Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Local Love.

Starting this week my writing will become pretty solid due to all kinds of fun adventures coming up-  I'm excited about this, albeit a little intimidated with keeping a steady pace, but I will do my best to report back to the masses as often as my computer is within typing distance.  Summer is already upon us, and in the East Bay that means festivals, events, markets, fairs, tastings, tours and backyard parties galore.  Literally.  I think I have something happening every single weekend (along with a few weekdays thrown in) during the month of June.  Not that I mind, the exploration of all things foodie has me running rampant, anticipating some of the best and brightest blogging possibilities out there.  It should be an action packed month for sure! 

One thing to mention:  Fresh Food May is over, technically.  The thing is, we LOVE the concept so much that I don't think it's realistically ending anytime soon.  I'm still going to markets, still buying local and still enjoying every moment of eating only the freshest food I can find.  The possibilities are endless really, I feel like there are so many places out there that still need exploring.  We are blessed to live in an area that is absolutely brimming with the resources that make it possible to live easily and happily this way.  There's no excuses really.  The hubby and I have been feeling healthier, more energetic and frankly, just plain better about ourselves for choosing this lifestyle of seasonal eating- why stop? 

The main thing I've noticed this past month is that slowly, both he and I have stopped grazing like cattle on over-processed foods that aren't good for us.  Instead of pretzel sticks, we reach for apricots.  There's a bowl of cherries on the counter at all times.  Handmade beef jerky is the savory snack of choice, along with fresh nuts, cheese and crunchy vegetables.  For lunch I will steam an artichoke instead of running to some fast food joint in search of french fries.  It's amazing how changing your eating habits can change your lifestyle.  In no way am I against your typical run of the mill chain restaurant cheeseburger every now and then, I mean c'mon, who can resist?  But I've discovered that the desire to gorge on junk food fades pretty quickly once the indulgence is fully consumed and digested, leaving you feeling bloated, heavy and sluggish- that can't be good... Can it? 

I've spoken to folks from outside of the Bay Area about this whole idea and the main response I've encountered was, "Oh my gosh, you guys are so lucky you are able to do that!"  The reality is that not all states are created equal when it comes to fresh, seasonal eating.  The people of California are lucky to have the resources to live and eat the way we do.  With the addition of venues like The Ferry Building Marketplace, The Oxbow Public Market and The Bluxome Street Meet Market to our already booming list of local Farmers Markets, there are endless opportunities out there, in our own backyards, to eat fresh.  We are surrounded by farms and dairies in practically every direction- most of which are accessible to the public and love visitors.  Driving out to the "actual" Hog Island location in Marshall for fresh-off-the-boat oysters or Cowgirl Creamery in Petaluma to sample fine cheeses is a luxury for us locals, a privilege that should be taken advantage of as much as possible. 

I love living and eating here.  I enjoy supporting local farmers, artisans and craftsmen.  The joy I've found in doing so is sure to stick with me and I encourage everyone to get out there and try it for themselves.  Go to your local farmers' market, explore your surrounding areas and see what you can find.  Recommend your findings to others, share in the fun of a day out exploring the wharf, a winery or a simple strawberry patch.  You'll discover the most amazing things and meet the most wonderful people who are truly passionate about their craft.  It's refreshing and invigorating to be a part of...

Now get out there!


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