Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Farmer's Market is BACK!

Seems like I always return to some of the same old topics, but I just can't help myself. I love the farmer's market, and in early Spring, I start counting down the days until it starts up again for the season. This year's getting off to a bit of a slow start because of all the rain and cool weather we had from March to May. But the bounty is starting to trickle in, and in addition to the rhubarb, spring onions, broccoli and strawberries that have been available for a week now, yesterday I managed to get some peas! I'm going to say it, you haven't truly tasted peas until you shell them out on the same day they were picked, cooked them up and put them in your mouth. A veritable pea-flavor explosion. So green. So good for you!

And of course, I had my little helper to help me shell them. Recently, I was on a chat group I've been part of for about 6 years now (another blog post for another day!) and I had mentioned that it's so hard to carve out quality time with the kids during the day. Jonathan wants to read and I tell him "I'm busy" or he wants to play outside and I say "not now" and he wants to build a Lincoln Log house and I say "later". One of the "seasoned" moms told me that quality time doesn't have to be only when you're engaged in a child-related activity. You can take advantage of all kinds of moments in your day to talk, to teach, to enjoy the time together, to introduce a new skill. This was such a revelation to me because it's so simple and so true - why didn't I think of that?

So when Jonathan pulled over a chair to find out what I was doing and asked if he could help, I said "of course you can!" I opened the pods and laid them out flat for him, and he picked out the peas and dropped them in the pot. And in that simple task, that quiet time together, I just had to smile. Jonathan would throw a pea in the pot, and said to me "Listen to that funny sound they make when they hit the bottom of the pot!" A cute little plopping sound. And then some thunder came and we talked about the difference between tiny sounds and big ones. Quality time, courtesy of the farmer's market.

And then Matthew got up from his pile of cars on the floor, climbed up on the chair behind Jonathan and reached in and almost grabbed the pot and the bowl of empty shells and Jonathan started hollering in one fell swoop. End of tranquility.

But this morning, Jonathan came to me and asked if we could get more peas so he could help me "get them out" again. Sure buddy. And we'll do lima beans, string beans and bird's egg beans, too. And then maybe I'll teach you to husk corn!

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