Friday, September 23, 2011

More GREEN Reads

It's the Autumnal Equinox!  Happy 1st Day of Autumn Everyone!

I'm celebrating by making a pumpkin angel food cake for a friend.  (I may have to make a few more because it's so good I think we need one for us as well!)

I've been working my way through 2 very different books recently.  One is a quick, easy read that I can read with my 7 year old that has a lot of information I already know but it's the kind of stuff I want to share with my little guy.  The other is the kind of book that I want to get through, but I'm struggling because it's a bit more complex reading and by the end of the night I'm thinking I should just watch the PBS documentary that goes along with the book.

This is the book I'm flying through.  Author Scott Meyer is a former editor-in-chief of Organic Gardening magazine.  The chapters are organized as such:

Growing Your Own
Going Wild for Food
Save it for Later
Working with Animals
Caring for the Home
Then there's an appendix (which is Growing A-Z a guide on how, what & when to grown each veggie,) resources, etc.

I liked the chapter on foraging.  It brought back a childhood memory I have of being out early one morning with uncles and cousins and my family, walking through a mossy woodland forest in Canada, collecting mushrooms and maybe fiddleheads.  (My uncle Clement could identify what was safe to eat.  I wouldn't attempt that on my own.)  It also reminded me of last month at a fruit farm here in CT when the Asian women on the truck with me asked the farmer if they might be permitted to pick the nuts from the Chestnut tree growing at the edge of the property.  He turned them down.  I wonder if he had plans for the nuts himself.

What I like about the book is that it doesn't have to apply to "city" homesteaders.  I'm just looking to be more self-sufficient and the information is helpful.  The chapter on preserving food offers different ideas and things I might actually try!  After all, if I'm growing all this food, I don't want any of it to go to waste.

I also enjoyed the chapter on caring for the home, although I'm all set in the compost department, which covers the largest section of this part of the book.

Yesterday while I was reading the book with my cup of coffee, I was inspired to run out to the garden!  This was my harvest.  I cleared out some weeds that had taken over a row and prepped it for the lettuce & arugula I'll put in soon.

The other book I'm trying to get through is this:

It's about global warming, which sparked an interesting discussion with my 7 year old, who apparently has been informed by an older family member that there's no such thing.  This book sets out to prove that carbon dioxide buildup is causing global warming, but with my son I'm steering the conversation towards fossil fuels and natural resources & alternative energies.  Honestly, while I'm getting a lot of out parts of the book, other parts have me lost and putting it down for another cup of coffee.

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