Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Good, The Bad, and The Undetermined.

Yesterday saw mixed results on the shopping front.

On the good side, I was able to make a trip to Deerfield Farm.  While they haven't yet replied to my email, I figured that I could get the answers in person.
It wasn't a terribly far drive so we got there in a fairly short amount of time.  Granted, it will be a bit inconvenient to make the trip on a weekly basis but I hope to be able to work it in.  What I found when I got there was better than I had anticipated.  I was, in fact, able to confirm that their cows are primarily grass-fed.  While they do feed a little grain (no corn), the cows are primarily pastured or fed hay that is grown and bailed on the farm.  The milk produced is neither pasteurized nor homogenized and they offer it in quart, half-gallon, and gallon sizes.  Prices are not ridiculously out of reach, either.  Sure, they are a bit more expensive than your average grocery store options, but compared to The Farmer's Cow milk that I had been using it is actually cheaper.
In addition to the raw milk they sell, I found that they sell eggs that they get from another local farmer.  The eggs are from free-range chickens.  I am really happy with this added bonus - it makes the trip that much more worth it.  Again, these are a bit more expensive than the average grocery store options.
While we were there, we were able to go into the barn and see the cows.  We all enjoyed that.  The cows are very friendly and seemed to love the attention.  We also talked to Melynda about their 4H club, The Jolly Ranchers.  While our girls are already members of the Cromwell Clovers club, there is no reason why they cannot participate in an additional club.  The Jolly Ranchers meet on the first Sunday of every month from 1-3 PM.

After leaving the farm, we had a couple of errands to run.  We found ourselves out in Newington near the Stew Leonard's grocery store.  I had fairly high hopes for what I would find there.  Unfortunately, most of those hopes were a little too high.  I was mostly interested in their meat selection hoping to find some grass-fed options.  This was not to be.  In fact, one section of their meat department - their best-selling meat selection - had a large sign proudly proclaiming the beef's corn-fed status!  In addition, there was a looping video featuring Stew Leonard talking about their 'naked' beef.  He proudly exclaims that the cows used for this line of meat are 100% grain-fed.
In order to salvage this trip to the store, we decided to shop around a bit and see what else might suit my needs.  Sadly, I found very little that would make it worth the added drive on a regular basis.  Perhaps making an added stop on our quasi-monthly trip to Sam's Club to pick up some things that are better than other local options might be in order.  I just don't see us shopping there on a weekly basis.

In the undetermined category...  We went to rent a movie to watch as a family.  While at the store, I decided to also rent The Biggest Loser for the Wii.  I wanted to see what it had to offer over the Wii Fit Plus that we already own.  Due to other events of the day (as described above), I have not yet had the opportunity to evaluate it.  Hopefully today I will be able to pop it in and give it a try and see if it is worth the $40.00 price tag.  While I enjoy the Wii Fit Plus, a little variety would be nice once in a while.  Besides, if it proves to be better, I am open to making a switch.  I would also like to try out the Nintendo DS version of The Biggest Loser to see what it offers.

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