At Home in Nature

  (Agate, Colorado)
TwoInTents Blog
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What are we reading?

Dr. Peter Ward is a paleontologist at the University of Washington, a full Professor of Earth and Space Science.  We read Dr. Ward’s Under a Green Sky and Medea Hypothesis and found them entertaining, enlightening and very singular, so to speak.

        The Medea hypothesis is a term coined by Dr. Ward for the his hypothesis that multicellular life, understood as a superorganism, is suicidal; in this view microbial-triggered mass extinctions are attempts to return the Earth to the microbial dominated state it has been for most of its history.  It is named after the mythological Medea, who killed her own children and in this respect presents an almost anti-Gaian hypothesis, in that nature is not motherly in Dr. Ward’s world, but instead is a mother.

        His reasoning is based on paleontological evidence, and among many evidences, particularly and strikingly cites the methane poisoning (3.5 billion years ago), the oxygen catastrophe (2.7 billion years ago), snowball earth (both 2.3 billion years ago and 790-630 million years ago), and 5 separate hydrogen sulfide-induced mass extinctions, including the Great Dying (251.4 million years ago).  He also cites the reason that microbes are more efficient at producing biomass, and also transforming inorganic carbon dioxide into organic carbons.  His evidence is compellingly told so that even an average person without much scientific training can understand and judge the facts. 

        His Under a Green Sky closely examines the hydrogen sulfide poisoning.  In this book, Dr. Ward goes into depth on the complex mechanisms that led to the death of most of life on earth multiple times before – and relates them to the present situation of global warming that may result in the destruction of our own species.  It is not bedtime reading, unless you enjoy nightmares.

        According to Dr. Ward, the double threat we face is not only poisoning by hydrogen sulfide, which will gain a critical concentration in the atmosphere from microbial action, but also ultraviolet radiation poisoning from a reduced ozone layer due to the same microbial action.  This double threat has in the past destroyed most living creatures and is eminent today as the oceans rise, reducing or stopping the circulation of nutrient required to abate the “bad” bacteria and help the “good” bacteria: like tilling the soil, or cleaning a stall, nature spins the oceans, cleans out filth and encourages “good” bacteria.  When the oceanic “tillage” stops, “bad” bacteria thrive under the filthy and less-aerobic conditions.

        Dr. Ward says that there is reason to hope, however, that there need be no great dying this time.  Humans are not only aware of the situation, its causes and its effects, but have advanced technology to actually alter the atmosphere or preserve their lives, and the lives of other creatures.

        This is in line with the warnings of Dr. James Lovelock and other Gaianists.  Whether you read his books and agree the earth naturally benefits from multicellular life aside, you will at least gather that there is much concord on the urgency to protect our own lives.

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Honey cookies

While most of America enjoys sugar from sugarcane or beets, in Europe and much of the world honey is the favorite sweetener.  Typical honey is 38.2% fructose, 31.3% glucose, 7.1% maltose, 1.3% sucrose with other sugars accounting for some 1.5% of the honey.  Most honey is actually 17.2% water, and may have 3.4% “other” ingredients that may, in raw and unfiltered honey, include pollen, dust, and other sources of nutrition.  Sugar from sugarcane or beets is typically almost entirely sucrose.

        While there is typically no difference in taste between sugar beets and sugarcane, honey will have (because of the 3.4% “other” ingredients) a unique flavor depending on where it was made, by what bees it was made (some bees are better at making honey), and the subtle craft of the beekeeper or honey presser.

        Honey was the only choice of sugar for Europeans a long time before they discovered sugarcane or developed the sugarbeet.  Many traditional sweets from Europe rely on honey, instead of sugar.  Here’s a nifty recipe for those of us used to sugar cookies… Honey cookies (a recipe from Germany)!

 

INGREDIENTS:

2 cups honey (may need to add water if honey is dry)                                 1 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup shortening                                                                                                  4 cups all purpose flour

2 eggs                                                                                                                     1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (for more authentic German flavor, use almond extract)

 

DIRECTIONS

1. In a saucepan over low heat, melt together shortening and honey. Let cool.

2. Mix together eggs, vanilla, baking soda and ginger. Gradually add to cooled honey mixture.

3. Slowly add 4 cups of flour to mixture. Stir until well blended. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto cookie sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake at 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) until golden (about 12-15 minutes).

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An alternative animal bedding

Keep the mud down in your animal pens.  Mud is dangerous to animals because the standing water can result in an unhygienic environment that can lead to disease in your animals.  If you cannot afford gravel, or sawdust or other celebrated beddings throughout your pen, there are numerous affordable alternatives that you can rely upon.

