Farmer John Writes: Projects and Polarities

 In Farm News

Extended Season Week 2, November 7th – 11th

Deliveries Have Ended for About Half of our 2017 Shareholders
This is the second week of our 4-week Extended Season. If you are not signed up for an extended season share, please do not pick up a box during our extended season deliveries. If you pick up a box on the wrong week, it will cause a shortage at your pickup site. Please make sure that your name is on the checklist at your pickup site before taking home a box.

Some shareholders are signed up for a half 2-week extended season share. If your pickup reminder email indicates that you have a half extended season share on the “odd weeks”, this means that you will receive your extended season boxes on Extended Season Week 1 (last week) and Extended Season Week 3 (next week). If you have a half extended season share on the “even weeks”, you will receive your boxes on Extended Season Week 2 (this week) and Extended Season Week 4 (our final delivery week of 2017 which is also Thanksgiving week).

If you are unsure whether you have an extended season share, or you want to check which half extended season share delivery schedule you are on, log in to your membership using your email address at and look under the “Memberships” tab. Another way you can check to see if you have an extended season share is to look at one of your pickup reminder emails from this season which is sent from email hidden; JavaScript is required. The weekly pickup reminder emails list all of the share types that you have in the 2017 season.

Your Box This Week — Thursday, Friday & Saturday Deliveries:

Please note: this summary is written before we pack your box—be aware that some guesswork is involved. As always, be sure to thoroughly wash all of your vegetables.

Brassicas — Brussels Sprouts

Fruiting Crops — Butternut Squash

Root Crops  Daikon Radish, Potatoes

Cooking Greens — Kale Tops, Brussels Sprouts Tops, Baby Kale (in bag)

Alliums — Garlic

Sign up for the Free Recipe Service
Make sure you sign up for the Local Thyme recipe service we offer with your share. Local Thyme offers storage and handling tips and recipes customized to each week’s share. It has received many great reviews from our shareholders. Check out this sample recipe: Garlic Roasted Brussels Sprouts.

Brussels Sprouts
Your Brussels sprouts have now gone through a couple of frosts, so they should be extra sweet. 

I wrote extensively in last week’s Farm News about Enigmatic Brussels Sprouts. Check it out if you have not already read it. It will background you on this season’s Brussels sprouts and how to work with them to make them into a great culinary experience.

Hi, After the message about the Brussels sprouts, I was surprised at the great condition of mine.  Much appreciation to the workers who must’ve spent a lot of extra time to work on these.  Just wanted you to know it was noticed!

I’m so happy each week to get my veggie box! Thanks for all you do!

Kind regards,

Our Fabulous Pack Volunteer Program
I have mentioned our Pack Volunteer program in a few former issues of Farm News. About 10 volunteers regularly show up to pack your boxes three days a week. Most of these volunteers pack one day per week; a few pack two or three days per week. Camaraderie flourishes amongst the volunteers.

For the final week of the full season, the volunteers, Haidy and I had potluck lunches in the main barn prior to the Monday, Wednesday and Friday packs. These were beautiful occasions, with fabulous dishes and warmhearted conversation.

Perhaps you would be interested in joining the program next season. You can read more about the program at Angelic Organics Pack Volunteer Program.

Three generations of a local family volunteer to pack the boxes. They presented me with this lovely gift.

I have noted in previous issues of Farm News a proliferation of meanness amongst some of our shareholders—this has become especially notable in the past two years. I want to also point out that with other shareholders, there seems to be an increase in satisfaction and joy with our CSA program. This polarity is like a microcosm of what it happening with the general culture today. (For those of you who might want to further investigate these phenomena of increasing polarization, I suggest investigating Socionomics, pioneered by Robert Prechter.)

