November is a State of Mind

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There’s a lot of talk about city folks moving to the country in the papers, but I doubt many will decide to take that leap in November. Country living in this cloudy month requires quite a sensibility that is quite different from one which needs blue skies and warm days to feel content.

However, there are some people out there who thrive on grey days. A painter I used to know  said she loved painting en plein air best in November, when the colours of the landscape looked like everything was wearing a hairnet.

For farmers, November brings a chance to catch their breath. I was talking with Indy Kooner about his plans to increase winter storage on the farm, make more value-added products and generally extend the season at both ends– all very exciting, but he also said a little rest is good. Taxes, organic certification paperwork and seed orders beckon, and it’s hard to sustain the pace of farm work required during the growing season year-round.

Farmers with livestock have a different rhythm. Jennifer from All Sorts Acres sent some news and photos this week, including the sombre but lovely view of their fields up top.

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She writes: “As the cold weather moves in, it’s always a rush to get the remaining fences in before being buried under a layer of permanent snow. Although the rain isn’t inviting, it does replenish our marsh, ready for next year’s unpredictable weather.”

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“Any unused squash becomes a treat for the chickens and ducks. When they see me coming down with one, they race towards me, hoping to be the first to taste the treat.”

Be sure to browse through Jennifer’s many lovely craft kits, just the right thing to work on while  curled up with a cup of tea on a stormy weekend.

All Sorts Acres Farm

Henny Penny Wool Painting Kit

This kit contains everything you need to make a felt painting. Includes: farm-grown naturally dyed and coloured wool, felting needles,instructions,and felt backing with original design, foam felting base,.

All Sorts Acres Farm

Mouse the Sheep Wool Painting Kit

This kit contains everything you need to make a felt painting. Includes: farm-grown naturally dyed and coloured wool, felting needles,instructions,and felt backing with original design, foam felting base,.

All Sorts Acres Farm

Needle Felting Kit: Leaves

Ideal gift for all ages! This kit features naturally dyed wool, three different types of felting surfaces, a felting base, needle, thread, and felting needles. Everything you need to open the box and go. All instructions are also included.

Learn how to make your very own flock of sheep! This kit has everything you need to learn the basics of how to make a needle felted animal. Kit includes: farm wool, felting needles, felting base, eye beads, instructions. Doesn't include: needle and thread for sewing eyes on.

Of course, not all our farmers grew up with our crazy Canadian weather. Here’s an excerpt from Ayse’s most recent Marvellous Edibles newsletter:

 

“I remember when I first moved to Canada, I lived with my aunt, and all her wonderful friends came to visit and invite me to various kinds of trips to get to know my new country. It was during that time one of them said something about freezing rain and I was completely and truly puzzled and could not figure out what it would be like, having never experienced one before. Nowadays, I find myself warning newcomers about freezing rain, especially people with Mediterranean backgrounds who have no idea what I am talking about.”

When the winds blow, we can retreat into our burrows, and think about the warmth friends and family bring into our lives. This week, we begin showing off some wonderful things to give to your loved ones this season! You can shop while under a blanket if you wish, and never set foot in a mall! Local, sustainable gifts can’t go wrong.

We have the first two Market Boxes ready to go out to gift-givers who plan ahead. Here are the descriptions:

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The Early Bird Basket

For the sagacious gift giver. This gift box is a shelf stable cornucopia of organic goods. A beautiful selection from our vendors including items like our vegan and virgin caesar mix, gentle soap, interesting and healthy treats, and of course some delicious jam. Attractively wrapped, but not Christmas-y, this combination is wonderful as a present for any celebration: birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, etc.

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The Gratitude Box

This is a perfect gift for teachers, caregivers, pet-sitters, hosts, and anyone else you want to thank! Shelf stable so you can get your shopping done early.

Harley Farms has briskets and Braising Ribs for hearty slow cooking.

Audrey from The Greenhouse Eatery has just finished making 5 cases of delicious salsa to warm up your tastebuds!

and Magic Oven has added one of the ultimate comfort foods to their list: Coconut Rice Pudding, and it’s Vegan and Gluten-free!

What a treat to have Plan B back at the market with some of their own crops and some extras including organic citrus fruits, fresh ginger, and more.

Organic, product of Mexico - 1 avocado

Organic, product of Peru - per lb

Plan B Organic Farms

Grapefruit (Imported)

Organic, product of Mexico - 1 grapefruit

Organic, product of Mexico - 1 lemon

Chanukah starts on the evening of the 28th. It’s the perfect time to pickup the beautiful Beeswax Chanukah Candles from Shoresh. There’s no such thing as too many candles, so these are also a wonderfully kind gift to anyone you know who’s celebrating!

Beeswax chanukah candles - 2 boxes

Enjoy browsing through all our producers have to offer, no matter what the weather. You’ll find a rainbow of healthy produce choices, and a pot of treats at the end of it! 

Anne & the Crew

P.S. Check out our local talent! Singer, musician, music teacher, entertainer, and market devotee Andrea Kuzmich has a gift for us:

“I have set up 2 free downloadable EPs of holiday songs on bandcamp. (You can also stream them on bandcamp.) These are traditional with a bit of a twist. “Jazzed up,” “modalized” – are words you could describe them but more important is the intent, a festive vibe in their performance that reflects the traditional need of celebrations around this time of year –  that allows us to manage the darker days and longer nights with the comforts of friends, family, food, and song… Please feel free to share them!” 

THANKS, Andrea!

Andrea also has songs she recorded a year ago available here

Please place your online farmers' market orders between noon on Saturday and noon on Tuesday for pickup or delivery in Toronto on Thursdays

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