One easy remedy is newspaper.  Whether you shred it or use it whole, the paper soaks up the water very well and can become integrated with the pen ground so that the next time there is a lot of snow or rain, it is less likely to become muddy.  Newspaper is harmless if your animals eat it, and is good for compost when you are cleaning out your pens, making it a great affordable alternative bedding.

 
 

Le Menu - what's ready already?

5 Gallon Bucket - $30 member, $40 non-member…

3.5 Gallon Grocery Sack - $20 member, $30 non-member…

Fill them with whatever you like!

 

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News from the farm and ranch

Out at the farm, there’s 5-8 feet of snow, but luckily we still have electricity so we can email this, post it to the blogspot, and keep in touch with all of you!  It’s amazing how much a modern farm relies on electricity for internet, cellular phone, text messaging, and other telecommunication.

 

NEW THIS WEEK:

 

Pine nuts

Cashews

Caraway Seeds

 

NEW: Firewood and animal feed may be included with your order.

 

President’s recommendations for the week

This week I highly recommend

 

* The fresh-picked organic maia-bought avocados make an excellent guacamole, and you can simply add in some store-bought salsa and a squeeze of fresh-picked maia-bought lemons.  A glass of fresh-picked orange juice finishes this California treat!

 

* Still on the must-try list is the eggs from Paredes Farm of Elbert County. 

 

* Give those pine nuts a try, too!  They sure are good.

 

* Our fruity tea is also quite good, as is our pine needle and willow tea.  I just tried our Lincoln Park Blend and I liked it a lot.  So did the Secretary / Treasurer.  Maybe you will too?

 

* Glazed Mushroom sandwiches - - - rehydrated glazed mushrooms are a breeze, and takes about 10 minutes to make with Maia’s farm fresh olive oil and twist of orange.  On your favorite bread (ask for bread to be included if you like) with sprouts and your choice of wild or garden herb blends.  Ask Maia to prepare all the ingredients for your kitchen and dinner can be ready in a moment!

 

* Roasted Tofu or Chicken - - - A bit of wild or conventional spices, some fresh olive oil from California, a few delicious mushrooms… dinner is ready inside an hour or two, and finished inside a minute or two.  Ask Maia to prepare all the ingredients for your kitcen and dinner can be ready in a moment!

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Tea mixes

While we encourage you to mix your own, give these popular mixes a try…

 

* Fruity blend.  This one is extraordinarily popular!  hibiscus, rose hips, elder berries, raspberry leaves, dandelion root, elm bark.  What else do you need?

 

* Lincoln Park Blend.  We love Denver’s parks, and this may have actually come from Lincoln park!  Actually, it’s raised by members, but features some of Denver’s favorite landscaping.  It’s actually quite refreshing.  Dandelion root, chicory root, pine needles and willow.

 

* Walden Pond blend.  Thoughtful, meditiative.  Earthy.  A blend of wild and cultivated.  Peppermint, pine,  dandelion roots, elder berries, raspberry leaf, hawthorne berries, rosehips, elm bark, and the secret ingredient: cannellini.  Weird, but actually it’s good.

 

* Limon 5-way.  Named for Limon’s five highways, we put in five ingredients famed for their benefits to your blood, liver, stomach, heart and mind.  Includes dandelion root, milk thistle seeds, elm bark, fresh willow and pine needles.

 

 

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Beans

 

>>>>DRY BEANS<<<<

 

All dry beans are choose or mix…

 

Anasazi
Black
Black eyed peas
Cannellini
Cranberry
Fava
Jacob's Cattle
Kidney
Lentil – Brown

Lentil – Black
Mung
Pinto
Soldier Beans

 

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Eggs

 

>>>>CHICKEN EGGS<<<<

 

PRODUCED BY MEMBER MP – ELBERT COUNTY – Paredes Farm Eggs

 

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Dairy

 

>>>>MILK<<<<

Still in negotiation for prices and availability.  Contact the President to join the Dairy committee and help Maia provide milk and cheese!

