The convenience and cost saving of mass produced products have filled my life, saved time and money; but cost me the understandings and joy of flavor, and connection to people who make things.
Tuesday, August 30, 2016
I had some toast today and found a jar of grape conserves in the refrigerator. They came from the church fair, made by a wonderful friend. I really didn't think much of it while I added it to the top of the toast. My experience of grape jelly is from many years and millions of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with grape jelly. The general taste of grape jelly in my experience is basically a lubricant for peanut butter, a minimally flavored sweetener that adds moisture. So when I took a bite of the homemade grape conservative I was taken aback. It tasted like grapes, actually several different and individual kinds that were intermingled with intricacies and flavor. A million sandwiches were now being reconsidered.
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
There is much to be gained by knowing one’s farmer, knowing where one’s food comes from. It is very rewarding to grow one’s own food in one’s own garden and understand the cycle of growth and food. Supporting local farmers, eating in food in season, learning to cook food from scratch and understanding the range of ingredients and the importance of nutrition is vital for our physical health.
Supporting local businesses keeps more jobs in the community, as well as more money. It is always much more beneficial to support the local mom and pop shop, or local store than the big box store which sends most of its profits out of state.
But living local is larger than where we shop. Living local means also going to local concerts, shows and events and not just watching the downlink, or television special. Supporting local musicians not only ensures that we have access to local music, but it is much more direct and engaging for us to know and see the people playing the music, and even better to join the song, and get out and dance ourselves.
Living local also means supporting the local community, being a part of the church, participating in town meetings, being a part of the local P.T.A. or school board, voting in the local elections.
Living local means getting to know the people who live in the neighboring houses and apartments. It means getting to know the local youth, and the elderly who might need some assistance.
Living locally ultimately means living one’s life where one lives, not in the virtual world, or vicariously through the media, or through national and international issues, but in the world outside one’s window.
Living locally leads us even to ourselves, our own bodies and minds – to go for a walk and get exercise and to take the initiative to keep learning.
Monday, April 4, 2016
I have been looking at various artists photography recently to learn from what they take, how they set things up, and the light and backgrounds that are in their works. But what I have noticed is that after looking at a number of artists work, I somehow can sense what state of mind or spirit they might be in while working or over a long time. Some artist seem to find many shadows and darker images, some mostly very thin models, some sweeping landscapes, and some very intimate and private small events. When one displays one's work one is not only displaying the subject of the image, nor just the techniqual skill but also a reflection of the artist and the state of mind or soul within. It would be interesting to see what a dozen different people given the same camera and skilled at the craft, and given a few days, what they all would bring back. Then looking at it primarily as a way to share oneself, not just the images.
It has been quite awhile since I last posted. It is interesting to me how we go through phases when we do something like blog or journal, then stop for long periods. Or rather how I do such. There seems to be seasons for some things, I often feel guilty that I am not writing more and blogging to keep the energy moving. There is some truth to how I would benefit from keep doing this even when dry or distracted. And there is benefit in letting the field go fallow for a time. Guilt will always shadow me, what I do with it is my choice. Sometimes it motivates me to get going ad do the things I need to do, and other times it simply causes depression and paralysis.