Submitted by Irene Kaufman on Fri, 11/17/2017 – 10:14am
This time of year has always been my favorite. The colorful leaves on the trees, the crisp Autumn air, and of course Thanksgiving! I usually like to wake up early and go on a walk outside before the chaos of cooking ensues. It gives me some time to quietly contemplate all that I am thankful for. I think there is an art to practicing gratefulness; it goes beyond reflection and into conscious actions.
Having moved to Champaign-Urbana just over a year ago, I find myself being thankful for such a welcoming community that has opened its arms to me. I have met wonderful people, and I think a way to “practice gratefulness” to this community is to support it directly.
What better time to purchase local goods than for a holiday feast?
There are so many great options for local holiday goods in the area! Shopping local supports our community’s farmers and food producers, and it also tastes delicious. Here are a few suggestions to having a local feast:
- Buy a local turkey! Here in Champaign, Common Ground Co-op, Harvest Market, and Cheese & Crackers are a few options.
- Eat in season produce. Fall produce is great for thanksgiving sides; find a farmer’s market for the freshest produce. Market in the square and Common Ground are two options for some fresh fruits and veggies.
- Bring a local gift for your host. Pick up a bouquet of local flowers or a locally baked pie or cake. You can’t go wrong with anything from Hopscotch.
In case you are in need for some inspiration to try a new recipe for the holiday season, here is a link to one of my favorites: Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Warm Cider Vinaigrette. It features delicious seasonal ingredients like greens, apple cider, and butternut squash. Remember, you can continue to support local throughout the holiday season and all year long!