How does the Organic Box work?

I’ve shared with several of my friends here in Edmonton that we have really enjoyed getting produce delivered to us from The Organic Box. Here’s a little bit of how it works!

Choose Your Box

Every Saturday, I get an email from them that says to login to “Choose my box.” Actually, I’ve already indicated many of my preferences. I prefer the “Local First” box, and don’t like to get avocados in my box, for example. (We eat avocado, I just usually get 5 at a time from Superstore!). So they fill my virtual box in my account with fresh, in season produce. I can go on and remove items I don’t want this week and add anything I might want. For example, if I know I’m planning to roast a turkey, I usually want celery, so I might add that. They put broccoli in my box, but I know I just bought some at Costco. So I remove it from my list and select rainbow Swiss chard instead.

The window of time for changing what’s in my virtual box closes (for me) on Monday at noon. So if I forget to check what was put into the box the cutoff time, I might get some surprises on my delivery day! They do work with you and I’ve had wonderful help from the folks in the office there when I needed to add something or make a change. You can also select from grocery, frozen, meat, dairy or bakery items to add to your produce delivery. Some of our favorites we splurge on have been their milk and yogurt, cinnamon buns, BBQ sauce and fair trade chocolate. Or I might notice that they have bulk carrots on sale and add on a 20lb bag! (We did that once and it took me FOREVER to get through them!)

Delivery Day

On delivery day, I get an email when the truck has left the warehouse and is out for deliveries. Usually relatively quickly (within an hour or two), the good folks from Organic Box are at my door. If I haven’t already done so, I rush to put my empty box on the front step so they can take it away with them to use again. Then we get to open our box of goodies and decide what to add to supper!

The Organic Box has lots of great, fresh fruits and vegetables available. If you’d like to try it out, you can get $20 off your first $50 order (that’s up to 40% savings on your first order) by using this coupon code: ORGANICJOY.

Disclosure: I am a part of the Organic Box Ambassador program. I joined because we enjoy being customers and love the fresh and healthy food they provide. I am not paid for my participation, however, I do receive food credits.

Resource Highlight: Mina Oglesby’s “Hey Kids, All Aboard!”

Our pastor’s family introduced us to this wonderful children’s CD. It’s called “Hey Kids, All Aboard!” by Mina Oglesby and is available here.

Children start the story by “climbing aboard” the Happy Train where the main character, Mrs. O, takes you on a tour of the train. Each car has a Bible verse over the door as you walk into it which the children learn. And there’s a discipleship theme for each car as well as a song.

The first car teaches you about having to have faith to reach God (Hebrews 11:1). You’re taught a delightful song called “Faith is the Key” that talks about how faith “opens the door to eternal life.” Another car teaches about being joyful in trying circumstances, and yet another about how love requires action, not just words.


Fiddleheads! a special spring blessing

I play and teach violin. But I also eat fiddleheads. Fiddlehead ferns, that is!

I first became acquainted with fiddleheads when I was in grade one. We lived in a little neighbourhood on the side of a hill in Edmundston, NB. My best friend and I would tromp through the few streets exploring. I would always get tan lines on my feet wearing little sailor shoes. One day in the spring I met a neighborhood girl who said she would take me to pick fiddleheads behind her house. She told me a yarn that you had to pick them and then throw away the curled up stem and keep the stalk! Naïvely, I believed her and proudly took a bucketful of useless stalks home to mom!

When I was a teenager in Gaspésie, every spring we would look forward to eating fiddlehead ferns. I think some folks in our church would bring them in. I remember one time going out into some wilder back-country and seeing the baby ferns just starting to poke up through the spring snow, and always close to a stream. My mom, the best cook in the world, would sautée them up and add a bit of soft white margarine and just a touch of vinegar.

Since we’ve been in Edmonton, I thought that eating fiddlehead ferns would be a thing of the past. My family has enjoyed obtaining fresh produce from The Organic Box for over 3 years now, off and on. What a joy it was one spring to discover some fiddleheads in my online box order!

Since I introduced them to my husband, he is now a fan, and even let me send some leftovers in his lunch the other day. When my Sweet Boy was born two years ago, a kind friend brought us a meal made with some farmer’s market produce. One side was fiddlehead ferns with corn and some sweet peppers. It was something like this recipe, but with corn, too. I’m glad Sweet Boy devoured the two fiddleheads I put on his plate last week :). He doesn’t always eat his greens so readily! I’m hoping to make serving fiddleheads an annual tradition—one of the many special blessings of spring!

