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Moore Dirty Boots at Waterloo Rotary Market! Let’s Encourage Sustainability

19 Jun

By Kristen Moore

We’ve been having fun preparing for market’s opening day tomorrow! A bit of rain may put a damper on the day, but working with fresh strawberries and basil is a treat for the senses!

My goal is to share some of the insights I’ve been gaining from personal research and my friend, Cindy. Cindy boasts she watched Julia Child as a little girl growing up in Chicago. She spent time beside her grandfather when he cooked and still cherishes his handwritten recipe book.

Cindy stocks up on fresh produce from the best growers at the peak of quality. She then prepares each vegetable or fruit in the best method, wether canning for jam, blanching and freezing for broccoli and beans or…? She is so knowledgable in regards to food preparation and preservation, that her family thrives and it is a fascinating learning experience to discover her processes.

Working in restaurants myself, but in the front of house-F.O.H., I have developed a keen palette without the culinary skills to produce consistently at home.

Using fresh ingredients for multiple dishes is an art in itself to me! Strawberries are an important food in upstate NY, so I’ve thought up four recipes for the quart of strawberries I purchased.

After photographing these beauties, I hulled the strawberries and rinsed them in a colander. At the height of freshness, tender care is necessary. After drying half of the berries, I lined a tray with parchment paper and placed the berries in rows. These berries went into the freezer to save, while the remaining berries were cut up for salad and shortcake.

While preparing the strawberries for use and for storage, I dreamt up a salad that I can’t wait to try! Tasty accompaniments and just the right beverage came to mind. Dessert too. Of course, that will have to be strawberry shortcake! Our strawberries are cut up nicely and chilling, ready to top shortbread biscuits from the local grocery store’s bakery! A BOGO deal on biscuits, meant 6 biscuits went into 2 freezer bags and into our large freezer.

Basil butter pats were a delicious treat I enjoyed last year for a week or so. Another friend and I got together specifically to process fresh basil for each of our households. We cleaned, dried and finely chopped the basil, mixing it into melted butter; some of the batches also had fresh garlic. These supplies did not last long in my house as I wanted to use the trifecta of basil, garlic and butter in everything!

Striking out on my own, I made a batch of basil butter this week; with basil I’ve been growing. Baked potatoes were timed to finish just before the basil butter was ready, allowing an incredible garnish for dinner and some prepared ingredients stored in the freezer. Portions of ingredients need to be researched, as this turned out to be a micro-batch, only making 6 pats!

Soon, I will be sharing the gourmet summer meal and wine pairing-featuring strawberries. Also, I have a classic strawberry dessert recipe to share from personal family archives. Simple to create, yet delicious and complex; it can impress the most discerning guest.

If you haven’t spotted wild strawberries yet this year there is still time. Their rounded, serrated leaves look romantic; while the vivid color of the berries can catch your eye. Discounted for lack of flavor by some, I found a berry at perfect ripeness and felt the original delight of exploring the same banks as a youth. Mmm.

Busy Summer for Moore Dirty Boots!

8 Jun

During quarantine, I created the acronym L.O.V.E. for Lake Ontario’s Valued Ecosystems and launched Moore Dirty Boots, LLC. Our media and adventure education is now complemented with our Sustainability Innovation Department! I’m developing an illustrated sustainability guide and working with a fantastic team of marketing professionals, artists and graphic designers. Projects are in the works within each category and there will be feature articles and media.

Saturday, June 12 I will be cleaning a stream with Girl Scouts to support the Cayuga Lake Watershed Network with an “Embrace the Lake” event. We will continue south to Treman Marina on Cayuga Lake’s southern end to board The Teal, Discover Cayuga Lake’s research cruise vessel and Floating Classroom. After our seminar we will head back north for a stop at Cayuga Creamery to celebrate our day caring for and learning about Cayuga Lake.

Working with students to improve the watershed and share information presented in W.O.W.!, Women On Water is a great honor! W.O.W.! is a series I created for Audubon NY that may gain new life, even being presented in a Sunset Cruise later this summer upon the Discover Cayuga Lake boat.

