Dear Kingston Branch members and friends,
Last night, despite some technical difficulties in the Woodstock tv studio, Janine Fallon-Mower and I were once again holding AAUW Conversations.
Our winter-spring theme and title of our series is GET FRESH, buy locally and buy seasonally.
In our research, I read Barbara Kingsolver's book Animal, Vegetable, Miracles, how one family with two daughters, two full-time working parents, managed to live graciously and abundantly from local produce and their garden. Then, Janine searched her own family history and found a 1950's Woodstock Recipe Booklet, full of delightful home-made possibilities. She also recalled Mower's Market on Tinker Street whose produce was supplied by the family garden, now Mower's Flea Market, less than 50 yards from the store. Now that's local.
We are delighted to have found so many people in our county working on the theme of practical, local and cost effective healthy food. Check out www.EatLocalFood.org. From this website, I gleaned the following quick start tips.
1. Check labels for origins. Janine found she bought garlic from China. Garlic grows well here. So start with buying items easily grown within 100 miles and save transportation and oil costs.
2. Start with two or three items, not switching all items at once. Do what is manageable bit by bit considering how busy we all are.
3. Get the whole family involved. While it's winter, dream over garden catalogs, consider planting edible as well as ornamental plants to cut down food and gas costs.
4. Look into community garden buyer's club, called community supported agriculture (csa). We have NINE in our Hudson River Valley area. If you already belong, tell others.
5. Buy a share in an apple tree at our local orchards. You get to help the grower grow with your share and later eat local apples.
And, #6. Vote for Carrie Little as White House Farmer. I know Carrie's daughter, Mary Letterman, an active AAUW member on Facebook. She sent this story about her mother asking all Facebook AAUW members to support Carrie with our votes:
Correction: Mary points out in the comments that this is her friend's mother. That doesn't change how impressed we are with Carrie!
"Hey everybody, the White House and Barack Obama, our new president, is looking to turn the White House more "green" and turn the White House lawns into organic gardens. My mom has been nominated for this position along with only 18 others in our country. So get on this website starting January 21, 2009 and vote! The top 3 candidates will be submitted to our Prez and then he will choose.So, please read Carrie's profile -- you'll be overwhelmed by her imagination and what she's accomplished in Washington State with organic gardening providing local food for emergency food pantries, engaging hundreds of children, volunteers, prisoners and families. You'll be convinced that she should be the first White House Farmer. Visit the White House Farmer for more information on this movement and to vote.
And if you want to, vote for my MOM, Carrie Little, because she would be the best for the job!"