Sunday, March 14, 2010

femivore?

do i have to add this to the ever growing list of made up phrases that are used to describe me?
according to this recently posted article on NYTimes: "Femivorism is grounded in the very principles of self-sufficiency, autonomy and personal fulfillment that drove women into the work force in the first place."
the article goes on to describe the way that i feel i have been trying to steer my life:
Given how conscious (not to say obsessive) everyone has become about the source of their food — who these days can’t wax poetic about compost? — it also confers instant legitimacy. Rather than embodying the limits of one movement, femivores expand those of another: feeding their families clean, flavorful food; reducing their carbon footprints; producing sustainably instead of consuming rampantly. What could be more vital, more gratifying, more morally defensible?

i hate that this article, and honestly, the whole idea of femivorism, is so tied up in the women's lib movement. first women were stuck at home, then we were allowed to go work (and most women strongly embraced working outside of the home), more recently feminists have argued over the decision to be a stay at home mom.
i have no desire to be a stay at home mom, but i would love to essentially run a small farm (when i say farm, i mean turn my regular sized back yard/front yard into all producing plants including fruit trees/bushes, and maybe chickens and/or goats) as well as continue to work outside the home. i realize i may be falling prey to that other feminist problem of "having it all," but most of that farming stuff is so far in the future, i am not even worried about it. since most of my femivore dreams can't come true yet, i just try to grow as much of my own food as i can from my community garden plot, get a larger portion of my food directly from farms, and supplement the rest of organic/locally produced items.
to many people, the ideas of independence and self-sufficiency seem like a step backwards in modernity. i don't agree with this, this new idea of modernity is made with a full understanding (and mostly appreciation) of technology and it's impact on the world. it is not a complete rejection of technology or civilization (these would be steps backwards), instead it is a broader viewing of the world, it's people, and how we effect nature.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

oryx and crake

homo sapiens doesn't seem able to cut himself off at the supply end. he's one of the few species that doesn't limit reproduction in the face of dwindling resources. in other words-and up to a point, of course- the less we eat, the more we fuck.

how do you account for that? said jimmy.

imagination, said crake. men can imagine their own deaths, they can see them coming, and the mere thought of impending death acts like an aphrodisiac. a dog or a rabbit doesn't behave like that. take birds- in a lean season they cut down on the eggs, or they won't mate at all. they put their energy into staying alive themselves until times get better. but human beings hope they can stick their souls into someone else, some new version of themselves, and live forever.

as a species we're doomed by hope, then?

you could call it hope. that, or desperation.

but we're doomed without hope, as well, said jimmy.

only as individuals, said crake cheerfully.


"oryx and crake" margaret atwood



also read her newest book "year of the flood"
great "speculative fiction" (she refuses to call them sci-fi/fantasy)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

guest blog for ecofiend

****RE-BLOG**** see original post here

We heard from Neale a couple of weeks ago about various ways to eat as locally as possible. I wanted to take some time to tell you about the main way that I have chosen to do my part for the locavore movement. This past spring I joined a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) through a local farmer. If you will remember Neale’s description of a CSA, I subscribe directly to a farmer for a box of produce every week. Because this is a large initial investment, my husband and I share our box with another couple. We subscribe through Angelic Organics, and they have done everything possible to make sure that we enjoy our weekly produce. At the beginning of the season we received a cookbook that is specific to the farm and the produce they grow and every week we receive emails that let us know what will be in our box including even more possible recipes to use.

The farm that I subscribe to has different types of subscriptions, including the option to include fruit or choose a shorter length of time to be subscribed. I signed up for a 20-week share of vegetables and recently added a 4-week winter subscription. Our box is 3/4 of a bushel, it is delivered to a pick-up site about a half mile away (I can walk or ride my bike there), and started in mid June and has 1 week of the regular season left (before the Winter share starts). I think it has been well worth the investment. At times I get a little overwhelmed by how many veggies I need to eat in a week, but I have tried many different vegetables I’d never had and probably never would have bought on my own. I also am finally eating the recommended daily amount of vegetables and have even managed to lose some weight (and keep it off) with this change of diet.