This Thursday, I am registered for a writing workshop with Robin Wall Kimmerer, author of Braiding Sweetgrass! As this book affected me profoundly, I’m thrilled to be attending! I’m so glad to be able to include her perspectives and insight-within my limited understanding, in my work. Reading about the author discovering and assessing wild strawberries as they ripened, was a retelling of my own memories. It was also a red maple which I swung from and read within. Robin Wall Kimmerer’s call to experience and nurture our surroundings, led me to incorporate celebration as a major component of outreach. In addition to energy, transport, food and waste; outreach is a fifth pathway for sustainability. Service, education and celebration can transform relationships among people and the relationships with our physical surroundings. I’m so eager to hear from this inspiring author and scientist!

August 14, I’m hosting Love Your Greats Day with a series of events on Lake Ontario, including a Butterfly Walk at 11 am at Alasa Farms/Cracker box Palace. Lunkenheimer’s Craft Brewing Co. is located right on the way to Chimney Bluffs where we will reconvene after lunch. East of NYS Park Chimney Bluffs, we will clean the beach at the NYS DEC Wildlife Management Area. The beach side forest is lined in fine pebbles and sand, as well as trash. We will improve and enjoy this space together. Susan Gateley will celebrate the release of “Natural History of Lake Ontario” on Arcadia Press, with a sunset bluffs/beach walk. Please mark your calendars and join in this special day however you can!

It seems butterfly season has begun, with milkweed popping up and casual walk & talks with little ones. My ten year old friend scored high marks when he told me viceroys pretend to be monarchs to be safe from predators.

I’ll be reading about butterflies at Sodus and Port Byron libraries, hopefully with caterpillars, chrysalis or butterflies in nursery!

September 12, Karen Haas of Bayview Wellness Center and I will co-lead a yoga hike at Sterling Nature Center. Our yoga hikes here were AWESOME, so I’m so glad we are co-hosting this yoga hike again. Donations to the Sterling Nature Center are encouraged!

These are the major highlights on the schedule thus far. Who knows what might be next? I look forward to seeing work along the pathways for sustainability. We all can do better, together!

Happy New Year! 2021, Here We Come!

31 Dec

Hello, everyone! I’m sorry I haven’t spent time writing here. I will, I promise.

I’ve talked to more friends and family today than all year long! How I miss you!

January 28 at 8 pm, I will be leading a snowshoe excursion for Audubon NY at the Owasco Flats Nature Reserve in Moravia, NY. I’m excited to help launch this non-profits educational programming in such a neat area. The president of “The Flats” and I will be spending some more time in the reserve this month, in preparation for our walk/snowshoe. Recently cleared trails, now allow visitors to walk from the northern kiosk off Fire Lane Rd. to the southern kiosk on Route 38. I’m hoping my friends who live nearby will be able to join us for this neat celebration.

I’ll be writing more about “The Flats”, the history of the land, the geography of the local hills and complexity of the watershed.

A bit far from my beloved lakeshore of Ontario, I do plan to spend more time concentrating on my home territory. The enormity of the lake can overwhelm with immensity of peace, beauty, ferocity, adventure and a sense of boundlessness. I suppose I need to tell this story more vividly as the pandemic limits our ability to lead in-person events. I do hope to host some events with all COVID precautions in place. I love to talk about the bluff mud! Not to be confused with ordinary mud, this can be reddish orange due to a high quantity of sandstone. If you haven’t hiked bluffs, peered out over the seemingly endless lake and marveled at our lake rocks-you are really missing out! “Mud and Wine” sounds divine, we’ll explore our glacial history, observe, discover and enjoy.

I realized I quit taking pictures a few years back that don’t tell a story for work. I’m trying to capture more fun, beautiful images. To work on my writing and photography and to get out there for fun! The “Hit the Trails Passport” from Wegmans has been getting me to different places. Though, I’ve stayed within 60 miles of my home since March, the hike I discovered today was interesting in many different ways. A first visit can captivate in ways a frequently visited place might not.

Pictures and much Moore in 2021! If you would like me to reserve a space for you January 28, please let me know as the month unfolds. Space is limited and we will be social distancing-quite bundled up too, I’m sure.

CHEERS!

Roots of the Adventures

14 Aug

Books, dogs and the outdoors have always been central to my happiness. If all three are present, that is superb but two of the three is excellent as well. I’ve chosen to concentrate on environmental stewardship and conservation in this blog but the adventures have greater depth.

