Here is the moment you've all been waiting for (well, maybe not) - the final installment of the Animal, Vegetable, Miracle book club discussion posts.
For those of you interested in the next book club and haven't noticed the never-ending polls and various posts, you can check it out here. I think it's fairly obvious at this point what we'll be reading.
Okay, now on with it!
Chapter 17. Celebration Days: November - December: In this chapter, Kingsolver states:
I only vow each winter to try harder to live like a potato, with its tacit understanding that time is time, no matter what any clock might say. I get through the hibernation months by hovering as close as possible to the woodstove without actual self-immolation, and catching up on my reading, cheered at regular intervals by the excess of holidays that collect in a festive logjam at the outflow end of our calendar.
How about you? Do you hibernate during the winter months, waiting for the end? Or do you relish in the shorter days, warmer foods and lots of company?
Chapter 18. What Do You Eat in January?: The author and her family fill their plates in January with foods high in omega-3s to fight off the winter doldrums. Add to that legumes, baked goods, winter squash and whatever else is in the freezer.
Do you have certain foods you tend to eat during the dead of winter?
Chapter 19. Hungry Month: February-March: This chapter discusses, in its entirety, well, turkey sex.
You see, the majority of turkey growers artificially inseminate their breeding stock. In effect, knowing how to breed turkeys naturally is becoming a lost art. And the turkeys don't know how to do it either since they don't have to. Skill in sexual prowess isn't selected for if even the most inept turkey come-ons still result in offspring via a tube. Add to that the fact that mothering instincts have been bred out of turkeys.
What in the world is going on around here? Did anyone else find it incredibly disturbing that sex and parenting have been completely bred out of turkeys?
Chapter 20. Time Begins: The final chapter wraps up their year of changes, between growing their own food and making everything from scratch. When she calculated everything out, they ended up spending about 50 cents per person per meal. Kingsolver also discusses some of the changes that occurred in society during that year, like more acceptance and desire of eating locally, driving hybrids, etc.
One thing she touches on is the act of ridiculing the small gesture. She argues that "small, stepwise changes in personal habits aren't trivial. Ultimately they will, or won't add up to having been the thing that mattered."
What have you done in the last year to change your personal habits, that when they add up really make a difference?
On Thursday, December 20th, I'll be doing a BOOK GIVEAWAY CONTEST. The book? Well, none other than my miraculously pristine hardback copy of Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, A Year of Food Life. Stay tuned!