Berry Pirates: Summer CSA Week #5

 In CSA Newsletter

Amidst the frenetic busyness of the zenith of the sun and season, there is rest and joy to be had.

The grand brushstrokes of our day have been lovely, and for this I am grateful.

The morning started with the regular chores – feed the cat, move and feed the chickens, feed the pigs, water in the greenhouse. But these chores were done in cool sunshine at a 3 year old’s pace. Little hands grab eggs. Questions arise. Bird poop is studied intently for its purple color and texture.  The world of the home is huge. Rushing unnecessary.

With chores complete, and the strawberry event over (and thankfully there were plenty of berries there for folks to enjoy themselves, phew!), the girls and I went to pick berries.  We picked for no one but ourselves. We picked with no regard to time and efficiency. We didn’t worry if a little foot crushed fruit. We ate and ate and ate the last of the strawberries.

Zea practiced steering the golf cart over to the cucurbit field. Mike picked pickling cucumbers. The girls and I followed and gathered what he lay in the row. Even Juna could play this simple family game.

With a mild summer day and our chores finished, we gave the girls a choice: go pick red raspberries at the Pioneer fields where we have some plants and the picking is easy or go walk in the woods and go hunting for berries there.  Having had enough of the fields already, the girls chose the woods. Off we went to be berry pirates, hunting for blackcap raspberries in the woods.

The forest was lovely, and the pirates successful in their search for booty in berry form. Berries went plunk into buckets. Fingers and faces became purple-stained. Juna rode on my back. The older girls practiced sashaying along the trail, turning their bodies this way and that to avoid brambles and thorns.

Together we admired the sun bringing out the sparkle in rocks. We smelled pine needles. We lay on our backs and listened to the wind sway the leaves. Wood thrushes sang. Walnut cases were discovered. A downy feather found.

Each of these little moments constitutes a great joy. This beautiful place and life we get to share together as a family.

Sometimes the girls fought over a picking spot. Sometimes the baby cried and pinched my arms angrily. Sometimes the parents had to ask the kids to take talking breaks. And there was whining. There’s always whining. That’s just how it is with little ones. But together, in the broad brush strokes, we had a lovely afternoon together.

After two hours of wandering (which is a really long time for 3 kids under 7 to be moving in the woods – thanks, blackcaps!), the berry pirates completed their grand land voyage with an act they both find hilarious – peeing in the woods.  Pirates will be pirates, I suppose.

I loved this day. I’m sad to see it slipping away into darkness.  But here I am in a peaceful, quiet moment getting the chance to use words to package and name this little slice of family experience…

“Hey girls,” I’ll say. “Remember the day we were berry pirates?” I know I will.

Anchors away!



In the Box:

  • Beets
  • Cucumbers
  • Garlic Scape
  • Japanese Eggplant
  • Kale
  • Leek, bunching
  • Parsley
  • Purplette Onions
  • Peas, Sugar Snap
  • Zucchini

REGs only:

  • Lettuce, Red Summercrisp

EOs only:

  • Kohlrabi
  • Lettuce, Romaine
  • Snow Peas



  1. €‹Ratatouille
  2. Pasta with Bacon and Leeks
  3. Zea’s Beet Chocolate Cake
  4. Potluck Pasta Salad
  5. Lettuce Wraps
  6. Sugar Snap Peas with Onion and Bacon
  7. Roast Squash and Fennel with Thyme
  8. Warm Balsamic Kale Salad
  9. Pickled Sugar Snap Peas
  10. Lettuce Soup
  11. Stir-Fried Snow Peas and Mushrooms

Wednesday, July 6th: Everyother Group A