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Thursday was my last day working at George Jones Memorial Farm. I'm sad to miss the rest of the growing season and the birth of the farm cat's kittens but this Saturday's event is something I will miss seeing unfold as well...Weed Dating! Fox News even came out to the farm to do a segment promoting the event. Was hoping the video would be available online but it has not yet been posted. Should be worth a few laughs with me and some fellow co-workers in the background pretending to be "weed dating." For the daring folks who attend the actual event, I think they will be pleasantly surprised. I've had some very enlightening and stimulating conversations while weeding. More importantly, it is puts a fun spin on farming and gets more people in the community out in the fields and connected to their food. Whoever coined the term, "agritourism," I'm sure they never envisioned weed dating would be added to the list. But to engage eaters, we need more ideas like this. Instead of Tupperware parties there could be planting parties or harvesting contests to see who can quart the most berries.

As for the rest of my time in Ohio...I've got a packed schedule. I'll be attending the MotherEarth News Fair, taking a soil class at The Rodale Institute in Pennsylvania, attending a Food Summit in Detroit focused on fighting hunger and meeting with area farmers and others involved in the local food movement in NE Ohio. Should be a pretty vibrant next month so stay tuned!

 
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I can remember my Mom using this saying, “knee high by the Fourth of July.” Pertains to how high corn should be if planted at the right time. I guess in some ways I’m knee high with where I am at on my food journey. But I’m still a long way till harvest. One thing I am though is detoxified. I dig greens and eat lots but I’ve had a salad at least once, if not twice, a day for the past month. It’s lead to less wheat and even dairy in my diet which is huge for me. I feel great! "Fasting" has never been for me. I know they work but not eating as a way to cleanse your body scares me. But by just eating a little cleaner, I feel like I got rid of all kinds of nasty toxins in my body. Now that I’ve been off the farm a couple days, I’m seeing some of my old carbo-loading ways starting to creep back in. I can see the hurdle for many people...as soon as the good food is not as accessible, you take what's available and convenient. It demonstrates that we have to make conscious choices and asserted efforts to get happy food for our families. We make sure we leave 10-minutes early to stop and get coffee; we make sure we aren't late to a doctors appointment. We also need to make sure we take the time to seek out food stores and restaurants that support our body and our community.

Idea for the day…Reflecting back upon my time on the farm, I feel very fortunate that I could volunteer full-time like I did. Working day after day allows you to become immersed noticing the little changes and connecting with the staff on a deeper level. It definitely enriched my experience. I would love for more people to have this same opportunity. Not just for their own self-development but so more farmers would have access to more volunteers. So here’s my idea…Some employers are starting to offer paid internship positions where employees can volunteer with enviro or social non-profits. What if farms were added to the list?? Employees could apply to their company’s internship program and get 2-4 weeks paid leave to volunteer on a farm. For a local foodshed to become more resilient the whole community needs to get involved. If businesses could subsidize a volunteer program for local farms, we could get more organic food on the table and more healthy, quality food to market.