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I once saw spring as a season to be suffered through. Sure, I was happy to have something new to eat after all the heavy foods of winter, but the torture of waiting for summer’s cherries and tomatoes was just too much. Last year, though, something changed –– the arrival of spring foods started to feel like an event in and of itself. It seems so appropriate that a season dedicated to new life, growth, and planting should produce so much in the way of earthy, grassy flavors. After all the rich stews and chewy brassicas, I’m in love with bitter greens and bracing flavors. read more »
Yesterday we had our third March snowstorm. What was predicted to be a dusting, changed to an all day, several inches type of affair. And somehow, blessedly, school was not cancelled. With the house to myself, I spent the morning watching the snow fall and cooking up some spring comfort food (even if the weather begged to differ). read more »
I’m prone to think myself an expert on too wide an array of topics. Brian’s similarly afflicted, so in this way, and the fact that we’re both not the dollars and cents types, we’re a bad match. Or at least, he’s not the absolute yin to my yang. One way we both learned we knew much less than we had thought we did was moving to Virginia. In Brooklyn, artisan products and farm-fresh produce (that you buy from the farmer) are available almost any day of the week at one of the city’s Green Markets and also at local specialty shops like the Bedford Cheese Shop or the Meat Hook. Not only that, but because vendors range from Vermont to southern New Jersey, we enjoyed a particular food’s season longer as it stretched up the eastern seaboard. Here in a small city in central Virginia, vendors aren’t exactly flocking, so eating locally has a far more strictly defined meaning. That’s one of the main reasons we were thrilled to have signed up for a CSA. (Have you sent in your check yet?) read more »
After returning from my morning rounds today, I cranked the oven to full blast, threw a big pot of water on the stove, and set about making this roasted carrot and beet salad. While I washed and peeled and chopped, I watched the birds (now out in force and doing their bird thing with no mind for the human world) and went over my to-do list, the top of which is getting signed up for a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). Last year, we moved here right at the tail end of sign-ups, and just let it slip. But as the growing season progressed, Brian and I realized we’d made a huge mistake. Not only do CSAs do much to support local farmers as they begin their seasons by providing financial security no matter what the summer brings, CSAs benefit members too. read more »
Last night at around 5:30pm here on the east coast, something magical happened. All at once, at the dinner table I looked up and noticed that it was still light outside. Instead of the pitch dark we had become accustomed to, there was a faintly pink sunset just wrapping up. I mentioned it to Brian and the girls, and we all agreed that spring might really be here soon. Later, a glance at my Instagram feed showed that others had noticed the pink glow, too.
Then today, a brief morning downpour greeted us as we left the house. The kind that makes everything smell like dirt. A spring rain. Once it had passed, I took a long walk. Suddenly, the warm sun was out, snow seemed to be melting in one giant gush, and the birds were chirping madly.
A week ago, I may have doubted it. But today, I tell you with total confidence that spring is coming. read more »
Ever since our enormous Penske rolled out of Brooklyn at 11:30pm on a Saturday night, our lives have been something just shy of complete chaos. I’ve been traveling back and forth to NYC over the past week tying up loose ends. It was strange to be back in the city not 48 hours after our exhausted/triumphant exit. But now, we’re really here. The family is settling in, though nearly any task includes endless searching through a boxes and bags, rifling through these papers or those, or opening this drawer and then that one. I feel a little like we’re all just wandering in circles in this unfamiliar space. After one of the most intense and exhausting weeks of my life spent getting out of New York, I am a little bummed to face the fact that moving into a place is hard too. read more »