 

 

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Herbs, Teas and Coffees

 

>>>>COFFEE<<<<

* Coffee from Don Francisco – choose organic or conventional, house blend or espresso, columbian (not only is drinking coffee natural, some would claim it is medicinal – especially after missing their daily cup)

 

* Not-coffee (roasted Chicory) (also good to blend with your coffee for a Cajun treat)

 

>>>>TEAS AND HERBS<<<<

PRODUCED BY MEMBERS – BS & CF and also Group Purchased:

> Alfalfa leaves (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (delicious, blood tonic)

> Burdock Root (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (cure-all)

> Chamomile flowers (sweet flavor, sleep aid) (Organic, Maia bulk purchase)

> Chickweed (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (peculiar flavor, good for the blood and lactation)

> Cottonwood (bark, twigs, leaves, buds) (fresh) (delicious, sweet vegetable, good in tea.  Cook at low temperature or luke warm for antiinflamatory and pain reducing properties)

> Echinacea flowers (earthy flavor, good for immune system) (Organic, Maia bulk purchase)

> Elder berries (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (fruity flavor, good for the immune system)

> Elm, slippery (bark) (sweet flavor, good for the throat and stomach) (Organic, Maia bulk purchase)

> Dandelion root, dehydrated and cut (refreshing flavor, generally good for you) (Organic, Maia bulk purchase)

> Hawthorne berries (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (very tasty!)

> Hibiscus (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (delicious in any tea, high in vitamin c)

> Horehound (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (generally good for you, green flavor)

> Nettle leaves (refreshing flavor, a blood tonic, generally good for you – like dandelion)

> Marshmallow root (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (good for stomach)

> Milk Thistle Seeds (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (tasty, very good for liver)

> Peppermint (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (delicious, good for stomach)

> CF Wild Harvest Pine (needles, bark or twigs – fresh) (delicious, nutritious vegetable, makes great tea)

> Raspberry leaves (dry) (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (very delicious, good for the blood)

> Red Clover Blossoms (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (delicious, good for the blood)

> Rose Hips (dry) (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (sweet fruity flavor, great addition to any tea, good source of C)

> Scullcap (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (sleep aid, good for withdrawal, and more)

> Spearmint (dry) (Organic, Maia bulk purchase) (delicious! Good for the stomach)

> CF Wild Harvest Willow (bark, twigs, leaves, buds) (fresh) (delicious, sweet vegetable, good in tea.  Cook at low temperature or luke warm for antiinflamatory and pain reducing properties)

 

 

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Animal Feeds

Feed from member Coastalfields Feed can be delivered with your regular order.  Contact Maia at 720-722-FARM or maiacooperative-AT-gmail-DOT-com for more information and selections.

 

Container deposits may apply to purchases.

 

>>>>FORAGES: ARBRE CADABRA (CONVENTIONAL)<<<<

50 gallons (a small “bale”): $10 ($0.20 per gallon) MEMBER.  $14 NON MEMBER

1000 gallons (a large “bale”) FOB Agate: $160 (0.16 per gallon) $200 NON MEMBER

 

* A special blend of tree leaves.  Nutrient tested by two independent labs.

* USDA graded “Supreme” (RFV was rated at 200 on a scale of 1 to 185 – off the charts!)

* Better nutrition than alfalfa. 

* Suitable for dairy production, cattle, sheep, goats, rabbits and all other grazing animals: low sulfur, low copper, high calcium.

* Approximately 10% Protein, with a TDN of 60-67%!

* Sorry, “Organic” and “Natural” blends sold out.

 

>>>>GRAIN MIXES<<<<

* Numerous formulated varieties to choose from.  Please contact Coastalfields directly.  Tell them you are a member of Maia to receive your member discount.

 

 

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Fruit

Fruit is always in season… somewhere!  Try these organic Californian imports, they’re really tasty!

 

>>>>FRESH FRUIT<<<<

Organic Avocados (from non-member Pedro’s Avacado Ranch)

Organic Cherimoyas (from non-member Pedro’s Avacado Ranch)

Organic Lemons (from non-member Pedro’s Avacado Ranch)

Organic Oranges (from non-member Pedro’s Avacado Ranch)

 

>>>>DRY FRUIT<<<<

Organic Halawi Dates (soft, caramel flavor)

Super sweet raisins (not your standard Thompsons!)

 

 

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Firewood and Fuel Oil

Firewood – Cord $200 (4ftx4ftx8ft), 1/8 Cord $25 (4ftx2ftx2ft), Small Bundle $2.50 (1.5ftx1ftx1ft) … Delivered and stacked

Canola Fuel oil - $4/gallon

MEMBER PRODUCED - DP Used oil (for fuel) - $2/gallon

 

Ask us for free lessons on how to make oil lamps for light and heat!

Ask us for free lessons on using wood for light and heat!

 

 

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Flowers and Bouquets

CF Winter bouquets

 

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Grain

 

* Barley (Maia group buy)
* Oats (Maia group buy)
* White Wheat (Maia group buy)

* Brown Rice (lundberg – Maia group buy)

* Wehani Rice (lundberg – Maia group buy)

 

 

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Honey

* Busy Bee (Larkspur)

* Ambrosia Honey (West Slope)

 

 

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Meat

 

>>>>BEEF<<<<

Beef (group buy from Elizabeth Meat Locker of Elbert County)

>>>>CHICKEN<<<<

Chicken (Redbird) (group buy from Elizabeth Meat Locker of Elbert County)

>>>>GOAT/CHEVON<<<<

PRODUCED BY MEMBER MP – ELBERT COUNTY: quarters, halves, whole, or pieces. 