Clean water for my dog, Organic led me to learn about threats from hydrofracking. HABs (hydral algal blooms) are a more recent concern, threatening human health and our pets. I began organizing and leading beach cleanups, participating and coordinating water chestnut pulls. The Finger Lakes Institute at Hobart and Williams Smith trained me as a watercraft steward and I worked at our boat launches. I’ve learned about and supported the Cayuga Lake Watershed Network, Discover Cayuga Lake and Mission eXXpedition’s Great Lakes 2016 project.

Now, a bright and cheerful book called “Where Does Your Water Shed?” captured my attention at the Montezuma Audubon Center. Published by the National Association of Conservation Districts, I’m planning to create a video with the story read aloud while near/on or in water. I’m excited to see which partners join me in this project!

My dog’s health is always a priority to me. I wonder when there may be HABs and if/how they can be avoided. I’m immensely hopeful for water quality in our area after attending the 2020 Finger Lakes Research Conference at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in January. Though the threats are enormous and persistent, over 200 dedicated professionals came together to share research at this most impressive occasion.

I’ve begun sharing insights from my bookcase and hope to learn more from our community on keeping our pets safe.

Dogs, books and the outdoors make for great adventures (with clean water!)!

L.O.V.E. = LAKE ONTARIO’S VALUED ECOSYSTEMS

14 Jun

L.O.V.E. = LAKE ONTARIO’S VALUED ECOSYSTEMS.

BY KRISTEN MOORE

Sun shines over Lake Ontario from Scott's Bluffs

A sunny afternoon glimmers from the eastern edge of Scott’s Bluffs.

When winter seemed like it would never end, this acronym came to me. Clean water has always been important to me, especially growing up beside Lake Ontario.

The lands along Lake Ontario’s southern shore are abundant with wildlife ranging from Bald Eagles, Ospreys and Great Blue Herons to turtles, trout and trillium. As an adventure educator, I hope experiential learning will captivate people and foster healthy behaviors including outdoor exercise, recreation and stewardship.

The Red Creek Marsh Unit is an area I’ve enjoyed exploring for years. Reading books in the shade of tall oaks, kayaking, picnicking, clearing litter and invasive species; I know it well. Mute swans and Canada geese rely upon these waters, as do turtles, beavers, raptors and others.

Still marsh waters foster huge reflection of sky and greenery

Still waters create a mirror of the sky, with a single lily pad showing off in the foreground.

Sunlight and white, puffy clouds reflect upon a marsh's waters beside the nose of a green kayak

White, puffy clouds and sunshine reflect from the waters of the Red Creek Marsh Unit.

Water chestnut is due to grow in here soon. Hydra algal blooms have been a problem in the past. Poison oak here has harmed me, along with wild parsnip? This wild area is a treasure to marvel and care for.

Sodus Bay, with Chimney Bluffs to the east and Crackerbox Palace/Alasa Farms to the south; the bay and lake have defined life in this area for quite a long time! Historic Huron and the Sodus Bay Lighthouse Museum both have artifacts and information about our local families and culture that demonstrate great richness of people and environment.

A black horse named "Double" looks over the fence at the photographer.

“Double” looks at the camera, perhaps wondering if baby carrots are to be enjoyed today.

Stone Bench and View at Alasa Farms

This stone bench sits beside the eastern pastures at Alasa Farms. An animal sanctuary and Genesee Land Trust property, Cracker Box Palace is a gift to many species.

What can we do for L.O.V.E.? We can participate in invasive species removal events. We can clean spaces of litter, take pictures & video-while posting on social media. We can conduct watershed education with events like kayaking with local historians and conservation leaders. We can explore the geology of our beaches and bluffs, igniting people to learn about our glacial history and earth sciences. We can help Randy maintain trails at Crackerbox Palace/Alasa Farms. We can raise pints from Lunkenheimer’s to support the Genesee Land Trust and Sodus Bay Lighthouse Museum!

These spaces thrill me with their variety, rhythms and life. To me they are L.O.V.E., Lake Ontario’s Valued Ecosystems.

Oh, ho, ho December!

