Monthly Archives: September 2010

My First Food Club Order – September 2010

I joined a local food club, “Paradise Food Club”.  My first order came in this past Monday.  I’ll try to share my order every month so you can get a feel for what is available.  I was really excited to hear about this club.  It is, unfortunately, not a local or even state sourced program like I had hoped.  The products come from a United Natural Foods warehouse in Indiana.  That means I will continue to seek out local sources of food and other goods whenever I can.  The nice part is that I now have a great variety of natural and organic products at my fingertips instead of being stuck with the one or two options offered at the grocery store.

Here’s what I ordered this month:

  • 5# regular raisins (not organic) $11.13: about the same as the locally owned grocery store’s sale price
  • 30 oz. Jason’s Naturals Aloe Vera Body Wash $11.24:  nice big bottle with a pump dispenser, natural/organic, paraben free, neutral scent so we can both use it.  I tried it tonight and it isn’t as super foamy as normal wash but I’m sure once I get used to it I won’t notice.  Also the bit of aloe scent isn’t delicious but it’s not offensive either, just weird.  It doesn’t stick with you luckily.
  • 180 ct. organic cotton swabs $2.84:  not sure I’ll always buy these due to the price but they are nice, especially since traditional cotton is so pesticide laden.  I mostly bought them because it was the only thing on the grocery list and I didn’t want to go just for them and end up buying other stuff.
  • 50# organic quick rolled oats $38.81: assuming i did my math right this was a way better price than anything i found online or at the grocery store even compared to non organic oats.  I eat a lot of oats so I fly through those dinky little canisters.  This alone makes the club worth it to me so far!

There was $1.84 S&H charge and a few cents tax which annoyed me because I had specifically asked if I should expect S&H and was told there was no charge.  Still, it’s not significant.  You shop online and add things to your cart throughout the month.  Whatever is in your cart on the due date gets run through.  The orders are delivered to the local fairgrounds via semi one week later.  You pay, preferably by check, when you pickup.  The pickup time is a bit of a problem for me because it’s the middle of the day on Monday.  I work only a few minutes away but I had to take lunch early to get there.  Jean, the organizer, was nice enough to call me when the truck got there so I didn’t have to leave work until the very last minute and the girls at work were great about it.

If you want more info just asked and I’ll put you in touch with Jean.  Have you ever joined a buying club or considered it?  What did you like/dislike?


Apple Bread Revisited

This is one of the first recipes I started using regularly when we got married.  It is so, so good.  I posted in a couple years ago as part of my 9 Things We Do With Apples post.  When I referred back to that this year it wasn’t written as clearly as I’d like.  Besides, a recipe this good deserves it’s own post.

1/3 cup shortening
1 c sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
2 c chopped apples
2 Tbsp sour milk (or buttermilk, I use a little milk and vinegar)
2 c flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cream together shortening and sugar. Beat in eggs. Mix in sour milk, vanilla, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add flour, mixing well. Stir in chopped apples or nuts. Pour in to a greased loaf pan.

To make topping cut 2 Tbsp cold butter into 4 Tbsp white sugar and 1-2 tsp cinnamon. Sprinkle over the top of the loaf before baking. Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the center clean. I usually forget to preheat my oven fully so mine take about a hour.

Notes: You may use applesauce in a pinch if you don’t have any apple to chop. The flavor is still good you just don’t get those little pieces of apple goodness. You may also want to use brown sugar in the topping in place of all or part of the white sugar. This bread can be served for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It is wonderful at potlucks and given as a gift. It doubles well!

Last step… after putting the bread in the oven don’t forget to settle in for breakfast on the couch with the spatula, bowl, and beater. Not that I’m doing that as I type or anything! 😉

Thoughts on Marriage After Two Years

That hardest part is starting, right?  So I’m just going to start this post and see where it goes.  I’ve been mulling it over in my head.  I reread last year’s post for inspiration.  Still, I basically got nothing.

Last year I had a lot to write about because things were so hard and then, in the end, things were going great.  This year was pretty uneventful.  In a word, it was wonderful Absolutely wonderful.

We laughed.  Mostly at ourselves, our dogs, at dumb things like farting or hiding from bats.  We laughed so we didn’t cry when June stole an entire freshly baked pie off the kitchen counter before Brian tasted a single bite, and again when we could only get one TV channel and the internet was out.

Thank the Lord, we didn’t cry much this year.  I cried occasional tears of happiness and relief when things were going so well and coming together so nicely.  I still shake my head when I look around and see all that we have accomplished together here on the farm.

Do we fight?  Of course.  Here’s how pretty much every fight went this year:  One of us would say something to the other in a louder than normal voice due to frustration from stress or a difficult project.  The other person would flip out for being unfairly yelled at and yell back loudly that you’d better not yell at ME!!! Then the original yeller typically would apologize for accidentally yelling (or insist that they didn’t yell at all but they are sorry if you took it that way) to which the responder would declare how proud they are of themself for keeping their temper in check and would you please remember to do the same even though it is hard?  And I think those fights happened maybe three times all year.

We have the typical little spats like “I can’t believe you left the shower curtain open AGAIN!!!!” but for that type of stuff we’re both pretty much in the habit of saying, “Ok, I know you don’t mean to do this I just want to mention it so you realize you did it…”.  When we have bad “moments” it’s pretty typical to catch us kissing and apologizing the next time we see each other.

I am so excited to be at the point where the honeymoon is over, we know what we’re working with, and we’re still in love.  It may sound cliche but I am married to my best friend.  We’re on the same page with money and that has forced us to work together in a whole new way.  We have the same goals, the same dreams even. Okay, except I don’t want tractors that cost as much as the farm and Brian doesn’t want a dozen children.  But that’ll work out, right!?

If you have any specific questions or ideas for discussion on marriage let me know.  How was your marriage at the two year mark?  How is it now?

A Little Photo Fun

I was trying to find a good picture to use in my Thoughts on Marriage post. Instead, I ended up having some fun playing around with other pictures. These are from a recent hay day at our new friends’ The Glasers.

What do you think?  Have you played with any pictures lately?  Care to share?