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Shifting to Summer

Well so much for my hopes of a slow, lazy summer!  That said, it is nice to not have to set my alarm – ever – and to work at my own pace throughout the day.  But boy is there a lot of work to do!

My first big project is to get my things out of storage, unpack and set the house up now that my roommate has moved out.  I’ve been doing that for over a week now and the place is still chaotic!  But a least my kitchen is back to being fully functional, if still a bit messy.  I’m also trying to spend at least 5-6 hours a day researching and writing, and the rest of my time is dedicated to the animals.  Most specifically I spend a good 3 hours or more a day exercising, training, feeding and hanging out with the dogs.  Just with these three tasks, my days are full to bursting.

I have sadly had to give up the idea of doing anything with the yard and gardens around this house.  Being away for this past month with no-one keeping things up has simply set me back too far.  It took me 5 evenings to get the lawn back in order, and reclaim just one of the garden beds.  I simply don’t have enough time, or energy, to do anything more.  If I had been thinking, I would have hired someone to at least cut the lawn while I was gone.  Then again, I don’t have that kind of money to throw away on something like keeping grass short.  So my much lowered goal for the property is to keep the grass short and turn over the composters, and that’s about it.  If I do manage to get a couple of pots of herbs started, that will be a bonus.

In addition to setting up my kitchen (which has been a lot of fun!) I’ve been doing a fair bit of cooking.  For one, I picked up two CSA shares three days apart, and had to do a mad scramble to get through most of it, and process what I couldn’t eat.  Then there’s the milk influx, which is fantastic.  Nine liters last week, 11 this week.  Finally I defrosted my big freezer and gave it a good cleaning.  It’s contents all fit in my fridge freezer – minus a duck, which I then had to cook.

Cooking a duck felt somewhat overwhelming so I put it off and put it off.  After three days I knew I had to do something with it, or throw it out!  I couldn’t bare to do that as this poor animal gave up its life.  To compromise I cut off the breast meat and grilled it, and fed the rest raw to the animals.  Ross dog turned up his nose (he’s becoming increasingly picky, which is both worrisome and annoying), but everyone else thought it was delightful.  The cats in particular devoured it and pestered for more.  I like to be able to feed them a good variety of meats, so it was nice to provide them with some free-range duck.

As for my portion, I grilled it and ate it with steamed asparagus and a little bit of red pepper jelly.  It was quite delicious.  However for some reason I am finding myself quite repulsed by meat these days.  I have been moving more and more towards this over the last year.  Also I find that in the heat of summer, I rarely want meat.  So that may have been the last meat for me for a while.  Likely my carnivorous appetite will pick up again come the colder weather of fall.  Right now I cannot eat enough fresh greens.  Last night I ate a giant bowl of salad as a midnight snack before bed!  But this craving for greens only kicked in after I force fed myself greens (as I had so much in my fridge!) for a week or so.  And the new craving for veggies flared up along with my sudden revulsion of meat.

I find it fascinating how my body wants different things at different times of the year.  Or perhaps more interestingly is the fact that I notice these things.  Have I always been like this but just paid no attention to the changes in my eating patterns?  Or is my body becoming more in tune as I continue along this path of local, seasonal eating?

Today is my CSA pick-up day, and they are offering u-pick strawberries.  I am going to head out just as soon as I finish this entry.  I had planned on writing all morning, but I had a late start (I am still sleeping 9-10 hours, presumably still recovering from my month-long adventure), and I didn’t do my dishes last night.  By the time I finished cleaning, it was time to knead the bread that I am going to bake later today.  Then I cooked breakfast (spinach and raw milk cheddar omelet), fed the animals, decided to write here, and suddenly it’s 12:45.  So off to get my veggies and strawberries, then down to work for the afternoon. After dinner I’ll drive to the farm to train the dogs, which I also did last night.  As I said, so much for a slow summer!

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2 Responses

  1. One of the things that convinced me that humans were meant to eat meat is my body’s cravings. I eat a primarily vegetarian, if not vegan, diet. I eat meat maybe twice a month–first, because I will only buy meat that I know has been raised humanely, organically, etc. etc., which means it’s more expensive (and I’m poor), and second, because I am lazy and feel like meat is more trouble than making a big rice pot of veggies and beans. Regardless of the fact that I try to ensure that I eat enough protein, iron, etc. (of course, I only started doing this after I was diagnosed with an iron deficiency due to my lack of meat) from other sources, every few weeks I get this unbelievable craving for meat. It’s a very clear, distinct signal from my body. Although many people choose to ignore their bodies, I find your body is the best indicator of health and what it needs!

    • This is exactly why I won’t commit to being 100% vegetarian. I think it is likely healthier to just listen to your body and give it what it needs. Of course this means being able to really hear what your body is asking for, and that’s not often easy. My body frequently tells me that it is in dire need of Nutella, for example, but I know that this is not true. But when I am rested and eating well, I notice subtle shifts in my cravings. Meat and starch when it’s cold, greens and fruit in the summer. For this reason I gave up trying to put by too much of summer’s bounty, and instead just pig out on it. In winter, I eat winter stuff – root veggies, bread, meat, dairy.

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