I am re-reading the little house on the prairie books right now... and I LOVE THEM!!!! I sometimes wish that I enjoyed reading books that were intended for people my age to read, but I guess its ok to nourish the inner child in me. I still have to look up some of the words I come across in these books, so I feel like that justifies the fact that I am reading them... although that probably is just a bad sign for my vocabulary.
Anyway, one of the things that I love about reading the Little House on the Prairie Books, besides how bad ass it is that "Pa" can make everything from a house to a baby doll from nothing more than earth and wood, is THE FOOD! Those books make me so damn hungry and those prairie folk eat like dinosaurs. Almonzo, the main character of "Farmer Boy", which is the book I am currently reading, typically eats three kinds of meat, beans, corn, two kinds of bread, potatoes, yams and 3 different kinds of pie for LUNCH... DAMN! and I get the feeling none of these people are particularly chubby. They just work until they are about to collapse and then eat about it.
I want that life so bad! I have a small scale-part time version of that going for myself... I ride my bike to work and feel kind of tired, but then I watch what I eat during the week days for the most part so I can eat copious amounts of whatever I want with 2 different desserts at night and on the weekends...and so far, other than during the holidays when I wasn't riding my bike, I haven't gained any weight. Also, I am raising a garden. Right now my garden consists mostly of dirt, but I have 1 bed with wheat and fava beans and vetch, but there will be corn and tomatoes and beans and many other fabulous things to come.
When I read my "prairie" books I love hearing about all of the care and work they put into growing their food and then the work that goes into the preparation of the food. I want to do that too. It would be a dream come true if I could churn butter once a week and make my own damn soap from the cooking fire ashes and bacon fat that I'd saved... or actually maybe I would make soy soap or olive oil soap... I'm pretty sure that's just as easy, but anyway, just being able to fend for yourself and create everything on your own would be awesome. Not to mention that I wouldn't have to worry about the people and animals suffering in the process of creating almost everything I buy from Safeway or Target.
Anyway, this is why I have decided this late spring or early summer when I have veggies and fruit in my garden I want to have old-timey day and have a bunch of people over and cook tons of old fashioned fashioned things with the products of my garden... and dairy products that I have purchased... I wish I had a cow or a goat or something but I'm pretty sure that we are not zoned for that. I want to make a strawberry pie and a lemon meringue pie and have lemonade and home made ginger-ale and corn on the cob and veggie pot pie and baked beans or something. mmm... I would just like to gather people together and celebrate good fresh food.
It feels like words do not begin to explain the love I have with food. It's a basic necessity for life, but eating can also be one of the most supremely enjoyable experiences of living and to me it is enhanced by having total quality control over the food you eat by growing it yourself. I guess I feel like I can make my food the best that it can possibly be if I make sure work and care has been put in to it from its conception to its preparation. I'm sure that is a pretty arrogant notion considering the last time I grew any veggies I was like 14, but hey, I grew some pretty tasty corn and artichokes and I didn't put in half as much effort then as I have in my current garden.
There is something about working hard on a meal that makes it taste better I think.... I get majorly offended when Tony doesn't love one of my meals that I think is really good. It feels like he's taking for granted all of the work that I put in. I seem to be able to taste that hard work, but he apparently can't... sometimes my dinners do not turn out the way I would hope though and that is disappointing... but now I can compost my shitty meals so at least it's not a total waste.
I love composting too. It saves me from a lot of guilt about not using things before they go bad and not finishing everything on my plate... although I almost always finish everything on my plate. I eat too fast not to. Lately though, I get so excited to feed my compost pile that I find myself sometimes letting a couple slices of bread or a piece of fruit go moldy on purpose so I can toss them into my compost bin. I can't wait until everything in my bin is broken down and smells like sweet dirt... my soil is going to be UBER fertile . My veggies are going to be in heaven... and then so shall I be when I eat them.