Saturday, November 26, 2011


Well, my 1/2 share from Harvest Kitchen has run out. This is a prepared food CSA where they get your share from the farm and make it into meals that you pick up once a week. I had a Tuesday vegetarian share, which was helpful for getting through the weeks of super busy-ness this fall. But I won't be renewing.

While I felt like the ingredients were good, the quality of the preparation varied (too) greatly and several of the weeks the quantity was below what I expected. Only a couple of the dishes were true stinkers, but then only a couple of the dishes were outstanding. Most were best categorized as "okay" or "eh." It was frustrating to see some clear errors -- like fried rice made with hot rice instead of chilled, so it just mushed or sushi were the rice had no stickiness and the rolls were so loose that they disintegrated when you picked them up. The spice levels needed to go up on virtually all the dishes and several others just needed to cook longer in order for the flavors to come together. Probably their strongest category was salad dressings -- the Asian one, in particular, was excellent. But dressing just can't carry them in my book.

One benefit of having tried this experiment was that it gave the kids a new perspective on my cooking. They are used to my food and have taken it for granted, but now they know: I'm actually a decent cook. Now, if I only can use that to get them to help more in the kitchen...

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Lot

A few weeks ago I joined up with a few friends to create a little experiment in urban farming. We threw some money into a hat (ok, really it was a paypal account) and bid on an empty lot in a tax foreclosure auction. Today we headed out to break ground and start planning. Most of us, like myself, won't be doing the farming ourselves, but a bit of digging and layering of ingredients for the first bed was certainly in order. So, here we are, checking things out on a gorgeous fall morning.

Leaves and a Mohawk

Hey, it is fall in Michigan. So there are leaves to be raked... and then, of course, jumped into.

Also featured in this video: the boy's new haircut, which he got just in time for his 4th grade school pictures.

Trick or Treat 2011

Halloween with a 9 and 12 year old and a bunch of their friends is pretty great, even if one of them had a bit of a cold.