You may think we haven’t been getting any good veggies since it’s been pretty cold recently. Maybe you think that only during midsummer, when tomatoes, peppers, and corn are coming in, that a produce subscription would be worth it. I want to talk about the veggies I got this week in my box, because they are all tasty, beautiful, and out of the ordinary.



This is a selection from our box this week, and because I couldn’t fit everything on the table, I decided to show at least one of each item. Because you may not recognize everything in the picture, I’ll briefly go through each veggie.

Carrots, potatoes, lettuce, spinach, and onions are all fairly common vegetables; we have been getting a couple of pounds or bunches of each the last few weeks. I am fairly familiar with almost everything else that is here, but celeriac and its greens and rutabaga were new to me. I learned from the accompanying newsletter that celery root greens have hollow stems and could therefore be used like straws. I immediately made myself a Bloody Mary with a celery root straw and it added great celery flavor! Rutabaga, like many other root vegetables, are great roasted or mashed like potatoes. Butternut squash, sweet dumpling squash, and acorn squash are great roasted or cooked and tossed with pasta. I love the fact that this late in the year we are still getting fresh salad greens as well as spinach and chard: the latter two can be eaten raw as well as cooked.

I hope this gives you a good idea of what a typical late fall produce box looks like, look into finding a CSA that would fit your needs and budget. Here are a couple of places to start looking for a CSA for you:
thelocalbeet.com (Chicago area)
localharvest.org

Saturday, September 19, 2009

deodorant


i have this serious love/hate relationship with deodorant/antiperspirant. i was antiperspirant free for 6-8 months, only using various "natural" deodorants and at last i went back to antiperspirant because i couldnt handle my smelliness. but as a fairly aware green/eco minded person, i feel like i am betraying my own body. america has quite an obsession with being smelly that many of the european countries dont abide by. we bathe very frequently and invest a lot of money into perfumed lotions, body sprays, deodorants, cologne and millions of other products. antiperspirant is a problem because one of the main ingredients that keeps us from sweating is aluminum. there have been studies done that show aluminum (even in low levels) to be a neurotoxin. even if you question the validity of the studies for whatever reason, does it make much sense to be constantly allowing a metal to be absorbed into your skin? so, after reading about how to make your own deodorant out of very common products, it looks like i will be getting off of antiperspirant once again. here is the link to how to make your own deodorant stick, and please, give me a little bit of leeway if i am slightly stinky, my body needs time to adjust back to being more natural again!

Monday, August 3, 2009

first tomato




first tomato from my garden. yummmmm.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

opening at woman made gallery



i am pleased to announce that i am a part of this years Her Mark 2010 publication and exhibition. the opening is this friday from 6-9. hope to see you there! below is more information from the gallery!

Her Mark 2010
Woman Made Gallery is proud to present Her Mark 2010, a publication with art and poetry by 48 women. Juror Maria Elena Buszek made the art selections, and Maureen Seaton juried the poetry entries. Designed by Karin Kuzniar and edited by Marty Bash, Her Mark 2010 includes a layout with color reproductions, poetry, and weekly calendar pages with holidays and moon cycles.
In addition to the publication, WMG hosts an exhibition featuring most of the Her Mark 2010 artworks. The Artist Reception is on July 31st from 6 to 9 p.m. The Release Party and Reading is on August 2 from 2 to 4 p.m. Her Mark 2010 copies are available at the Artist Reception and Release Party or may be ordered for $15 per copy plus shipping. Please contact WMG by phone, 312-738-0400, or by email, gallery@womanmade.org.
Visual Artists who have their work in Her Mark 2010: Grazyna Adamska-Jarecka, Adriana Baltazar, Barbara Ciurej and Lindsay Lochman, Crisanta de Guzman, Kathleen Elliot, Rebecca Rose Greene, Judithe Hernández, Anjani Khanna, Margaret LeJeune, Aliza Lelah, Suyeon Na, Bonnie Peterson, Shari Pettis, Tara Polansky, Melissa Shook, Alice Simpson, Sylvia Steen, Verna Todd, Kate True, Iris Vazquez, Amy Wainwright, Angilee Wilkerson, Beatrice Wolert, and Elizabeth Wuerffel.
Poets included in Her Mark 2010: Beverly Boyd, Rosemary Ann Davis, Kelley Evans, Veer-Tess Frost, Jane Ellen Glasser, Ona Gritz, H.K. Hummel, Kiki Vera Johnson, Laurie Junkins, Elizabeth Kerlikowske, Anna Leahy, Christine McKee, Coco Owen, Maureen Piggins, JC Reilly, Susan Richardson, cin salach, Mary Kolada Scott, Sheri Sorvillo, Judith Terzi, Judith Valente, Gale Renee Walden, Rachel Jamison Webster, and Andrena Zawinski.
Exhibition Dates: July 31 - August 27, 2009
Release Party: August 2, 2009 - 2-4 p.m.
Woman Made Gallery, 685 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, IL 60642

