WSV’s Deborah Haak-Frost writes, “I’d like to make the case, on behalf of the planet, that less might be more. I am not a parent, and I don’t know if I can or will be, but I want to be conscious of the impact of my choices on the earth in terms of family size.”
A downtown Three Rivers storefront has added shelves of dry goods, pantry essentials, and refrigerated and frozen foods to its selection. World Fare, a volunteer-run nonprofit store that has made its home on Main Street for 17 years, mainly carried fair trade home goods, décor, jewelry, and gifts until recently.
WSV’s Deborah Haak-Frost recently interviewed St. Joseph County Drain Commissioner Jeffrey Wenzel to learn more about what exactly a drain commissioner does.
WSV Columnist Deborah Haak-Frost writes, “I have a veritable gaggle of winter squashes amassing in my kitchen, all waiting patiently to fill roasting pans and crockpots for the long cold season. Their soft-skinned, warm-weather cousins have disappeared, but these hard-shelled, firm-fleshed troopers stick around.”
If you’re seeking a calm reprieve from the turbulence of this year, Tom Springer’s The Star in the Sycamore is a balm. If you’re looking for wry, thoughtful nature writing in the spirit of Wendell Berry or Mary Oliver, nestle into these pages. If you’re feeling a bit adrift, the writings will deeply ground you in the forests and rivers of southwest Michigan.
“I see the irony here: I’m supposed to be the tree-hugger. And yet, it’s still hard for me to feel a sense of urgency around climate change, particularly when there are pressing situations happening all the time. It’s especially tricky now, but I think it’s always been hard.”
“I preserve food in good faith that it will be eaten and enjoyed later – not simply because I can’t bear to see a tomato go moldy. It’s good to put food away for the future, but it’s also good to eat now, while the eatin’s good.”
“When land, air, and water are devalued and exploited for their resources, the people living in those places (more often people of color) are dehumanized and exploited as well. Conversely, when the earth is cared for, the people on that earth are cared for.”
“One breath of fresh air in the culinary doldrums is using fresh herbs: they provide a punch of flavor to bring a dish up a level, adding dimension and complexity. The chemical compounds concentrated in the leaves and stems of herbs give zest and contrast when added to a meal.”
“Preparing food, to me, is one way that I care for myself: I love the creativity of transforming fresh produce into a delicious meal, as if I were creating a mixed-media art piece. It’s a way of accomplishing one small thing that nourishes and re-energizes me. It’s a way of absorbing and honoring the energy that farmers, farm workers, and gardeners (including myself) have put into growing the food I’m putting into my body.”
Check out this photo gallery from Monday’s ‘Stand for the Right to Breathe’ protest by Watershed Voice’s Deborah Haak-Frost.
“I don’t deny that rhubarb can be an acquired taste, but I’m glad my palate shifted. I came to realize that a little sweetener takes the edge off, but it doesn’t need to be doused to be edible. In fact, I think masking rhubarb’s flavor is an unfortunate habit of the dessert-making world and doesn’t do service to its finer qualities. A bit of pucker-iness gives nuance, interest, and dimension.”
“This week’s Sow Good Seeds column departs from the environmental theme of most of my writing, but I’d like to share a story of a recent experience. I try to write columns that encourage us to look at how connected we are to the world around us. I hope this will shed light on the community relationships that are possible when honest and respectful communication is a priority. When we care for each other, we care for the whole.”
Ah, asparagus: the herald of warmer weather to come, the great divider of households, the aroma of springtime bathrooms everywhere.
“Disrupting a pattern, as abruptly as this virus has disrupted our society’s patterns, shocks the system. Shockwaves are reverberating through all sectors.”
“My compost pile isn’t huge or fancy; I constructed its three sides from some reclaimed concrete blocks and an old pallet, lashed together with twine. It’s not perfect, but it’s doing the job, which is to break down kitchen scraps and yard clippings into rich material that returns nutrients to the soil.”
Those who follow us, who did not live through these unprecedented times, will ask us what we did and how we acted. They’ll be feeling the ripple effects, seen and unseen, and they’ll want to know how we responded to this serious threat. How did we help? Who did we help?
I like to look out the window — I think I get that from my dad. While I was growing up, my parents had an agreement that my mother would drive the car anywhere we went as a family; I’m told it was so that my father could look out the window without imperiling the rest of us.