Happy solstice, and week three of the CSA! Perhaps you’ve got solstice traditions of your own, or perhaps it’s not something you observe (yet!). Each season I farm—I’m in my fifth season now—I find myself taking more cues from the rhythms of the seasons. I’d guess that you, too, feel more deeply connected to seasonal rhythms than most as you watch your share contents change and your bags get heavier with each passing week. 

Celebrating the solstices and equinoxes (which some traditions conceptualize as part of a seasonal marking of time, referred to as “The Wheel of the Year”) helps me think about how I can embody the seasons in my own life, too. Coming from winter— the turning inward, the storing up of energy, a time to slow down and rest and ponder the questions we’ve stored up through the seasons. Then the sap rises and the clover blooms – we celebrate the spring equinox and our bodies start to wake up with the lengthening days, we clean and prepare ourselves for the season we’re entering now. We welcome the summer, a time for our energy to radiate out, a time to be outside as much as we can, to be with others, a time of deeper colors. 

Looking for some ways to celebrate the solstice and invite in the summer with more intention (though hopefully without such intense heatwaves…)? Here are a few ideas: 

  • Make a summer herbal tea blend— perhaps some of the many mints, tulsi, lemon balm, lavender— maybe some dried hibiscus if you’ve got it or can find it easily as another cooling herb.
  • Make an infused oil— St. John’s Wort (which gets its name from blooming around the feast day of St. John the Baptist in the Catholic tradition, and a plant very often associated with the solstice), calendula, comfrey are all great to try — especially helpful for bites, stings and scrapes.
  • Eat a meal outside with family or friends— show off your CSA bounty and fill your plate with as much color as you can.
  • Next time you pick up your share, leave time for a good walkabout of the farm. Get your own snapshot of what’s in bloom, what birdsong you hear, how tall the tomatoes are now (I guarantee they’ll be so much taller on your next walkabout), what’s just starting to come up. Maybe get in the habit of a regular farm walk – I’m quite biased, though, I think it’s quite fun to get a view from the fields and watch the veggies you enjoy as they grow.
  • Jump in some water! And please share any favorite local dip spots with me if you’d like 🙂 I’m new to working in the Framingham area, and an avid dipper.
  • Pull out a journal and write some questions to ponder this summer, some hopes for the coming months, some recipes you hope to try, or some creative projects you hope to embark upon. Maybe sketch some of your favorite summer plants. 

Happy solstice, stay cool out there and enjoy your share! It’s a joy to share the harvest with you. 

Hannah, assistant manager