This is the absolute best time of year for cooking. There is so much good, local, fresh produce for sale! I love knowing our food was picked recently and traveled less than ten miles to get to my table. I love the fact that we are paying someone from our own community instead of a big corporation that trucked in stuff from far away. I love the flavors you get from fresh. And you really can't beat the price! Tomatoes for twenty-nine cents a pound, fresh red potatoes for five cents a pound, cucumbers for a quarter, bell peppers for a quarter, and huge bunches of fresh basil for just a couple of bucks. Tonight's meal had just two items that were bought from a conventional grocery store--everything else came from the local fruit and vegetable market :) Eating healthy is a whole lot cheaper in the summer ;)
I think the best thing about this time of year, though, is how excited the kids get over a trip to the local fruit and vegetable market. The Boy (newly turned five) thinks it a really fun treat and has a grand time helping me pick things out and put them in the cart. Vegetables that routinely get a "yuck" in the winter months when I pull them out of the freezer (another reason to love summer--I can buy cheap and save for later!) are suddenly exciting and he can't wait until we can have them with lunch or dinner. The Toddler (14 months) doesn't much care what it is as long as its raw and has some crispness to it. His only preference is that we have tomatoes. All the time. He loves them (and now that I can get them for twenty-nine cents a pound, he can have all he wants).