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

what would i say if....

....i found out i was wrong about climate change?

i don't know too many people who deny that climate change is happening. but i do know some who either don't care, or don't think it is happening very much. either way, these people are the ones who seem to question why we should put much effort into really changing our habits, social norms, and perhaps even our economic structure. the list below answers most of those questions. i quoted the list directly from no impact man. so pop on over there if you want to read some more of what i so generously quoted from!



I am glad we created 5 million or more new jobs here in the United States in the fields of energy efficiency and renewable generation.
I am glad we created a culture that relies less on foreign oil, so that our children can live secure lives, knowing that the energy rug can't be pulled out from under them.
I am glad we have found a way to save people and industry billions upon billions of dollars by making the use of energy more efficient.
I am glad the millions of children who suffer from asthma can now breathe easier thanks to the fact that we aren't pumping the air full of toxins from our exhaust pipes and smokestacks.
I am glad that, by no longer burning oil and coal into our air, we've put an end to acid rain and the devastation of our aquatic life.
I am glad that we created good, reliable, fun-to-use public transportation system so that families no longer have to raid their budgets to pay for cars and gas.
I am glad we've stopped building suburbs, which make people unhappy and [thanks to the happy suburbanites who wrote in] are designed for cars not people, and instead build villages where people can have strong community bonds that help make life fulfilling.
I am glad we now have fuel-efficient automobiles.
I am glad that we've learned as a culture to get off the work-more-to-spend-more treadmill which gobbles up resources and leaves us unfulfilled and instead turned to a way of live full of meaning and purpose.
I am glad we developed local, fresh food systems that care not just about filling bellies but what we put in those bellies.
I am glad that we have rejected the philosophies of survival of the fittest and competition for resources as driving philosophies and have instead embraced a philosophy of compassion and justice.
I am glad that we have understood that a sustainable society cannot work without supporting all of its people and that we looked for and found ways to improve the lives of everyone.
I'm glad that we've come to see people rather than things as our most valuable resource and that, in embracing the respectful and loving principles of not wasting, we have learned not to waste youth in prisons but instead to get them help for their drug addictions and alcoholism.
I am glad that, in realizing our resources are limited, we have come to use them to do what is important and to help each other rather than compete with each other.
I am glad that we have come to see education as the ultimate in sustainable industries.
I am glad that we have developed distributed, renewable energy technologies that allow kids in all parts of the world to have electric light so they can learn how to read.
The list goes on and on, but in short, I am glad that we have embraced the opportunities presented by the crisis of climate change in order to improve our society in ways we should have done anyway.
And now, to turn the question back on those who say that either there is no climate change or that it is not a serious problem:

What would they feel if we did nothing about climate change and they turned out to be wrong?

What would they feel if we buried our heads in the sand, ignored the problem, and then irreversibly damaged the planetary habitat that we depend upon for our health, happiness and security?


although some of my "green" habits are initially cumbersome, time consuming, or difficult to adjust to, i firmly believe they are beneficial to my well being and the planet's as well. i know that just one person doesn't make a huge difference but if enough individuals change than that really can make an impact.