Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Teaching kids about seasonality

See those cucumbers in that picture above? I'm CRAVING them. I can literally almost fell the crunch in my mouth and the cool crisp. I can't wait until summer.

I didn't look up the definition of "seasonality" but in my family it simply means that not every food we eat is available year round. Some foods are only available during a certain SEASON.

And there is something very romantic about that notion. Something very nostalgic.

I haven't bought a tomato at a store in probably 10 years. I can't remember ever buying okra, cucumbers, peppers or even onions from the store. Or potatoes.

I feel as a parent it is very important to teach the kids that food  is only availble to us during the time we are growing it. We have to be aware of our growing season. We have to know WHERE food comes from. We have to realize that that tomato in the store was probably picked from sandy soil in Mexico when it was green, 2 weeks ago then it sat in a dark room and was sprayed with ethelyne gas to faux "ripen" it.

And that's why it doesn't taste that good.

We eat corn year round. We typically only harvest it once a year, but what we don't eat fresh, I can or freeze like you see above. I'm not OPPOSED to freezing or canning things so we can enjoy it all year, in fact that is the WHOLE point of canning and freezing. But I want the kids to UNDERSTAND.

A month or so ago my 7 year old came up to me and was looking for a snack and said " Mom are blueberries in season yet?"  How proud was I! She knew that we could only enjoy the beautiful plump berries during the growing season.

Now, please don't get me wrong, there are certain things that we can't grow here. Like pineapple. Or lemons. Or bananas. We just can't. We do enjoy those things though on occasion, and I make sure the kids know where they were grown. We look up the country on the map. We talk about the climate that makes it able to grow there. It's kinda fun actually...

So I challenge you to be aware of your food. Teach your kids that it's not magical. It doesn't just appear out of thin air. People have to plant it, tend it, pick it etc. Mother Nature has to provide certain climate for it.

Beleive me, there is NOTHING better than biting into that first cucumber you pick from your garden this summer. The one that is probably a bit too small but you couldn't wait a few more days to pick it. The one that you don't bother to wash and you eat it strait from the vine and you can taste a tiny bit of soil and dust on it. Man that's good eating!!

Until Next time
Happy Homesteading!!

Linked up with Adorned from Above Monday Barn Hop Tuesday TALU The Great Blog Train


  1. Oh! You're making me drool for cucumbers! I love them! For some reason, mine didn't make last year so hopefully I'll have a bumper crop this year! Same with tomatoes. You are absolutely right about eating within the seasons, and teaching your children to do so! There's nothing worse than a gassed tomato! Thanks for sharing Blessings from Bama!

  2. You give me something to look forward to. Yum!

  3. Hi, I popped over from the blog hop at God's Growing Garden. We garden here in the desert, too, and we've had a decent year. It's fun to get our daughter involved in the process so she actually sees what happens from seed to plate. Fun for kids, and fun for us to pass along to her, too. My husband actually just put some corn into our backyard garden and we've got some new growth. Keeping our fingers crossed! Enjoy the rest of your week and Happy Easter!

  4. Those cucumbers looks amazing. Popping over from the Great Blog Train. I was actually thinking about having the kids create and tend a garden - so we could be more sustainable. Granted, it wouldn't be all, but it would be some.

    It would be a start at least.

  5. What a wise mother you are! 'Great post! Thank you for hopping on board The Great Blog Train! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

  6. What a fabulous lesson. I love the fresh fruits and vegetables of the season. My goal is to have a little garden. Nothing too big because I have very little space. My main concern is the javelina that travel in little clans around here. Thanks for sharing. :) I'm dropping by today and following from the Great Blog Train hop. I hope you can stop by and say hello.