A local farm just added my workplace as a new drop off location for their CSA. I was so excited to be a part of it–to get regular shipments of organic, fresh produce, to try new vegetables, and basically be forced to eat new foods and be healthier. This was just what I needed to turn my life around! The CSA would be the answer to all my problems! I was so ready.
2 Hours Before Delivery: It was like Christmas. I couldn’t wait for the boxes to arrive so I could start planning what I would prepare for dinner.
After Delivery: I excitedly looked through my box to find strawberries—awesome! Carrots, onions, basil, small summer squash–nice. Sprouted wheat berries, beets, a head of lettuce and a giant bag of spring mix (basically a big bag of leaves)? That was a little more challenging! I have never cooked beets before–now I had to! Yeah!! Forcing myself to try new things! I immediately googled “wheat berries” and looked for recipes to incorporate my beautiful box of bounty. A co-worker told me how to roast beets, which neither sounded appetizing nor worth the energy cost of having my oven on for a full hour just to roast four beets. But it would be worth it for the experience! Maybe I would love them! Maybe beets would be my new favorite thing!
That Night: It was “date night,” and no amount of persuading my husband that cooking beets and making a salad would be superfun could change his mind about eating dinner out. So none of my lovely organic food got touched that night.
The Next Night: I figured I should try to eat the bag of spring mix first. Unfortunately, we had just bought a bag of arugula the day prior, so there was a whole lot of green leaves in my fridge. I made a giant salad with the spring mix, tossing in some ham and feta I had in my fridge, as well as sprinkling in some wheat berries. It was probably the third salad I’ve ever made in my life. It was tasty, but as I ate, I eyed the bag of still nearly-full spring mix on the counter. How many salads was I going to have to eat this week? I made another salad to take to work with me the next day. I made a smoothie with the strawberries and some other fruit already in my fridge. All was well. I figured I could let the zucchini, beets, and carrots wait a bit, since they’d last longer.
The Next Day, Lunch: I opened my beautiful salad at work and discovered that I shouldn’t have put the dressing on it the night before. It was a big, wet, gross mess. I ate a few bites, but it was not appetizing. What a waste!
Dinner: I get home and notice that the basil, which I had lovingly put in a cup of water in the fridge, had not perked up. In fact, it looked like saggy death. There wasn’t enough to make a pesto, and I didn’t want to cook something only to use up a little basil. To make matters worse, the zucchini was already bendy! I couldn’t believe it—I thought it would have lasted a long time. I sliced one up and ate it raw with some flavored salt. One zucchini down, five to go. I guiltily thought about the entire head of lettuce sitting untouched in the crisper, and how I simply couldn’t endure another salad. I ended up eating restaurant leftovers from date night. I chose to ignore all the produce waiting for me. I couldn’t be bothered.
Later that night: I entered a new plane of thought. I was tired of feeling guilty and living my life around how I could eat all the vegetables in my fridge. I couldn’t let this rule my life. If I didn’t feel like eating a salad, I wasn’t going to have one. I suddenly realized that I hated the anxiety the CSA was giving me. Maybe I should just force myself to buy one new vegetable every week instead. It would be a lot cheaper, too. And just like that, my love affair with the CSA was over.
I was about to sign up for a CSA this week. I had to much anxiety about actually signing up (I went through all the scenarios in my head…and they basically played out like your experience did), that I ended up not joining. You’ve affirmed my decision, thank you haha 🙂
I went through the exact same range of emotions when I joined the CSA last year. SO excited to have fresh organic veggies, then SO overwhelmed trying to eat them all before they went bad. My saving grace was that I found somebody who was very happy to take half of the veggies off my hands each week. Little did she know she got 9/10’s of them some weeks because I just couldn’t deal with figuring out how to eat everything. 🙂