Wednesday, October 7, 2009

100 Mile Challenge.....

Okay..... so we decided to go for it! We are taking the 100 Mile Challenge, we will only eat foods produced, grown or raised within a 100 mile radius of our home. You will be amazed at how far that really is, I was. Over the past few years we have incorporated little changes here and there, like eating organic, getting most of our fruits and veggies from our farmers market, using only local hormone and antibiotic free dairy and meats, shopping at our local Co-Op and even making our own laundry soap and bread. I can't say I am satisfied with just these changes, so we decided to take it a few steps further! I figure the closer we can get our food, the better. We are going to incorporate a few exceptions to that rule only because there are things we will NEED that just cannot be located with in that area. We will have flour, grains, tea & coffee on our exceptions list, but they will be organic and/or fair trade. We are also going to try and use as much "household" items that are local or that we make ourselves, but there must be exceptions to that rule also; I haven't found a way to make toilet paper or a local company and we MUST have that!!! I think the most important lessons we will learn from this experience is to not take for granted all the wonderful food we have so close to home and by making a few simple changes in our lifestyle we can have such a huge impact on our surroundings. The benefits seem to be abundant from this challenge, I am hoping it will be life changing for my entire family. I have always said we have become so very lazy in our lives because things are just so easy to obtain. We work less at the important things than our parents and grandparents to gain twice as much, the only problem with that is we are sacrificing quality. We have inferior foods and we don't seem to mind, we are conditioned to believe that we should take a back seat when it comes to the safety of our food. We rely on big companies to supply us with the very things that essentially sustain our lives.....does this seem right? I grew up on a small farm and we always knew where our food came from. If it didn't come from us it came from someone we knew very well. We had a large garden and we ate everything from it, it wasn't a hobby it was a necessity. We had our own cows that we would faithfully milk every morning and evening, not for fun but for sustenance. We raised beef, pork and poultry, not always for pets but for food. FOOD that we took responsibility for, there was a reason behind almost everything we did. It sounds so crazy to say that was such a simpler way of life but it was, simple because we were very clear on what, where and how the very most important thing, FOOD, was coming from. We wonder why there is an alarming rate of obesity in our country, why the rate of Autism is sky-rocketing, why cancer is out of control and why our children are plagued with learning disabilities? Maybe, just maybe if we stopped and really took a look at all the things we put into our bodies we wouldn't wonder anymore. We wouldn't drink straight from the pesticide bottle, so why are we deciding it is okay to consume it on and in our foods? I think that as a society we have begun to take for granted that there will always be a plate full of "something" whenever we want it sitting there waiting for us, but is that the best we can accept "something" when there is so much better from our local farmers? We eat fruits that are picked before they are ripe so they have time to be transported cross country in the back of a truck when down the road we have a small farm that grows that very same thing in their backyard! It seems like a very elementary decision to me to choose the foods that I trust, the foods I really choose, the foods that are not laden with things that can potentially harm me, but most of all my children. We set the example for our children through the choices we make. They watch and learn from every single thing we do. I want to teach my children that they have the power to make a difference and it all starts with a choice, a simple choice that cascades across and affects far more than they will ever realize; those are the choices to make, the simple ones that in the end make the biggest impact. We have begun to take our choices to a new level or a closer level because we know that by choosing local we are in fact doing more than just eating the freshest food we can find, we are empowering our children with the courage and skills to continue to make wise choices that will make the world and their lives better. I am excited to get this challenge started and I can't wait to share our journey. I have a feeling that once we start we just won't want to stop and as far as I can see, why should we ever stop choosing the best!


  1. You have inspired me!

  2. Great post! Very insightful and inspirational. If only more people would follow your example we would be able to lower the % of obesity and disease in this country.