If you’ve been around this blog for a little while, you know I’m kind of obsessed with our local farms. We can frequently be found at local farms picking our own cherries, blueberries, strawberries, apples…gosh I love living in Pennsylvania.
Now that we own a few acres of land, we’ve also started our own mini-orchard which I am determined to keep organic.
Organic food was never really something that crossed my mind until I had kids and we started a garden of our own. Once it came time to spray our own garden with nasty chemicals to “help” our vegetables, I just couldn’t do it. There was no way I was going to spray “Mr. Yuck” on something I was going to feed my kids. If I wouldn’t want my kids to eat a chemical, why would I put it on their food on purpose?
My husband didn’t think it was all that big of a deal. “What do you think grocery stores have on their produce?”
I didn’t want to think about that. Gag. But the organic stuff at the store is very ‘spensive.
So our own garden is organic, and even though I’m typically a major cheapskate, I do shell out the big bucks for organic milk for the baby and free-range eggs when I’m at the store. It’s a small change that only costs a few extra dollars each week, but over the course of time is keeping a lot of nasty chemicals out of my kids’ little bodies.
I’ve wanted for a while to get a local source for beef and chicken, but it just wasn’t high enough on my priority list for me to make happen. Sure I was on board for switching my own diet to more of a whole foods lifestyle (let’s be real, people, I’m never giving up Ben & Jerry’s) but the hubby and kids were less enthusiastic.
Then when Eddie was in Africa a few weeks ago they ate a mostly whole foods diet out of necessity and guess what? He came back and said how much better he felt, he wasn’t hungry during the day, and he lost almost 15 pounds in just a little over 2 weeks. A lot of the weight loss was simply due to being on a construction crew working in 110-degree heat.
It was the push he needed to get on board.
I’m sooooo excited that we are joining a local CSA for the first time. There is even a creamery in our area that DELIVERS grass-fed, GMO-free milk, beef, and free-range eggs.
Guess what else???
I’ve been doing a lot of price comparisons and it turns out that it is going to be cheaper for us to have local, organic produce delivered (to our freaking door, you guys!) than it has been for us to be buying the same stuff from the grocery store. Not to mention that buying from farms in your area supports the local economy and small business owners (the farmers).
WHY haven’t we been doing this all along? I’m a little slow on the uptake, but I did the math, people and I made a handy chart to put it in.
That’s $46.47 total from the grocery store vs only $40.92 from our local places AND, since I placed an auto-delivery order on the cage-free, vegetarian-fed eggs from the local farm, the price went down even more, to $2.99/dozen. Plus the local farm items include 100% organic produce in addition to cage-free eggs and hormone-free grass-fed milk and beef. Delivered. To Our Door. For LESS money. That’s over $280 a year in savings.
I know not everyone can afford to buy organic, we certainly can’t afford to do it for everything we eat either. And anyway, who wants to give up Oreos? But I do think it’s really important to know what is going into your body and especially into your children’s bodies. We are trying to live by the 80/20 rule that I learned from one of my favorite blogs, Weed Em And Reap. 80% healthy stuff, 20% crap. I feel like we can realistically handle that.
Now I’m on a mission to encourage everyone to try to find local sources because I’m living proof that it can actually be cheaper and more convenient (It doesn’t get much more convenient than home delivery!) to eat local and organic food than it is to take a trip to the grocery store. It just takes a little research.
Obviously, people who don’t live in PA (Why don’t you live here, again? PA is the best.) might have a harder time finding local sources, but ask around. Go to farmer’s markets and talk to the farmers. They know people who know people.
And let me know if you find any secret local treasures!
If you liked this post, then you’re going to LOVE this post that features my top five tips for finding afforable organic produce.