Real Life

Farmers To You Year Round

or How to get Farm Fresh Food even in the middle of Winter in New England.

I love everything about our local Farmers Market, from the farm fresh produce to seeing friends, getting to know the farmers, and bringing my recyclable bags, which for some reason I don’t remember to bring anywhere else but the farmers market – go figure. And right about now, in the midst of all the holiday cooking and baking, I miss it the most.  As luck would have it, I was introduced to Farmers To You and invited to try it out by ordering so I could write about it – perfect timing – just before Thanksgiving.

This is a terrific find – it links New England farmers and producers to Boston-area families bringing the best local, sustainable and artisanal foods to your family year-round. Farm to Table – yes! Farmers To You delivers to several cities and towns – and now in Newton! You can check your zip code here to see where the closest delivery spot is to you.

What did we get? To start – great produce – romaine lettuce, mixed organic shoots from Pete’s Greens of Vermont, then some organic sweet potatoes and carrots, some awesome flour from The Nitty Gritty Grain Company, and an unbelievably gorgeous and delicious double crust apple pie from Champlain Orchards. All wonderful and fresh, and since I was responsible for roasted vegetables and salad, it was easy.

Oh, and cheese – gorgeous Moses Sleeper cheese from Jasper Hill Farm, organic tofu from Vermont Soy, Vegan eggrolls from Rhapsody Natural Foods – the non-vegans loved these, too. And salmon from Starbird Fish Company, which came in super handy with the vegan egg rolls when someone was too sick to go to Thanksgiving dinner and we had all the gorgeous vegetables and salad but no turkey (don’t worry – we had a do-over the next day).

My next order will include this yummy ice cream…I tried it at a friend’s house and it definitely needs to be parked in our freezer…for a few days anyway. Check out their Facebook Page here.

 

Along with this pizza crust from Red Hen Baking CompanySo excited to be able to get farm fresh produce and artisanal products year round! I can’t wait for my next order – Newton pick up is super easy – just off Lincoln Street in Newton Highlands.

 Disclaimer – I did not receive any compensation for this post just a credit so I could sample the service to aid in the review.

Giving Thanks

I have a lot to be thankful for – my family (all home!), friends, and my local and online communities, and when good online friends are local, you get something wonderful. Shout out to Kim, Debbie and Leah, all from my online community who have become the most wonderful group of co-workers/friends/partners in crime adventure ever. From blog makeovers to making me do live video to keeping me younger than I appear, they get me out of my comfort zone and occasionally my own way, with grace, humor and kindness. #wdwww

Check out their blogs here and see what they’re up to  – it’s always good!

Debbie –  A Little Bit about A Lot of Things

Kim –   Family Friendly Boston

Leah – City Living (Boston)

 

Best Gifting Practices – Uncommonly Good

For a long time now we have had a present cabinet. Yes, as in gifts. And, no, I am not super organized. It’s for when I need an emergency gift, you know, when you’ve forgotten an event is coming up – What, you don’t do that? Well, I do and sometimes the cabinet is stocked and I breathe a sigh of relief, and sometimes I am down to some hair ties and a pen.

So I clearly can’t leave special events like birthdays, graduations, weddings or anniversaries to chance, those need more planning, and, well, I have that covered, too. Actually, UncommonGoods does. When they contacted me to share my gift giving practices, I was thrilled – I love their site because they have cool, creative gifts in a wide range of prices, and make shopping by occasion super easy. Located in Brooklyn, NY, they select works from talented artists and artisans, and, as an added bonus, they’re a B Corporation. What is that? It means they do work on social and environmental problems, including wage levels, environmental impact, and giving back to the community. That’s to the good of everyone.

But you need gifts.

Our family just wrapped up one graduation season, and while the next is a ways off, the holidays are around the corner and I’m betting on UncommonGoods to help with my list. Love this dreamy retro camera that takes romantic, light soaked photos and will charm any photographer, artist or film student. The Diana Camera is super cool, dare I say hipster? – and uses 120 film.

The Diana Camera at Uncommongoods.com from Capabilitymom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Math mug Uncommongoods from capabilitymom

Less art and more math? There’s fun with numbers in this math-y mug or great geeking out clock (equations included).

geek equation clock uncommongoods from capabilitymom

Looking for something a bit more personal? You’re covered there, too, with gifts that can be made to honor a special someone. And I love that the Uncommongoods site lets you search by occasion, interest, price, and category. No small feat, that.

