Monday, September 1, 2014

Slow Living: August 2014

It's almost as if it turned August and Autumn on the same day.  We've had a few (very) warm days, but the nights are cooling off, the air is crisper and the early trees are changing their colors.

I also secured and started a great new Day Job this month, so I have a lot to talk about in my August report for the Slow Living Project.  :-)

NOURISH: Make and bake as much as possible from scratch. Ditch overpackaged, over-processed convenience foods and opt for 'real' food instead. Share favourite links/recipes/tips from the month here.

The Farmer's Market continues to be a favorite way to spend a morning.  We have a few vendors that we visit each week and often meet up with friends when we're there.  Then the delicious vegetables and treats are enjoyed at home during the week.  I feel less disappointed that I did not plant a garden when we shop at the Farmer's Market.

Hubba made a Shrimp Creole feast when we had southern house-guests.  With one being from Louisiana, it was a risky move, but he outdid himself and our near-Cajun guest was pleased.

PREPARE: Stockpile and preserve. Freeze extra meals or excess garden/market produce. Bottle/can, dehydrate or pickle foods to enjoy when they are not in season. Aim to reduce dependency on store bought items especially those known to contain BPA and other suspect additives. Stocking up on dry goods when prices are low counts too.

With starting a new Day Job this month, I prepared several meals in advance and froze them.  Also two lug boxes of peaches have been put up for the winter.

REDUCE/Reuse/Re-purpose/Repair: Cut down on household waste by re-using, re-purposing and repairing. A ladder into a strawberry planter? A sheet into a dress? Share ideas and project links here, allowing others to be inspired.

Earlier this month I started reviewing my blog drafts.... there were well over 200 started but not yet published blogs posts!  I spent quite a lot of time reviewing, revising, consolidating and deleting... and now I'm down to .... let's just say less than 200.  This one is going to take more time, but I do feel better knowing there are only 2 pages of drafts instead of 3.  ;-)

I also cleaned out and organized my closet so I have a bag of things ready to take to the thrift shop.

Hubba fixed up and traded his old lawn mower for some help he needed with his racing chair.

GREEN: up our lives. Start (or continue!) using homemade cleaners, body products and basic herbal remedies. The options are endless, the savings huge and the health benefits enormous.

Since I am no longer working remotely I felt I should revise my work attire inventory.  I didn't feel it was appropriate to show up looking like I just finished my farm chores.  ;-)  I did most of my shopping at two thrift/consignment shops.  It was my first time really shopping for clothes since we moved to the farm in 2009.  I am happy to say that both shops were lovely and that I no longer miss my favorite such shop in New Mexico.

GROW: plant/harvest. What's growing this month? What's being eaten from the garden? Herbs in a pot, sprouts on a windowsill or and entire fruit/vegetable garden -opt for what fits space and time constraints. Don't have a backyard? Ask a friendly neighbour or relative for a small patch of theirs in return for some home grown produce, they may surprise you!

I've been watching my cotton bloom and begin developing bolls this month... I'm so excited for the lint to come in.  :-)

My apple tree is testing the strength and flexibility of it's limbs.  I'm certain we will have plenty of apples to share when they are ready.

CREATE: to fill a need or feed the soul. Create for ourselves or for others. Create something as simple as a handmade gift tag or something as extravagant as a fine knit shawl. Share project details and any new skills learnt here.

I have continued to spin in August.

DISCOVER: Feed the mind by reading texts relevant to current interests. Trawl libraries, second hand shops or local book shops to find titles that fill the need. Share titles/authors of what is being read this month.

It's been heavy on the discovery this month, learning about my new job.

ENHANCE: community: Possibilities include supporting local growers and producers, help out at a local school/kindergarten, barter or foodswap, joining a playgroup or forming a walking or craft group. Car pooling where possible and biking/walking instead of driving. Even start up a blog if you haven't already - online communities count too! Or maybe just help out someone trying to cross the street! The rewards for your time are often returned tenfold.

My Momma came over to help process peaches one weekend and another friend helped me handle our dogs at a big show.

ENJOY: Life! Embrace moments with friends and family. Marking the seasons, celebrations and new arrivals are all cause for enjoyment. Share a moment to be remembered from the month here.

A new Day Job, a Dog Show, putting up peaches, a day trip to my childhood home, the county fair... all wonderful and fun things this month.


EcoGrrl said...

Your dogs are gorgeous!!!

Linda said...

Good to see you're feeling so enthusiastic about the job! Your preserves look lovely. I love looking at photos of jars of food. It makes me feel good!

sustainablemum said...

We love the famers markets too, although ours are only held once a month round here.

200 drafts? That is impressive I would get lost trying to sort out that number!

I hope you job continues to give you the pleasure it clearly does :). Thank you for sharing.

Fiona from Arbordale Farm said...

What a busy month. gee those dogs are good looking. How nice to have all those peaches in storage. Man that apple tree is going to be groaning under the weight of apples you are very lucky.

Wendy Meijer said...

productive and lovely!