Just recently, we got an opportunity to move back to Colorado, from Texas, and we jumped on it (the kids, not so much). I love it here. The majestic Rockies, the beautiful blue skies, the parks and lakes, they are all breathtaking. It’s not just the obvious beauty of the State I appreciate, but also the strong commitment and responsibility of its residents towards the environment and all things local. We have easy access to recycling, alternative fuel sources, local farms and products. We are encouraged to always shop local and help our community, our county and our city.
I am enjoying all the perks of living in Colorado and buying local. I am surrounded by farms and dairies and intend to utilise them all.
I love having our milk delivered by a local dairy. Every Friday the milk miraculously appears in my blue cooler outside, along with anything else I ordered from them. Last week it was organic raisin bread, juice, lemonade and milk. This week, just milk and raspberry juice drink. Its fun to wake up and find the goodies waiting for us. We use Royal Crest Dairy for our milk, but there are a couple of other ones around too.
As for the farms and farmers markets, most are closed for the season and I can’t wait for May/ June when they all open and I can go exploring. Many of the farms around participate in the CSA programs. Community Supported Agriculture programs allow you to share in the harvest of the farm you choose to support. It’s a great way for the farms to plan how much they are going to plant that season because they already have a guaranteed demand. Not only do the CSA members get farm fresh, local produce, they are helping their farmers, their economy and the environment. Apart from the CSA program, which can be a bit expensive, there are always the farm stands that open at the farms during the growing season and also the farmers markets that are pretty much present in all the cities. I have access to three farmers markets nearby and a couple of farm stands. I am way excited for Summer to get here!
There is a farm that has been providing a Winter CSA program and also offering bread, cheese and fresh, pastured eggs. I have been ordering eggs from Grant Family Farms for the past couple of weeks. They have a CSA pick up really close to my house and I swing by there and pick up the eggs. The eggs are amazing. They are all different colours and sizes and they taste a million times better than any egg at the grocery store.
I feel really good about feeding fresh, healthy eggs, from ‘honestly, happy hens” to my family and also, I feel good that I can support my local farmer.
Even when I lived in Pearland, Texas, we had a farm nearby in Alvin, Froberg’s Farm ( off of Hwy 6). They had a big farm stand and grew quite a big selection of vegetables. I was even able to take my kids strawberry picking a few seasons; my favourite past time growing up in England and I was so excited to introduce my kids to it. They did have fun, looking for those red, juicy jewels hiding amongst the leaves. Then we got them home and stuffed our faces with juicy strawberries straight from the basket, or cooked up in a crispy crumble. The rest were made into a luscious strawberry jam that lasted us all Summer.
Organic, natural, healthy and local, all these ideas are “in” right now. Everywhere, in every city, you can find a farm that can cater to you. Research your local areas and search out the local farmers and farmers markets. If you support your local community, that only makes your community stronger and your economy stronger. Of course, I don’t want to get all preachy, because its not always easy to be local. In this day and age, we need to manage our budgets and if that means going an extra mile to get that deal, we are doing it. Being local is not just about shopping at your local farm, it’s also about shopping at your neighbours store. One example, today I went to get the oil changed in my car. I drove 5 miles or so to go to the shop in the neighbouring city which had serviced my car before. They were really busy and asked if I could come back. As I was driving back home, I passed an oil change place that didn’t seem too busy and decided to just take my car there. This place is around the corner from my house. The guy there was as nice as could be and gave me a discount etc and so forth. I felt a tad bit guilty when I saw on his door, “Think Broomfield”. What that means is, shop your local businesses first basically. Yeah..I had not done that..at first.
So, from now on, I will try harder.
Any cool local places y’all like to visit on a regular basis?