And having just reached a milestone wedding anniversary, I also know a bit about great gifts for anniversaries (or weddings). Keeping it personal is key, and so easy to do here. My favorites for couples include these gorgeous faux bois personalized mugs, just pair with your favorite fair trade coffee.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A new go-to gift: Put together a mixed six pack of local craft beer, the beer labels are cool and the names are usually funny, and if you put that together with these wordy glasses, you have a really thoughtful gift. And you might even pick up a vocab word or two.uncommon goods wordy beer glasses

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feeling the sentiment? Me, too. Love this company,

 

 

Check out their blog  which features their artists, design inspiration, and even more gift guides.

 

Disclaimer: While I did receive payment for sharing this post, all opinions are always my own.

The Fun, and Itchy, Days of Summer

After Bite® "The Itch Eraser" is America's #1 selling insect bite treatment. Its pen-like vial that is easy and convenient to carry and use. The ammonia based product relieves the itch from insect bites. Efficacy studies and 32 years of happy customers prove that it provides IMMEDIATE RELIEF FOR INSECT BITES. After Bite® Kids is specially formulated to provide fast relief for children. We removed the ammonia in order to make this formula non-stinging on sensitive skin. With Eucalyptus Oil, Tea Tree Oil, Baking Soda, Aloe Vera and Vitamin E, this unique cream formula provides relief from insect bites. capabilitymom.com

capability mom The Itch Eraser

Summer means more time outdoors, dinners on the patio, hikes, the beach, lake, or body of water of your choosing, outdoor movies, and, for us, anyway, it also means more bug bites and itchy skin. We are a family who, as a whole, tends to get bites, rashes and dry itchy skin. Really. One year, our daughter returned from camp and looked like she could be on a poster for common skin problems of summer with arrows pointing to different part of her body where she had poison oak, sunburn, bug bites, and a rash from the boat she was in for two days. This same daughter also once (also at camp) had an allergic reaction to an antihistamine cream. Yes, thank you, I know that is not that common. My husband is known to get rashes upon rashes. And once my scalped itched for almost two years (no, thank you, it was not head lice). Yes, we are that family who sends photos to our dermatologist. What is this? Chiggers? Check. Poison Ivy? Check. Contact dermatitis? Check. You would think we would learn to stay indoors, my rash acquiring family and I, but no, we head out time and time again, and we gather all the bug bites, too.

Luckily, there is a local New Hampshire company that makes great products that lets us continue to leave the house and they sent me products to review. How did they know?

Here’s what I know – this company has been making After Bite® “The Itch Eraser” for 32 years and it is top selling insect bite treatment in the U.S. And my particular and itch prone family has all tried and loved it – there is even a a sensitive cream version that I used on the supremely sensitive child, of course. And I like the lock feature on the spray with a clearly notched button so you know which side you’re supposed to hold.

There is also an After Bite® Kids – specially formulated to provide fast relief for children with the ammonia removed so it doesn’t sting sensitive skin. Eucalyptus Oil, Tea Tree Oil, Baking Soda, Aloe Vera and Vitamin E all help to make this cream provide relief from insect bites. I think I’ll bring this to the next family outing with the nieces and nephews. I do love to be prepared so I’ll put some in my Mary Poppins Bag.

capabilitymom.com seabags

From the website:

After Bite + After Bite Kids:  Available at Walmart, CVS, Target, Rite Aid, Walgreens, Kroger, and at afterbite.com. Right now on their site, After Bite is offering a free super cute Professor Bugsbee (their mascot) key chain with the purchase of any two products.

The Itch Eraser is an all-in-one solution that stops the itch and heals skin affected by allergic itches and hives, poison ivy, oak and sumac, sunburns, rashes, redness and insect bites. It’s dermatologist-recommended and easy to apply, and available in a Max Strength Gel, Max Strength Spray and Sensitive Cream for every type of skin itch. Sold at Rite Aid, HEB Groceries, Kinney Drugs, Wegmans, Harmon, Hannaford, Bass Pro, Shopko Grocery, and at theitcheraser.com.

 

Disclosure: I received samples of products to facilitate this review but as always, all opinions are my own.

 

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