14 Dec

The holiday bells are ringing and I’m squeezing a post in while I wait for my car to be serviced. Festive gatherings are making me jubilant and inspired!

As sugary delights taunt me, I’m adding in additional exercise and fun. Socializing and being physically active increase energy unlike the negative effects of too many holiday treats.

At a recent party, another guest revealed that he had followed my blog but he had never received it! It was a friendly reminder to get back here.

Joining the National Audubon Society as an environmental educator this spring has been an exhilarating realization of my work and education. Working with Audubon to achieve our mission to conserve habitats for birds in the face of climate change is tangible work of great value for so many reasons. Delivering educational programming to children and adults at the Seneca Meadows Education Center and Wetlands Preserve is a true delight and honor. Audubon’s work teaching people about birds and how to help them directly achieves the goal I’ve state here; to connect people to the places where we work and play.

A volunteer potluck dinner at the Montezuma Audubon Center this month surpassed my expectations. Guests were surprised with a feast of venison and veggie chilis, chicken french, ordeurves, mashed potatoes and numerous desserts; including cream puffs shaped as swans! We talked about rare bird sightings and favored nature preserves, how fun our field trips are and the latest environmental news. Volunteer work ranges from gardening flower beds, running a store register to setting up and breaking down for events. The opportunities to meet others sharing the same interests and to learn are abundant. MARSH works in the Montezuma Wetlands complex area, while I often arrange events along Lake Ontario’s shore, cleaning beaches and collecting water chestnuts, for example. Working alongside others interested in helping birds, increasing positive feelings of engagement and widening our understanding of issues is proactive.

Many volunteer opportunities are in the warmer seasons but there may still be opportunities to contribute and get outside. Researching these organizations and learning about their work can help us remember Spring will come again!

Another place that protects water quality and provides habitat for wildlife and rescued domestic animals is Cracker Box Palace at Alasa Farms, on the southern shore of Sodus Bay on Lake Ontario. An animal sanctuary situated on a Genesee Land trust property, this historic farm is comprised of diverse lands beside the bay. Over 200 rescued farm animals call this property home, relying on three or four staff members and numerous volunteers. A network of trails is available for visitors to experience protected lands including bay views, forest paths and waterfalls in a stream salmon rely upon.

Amazing places surround us, ripe for our discovery and stewardship. Wild, silly, creative people are all around, yearning to engage-to be involved, be valuable and valued-to share joy. These gifts of the season, I wish for us all.

For those who might need a tangible gift, South Shore Artisans in Fair Haven, NY is full of locally made creations. Drop in to find durable pottery, colorful, joyous paintings, and much more throughout the co-op’s three rooms. Avoiding waste and supporting local artists are actions with more benefit than we may remember. Happy Holidays!

 

We Love It! That’s Why We Work For It

10 Jun

When the temperature warms, the sun appears and the birds abound; upstate or central New York becomes an amazing playground! After a long, cold winter and wet spring we are ready for gardening, lawn work, barbecues with friends, kayaking, hiking, wine tasting, stargazing and bonfires.  One can easily become exhausted or injured embracing the numerous activities we’ve been longing for half of the year.

Balance can be hard to achieve or even contemplate for many.  Creating a lifestyle which fosters wellness on the deepest levels is important work I find many of us ignore.

Ample research proves the benefits of time spent in vibrant outdoor spaces and enjoying camaraderie.  Pleasant weather Friday made a visit to Lucifer Falls near Ithaca an awesome visit.  We experienced the wonder of the falls and the history of the old mill at Enfield Falls. A visit to Upper Treman became a walk through time when we entered the old mill.  I’ve been to this park many times but I have never seen the building open or been able to walk through and view the intelligent engineering behind the once thriving business.

 

 

 

 

 

News tends to dismay with such severity our own health and relationships can suffer.  Grace is needed to thrive and live harmoniously.  How can we achieve graceful living when confronted with so much mental and environmental pollution? I’m finding many tools and strategies that can aid us in wellness with awareness.