This year the Organic Box is again offering fiddleheads which are sourced from BC and in a category called “wildcraft.” If you would like to try them out, be sure to check out Health Canada’s safe cooking recommendations.

The Organic Box The Organic Box has lots of other great, fresh fruits and vegetables available. If you’d like to try it out, you can get $20 off your first $50 order (that’s up to 40% savings on your first order) by using this coupon code: ORGANICJOY.

Fiddleheads photo credit: Wikimedia Commons/Ɱ (Licensed CC BY-SA 4.0)

Teaching Children about a Christian Worldview (#8)

What lenses do we use to look at moral, ethical, cultural, academic, or scientific questions? Children should learn about Creation, Fall and Redemption as lenses through which to look at our world.

First I need to talk about a book. My friend Mark wrote a really neat book. It’s a high school textbook, but so helpful for adults, too. It’s called Biblical Worldview: Creation, Fall, Redemption.

All of your prior knowledge of Scripture comes into play when teaching worldview. But this exercise in discernment can happen at the dinner table, as you “walk by the way,” and anytime you are wondering about what Scripture has to say about something.

One example is the concept of “Work.” Let’s start with Creation. How did God design work? Well, He made it to be Adam and Eve’s job to maintain the garden, to have dominion over all the earth (Genesis 1:28). It was good before the Fall. So what happened? With the Fall, work was cursed (Genesis 3:17-19). Work is now hard and laborious and a battle with thorns and thistles. Man’s heart now has laziness as a tendency. Many Proverbs would have something to say about this, right? What about Redemption? Well, we see Jesus applying His hands to work. We see Paul telling the Colossians  to do work heartily as unto the Lord (Colossians 3:23, see also Ecclesiastes 9:10). Ultimately, the curse will be reversed in the new heavens and new earth.

This exercise challenges children to embrace God’s help to obey His commands to work hard and dilligently.

Teaching Children the Attributes of God (#7)

Knowing God and Who He is will prepare children to trust Him during life’s trials and difficulties.

Here are two books that changed my life.

What Do I Know About my God? by Mardi Collier

This book challenges you to get to know your God by starting to list out verses about God’s character by topic. My God is good is one category. But how do I know He is good? That’s where you list verses that you come across in Scripture that describe how you can bank on His goodness. Two verses in that category are Psalm 34:8, “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!” and Nahum 1:7 “The Lord is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble; And He knows those who trust in Him.” (NKJV)

I can begin to describe how thinking in these categories has helped me in times of difficulty. If I’m struggling with ANYTHING, there is a truth about God that will comfort, challenge or encourage me.

When Life and Beliefs Collide: How Knowing God Makes a Difference by Carolyn Custis James

This book presents how the two truths about God–that He is in control/sovereign and that He is good–are often tested and tried by our circumstances. And ultimately, you have to trust that God is in control and that He is good because God’s Word says so, not because your life seems to show it to be true right now.

Children who learn about God and His nature and attributes from a young age, especially if these concepts are accompanied by verses, will be prepared to encounter difficulty all along life’s way.

One concept that has really helped me when I find my soul in a quandry is to ask myself three questions. Usually at that time in my life one of these is particularly applicable.

  1. In this situation, how is God my Savior? (What is He ready to save me from? Am I looking to Him as my Savior?)
  2. How is He my Lord? (Am I submitting to His will? Am I willing to serve Him?)
  3. How is He my Example? (Is Jesus asking me to take up my cross and follow Him in this?)

So how does this apply to teaching Children about God? Well, if I am looking to God and meditating on His attributes, it will come out in my speech. If I pray for help to find the lost keys or library book and my kids see me pray and then God answer, then you better believe it, when they are looking for their lost dolly shoe, that little head bows and asks Jesus to help her find her dolly’s shoe.

One way that I taught this to children in a very rudimentary way was in my Sunday School class one time. We had a prayer time where we would write out a prayer request on a strip of construction paper. When God answered the prayer, we stapled the answers together into a chain. It was neat to see the chain grow longer every week.

I soon realized that I needed to teach the children not just to pray for requests, but to praise God for who He is. So I started writing “Dear God, I praise you because…” and gave each child a small card with an attribute of God. “You are loving,” “You are kind,” “You are powerful,” “You are in control,” and others. I tried to explain to them a little about what it meant. Their faith-filled prayers were all the more sweet as they praised Jehovah for being loving and kind.