 

>>>>LAMB/MUTTON<<<<

Out of stock.

 

>>>>PORK<<<<

Pork (group buy from Elizabeth Meat Locker of Elbert County)

 

>>>>RABBIT<<<<

CUSTOM BUTCHERED – REQUIRES ADVANCE ORDER

PRODUCED BY MEMBER AA – LINCOLN COUNTY

 

>>>>TOFU<<<<

Denver Tofu (from non-member the Denver Tofu Company): $2.50 ea

 

 

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Mushrooms

Dried portabella

Dried oyster

Dried shiitake

 

 

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Nuts and Seeds

 

>>>>NUTS<<<<

Almonds

Cashews

Natural Cashews

Pine Nuts

 

>>>>SEEDS<<<<

Caraway (excellent toasted, or in bread!)

Sunflower Seeds (shelled)

Sesame

 

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Vegetables

 

Sprouts (Maia group buys from Sprouts Extraordinire of Denver)

> Alfalfa

> Clover

> Mung

> Radish

> Wheat Grass (ask)

> Numerous other varieties available upon request: chances are we have it!

 

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Wild Harvests

 

From Coastalfields Farm

> Cottonwood (twigs, buds or roots – fresh) (delicious, nutritious vegetable.  Cook at low temperature for antiinflamatory and pain reducing medicinal herb)

> Pine (needles, bark or twigs – fresh) (delicious, nutritious vegetable, makes great tea)

> Wild Harvest Willow (bark, twigs, leaves, buds) (fresh) (delicious, sweet vegetable, good in tea.  Cook at low temperature or luke warm for antiinflamatory and pain reducing properties)

 

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Oil (cooking and eating)

 

Olive Oil (produced for Maia to Maia standards by Oils of Paicines of California).  Sold in 50ml bottles – about enough for a week for most users

 

 

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Prepared foods

 

Some of our members sell prepared farm fresh foods from their own farm and ranch, using their own and also other Maia products.  We purchase these at a bulk discount for our members!

 

>>>>BREAD FROM AA FARMS <<<<

* White

* Potato

* Wheat

* White Winter Wheat

 

 

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Garden Seeds and Trees

 

Seeds and trees for planting can be included in your regular order.  Contact Maia at 720-722-FARM or maiacooperative-AT-gmail-DOT-com for more information and selections.

 

Packets of seeds begin at less than $0.25 ea. 

 

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Cloth and Fiber

Price of purchase deducted from bucket or sack value

 

AA Dish cloths: hand crochet, 100% cotton. Choose white and blue, yellow and green, white and muted green, white and pink, white and red, yellow and orange, pink or green). Non-members $5 ea, members $3 ea. (Maia members may reduce the $3 from the cost of your bucket or sack).

 

CF Raw alpaca fiber.  $1.50 per oz (member)

 

 

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Crafts

Price of purchase deducted from bucket or sack value

 

>>>>LOTIONS<<<<

AA Farms: Vanilla Pear Lip Lotion 16 @ $1 member. Contains avocado oil, shea butter, beeswax, vitamin E, stevia and flavor oil.

 

>>>>SOAP<<<<

> AA Farms: Soap: lavender, wild chamomile and geranium.  $3 ea member Contains: lard, coconut oil, shea butter, lye, oil, castor oil, water, lavender, wild chamomile and geranium essential oils

> AA Farms Soap: Apple blossom & peony.  $2.50 ea member.  Contains: lard, coconut oil, shea butter, lye, olive oil, castor oil, water and fragrance oil.

> AA Farms Soap: Peach orchard.  $2 ea member.  Contains: lard, coconut oil, shea butter, lye, olive oil, castor oil, water and fragrance oil. 

> AA Farms Soap: Aqua reef (like old spice).  3 bars at $1.50 ea member.  Contains: lard, coconut oil, shea butter, lye, olive oil, castor oil, water and fragrance oil

> AA Farms Dish cloths: hand crochet, 100% cotton.  Choose white and blue, yellow and green, white and muted green, white and pink, white and red, yellow and orange, pink or green).  Non-members $5 ea, members $3 ea.  (Maia members may reduce the $3 from the cost of your bucket or sack).

 

>>>>CANDLES<<<<

> AA Farms: numerous scents. $2.50

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