Dear Angelic Organics,

Thank you for a 3rd season of incredible produce! It is always like Christmas getting a box of your beautiful veggies, and I am already looking forward to next season. Personally, I’ve enjoyed all the “weird” greens and other unfamiliar vegetables. I’ve learned how to use mizuna (love it!) and pea shoots (soooooooo delicious!), and it’s been delightful researching veggies I’ve never eaten before (kohlrabi, delicata squash)…

A big hug and thanks to everyone who makes Angelic Organics possible. It has helped me make MY diet healthier and more plant-based, but more than that, I love how much you love the earth and want to keep it healthy and balanced. Bless you all and may you stay safe and happy until everything starts up again in 2018 (although I am well aware that you all will still be working)!!

A big fan,

PS—I pick up my produce in Barrington, and I want to give a big shout out to Alina of PURE because she has always been so accommodating and helpful!

Last year was my first year with your CSA, but I’m no stranger to CSAs having been member of 4-5 different ones since moving to Chicago 20 years ago.

Your share offered consistently excellent quality, variety and value, and the Chicago-Uptown pick-up location only a block from my house makes pick-up super convenient!  Thanks again!


Hi Farmer John and Haidy!  Thank you for another phenomenal season! We love being a part of angelic organics and we are already signed up for next year! Really appreciate all of your hard work and delicious food!


From Former Shareholders
Shareholders from past seasons who haven’t renewed their shares have also been extremely gracious.

Hey there Angelic Organics! I still love you!  But, I moved to Costa Rica three years ago, so I am unable to continue my shares. Please know that if I still lived up north I would continue my membership. You are providing a great service to folks in Chicago. Please keep up your noble work!


Dear Farmer John,

I would love to be a shareholder again — I miss the variety and quality of veggies you grow!!! And I loved being part of the farm.

The reason we are no longer members is because we moved to Anchorage, AK. It is possible that we may end up back in the Chicago area, but not likely… there is a growing local food movement in Alaska but no Angelic Organics.

I am disappointed to hear that you don’t sell out of shares. I guess people are too busy to prepare good food… I hope that next year is different. These movements have transformative power! I wish you all the best, and thank you for many seasons of wonderful food.


The Work
I like to do things well. Sometimes doing something well is doing it less well, because: it isn’t that important; or it is less important than other things that really need to be done well; or the thing that needs doing is going to be done really well soon, so it can be done less well now, or not at all now. Of course, there are many other considerations: How much time is available for the project? How much money is available? How much supervision will be required? Do I have qualified to people to implement the project? Is the weather conducive to the implementation of this project? And then there is the emotional component: Is the project itself exciting? Is it resistible? Will the project result in more efficiency? More safety? A greater sense of well-being? You might wonder if I endure a sort of paralysis in considering a project, but no, I process most of these questions/considerations in an instant, or a flurry of connected instances.

Newly painted Corn Crib (farm office), in the process of becoming itself–main color, Thai Basil by Behr; roof fascia, Bronze Tone by Benjamin Moore; outer window trim, Jack O’Lantern by Benjamin Moore; door trim, Sedona Clay by Benjamin Moore. Tall part of Farmhouse, Marigold by Behr (cloned from Benjamin Moore)

Farmer John

Please Fold Your Boxes Properly and Return Them
The farm re-uses the vegetable boxes. Each box costs the farm over $1.50. We appreciate getting them back so we can re-use them. Flaps are easily torn when the boxes are dismantled improperly, and then the box bottom might later burst open with fresh, organic local produce heading towards the floor. Please carefully flatten your box and return it to your delivery site. If you receive home delivery, place it in the location where your box is delivered.

Let us Know
Let our office know anything you’d like to share about this week’s box at email hidden; JavaScript is required. Please note the week and day of delivery, your site, when you picked up your box, and any comments about your box.

More from Shareholders
Visit us often at, where we post exciting farm developments regularly, and shareholders post recipes, tips, and photos.

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  • Miriam Greenfield

    I too have enjoyed the produce immensely. Haven’t purchased share for next year because I may not be in Chicago by next year. Good luck

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