soup fantastically wonderful before EVER (or well… at least lately). Each bite was like biting into a mixture of sweatshirt wearing/crock pot cooking/family camping/color changing leaves/cool breezes. I can’t put my finger on it but it just tastes so so so good. A little piece of Autumn heaven I suppose. Off to Google a recipe.

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Run.

Run. Run as fast as your legs will let you. To others it will not be fast. To you, it will be a flash. Run. Feel the breath in your lungs. Feel the stress melt away. Feel the street under your feet. Ignore the pain. Ignore the world around you. Run. Be in the moment. Be the moment. Run. More than exercise. More than keeping in shape. Don’t count the miles. Don’t count the minutes. Keep up with yourself. Get yourself grounded. Run.

An Article of Clothing

It must suck to be an article of clothing in my house. The abuse and neglect they receive. Tossed on the floor – sometimes walked on. Tossed into piles – clean or dirty. Left in the washer – needing to be rewashed. Left in the dryer – growing wrinkles by the minute. Hung to dry but left in the dark laundry room – forgotten to be worn.

They are always the last to be thought of when it comes to household chores. Only thought of in the morning when I’m pulling them our from drawers and my closet frantically trying to find something to wear – wondering where all of them have gone.

Every week I make the promise of catching them up. Getting them all clean and all put away. Tucking them into where each of them belongs. The week comes. The week goes. My promise is unfulfilled. Poor articles of clothing. I hope they don’t go on strike.

Woman Who Lived in a Duplex

There was an old woman (ok well not that OLD) who lived in a duplex. She had so many dishes in the sink she didn’t know what to do. After working all day and playing all evening – her books are calling. Library books stacked so tall she can’t wait to read them before the due date calls. She should go for a run and burn off some stress but housework is calling and all is a mess. On Saturdays the Farmers Market commences. Her obsession with fresh and local is considered comical. She’s here and she’s there. She’s in all places at once and in one place thinking of everything. Pulled here and pulled there and sometimes pulling out hair. Her life is full of love and has lots to give. She’s just got to remember that life can be challenging and cluttered and fast but in this duplex its full of us.