Thursday, October 1, 2009

River cottage

I guess i'm making up for lost time, i havent been able to post for awhile, either that, or i'm just procrastinating....

Anyway... I love watching/reading about people who are leading the kind of life i'd like to have...
Living in the country, running a smallholding, and so on...
I really like shows like "River Cottage Spring" if you are in oz you can watch it on Iview
but I have to say that Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall is a little, well, annoying. His heart is definitely in the right place, and his shows are great.

But i can't help feeling jealous of his beautiful cottage, with its pretty vegetable patch and its neat paths. And all his employees..... no wonder the house is neat and tidy, his rows of vege are straight and weed free.... He has a team of gardeners and people to look after his livestock.

He is, if not rich, comfortably well off and a bit out of touch with "poor" people, (like me), who out of necessity, put budget ahead of other considerations. When you are living on $250 aud a week, which is what the single parents pension is, nearly all of that goes to rent. So even a couple of dollars more a kilo for free range, or organic food, is simply impossible. Instead of belittling people for choosing cheaper food, we need to educate people about growing their own, and preparing food from scratch. (Which I admit he is trying to do... in his own way... but still average Jill will be intimidated by the fact he has loads of people to help him.)

I cannot afford organic, free range meat, so we simply do not eat meat. If we could harvest our own meat, and be sure of the animal's quality of life and it being chemical free, i'm sure we would eat it sometimes, well not me but HH definitely. We generally can't afford organic fruit and vege either, so we try to grow as much as we can ourselves, which isn't easy, living in a rental and working/studying/parenting fulltime.

Obviously, I don't have a solution or I would be living it already. I think generally simplifying where you can is the answer. Eat simple food, which is as ethical as possible. Take baby steps, for example, buy free range eggs, before jumping in and setting up your own chicken coop. Eat at home more often, and prepare as much food yourself as you can, before agonising over the environmental costs of rice farming, or soybean production.

Just start where you're at.... Bloom where you're planted... and don't beat yourself up if you can't keep up with the Greenes'...

This quote from Homemaker Ang kind of sums it up:

"Instead of eating the white bread we all grew up on, one of us decides to break the mold and start buying whole wheat bread at the grocery store. We feel so proud of this accomplishment because we are feeding our family more healthy than how we grew up. Then we meet a woman who buys organic whole wheat bread from a posh health food market, and she meets a woman who bakes her own organic whole wheat bread in her bread maker everyday! Then she meets a woman who bakes her own organic whole wheat bread but kneads it by hand everyday rather than using a bread maker…. But she meets a woman who grinds her own organic wheat berries each day and bakes her own organic whole wheat bread and then she meets a woman who GROWS her own whole wheat to bake her own bread but this lady even meets a woman who grows her own whole wheat but hers is actually organic! YIKES! I could keep going on and on couldn't I…?"

She goes on to say "Ps. I don't like the woman who grows her own organic whole wheat…"

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