It’s that time of year again. The outdoor markets are opening, and the farmers are starting to bring in fresh produce. Although I live near a few year-round markets, I love this season the most. Living outside of Atlanta, I’m blessed to be surrounded by many farmers’ markets, and last Saturday my husband wooed me by taking me and our youngest son to two of them. (Yes, I consider it wooing, as I don’t think he really enjoys them.)

I bought a gallon of strawberries, and we ate them in less than 24 hours. Freshly picked–they tasted SO yummy! Maybe this weekend we’ll save some for a strawberry cheesecake.

Then there were the variety of fresh greens. I immediately washed them and ran them through my salad spinner. (Moisture is the death of salads.) I put them in a large, glass bowl and sprinkled some fresh wheat grass over it. To keep everything crisp, I put a folded paper towel on top and sealed it with Cling Wrap. I set it in the fridge and boiled some eggs. For lunch, my son and I enjoyed our delicious salads with strawberries for dessert. I smiled when he looked up from his plate and said, “Who knew fresh tasted so much better?” He had just complained about the chia seeds I sprinkled on his salad, but after taking a bite, all was forgiven.

It was a beautiful, sunny day, and with all those yummy goodies, my husband decided to grill some salmon to go with the corn and zucchini. I made a batch of biscuits last night for this morning’s breakfast, and we enjoyed the local honey with them. It’s now Tuesday, and I sent the last of the salad to school with my son today. Luckily, there’s a Thursday market at a local church, and I look forward to bringing home more fresh produce.

Oh, and I just have to share the exciting news! Okay, I know most of you don’t live near me, and this won’t be exciting for you. It’s a “me moment,” and I just need to express my happiness. The town I live in actually did a bit of rezoning so that a piece of land in the middle of a residential area could be turned into a farming zone. It’s actually on the same road as my tiny subdivision, which means I could easily walk to it. It’s still in the beginning stages, but next month they expect to have the little store built. Do you see what this means? I live in a residential area, but I will soon be able to purchase freshly picked yummies without any hassles. It really doesn’t get any more convenient than that! They’ll even have eggs from happy chickens!

They have volunteer opportunities, but I don’t have much time for that at the moment. Maybe next year I can get involved. I have a few garden plots around my house, but I’m not really doing anything with them this year. I may plant some herbs for cooking and teas, but I don’t see me trying to grow a lot of vegetables any time soon. I’m too far behind with everything else.

What’s your favorite thing about farmers’ markets? I’ve lived in eight states–rural and suburban–and every market has its own uniqueness. Although I miss a lot about living in the country and personally knowing the farmers, I highly enjoy the variety of offerings in the Atlanta area markets. Last weekend I tried goat yogurt for the first time, and I plan to start adding it to my smoothies instead of kefer. My son actually loved it straight!

If you’ve never thought much about your local farmers’ market, I hope you’ll give it a try. My son was right about the taste of freshly picked produce. There’s a different taste. It’s fresh and much healthier. You should give it a try.