Welcome Back – Quarantine Edition

Now that life is settling down into this strange new normal that is our quarantine, I figured it was time to get this blog fired up again for the season. Ever since Littlest Chef was born, my cooking life has, understandably, suffered. We’ve eaten out more, gotten take out more, and relied on quick and easy meals more. That’s understandable and part of an era in parenting. However, with this new shakeup, we’re obviously at home, so I’ve had a chance to start getting excited about cooking again.

Let’s talk shopping. When a mandatory quarantine, to varying degrees, began to obviously loom, everyone went crazy. I did not want to be part of the throng of people at ShopRite. It didn’t feel safe or wise, plus I couldn’t deal with the stress of it. In a way that honestly aligns with my principles anyway, I turned super local for my needs. I bought bread from Supreme Bakery and did last minute food stocking from Greengrocer Food Hub. I ordered basically everything else I needed online. I attempted an Instacart order that failed miserably; after scheduling it days in advance, the shopper abandoned the cart during the shopping because the app was being glitchy. We ended up needing to cancel my order, but Instacart’s customer service was really kind and generous with some compensation for my trouble.

As the shutdown intensified, Chelsa moved Greengrocer’s operation to an order-online and contactless pickup model. It’s worked fabulously. We’ve been able to be eating fresh, healthy foods while maintaining the integrity of our self-quarantine. I can’t remember a time when salad tasted quite so good. I also got in on a group order from a wholesaler, so I was able to get things like hummus, seltzer, flour, etc.

The interesting thing is that, by piecing my groceries together and working with what is available, I’ve basically been back in CSA mode- looking at what’s in front of me and trying to find interesting ways to turn it into healthy meals and snacks for my family. What better time to get this blog back up and running? If you follow the Instagram account (@omgcsa), you’ll have already gotten a good preview of what’s been going on in my kitchen thus far, but I’ll break it up into a series of posts here. I’ll likely also have interludes to talk about the quarantine and to share tips and information that I have. I won’t be talking about the disease itself – there’s plenty of that going on on social media, and it is not my field of expertise. We are, however, in strange times when it comes to procuring meals, and that is an area I can speak to with confidence.

I encourage each of you to record your experiences during this strange time. I read someone’s observation recently that we are the ones who will be creating the primary sources that historians will be referencing decades from now. Even if it’s just a personal journal, even if it’s just a Google Doc with your thoughts jotted down – record your navigation through these challenges.

Be well.

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