Stone seats carved to look like fish, bronze lobster statues green with age, and the delicate smell of grass and brightly colored flowers. Such are the environs in one of the green spaces in Boston’s Seaport. As I lounged on one of the stone fishes reading and musing a few days ago, the smell of rich soil reminded me of my garden back in Maine with raspberries, blueberries, peppers, tomatoes, and lettuces came to mind. The rustling of the leaves seemed to be the scratching of the hens plucking up tasty bits of kitchen scraps and churning the rest into the garden bed. I miss the immediacy of nature that life in rural Maine provided here in the concrete maze. It was so easy to compost, garden, recycle and stay close to the natural rhythm of Earth and her seasons; it is such a struggle to keep that connection in Boston. I yearn to rekindle that relationship that has dwindled and sputtered to cooling embers.
When we move to Revere in two months, I’m going to start practicing vermiculture, maintaining earth worms that live in the top 18” of the soil, to break down the non-meat and non-dairy kitchen scraps and plant trimmings in the house. I think I could even put Chloe’s litter box messes in there, too, as she uses the wheat litter. The worms need a container to live in that is dark, keeps moisture in, and provides oxygen. I have a small plastic tote that I’ll use. The product the worms produce will then be used to fertilize my houseplants and the kitchen herb garden I’ll start in pots in our new home. Vermiculture is a new practice for me, though well established in homesteader dwellings in urban settings coast to coast.
In recent months, I’ve tightened up the eating standards in my home. I stopped purchasing and using soy milk and similar products after reading various independent research articles on soy products and health effects. They made me uneasy. Then today I read an article on Food Renegade that put all the various research I’d read and others I hadn’t read into a single article. I’m glad I stopped using soy! I had no idea about the high levels of phytoestrogen and the health problems associated with them, but it makes sense. I stopped using soy about three months ago and last month I was completely shocked that I had no menstrual cramps to speak of! I’m usually incapacitated by them if I don’t start taking naproxen sodium the evening before I’m due to start. I didn’t take any naproxen sodium last month and so far I’ve been cramp free during the prelude to this month’s cycle. I can’t say it’s all due to cutting out soy, or at all, but it’s certainly an interesting and fortunate series of events.
Since cutting out soy and milk, I’ve depended on nut milks for gluten-free baking and cooking. I plan on making my first batch of almond milk this week. I’ll let you know how it goes! From there, I’ll try coconut milk and creamer. Hmm, what about almond milk-based Irish cream? It might work. I’ll try it.
What new recipes or homesteading skills have you tried lately? How did it turn out?
P. S. The site is finally working again! It was behaving oddly for a while.