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photo collage with text reading reduce, reuse, recycle with blue and cream background and growing leaves in the foreground for the unprocess by tina ferris

I pulled this little saying from the back of my worm composting tutorial yesterday.  What I love about working in my garden, planning out my meals around the Farmer’s market, making foods from scratch, is that they are all activities that require a high level of commitment.  By comparison to being a writer on deadlines, or a jill-of-all-trades wearing several different hats in each day, the activity of growing my own food forces me to pause, slow down, listen, and observe.  But what I’ve learned in my commitment to living unprocessed, is that all of these preceding activities are just the noise that surrounds the true center of our lives.

When we live our lives by our jobs and to-do lists, bulldozing through the minutes of each day, we are in touch primarily with life as something to get done.  This kind of life feels really thin to me, like I’m just racing atop a very narrow track trying to get to the next thing directly in front of me, until I drop dead one day.  This was how I first attempted to grow my own food; I had received a potted basil plant as a gift and let it sit in the window in my kitchen.  At the time I was considering going to grad school for psychology and I was busy in my time off from work researching, writing essays, and applying to schools.  I watered that plant every morning except for when I forgot, and let it be flooded with sunlight until I remembered to put it in the shade.  When I first received the plant, it was filled with beautifully green, aromatic leaves.  One month later, the roots had molded, and stems lifted weakly out of the too-wet soil, ending in brown stumps with no leaves at all.  My thought process with the plant had been very similar to how my life had been: -pay app fee for UCLA -reschedule dentist appt -request tour of school -exercise at gym -water plant -leave plant in sun.  It was just another something to get done.

With time and experience, I would say that I’m better at caring for plants than I used to be.  Unfortunately, much of my life is still filled with long lists, highly organized to get all the items done.  Grr, there’s that word again.  But being a more interested and curious gardener, has given my plants more of the support they need.  Caring for a plant however, brings me back to being a child, to the importance of treating living creatures well, to observing, to listening, to nurturing.  Life is rich and it is not in forcing it to grow that we procure bounty but in listening to what it’s saying, slowing down, and making time for its life cycle.  Being present, not getting it done, is what makes our gardens grow.  Any thoughts?

Tyler’s Birthday Wish

tyler and alex with hunted boar featured on the unprocess by tina ferris

Tyler’s birthday was this past weekend.  I felt so bad leaving him to go do a work event out of town.  But something tells me he was able to keep himself amused.  Over the past two years, Tyler’s hunting interest has been developing; for those of you who follow me on Instagram, you know all about his catching quail and chukar, but over the weekend, he definitely upped the game (literally) when him and his friend Alex caught a 175-lb. wild boar.

I’ll admit that at first I was much less receptive to Tyler’s hunting habits.  I was as averse as the next modern American who had been used to chicken as something on a salad, not a life that had once lived and breathed.  I cringed at the thought of killing a free animal, plucking it, and preparing it all ourselves.  Maybe it’s not the most glamorous way to eat meat; but I’m convinced, over much time and experience, that it is the most honest.  When we’re not eating our own hunt, we’re eating the next best thing: grass fed, organic, antibiotic-free, humanely raised meat.  I’ve given up on CAFO-raised meat completely and Tyler, well, he’s on his way.

Happy Birthday honey! Now, on to the preparation, any one out there know of some great boar recipes?

post signature for the unprocess reading with gratitude, tina

Welcome to Isai58

isai58 collage of outfits featured on the unprocess by tina ferris

What some green brands can prove is that they are not only environmentally friendly, they are incredible chic as well.  What I love about the fabrics used by brand new UK-based brand Isai58 is that they aren’t just your typical hemp or bamboo.  Although I LOVE hemp and bamboo (what hippie gal doesn’t?), this brand demonstrates how far eco-fashion has come, marrying unique style with environmental responsibility.

Owners Emma and Karoline of Isai58 promise that each of its pieces are ethically sourced primarily in Kenya, where workers receive fair wages.  All of the fabrics used are also sourced from GOTS certified purveyors.  If you’re not familiar, GOTS means Global Organic Textile Standard, making you certain that the clothes you’re buying are organic, sustainable, and free of toxic chemicals.  I have my eyes set on the Olive Heart Top; I love how it is just one step beyond the basic tank with the cute retro print and the unique olive color.

I’ll be ordering mine today from their growing line and you can do the same.  At this time, you can order any piece from their collection and receive a 20% off discount and free shipping worldwide.  This is a pretty fabulous discount so don’t forget to enter code TKF5001 when you go to their site and enter the code at checkout.

post signature for the unprocess reading with gratitude, tina


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