Grateful and Growing

It’s a bit surreal to be writing a final CSA blog post after 2 years of the routine: remembering to snap photos throughout the week, squeezing in writing time Monday evenings after field days, learning how best to share the inspiration, hardship, and beauty we have in being farmers.
We were hoping to write earlier but the winter season has ended up a busy one for Meghs and I.
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Member Kearney made us this lovely CSA themed apple pie! Thank you everyone for your gifts and cards–they are so heart warming.
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Member Marie used the Thanksgiving share for a center piece and made roasted beet and butternut salad with quinoa and arugula.
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Member Judy makes yummy all-veggie meals!
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At the beginning of December my grandfather, Paul Roberts, passed away and I made a sudden trip home to Missouri for the services with my family. I wanted to share this to spend a moment honoring the man I have so often referenced as a significant reason for my journey into food production.
He was left in charge of the family farm for several months during a medical emergency at the age of 11; he kept his family fed with home-grown fruits and vegetables throughout his life even with a full-time auto-mechanic career; he spent hours on his own in the fields, singing hymns to himself, whistling, communing with the little cultivated piece of land he called home. Papa was a quiet, steadfast man full of more wisdom and knowledge than I can imagine.
Throughout my two Second Wind years, I have shared about his impact and though I am sad for his passing, I am so grateful for this heritage and look forward to continue learning about the land that so relentlessly called to him and now to me.
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Due to the big pre-Thanksgiving snow storm, the final field clean-up had to wait until December and even January on my return from being home for the holidays.
It’s good to be with these plants from seed, to planting, to harvesting, to composting.

Amazing to think how much these kale plants fed all of us for 6 months!
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We had hoped to have radishes for Thanksgiving. Even though they weren’t really edible, it was still fun to see these babies frost-touched and snow covered.
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Thank you to everyone who filled out the survey! It’s great to hear feedback on the season and to pass along information for the new farmers who’ll feed you next season. If you haven’t yet, you still can here!

Hopefully you had magical, joyful holidays.
Hopefully you are warm and cozy during this latest snow wonderland.
Hopefully you are connected with the market nearest you for winter storage crops: squash, potatoes, turnips, celeriac, carrots, beets, and parsnips; and maybe even some beautiful hoop-house kale, arugula, and pea shoots!
Hopefully you have got some yummy preserved and fermented foods keeping your winter gut happy: dried herbs, soaked legumes, tangy kraut and kimchi, nutty sprouts, smoked meats or dried mushrooms.
Please do reach out if you are in need of any winter advice for what’s in season, what’s available locally, or cooking ideas.

Here is a recipe for using up that butternut squash in creamy-but-creamless soup, from Chef Rich Francis.
For my adventurous members up for a more involved project, here is a Butternut and Spinach Empanada from Runaway Apricot chef, Robyn Andrea.
Here is a slow-cooker recipe for throwing all the winter roots together.

I schlepped a small pumpkin home and my brother made this!


The end of the brussel sprouts roasted with “throw-it-all-in” frittata.
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Braised Four Winds beef short ribs with glazed vegetables and a pea-shoot/arugula salad.
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I have shared regularly of the gratitude I have for each unique member, and the support you give us–financial, social, and emotional. I will hold that gratitude in my heart always as I visit food producers in other communities. I will use it as a source of solace and joy in the path ahead, wherever it leads, whatever I am helping grow.
Thank you all for your commitment to building more just and equitable food systems and local economies. May we all continue to learn how to undo oppressive patterns and exploitative methods. May we all live in the full abundance and joy that a more intentional and aware life brings!

Ever grateful and ever growing,
Lyds
(I’ll send out an email with personal contact info and my travel blog within the week.)
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