On our family farm, we use sustainable practices to produce high quality meats from the heritage breed livestock that we raise.  Our customers are willing to pay a premium for our bulk meat products as they enjoy ‘slow food’.  ‘Slow food’ takes time to grow, prepare, and consume.  It has higher nutritional value, better flavor, and allows time for fellowship in its growing, purchasing, preparing, and consuming.

When the days are hectic, we all depend on a quick stop at the nearest ‘fast food’ joint.  That kind of food isn’t really good for us, but meets a need on long days that are too busy.

‘Slow food’ is better for us than ‘fast food’.  ‘Slow food’ takes thoughtful preparation and planning.  It is the lasagna made from scratch using Grandma’s recipe.  One of my favorites is being able to make home-made refried beans after two days of preparation: soaking beans overnight, then slow cooking beans and pork scraps a second overnight in the crockpot on low, and finally re-frying them for a couple hours on the stovetop.  Even better is when you can make  home-made tortillas to wrap around those garlicky, soft refried beans, home-grown tomatoes and lettuce, topped with raw live cultured sour cream from our milk cow!  The long two days are worth all the preparation for the full-flavored taste and serious stuffing we do until every last bit is wiped off the plates.

In our home we try to eat ‘slow food’ three meals a day.  This takes a lot of planning and time on my part, as well as help from the rest of the family.  We enjoy smelling breakfast, then lunch, and finally dinner cook all day when we wake-up, while we home school, and when we come in from afternoon chores. We look forward to sitting down to a delicious meal, then talking for a while after it is all consumed.  These are the best parts of our day, and they take time.  We discuss current events, politics, religion, and all the great important topics of life.  This is how our kids have learned for the past 18 years that we have home schooled.  Sure they learn from their textbooks, but our long meal times are where we discuss the good stuff, and build strong relationships that last a life-time.

Slow living is better for all of us than the fast paced rat-race lifestyle we are all so used to.  Slow living takes planning and time.  It takes commitment by parents, and willing participation by kids.  It is the best kind of living for parents, bio kids, and adopted kids.  We have seen huge changes in all of our kids since moving to our remote farm.  We all had to slow down and focus more time and attention on each other.  Deciding not to get cable TV was a jump-start to slow living.  Growing our own food was an essential part.  The most important factor was not getting in the car everyday to head to town.  High gas prices have helped us stay home more.  We all dread those weeks when life causes us to get in the car every day, day after day.  Our children who have problematic behavior are especially prone to difficulty on those ‘fast food’ days.

As winter hits making travel more hazardous, our family loves to just stay home, put dinner in the crock pot, build a fire, read good books, play board games, and just ‘be’ together.  That is the essence of slow living.  It is the best kind of life, and one that we all should return to in order to really live.