As an adventure educator and media artist, I aim to “Connect People to the Lands Where We Work and Play.” The S.E.E. formula of Service, Education and Enjoyment informs many of my events.  We will be teaming up with Sea Culture Brand to host a beach cleanup in Fair Haven. Sea Culture Brand is a clothing company from the Syracuse area, created by Daniel Tagliamonte. The clothes are inspired by life on and near the water and they utilize recycled materials. Rethinking methods of production and disposal, while being proactive caring for our surroundings seems wise to me. Watch this short YouTube video to see Daniel showing off his 2018 Fall Collection. Follow Sea Culture Brand on social media to see their latest designs and learn how they operate.  (A Henley debuting in July could be a great sustainable gift!)

Previous cleanup efforts at the rest area on NYS Route 89 just north of Taughannock Falls State Park in Trumansburg led to official adoption by the Cayuga Lake Watershed Network.  Cayuga Lake Steward, Hilary Lambert sited an improvement to the cleanliness of this space and plans for this year’s cleanup efforts. It does take a network to protect a watershed! I’m glad to receive texts and messages asking me for my advice with cleanups, water quality and Monarch butterfly care.  We will be hosting an “Embrace the Lake” event at Stewart Park on the southern end of Cayuga Lake in the near future.  Please return to this blog or contact me to find out when these and other cleanups will occur.  We will be sure to have fun, get exercise and hopefully improve our surroundings-while we learn in a joyful way. It’s finally nice out here, so let’s make the most of it together!

Huron Day!

22 Oct

Huron Day, October 6, 2018 was an awesome experience! It is fascinating to share cultural and environmental history with local residents and newcomers.  This year’s theme was “Into the Woods.” As I enjoy being in the woods, specifically our local forests on the east side of Sodus Bay and the southern lakeshore of Lake Ontario, this focus was ideal!

One of numerous pictures taken in this exact spot, an excellent place to stretch and relax.

The bluffs and forest change dramatically through the seasons and years. Witnessing erosion, eagles, Great Blue Herons and wildflowers are among the area’s treasures.

Huron Town Historian, Rosa Fox brought together people who interact with the woods in a variety of aspects, including sustainable forestry, soil and water conservation, mushroom foraging and more.  This collection of people and interests represents well the argument presented in Robert Hull’s Infinite Nature: The lens through which we perceive our surroundings and the resulting benefits we calculate can be quite different depending upon our various values and interests.

Walking meetings are my favorite, yet today we met inside the historic buildings of Huron.  It was my first visit to these buildings and the short flight of wooden steps to the upper room of the Huron Presbyterian Church offered a welcoming invitation.

Open doors invite visitors during Huron Day, October 6, 2018

Working as an adventure educator and visitor specialist in Wayne County is extra rewarding for me.  Researching and studying our local cultural history at the Sodus Bay Lighthouse Museum reinforces my own experience and passion for “Apple Country.”

With 20,000 acres under apple production in Wayne County, it earns the title of “Apple Country.” Orchards under spring blossoms and trees heavy with fruit can intoxicate the senses.  There are new varieties and styles of production which I was able to discuss with an experienced farmer.  Artifacts from the local apple orchards and production drew visitors’ attention.

Wooden apple crates, a basket and picking bag at Historic Huron.

Large piece of impressive cider making equipment at Historic Huron.

From local foresters to local public servants, there were so many people to meet and talk with. It was a pleasure to share a collection of information from the Sodus Bay Historical Society and Historic Huron which told the history of the lands which are now New York State’s Chimney Bluffs State Park.  Asking apple farmers if they drank at the Chimney’s Tavern was entertaining.  Watching a young boy’s jaw drop as I explained a connection between lighthouse keepers and local apple growers was too.

It was an honor to meet the presenters who came to Huron Day to celebrate “Into the Woods.” I’m thankful to be part of groups connecting people to each other and to the places where we work and play.  It is through these connections we gain and share strength.

This sign for Freer Brothers Farm celebrates the area’s long history in agriculture, while capturing Huron’s Presbyterian Church and belltower.

Rosa Fox speaks with good humor in regards to items within Historic Huron’s collection.

Mrs. Fox will be speaking at the Wolcott Library tomorrow at 6:30.  RSVPs are requested.  Seize the opportunity to hear what Huron’s historian has gleaned about topics including slavery, sailing and more. If you haven’t seen her book Great Sodus Bay, published by Arcadia Press in 2016, find a copy! This is a must-read for locals and a fascinating book for interested minds.  Many of the amazing photos are from the archives of the Sodus Bay Historical Society.  Copies are available in the Sodus Bay Lighthouse Museum store and should be in local libraries too!

