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Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Buy Local!

I hope everyone had a great Fourth of July!

I had a lovely day eating delicious BBQ, boating with friends, swimming in the middle of the Long Island Sound, and ending the night off with a bursting of fireworks...
I really couldn't have asked for anything more ♥

And speaking of fireworks- while looking up over the Sound that night at the bold explosions of lights streaming from each direction, I imagined myself on the Vineyard a month from now, and thought:
Why not stay the extra night to experience the annual Oak Bluffs fireworks? This trip is already a once in a lifetime opportunity. Why not indulge myself and go all the way?

So, I did!

We'll be staying on the Vineyard an extra night to witness, well, this:
A good finale to a dream getaway, don't you think?

In other events, summer on Long Island has been a sultry one so far. I just got myself a new air conditioner because of it and my humor has already greatly improved! I grew up for twenty-three years not having any air conditioner at all, so this has been nothing short of luxurious for me, and I'm loving every minute of it!

Today, since it was my day off, I took my mom to Youngs Farm in Old Brookville, New York. It's a very old place, located off the beaten track, ornamented with a beautiful 19th century farmhouse on the property... very New England-esque, I must say! Well, we went there today with one mission... Pie!

And we got one! A blueberry cobbler. And two blueberry biscuits. And a blueberry pound cake. Yep, we were in a blueberry mood today. I should have taken photographs of everything, but those biscuits were in our tummies before we even got back to the car! And the blueberry pound cake was given a similar fate by my boyfriend. And the pie... well, the pie is safely in the fridge awaiting to be reunited with it's other blueberry buddies! In due time...

Don't you just love these little local farm stands? They really take you back to a more simpler time when everything was bought locally and fresh. Imagine... you actually knew where your food was coming from! Something not so apparent anymore in these large commercial supermarkets we all so often frequent. Youngs Farm's farm stand/bakery is located in an old barn that still smells faintly of dried herbs and sweet hay... why don't they makes perfumes that smell like that? ♥
New England is full of these old gems- they're one of the many features that give the region such charm.
If only there were more places like this on Long Island... well, I'm grateful there are any left at all! Things could always be worse, you know.

Nevertheless, it's still so important to do the above. Without your patronage, these tenth-generation farms and shops will simply vanish over time... sooner than you think! So, before you go grocery shopping tomorrow, maybe try treating yourself with a few locally-grown items. Find that little farm stand off that beaten track. I know they can sometimes be a bit expensive, but man, is it worth it! A tomato ripped right off the vine that very same morning will taste quite differently from the one grown in a hot house and shipped out from hundreds of miles away... I promise you that!

So, if you just so happen to decide to shop in that direction, I have the perfect summer recipe to put your yummy local produce to good use! Enjoy this outside with a nice crisp glass of chardonnay:

Spinach-Strawberry Salad
(Courtesy of Yankee Magazine)


1/2 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
1-1/2 teaspoons minced onion
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1 bag (10 ounces) fresh spinach
1 pint strawberries, sliced thin

In a blender, combine the sugar, sesame seeds, poppy seeds, onion, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, oil, and vinegar. Blend well. If the dressing seems thick, add a few drops of water.

Remove the stems from the spinach and tear the leaves into bite-size pieces. Arrange them on individual salad plates or in a salad bowl. Arrange the strawberries on top. Drizzle the dressing over the strawberries and serve.


  1. Glad to hear you are going to the Vineyard. I wish I was. I am going to Cape Cod in August.

    I am going to the Susan Branch book signing in Sandwich. Just got my tickets today and will stay in Sandwich. I am thrilled.

    That farm looks fabulous. I frequently go to farmstands and farmer's markets. Nothing beats that fresh taste of fruits and veggies.

    1. Elaine, how wonderful! Sandwich is undoubtedly my favorite town on the Cape, the the Titcomb Bookshop is adorable :) Where are you staying? So exciting!

  2. That recipe sounds good - lovely blog as always!

  3. good decision erin! i love shops like that. i support local as much as possible!

  4. Sounds like a fabulous day out! I agree- buy local when possible. Russ is always talking about when he was a kid- he'd go shopping with his mother and buy meat from the butcher, vegetables from the veg shop, cheese from the cheesemongers, his parents ran their own little grocery shop. He said they'd walk down the street and say "hello Mrs. So and so. Hello, Mr. So and so" and it was all very community oriented. Sounds idyllic. It's not like that any more in his home town unfortunately but I do think the tide is slowly shifting back to that, which is a good thing. :) Great post!!

    1. What a great memory your husband has, Patricia. So sad that things aren't so much that way anymore... but I'm sure there are still pockets on earth that are!

  5. sounds like a great 4th of July to me! And what a sweet little shop, I just love places like that! they are, sadly, few and far between, but I hope that our generation sees the benefit of them and turns things around. We've seen what it does to our economy when we outsource everything-- even our food. Local sounds good to me!

  6. What a great post, Erin. So happy that you had a great 4th! Also, that you now have AC. This year has been really uncomfortable and it continues so I am grateful for my AC, too.
    My boss has a sweet house in the woods on Martha's Vineyard and they are always there the same time as you will be visiting. I know you will enjoy it immensely. Will you be there at the time of the Vineyard Agricultural Fair. I hear that it an amazing event?
    Meanwhile, I think I must plan another LI trip with Lou to go to Young's!

    1. Hi, Marcia! No, I won't be there for the fair, although I too have heard wonderful things :) I will be there for Illumination Night and the annual fireworks in Oak Bluffs though!

      You and Lou should! I'd be more than happy to show you around!

  7. Ah, yes! The perfect salad, especially when things are in season.

    Love to shop local stands! You found some delectable treats! Our blueberries are slow to ripen this season because of our heavy rains.

    I'm envious of your trip to Martha's Vineyard! We were there two years ago in the fall, and I'm ready to return! Have a great time!

  8. Such a lovely post, Erin! I'm glad you decided to go all the way and stay the extra night to enjoy the fireworks. I am SO excited for you! I, too, try to shop local whenever I can. One of my favorite things about summer is the start of farmer's markets and local stands! The old shop you were in looks lovely! Glad you had a nice, blueberry kind of day! Rosinda xo

  9. There is nothing I love more than buying local.
    Yay for an extra night on your dream getaway. I just know you are going to have a blast.

  10. What a lovely blog you have here:) Do you have bloglovin to follow with?

    Check out my blog...If you want some cute Swedish decor insppiration:)

    Have a wonderful weekend dear

    LOVE Maria at


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