Free Farm Stand Mojo

As fall is slipping away and the new year approaches, I get a bit nostalgic about the early days of the Free Farm Stand, when we had a small table inside the garden and the project was in it’s sweetest most personal incarnation.  Here are some pictures from the first day in 2008:

all the produce from my backyard and a neighbor/friend down the street

all brought to the park by bicycle cart

a neighborhood family whom I still see around

This is also a season when I spend more time slowing down and reflecting on things and of course trying to count my blessings a little more than I normally do. This project we call the Free Far Stand is really not just about fighting hunger and food insecurity, nor just about teaching people to pay attention to where their food comes from (and getting a chance to have a relationship with urban farmers), or paying attention to the connection between diet and health, or even  just getting people to know their neighbors more.

What we are about at the core is hoping to inspire people to shift their mindset and world view.  To get in touch with the abundance that is out there and to act out of generosity and compassion. To believe in magic, the power of dreams, and miracles. To be thankful. To make love in many ways. To have faith.This is different than the propaganda that is fed us today from various sources…like the message to get ahead as a first priority (with a career or a job), to consume,  to buy and sell, in short to get real.

From my experience having lived in the crazy world I describe above, the rewards have been too many to describe. One example I can give, is that when I come home from the Free Farm Stand although I am exhausted, I feel great happiness and a certain stillness inside.

Here are some photos from the yesterday’s Stand:

28 lbs of sunchokes from the Esperanza garden (the Free Farm was closed on Saturday

 and thus no Free Farm Produce at the Stand

passion fruit from the garden down the street…I just put some fruit in a smoothie and it was delicious

the African Blue basil in full bloom still attracting the bees

free lettuce seedlings 

we had boxes of green beans left over at the end that came in the second shift

I love these two pictures above. Clara and her twins are in Oakland, but still with us in spirit. Cristina took her some lettuce starts to put in her new garden.

On a subject that has nothing to do with Farm Stands, but is one more thing to be grateful for, I stumbled upon this internet site that is about “sharing the sounds of birds around the world”, if you need a break from farming or whatever:  http://www.xeno-canto.org/ Then you can get  back outside and hear the bird sounds live and say thanks..

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