There is still time for cider, cider donuts, apple crisp, hayrides and pumpkins! Our agricultural and environmental abundance is unique-Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rare September Sunday Off

26 Sep

A September Sunday off to begin birthday celebrations was stupendous! Taking advantage of the precious opportunity, I was bound for the eastern side of Cayuga Lake.

Heart & Hands was my first stop for a superb tasting with Megan.  The quality is striking, a testimony to their expertise and efforts. A new release quickly became my new favorite.  Once I have a few bottles tucked away, I may divulge the selection but until then I will daydream quietly.

In Aurora, I skipped into Trader Rose Vintage. Mnetha was not behind the counter, so I made a beeline for the women’s clothing.  Within five minutes, I had tried on two great pieces and was wearing a Cheshire grin.  The cashier wrapped my purchases in tissue paper while I gave the store a final scan, determined to leave triumphantly in good time.

The afternoon stretched on as friends played music and we shared cheese, veggies and cold cans of Rohrbach’s Space Kitty.

Describing appetizers, dinner and the sky full of lake and sunset would make it sound better than most can imagine.  It was! As I talked with my friends and watched Monarch butterflies dance…

Ithaca Reggae Fest 2018-Cayuga Lake, NY

25 Jun

Sandra Steingraber spoke to the most personal and ecological forms of water with poetry.

A blue morning began June 23, 2018. Saturday was Ithaca Reggae Fest’s big day at Stewart Park. Worries of rain nagged at exceptionally high hopes for this event held beside Cayuga Lake’s southern shore in Ithaca, New York.  The discreet weather nearly whispered “Simmer down.”

The celebration of water and life through Reggae music provided attendees with access to Native American teachings, local water advocacy groups, yogis and more!

Chief Sam of the Cayuga Nation began Reggae Fest 2018 for me.  He warmly shared stories and reflections steps from Cayuga Lake’s blue water.  His son and grandson stood beside him with pride; it was a joy to see.  He spoke of the many medicines of this earth and jokingly acknowledged the medicine of goose poop in great abundance.  Sachem Sam spoke of Indian time, being  the time in which things happen.  I found this to be a description of my own view.

While gathering resources for my table in the education village, I took a few moments to read the Finger Lakes Land Trust’s Land Steward magazine.  I’m so glad! The good news is plentiful because of the amazing work and dedication of those who support the FLLT.  Rehabilitating land to reduce and absorb runoff is a proactive strategy to care for our watershed.  Developing and implementing a long term rehabilitation strategy can create benefits experienced in similar case studies.  Learn more about the Finger Lakes Land Trust’s work here.

The rains held off as Astrid Jirka of Vahana Yoga led participants in 108 sun salutations.  Massage therapists donated chair massage in the Wellness Village while bands including Thousands of One, Mosaic Foundation and Crucial Reggae Social Club welcomed in the afternoon.

Sandra Steingraber’s speech was personal and poetic.  She reminded the listener of the dynamic presence of water throughout our planet and our own bodies.  She did this by humanizing her experience.  More than an environmentalist, she is a human and a mother.  She is a creature aware of our composition and need to foster sanctity of water.  Sharing this awareness is effective, partly because it offers an invitation to entertain such a view oneself.

Ithaca Reggae Fest 2018 was plastic free.  Organizations like Plastic Tides, Mission eXXpedtion and Plastic Free July are doing great work to fight plastic pollution.  Please learn more about plastic pollution and consider taking the pledge at Plastic Free July.

Paddle-N-More had water crafts available for rent at the festival.  This year’s location was less noticeable than in the past.  Seeing others discover watersports promotes increased participation.  Recreation opportunities and meditative attributes draw me to water but for some it is science.  Cayuga Lake Watershed Network was joined by Discover Cayuga Lake, Citizen Science, NYS Parks and Recreation to name a few. Please continue to learn about the work being done by advocates for water.  What can you do? Water is essential to life. “Get up, Stand Up. Stand up for our right.” (Robert Nesta Marley.)