Sustain Able

Sustain Able

“It’s summer time, eat your vitamins!”  My grandma always says…

I grew up in the Far East of Russia (the VERY Far, Far East, like almost China).  Summertime meant school vacations, summer camps and a lot of family time on a datcha.  In case you’re too lazy to click, a datcha is a country house that a lot of families in Russia had, where city dwellers indulged themselves in having a ‘house’ as well as growing their own fruits and vegetables.  As I remember it, we had an abundance of fresh fruits and veggies, berries, sunflowers, various roots and the freshest cleanest water I’ve had to date.

In the summer, you often heard the phrase of ‘eating your vitamins’ since fresh fruits and veggies were seasonal, although there was access to imported [thawed] [[yuck]] fruits, berries and veggies pretty much all year round.

I’ve been thinking of sustainability.  Most foods we can buy even at the fanciest of supermarkets (even organic) may not be sustainable foods.  Sustainable equals fair trade, humanely harvested, real food that our ancestors ate.

What my grandma and mama would do when I was growing up was that fancy ‘green’, ‘eco’, ‘sustainable’ thing that we are now just realizing.  My dad would bring home pounds of fresh tomatoes and they would quickly become pickled.  Cucumbers, peppers, cabbage and so other available veggies awaited the same preserving destiny.  That way, we always had ‘fresh’ canned veggies on our table.  Berries and fruit became preserves (minus pectin or any other preservatives, since it was all homemade).

Because fresh food was scarce, people sustained their food chain by keeping their pantries full of homemade canned deliciousness.  Sustainability at its finest.

When I provide ‘sustainability’ through food for my family’s daily life, I don’t have to think too hard, or buy fancy books or publications.  The only thing I need is a local farmers’ market and the knowledge of what’s in season.

“You’re the hottest hippie I know” is the best compliment my husband can give me.  He doesn’t know many hippies, so I don’t have much competition, but to me it means I’m living in the past [when things were uncomplicated] when it had to do with taking care of your home, yourself and your family.

It’s June, which means Strawberries are in season along with other berries.  I’ve been loading up on those nonstop.  Check out the sustainable foods for each season here if you are unsure of what to get when.

Food should be simple, uncomplicated, healing and nourishing.  In this case you, too, will be simple, uncomplicated, healed and well-nourished.


Svetlana Sanchez

Skin Apothecarist and Founder

Gressa Skin


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