Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Getting Springy

Spring is coming!  It doesn't seem like it today in my neck of the woods, but if you were out and about yesterday, you couldn't miss smelling it.  Instantly recognizable, but impossible to describe: it hits you so far back in the nose, it's almost in your throat, almost more of a feeling than a smell. I can almost taste the rhubarb and asparagus that are on their way. Before I know it we'll be back to the hot, sticky over-abundance of full Summer in a temperate zone.
Now is the time of year to start researching CSAs!  If you wait for the eggplants and tomatoes to start rolling in, you'll be out of luck.  Many CSAs ask their members to pay for their produce in advance before the growing season.  This ensures that the produce the farmer is working so hard to grow won't go to waste, and it also gives the farmer the capital he or she needs to get equipment, hire help, and get those seeds into the ground and growing at this crucial time of year.  Do some research: odds are there's a CSA near you.  If there are farmers near you, but no CSAs, contact them directly and ask if they would consider starting one.  Tell them you want whatever they can grow, straight from their fields, and you want your dollars to go directly to them.  It's pretty safe to say they'll take you up on it, and you will never look back!

Of course, not all of us have the money in advance to buy into a CSA.  Don't hesitate to ask politely about possible paying in installments.  If it's a big CSA, and most subscribers to pay in advance, they may be able and willing to help you out.  If not, don't despair!  Get to your farmer's market for a weekly fix, and start saving right now for next year's subscription.  You'll save money in the long run by paying up front, so it's worth the trouble.  There's one CSA at the Union Square Farmer's Market that doesn't require you to pay up front at all!  Give them your name, and show up every week with $20 for an incredibly bounty that will force you to learn how to preserve. Central Valley Farm grows all the good stuff, and has deals with nearby farms to treat you to infusions of fruit, too!  They also offer eggs, yogurt, butter, and a variety of cheeses for prices that rival your grocery store, assuming your grocery store offers artisinal small-batch yogurt, cheese, and pastured eggs.

Aside from getting set for produce, how can you make the most of this time of year?  Well, we're transitioning from the season of the kidneys to the season of the liver.  This can leave you feeling agitated, stirred up, ill-tempered.  A strenuous yoga practice with lots of twist will release this pent up energy, and help your body and mind transition more smoothly.  You can try this challenging twist we played with today in Stacey's class at Jaya. Don't worry; the leg you're holding onto doesn't have to be straight!
 As the days warm up, take advantage of a backyard or park for some outdoor yoga!  It's a great way to start practicing on your own outside of class.  Nature is full of inspiration, and you'll likely find the next pose flows easily as you breathe and observe the world around you.

Have fun, and don't stress if we get a little more snow before Winter calls it a season.  Enjoy every moment!

Live Omily,

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