It was a hot week with lots to do on the farm but, as usual, the moments of adrenaline and excitement revolved around the farm critters. This afternoon, after a long sweaty day of seeding crops, weeding and prepping the ground for next week’s transplanting, Bill went to check on the cows. All the cows were out on pasture, enjoying themselves, but Toaster the bull was nowhere to be found. Bill looked in all the usual places: Asleep in the barn? Following around and hassling the cows? In the shady pine grove? He even started looking at some of the more concerning options, like the old well (filled in with dirt, but you never know…) and still no sign of Toastie. If you drove by the farm at about 5 pm you might have seen Bill, cruising the fields and roads and woods on Eli’s bicycle (if an 11-year-old’s bicycle is at hand, then an 11-year-old’s bicycle is what you use to get around). At his wit’s end, Bill poked his head into the old shed in the next field over and, yes, there was Toaster, happily relaxing inside this nearly fallen down and unused structure. Toaster had left the cows, gotten out of the pasture he was supposed to be in, crossed a rock wall, and squirmed his way into a shed that he could have knocked over with a bit of effort. All’s well that ends well, and at the least we can thank him for providing me with with yet another week of moderate entertainment for the newsletter!
To my surprise, there are still blueberries available to reserve for August 6th (Sunday), 7th (Monday) and 10th (Thursday)! If you would still like to order a 10 lb flat of Red House Farm organic wild blueberries for $40, please fill your name in the space next to any available number on this spreadsheet. I want to give anyone who hasn’t signed up yet a week more to do so, but if at that point there are still blueberries available, I’ll take names from the ‘Wait list for a second box’ column (on the right of the spreadsheet). So feel free to add your name to that wait list if you would like to reserve a second box of berries if they become available.
For those of you who were members in 2015, you may remember our farm apprentice from Nepal, Sayni Chaudhury. When Sayni returned home that August, many of us made a commitment to help support the work that she does in southwest Nepal. Sayni is an incredible woman and she has continued to develop and expand her Nepali orphanage and women’s education center, Sisterhome. At Sisterhome she provides an education for both girls and boys in the community, she advocates and provides a safe place for girls escaping servitude, she lobbies to put an end to the social “death” of widowed women, she teaches women trades so they can have some level of financial independence, and much more. Those of you who made an annual pledge to Sisterhome for five years will receive an email this week reminding you of your commitment (we’re in the third year of five). If not, please let me know! And if you weren’t able to contribute in the past but would like to this year, please also let me know. It feels incredible to have a way to provide some support for people doing wildly challenging work in a far away corner of the world. I feel truly lucky that we’re able to help to support Sayni in this small way. Click here to see an album of pictures, letters of thanks and more from Sisterhome this spring. If you’d like to see more pictures from 2015-16, click here.
If you see some purple leaves in with your basil this week, don’t be surprised! We’re giving a mix of purple and green basil this year. Also, at each pickup this week I’ll set out a bucket of Tulsi, or ‘Holy Basil,’ on the Extras table for you to take a few branches of if you’re interested in it. Tulsi is a medicinal herb often used in Ayurvedic healing, and in that tradition is considered an adaptogen that promotes longevity. Bring some home and try making a tea with the leaves!
Click here to see a picture of Eli using the Ecoweeder with Bill. Have a great week, and enjoy your summery meals!
Reba and the HCF crew
Summer CSA Week 7 of 16 [within brackets = you’ll receive a selection of these items this week]: Salad Mix, Zucchini and/or Zephyr Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Green Peppers, Basil, Dill, [Cucumber, Green Peppers, Carrots, Tulsi]
Summer Week 7 add-on shares: Eggs, Yogurt, Milk, Bread, Tofu, Cheese, Mushrooms, Oil & Vinegar