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A concern for the environment and a desire to better understand where our food comes from are reflected in today's collective consciousness; millions of people are eager to learn more about the local food movement. Many want to take the movement even farther by growing their own food, composting, and keeping backyard chickens. Visit California Farms, by Southern California local Erin Harris, offers readers options for both education and recreation and is a guide to only the most worthwhile destinations, from upscale B&Bs set among picturesque vineyards to working cattle ranches that offer a genuine cowboy/cowgirl experience. While farm vacation guides have been published for other states in the U.S., no such book covering California--our nation's largest agricultural producer--is currently in circulation. Visit California Farms provides valuable information to parents yearning to teach their children important life skills, outdoors enthusiasts who want to expand their repertoire of experiences, twenty-somethings looking for an affordable vacation, couples in search of new travel experiences, adventurous foodies, hobby gardeners eager to gain new skills, event planners who want to find unique destinations, and even companies looking for innovative team-building retreats.
A beautiful book of seasonal projects for using the brilliant spectrum of colors derived from plants to naturally dye your clothing and home textiles. Organized by season, Natural Color is a beautifully photographed guide to the full range of plant dyes available, drawn from commonly found fruits, flowers, trees, and herbs, with accompanying projects. Using sustainable methods and artisinal techniques, designer, artist, and professor Sasha Duerr details achievable ways to apply these limitless color possibilities to your home and wardrobe. Whether you are new to dyeing or more practiced, Duerr's clear and simple ingredients lists, step-by-step instructions, and detailed breakouts on techniques such as shibori, dip-dye, and block printing will ensure beautiful results. With recipes to dye everything from dresses and sweaters to rugs and napkins, Natural Color will inspire fashion enthusiasts, home decorators, textile lovers, and everyone else who wants to bring more color into their life.
Mother Nature has shown her hand. Faced with climate change, dwindling resources, and species extinctions, most Americans understand the fundamental steps necessary to solve our global crises-drive less, consume less, increase self-reliance, buy locally, eat locally, rebuild our local communities. In essence, the great work we face requires rekindling the home fires.Radical Homemakers is about men and women across the U.S. who focus on home and hearth as a political and ecological act, and who have centered their lives around family and community for personal fulfillment and cultural change. It explores what domesticity looks like in an era that has benefited from feminism, where domination and oppression are cast aside and where the choice to stay home is no longer equated with mind-numbing drudgery, economic insecurity, or relentless servitude. Radical Homemakers nationwide speak about empowerment, transformation, happiness, and casting aside the pressures of a consumer culture to live in a world where money loses its power to relationships, independent thought, and creativity. If you ever considered quitting a job to plant tomatoes, read to a child, pursue creative work, can green beans and heal the planet, this is your book.
Urban and rural collide in this wry, inspiring memoir of a woman who turned a vacant lot in downtown Oakland into a thriving farm Novella Carpenter loves cities-the culture, the crowds, the energy. At the same time, she can't shake the fact that she is the daughter of two back-to-the-land hippies who taught her to love nature and eat vegetables. Ambivalent about repeating her parents' disastrous mistakes, yet drawn to the idea of backyard self-sufficiency, Carpenter decided that it might be possible to have it both ways: a homegrown vegetable plot as well as museums, bars, concerts, and a twenty-four-hour convenience mart mere minutes away. Especially when she moved to a ramshackle house in inner city Oakland and discovered a weed-choked, garbage-strewn abandoned lot next door. She closed her eyes and pictured heirloom tomatoes, a beehive, and a chicken coop. What started out as a few egg-laying chickens led to turkeys, geese, and ducks. Soon, some rabbits joined the fun, then two three-hundred-pound pigs. And no, these charming and eccentric animals weren't pets; she was a farmer, not a zookeeper. Novella was raising these animals for dinner. Novella Carpenter's corner of downtown Oakland is populated by unforgettable characters. Lana (anal spelled backward, she reminds us) runs a speakeasy across the street and refuses to hurt even a fly, let alone condone raising turkeys for Thanksgiving. Bobby, the homeless man who collects cars and car parts just outside the farm, is an invaluable neighborhood concierge. The turkeys, Harold and Maude, tend to escape on a daily basis to cavort with the prostitutes hanging around just off the highway nearby. Every day on this strange and beautiful farm, urban meets rural in the most surprising ways. For anyone who has ever grown herbs on their windowsill, tomatoes on their fire escape, or obsessed over the offerings at the local farmers' market, Carpenter's story will capture your heart. And if you've ever considered leaving it all behind to become a farmer outside the city limits, or looked at the abandoned lot next door with a gleam in your eye, consider this both a cautionary tale and a full-throated call to action. Farm City is an unforgettably charming memoir, full of hilarious moments, fascinating farmers' tips, and a great deal of heart. It is also a moving meditation on urban life versus the natural world and what we have given up to live the way we do.
An illuminating look at olive oil with 100 recipes from the country’s leading authority on the subject Olive oil is more popular than ever, thanks to its therapeutic and preventative effects in treating different diseases, as well as the growing variety of brands and imports available. Nancy Harmon Jenkins, arguably the leading authority on olive oil and the healthy Mediterranean diet, presents more than 100 dishes that showcase olive oil, ranging from soups to seafood to sauces to sweets. Along with favorites like tapenade and pesto, you’ll find other exciting dishes like North African Seafood Tagine, Oven-Braised Artichokes with Potatoes and Onions, and Quince and Ginger Olive Oil Cake. But this book isn’t just a collection of hearty and healthful recipes; Jenkins also covers the history and culture of olive oil as well as how to buy it and cook with it. A thing of beauty with the stunning photographs of exquisite dishes as well as Jenkin’s own Tuscan olive tree grove, Virgin Territory captures the delights of making and cooking with olive oil.

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