Once my first child started eating solids, I became mildly obsessed with what I would be feeding him. Actually, it really began when I became pregnant. I was more mindful of what I was fueling my body with. After all, there was a little person growing in my belly and I wanted to eat well. I started reading labels more carefully. I wanted to know where my food was coming from. I quickly became annoying about it (ask my hubby) and started to question every piece of food. That is saying a lot because when I was expecting, I was an eating machine, so there were countless morsels of tasty goodness that I consumed.
Now that I have two little ones and a hubby that has joined the “let’s eat healthy” bandwagon, I put a lot of thought into what we are eating. As the main grocery store shopper of the household, I feel like the gatekeeper. I get to choose what comes into the house and I get to choose what stays on the store shelves. As my small children grow, it is so very important to me that I establish healthy habits for them now. You need to be an informed consumer and know what you are eating!
In our house, we are trying to stick with whole foods – you know, not packaged or processed. Heavy on the fruits, veggies, and grains, and less of the ingredients you cannot pronounce. I sometimes was frustrated, however, at the selection of produce at my local grocery stores. I would come with my list only to find the green beans looking like they had been run over by a truck, the blueberries were mushy, and the lettuce was wilted. Sometimes I would have a hard time finding local, delicious looking fruits and veggies. It made me kind of angry.
But, I wasn’t angry for long. Many friends of mine had started buying their produce through a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). Buying local, seasonal food directly from the farmer is a win-win for the consumer and the producer. I started doing my homework and I was on board!
In the Seattle area, there are many CSAs to choose from. Check out Local Harvest to see what farms are near you. Many deliver to a drop off area near your home weekly and you pay throughout the season. Whatever is fresh and seasonal will come directly to you from the farm. Each farm differs on price, length of season, the produce they grow, and what comes in each delivery. You really need to check them all out to see which one is the best fit for your family.
We pick up our first bag of food this week and my four year old is excited to see what we’re going to get. We’re looking forward to fresh cherries, strawberries, peaches, and plums…and whatever else happens to be in there. Some even include recipes in each delivery so you have some cooking ideas for the week. Love that.
Summer is a great season for healthy eating because there is so much yummy and fresh food available. Take full advantage and serve your kids all of those colorful fruits and vegetables!
Have you tried a CSA or have you thought about it?