Food, Community And All Things Sustainable

May 27, 2008

Urban gardens, farmers markets and other fun stuff

Gardening season has started in earnest. I've heard from lots of folks that they planned to finish planting their gardens this past weekend - a Memorial Day tradition is this area. We had the perfect weather for gardening.

Had a lovely Memorial Day weekend: Saturday was spent at the farmers market. Sunday was breakfast at Stumpjack, conversation with two new friends, followed by a visit to the Hamilton Wood Type Museum. J & S came along to the museum, where we got a tour and watched our new Stumpjack friends printing with wood type on the hand operated printing presses. We also learned that HWTM will celebrate their 10th anniversary on Memorial Day weekend in 2009. Monday was the Memorial Day Parade followed by brunch at a dear friend's house in celebration of her birthday. Happy birthday K -- all the best to you!

The local farmers market is taking off. We had a good group of vendors and nice customer traffic. Lots of folks stopped at our vendor booth, chatted with us about gardening, and purchased items. I'm really liking the idea of collaborating with other (mostly) urban gardeners
and artisans so that we can offer some really unique wares at the farmers market. Works well for all concerned.

Wondering what you might find at our booth and at our farmers market? The list expands each week, but here's a sampling:

On Saturday we had in our vendor booth: maple syrup, asparagus, rhubarb, chives, bedding plants (asparagus roots, garlic, chives, raspberries), house plants, rain barrels, and other sustainably produced, repurposed wares.

You will also find the following items in other vendor booths: bedding plants, house plants, spring produce, eggs, doggie biscuits, handcrafted artisan wares (rag rugs, monkey sock dolls, yard art, candles, dish cloths & towels, art work, jewelry) and D Green's Outdoor Cafe - where one can get something good to eat and drink, whilst sitting down and visiting or playing a game! Our farmers market rocks!

May 23, 2008

The Great ATC Exchange

The Great ATC Exchange, 7:00 p.m. tonight at Stumpjack Coffee Company.

What a great idea Kim Persimmons Gal and David had when they came up with the Great ATC Exchange. They are geniuses. I've had such fun creating cards with all the bits of stuff hanging out in my studio.

We'll have fun tonight -- good friends, new friends, music by Kerry Michaels & Tom Reynolds, lots of ATCs to exchange, and good stuff to drink and eat. Who could ask for anything more?

Here's an ATC by quilting diva Colleen Ansbaugh - she's incredible!


And the music poster for our music tonight.............

May 20, 2008

Friends and urban gardens

Yesterday my friend S and I went over to our friend K's house to pick up some sweet grass, sprouted garlic and asparagus roots from her. Off course, we couldn't just do the pick up thing, we had to stay and chat. And that turned into tea and K showing us her latest issue of her favorite farm paper, which lead to more conversation and planning and lunch and more conversation. And three hours later, we had to leave. It was beginning to look like rain and S and I needed to plant that garlic in S's urban garden.

So over to S's house we go. I hit the garden and planted most of the garlic (we had each removed a few pieces to chop up and have for dinner), she made newspaper pots and transplanted some garlic into them. We'll be selling that at the farmers' market on Saturday. We got a lot done in an hour and then decided we'd reward ourselves with some ice cream from the local shoppe in the Washington House Museum. They have the best ice cream!

And then it was time to be off to the City Council meeting, where the urban gardening project was mentioned! I love how the city leaders are so supportive of urban gardening.

I just love the community in which I live, and am continually inspired by all the wonderful artists, business owners and just plain great people who work so hard to make this the incredible community it is.

May 18, 2008

Busy, busy

More vendors at the farmers' market -- fresh asparagus, eggs, honey, green onions, rhubarb and lots of bedding plants and perennials. I just love the vibrancy of a farmers' market in the spring!

