1st: Owen received a scooter (for the fall and as a reward for something...for those without children, I will spare you the details). We ordered it online because he wanted a Batman scooter to match our neighbor Andrew's. Already keeping up with the neighbors, huh? So, they've been scootering around the block together, Owen scoots from the parking lot to our church service (for you RVC folks, you know that walk can be killer with a grumpy toddler), and we are finally stroller-free on our neighborhood walks! YEAH!
2nd: Grandma Suzie "Sushi" came to town. Owen was so excited to see her at the airport. He's usually not that affectionate or cuddly, but he spent the first day stuck to her like glue. They stayed home together while I was at work on Friday, playing Play-doh, reading books, scootering, and, of course, shopping! Owen was Sushi's good luck charm, for the bargain hunter found many a deal for her fall wardrobe here in Fresno. We also took our first trip to Old Town Clovis to do a little antique shopping too. We were all sad to see her go on Monday morning, but we were thankful for each minute she was here!
3rd: Soon after moving to Fresno, the Rose family got us connected with T&D Willey Farms in Madera and their CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). Tom and Denesse own and operate an organic farm about 30 minutes away, supplying grocers around the country. They also supply families with weekly boxes of produce. You've seen my neice's Flat Stanley in one of these boxes before:
Yes, Owen's first taste of radish. It's super-fresh (usually picked the day before) and Denesse does a great job of supplying recipes to go with the less common items. For example, this week, our box contained the following:
- 5 Red potatoes
- 2 White Onions
- 1 head of Romaine Lettuce
- 1 bunch of Swiss Chard
- 3 Roma Tomatoes
- 1 bunch of Baby Dill
- 1 pound of green snap beans
- 1 bunch of collard greens
- 1 bag of Seedless grapes
Between Dream Dinners and the CSA, I haven't been to the grocery store for anything beyond milk and bread lately. If you live in Fresno, ask me about it. It's all organic and WAY cheaper than the grocery store.
Anyhoo, back to the story, we went on their seasonal farm tour this Saturday. A worker, oddly dressed like Che Guevara(sorry, I forgot to take pictures of the actual driver...but he seriously looked just like him, beret AND camo), drove a tractor with 4 or 5 flatbed trailers behind it (3 families per trailer). Tom narrated along the way, telling all of us CSA members about how the food gets from soil to table. I couldn't believe Owen stayed attentive and did not jump off the trailer for an hour (except to walk the rows with the group), but the strawberries were pretty powerful motivators. We also got to see how they wash and package everything, so it was like our own episode of either "Dirty Jobs" or "How Its Made". If only our driver looked like Mike Rowe.
They grow such a variety of produce there, and they rotate the acreage to grow crops year round. It was cool to hear about the veggies that are coming this winter (artichokes...my favorite) and spring. For you Dwight Schrute fans, Mr. Willey farms beets too.
We never know what's going to be in our box, so it's like a culinary surprise every week. Michael has tried more veggies in the past few months than in the past 30 years, and Owen...well, you know he'll eat anything.
Pardon all of the Flat Stanley photos; as you'll remember, we're compiling photos of Fresno's finest for her school project. If anyone is going to Yosemite or King's Canyon soon and you want to take Stanley along for the ride, let me know. He's a good traveler.
Before our Texas friends wonder if we've gone TOO granola, do know that we ended the morning with a lunch at Wienerschnitzel.