Grow Your Groceries

Admittedly, I don’t have a green thumb. Some things, however, seem to grow despite my ineptness. Take, for example, the jungle of kale and lettuce that’s taken over my garden at the moment. I grew so many sugar snap peas that I was giving huge quantities away to neighbors and friends of friends. I have recently started seed saving and it feels good, knowing that I have what I call “survivor seeds” that grow well in my tempermental environment.

In spring, I bought dozens of plants for the garden. Living further from a grocery store means that I can’t just pop into the store for strawberries on a whim, so it’s important to me to be able to produce fresh food. We have a few dwarf apple trees and a fig tree that should produce in the next year or two.

Living on the coast means there is an abundance of fresh seafood, too. The plan is to get clam guns (we’re waiting for a garage sale steal of a deal) and for the price of a shellfish license, we’ll be able to cook up delicious clam strips and chowder. If I am really productive, I’ll can some to have on hand in the pantry.

Yesterday, I noticed that the blackberries across the street had finally begun to ripen. I picked a half a bowl and will do more as they continue to ripen. The goal is to be able to add them to my yogurt now, freeze some to make a pie in the winter, and make some kind of compote or jam. I love being in the sunshine, picking berries for dessert. It’s productive and enjoyable. I have really been making a conscious effort to put my time and money where they truly benefit me, now and in the future.

At the grocery store, I did a rough calculation and figure that for the same amount of berries, I would have paid about $20. All it took was a nominal amount of time and effort and now that $20 can go toward something else, such as investing, paying off my mortgage or my garage sale clam guns.

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