And the Art & About Spring Gallery Tour was a total success! We had a great time at the Burtard Studio greeting customers and talking about our art - and selling some of it! And all the artist friends who stopped and spent some time with us. What great friends they are - I'm smiling right now thinking of how they appreciated our various works and encouraged us to continue on.

I'm all pumped for the next tour and have a couple 20 or so new sketches of items to start working on - the ideas never stop.

May 16, 2008

Outdoor Cafe

My friend D just let me know she's opening her Outdoor Cafe at our local farmers' market. I am so excited for her - and for us. Ready to eat food is so good at a farmers' market. What can be better than munching on some fresh bakery, chatting with friends while perusing market stalls, and buying fresh local produce and artisan goods?

I love our little market - well it's not so little. This year 50 vendors signed up, so it's a nice sized market, in a tree shaded park right down town. There's even a market stall with information about urban gardening - and supplies for urban gardening and more!

Visit your local farmers' market this weekend!

May 15, 2008

A dangerous ride to St. Vinny's

Just got back from a bike ride to St. Vinny's where I found a couple yards of incredible 1970's bright green fabric. It's getting washed right now and by tonight will be a new tote. I just love turning old cast off fabrics and notions into cute totes, laptop sleeves, ipod carriers, purses and such.

Wondering about the dangerous part - well, there's an intersection between my place and St. Vinny's that is known for inattentive, in-a-rush drivers who don't yield to bikes or pedestrians.

Well there's one dude driving a big white truck who I don't think will want to turn right on red again, and expect a biker/pedestrian with the walk light to yield to him. He got instructions on who has the right of way at that intersection - all delivered full volume while I was scrawling down his licence plate number, his description and his vehicle description - he even told me what year the vehicle was when I barked the question at him. I hope he's scared enough to never try that stupid human trick again. And me - I'll be walking the bike through that intersection. God am I glad for good brakes!

Finding that fabric sure made my day. Just putting the finishing touches on my "stuff" for a gallery tour this weekend and for our urban gardening stand at the local farmers & artisans market.

May 6, 2008

Spring on the Lake

Ahhhhhh! Spring has arrived - the temps are climbing and there's just a bit of a breeze off the lake, just enough to fly a kite. And the asparagus is up. It's so delicious that I've eaten every bit I purchased at the farmers' market on Saturday. Good thing I have a chance for some more at the Wednesday farmers' market, provided I get there early enough.

Busy, busy today upcycling fabrics into totes, purses and credit card/business card pouches. I've taken the plung with my good friend Soozee, we're selling our "stuff" at the local farmers' market. We are both aficianados of all things recycled and upcycled and urban gardening. So we're takin' our gig to the market. I love farmers' markets and all they have to offer.

May 3, 2008

Farmers' Market Open Today

I really should stay home and clean or wash clothes or something, but it's opening day at the local farmers' market - and I wouldn't miss that for anything!

It feels so good to shake off the winter doldrums, and see what wonders our local growers have coaxed from the cool spring earth. I'm hoping for asparagus and maybe some eggs, too.

Then I'll have to stop at Stumpjack and show them what I bought. And of course, have a coffee drink and a splendid cookie made by Jin. And possibly I'll phone my pal S and coax her to come down and join me.

I'm off............

May 1, 2008

Urban Garden Gathering

Urban gardening is a passion of mine. Some of my BFFs are putting on an Urban Gardening gathering & seminar next week.

Gathering day today with some of my best ever girlfriends for coffee and fun, and I'll bet some planning for future gatherings.

We're foodies, urban gardeners or artisans. I love all these gals - they are such incredible women. They don't know each other, although I know each of them. Let the talkin' begin..................

Local Earth Day activities have propelled some folks in our community into action. My good pal Soozee and I are putting on an Urban Gardening seminar/gathering at our favorite hangout - Stumpjack Coffee Company. So exciting!

Watch for a poster, I'll get one up as soon as it's finalized.

Now for some chai and an incredible treat from Jin - I'm so glad David & Kim sell her goddess food at the Stump.