Meet the chickens

A blog about our kitchen/garden wouldn’t be complete without giving our other three family members a mention – the chickens:

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Building the vegie patch

Buying certified organic produce is expensive. I have heard that many farmers just can’t justify the cost of certification yet still offer organic produce… you just have to head to a farmers market and talk with the farmer. But what if, like us, there is no farmers market within a reasonable distance from you? You can join a co-op, but for the most part you don’t get to pick and choose what items you get each week. This is a problem for us. With two young kids (one of whom is of the super picky eater variety) and a super busy lifestyle I need to be able to plan meals in advance to make sure the picky eater gets at least a few things on his plate that he will eat and each evenings meal prep time fits with the amount of time I have to get said meal on the table.  The answer for us was to grow our own food.

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Numbers, oh so many numbers!

Have you ever tried to read an ingredients label and been befuddled by all the numbers? These things are truly difficult to understand, especially when you are shopping with a couple of children who are “starving” and “so bored” so you haven’t the time to stop and Google what you are reading. I am yet to master reading labels, actually I have a very long way to go, so I reasoned that I could start by learning to identify foods with Sulphites (numbers 220-228), because these are the preservatives that have a reputation for triggering and intensifying a whole host of problems, some of which both myself and my children have suffered with.

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First step – cutting added sugar

Hidden sugar in food is a big deal at the moment, but I’m not just blindly jumping on the band wagon with this one. Excess sugar can lead to weight gain, diabetes and rotting teeth (to name a few) and, despite some experts claiming otherwise, it leads my kids into one foul mood when they come down off a sugar high. So, as a first step towards our new healthier lifestyle, I set about dramatically reducing the amount of processed sugar available in our house. After a couple of weeks of binge eating (more about that later) the only sugary snack options left are those that I have baked and frozen so I know exactly what’s in them (because I have no will power at all and this way I have to really want that snack to wait for it to defrost). There is now tonnes more space in the pantry and the kids are eating more fruit when they get hungry between meals.

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