My family did a “buy local” challenge where the goal was to spend money only on local items for a day.
We bought several items made or grown in Malibu and Los Angeles and the balance came from Northern California.
For breakfast we had organic strawberries from the Thorne Family Farm in Malibu and organic blueberries, blackberries and raspberries from Driscoll’s in Watsonville. Yogurt from Brown Cow Farm in Antioch, bread from La Brea Bakery in Los Angeles and butter from Sierra Nevada Cheese Company in Willows.
So far so good!
Except mid-day, I realized there is no local coffee! Hot water with honey was not quite an adequate substitute for caffeine!
Dinner was the highlight of the day. Organic, sustainably farmed chicken from Petaluma Poultry and vegetables from One Gun Ranch in Malibu — cooked with Malibu olive oil. And to drink — a delicious Semler cabernet sauvignon.
A great end to “local day” was sleeping outside on the deck under the stars with the fresh air on our faces.
When our daughter was very young, we would go on dog walks with her and our 3 German Shepherds in the hills of Malibu.
To encourage her to walk longer distances, we started learning the names of all the wildflowers. At the time, her favorite colors were red and yellow. So I printed a book for her (on an old letterpress printer) of all the red and yellow flowers we saw on these daily walks. Here are some of her favorites.
Deerweed — her very favorite flower — has spiky branches filled with tiny red and yellow flowers.
Charlotte also found the Bush Monkey Flower intriguing. If pollen is deposited inside its petals, they will close. But if fooled, its petals will open again. You can try playing this game with a pin and some patience.
Indian Paintbrush does not grow as abundantly as other flowers so it was always a thrilling surprise to find it on our walks.
Charlotte loved saying Big Gum Plant. And she loved touching its sticky yellow flowers.
Charlotte believed that these Golden Stars were magic wands for fairies.
Red-Stem Filaree will always have a special place in our hearts. Even before Charlotte was born, we discovered its needle-sharp corkscrew seed — one of nature’s most stunning creations.
I hope to someday print the other books I would like to do in this series — one with all the white wildflowers and one with all the purple flowers.