Wednesday, May 06, 2009

corner view:: shopping in madison wisconsin


Living in Wisconsin, we of course have strip malls, shopping malls, mega stores, super stores, and chain stores. We have wonderful neighborhood shops, crafty stores and boutiques, and small family owned businesses. We have farmer's markets and urban farm stands. Wherever you drive in the country you can also usually find bait, pottery, eggs, produce, farm animals, hay, and more.

This week the corner view is shopping. I am not much of a shopper. I loathe lines, fluorescent lighting, loud annoying music, and not finding what I need. I prefer to shop small and local for things I must buy, or shop online. We are also big fans of our local co-op - where we give our member number as we check out, and let them know if we want to "CHIP".


But for me, my favorite way to shop for many things is one on one. I love buying directly from farmers and producers...apples, wheat, cider, vegetables, meat, dairy, honey, soap, beeswax...you name it. We are lucky to live in a place where you can get SO much so close to home.

In the summer months we visit local farm stands. We also have a weekly CSA. CSA means "Community Supported Agriculture". So what we do is purchase a 'share' for our farm of choice, and get a box of seasonal produce each week during the growing season. We love to pick up at the farm, see what is in our box each week, and chat with the farmer or other families picking up at the same time!


Visit Jane at Spain Daily for her view - and don't forget to check out everyone from around the world who is participating!
jane, ladybug-zen, ian, bonnie,esti, sophie, cele, modsquad,caitlin, joyce, ani, couturecoucou, kim, a day that is dessert, natsumi, epe, kaylovesvintage, trinsch, c.t.,jeannette, outi, schanett, ritva, dongdong, francesca, state of bliss, jennifer, dana, denise, cabrizette, bohemia girl, ruth, dianna, isabelle, amber, a girl in the yellow shoes, mister e, janis, kari, jgy, jenna, skymring, elizabeth, audrey, allison, lise, cate, mon, victoria, crescent moon, erin, otli, amy, ida, caroline, lisa, dorte, kimmie, la lune dans le ciel, nicola, malo, vanessa, britta, virgina, april, sunnymama, samantha, karen, kristina, angelina, kyndale

35 comments:

sunnymama said...

A really interesting corner view and some great pictures!

Michelle said...

How fortunate you can do that Denise. Wow! I have looked for a CSA here around Saskatoon, SK and have only found one, which isn't even near us.

Sarah said...

Fantastic post! The top picture was in my blog reader and drew me right in.

Francesca said...

I like a place that advertises selling from goats to donkeys by the road side!

jane said...

Hey Denise this is great! Being from a big city on the east coast I never had this sense of community. You are very lucky! Thanks for sharing this! Hugs-Jane

Crescent Moon said...

So, it looks a little like you and I switched places. I usually leave comments on your blog about how your pictures remind me of living in Madison, and then today your comment on my blog was about your memories of Gainesville. It really is a small world!
I used to love the Willy Street Co-op. My ex-husband worked at the Green Peace office near there.
Do they still have the farmers market all the way around the capital? That was the first place I ever tried cheese curds.

Jeannette said...

What a great place to live!
Here in the Potsdam country area there are lots of people selling their produce on a little table outside their house. You throw the asked price in a jar and you can take the flowers, apples, berries or in autumn the pumpkins. I just love that!

denise said...

crescent moon :: Yep! I only lived in Gainesville for just about 1 year, and then moved back to Chicago.

Oh, yes, the main Saturday Farmer's Market is insane here in Madison. In the summer it is so crowded you literally cannot walk and the lines are very long. Locals must go well before 9AM if they want to beat the crowds and actually get to SHOP! :) If we make make Farmer's Market visits we only go to the smaller weekday markets ... there are so many smaller markets that you can find about anything you need M-F!

michelle - I know! We are very lucky to live where there are so many farmers with such diverse crops and products...and so many are organic!

Ani said...

i can't wait until our CSA starts up! we get eggs and honey during the winter from them but i can't wait for those veggies.

Joyce said...

I adore the shop in your first photo. Barrington is a stone throw away from me. Have a golden day!

Erin said...

I have been thinking about joining a co-op for awhile now.. I like the idea of knowing exactly where my food is coming from and who I am supporting. :) You are blessed to have so many resources close by!

Tara said...

Great shopping spots!!

I'm excited- our farmer's market begins in earnest again tomorrow.

kim said...

i would be first in line to buy one of the farm animals!

Crescent Moon said...

Oh, this is funny!
This spending time in the same places goes even deeper than Gainesville and Madison. I just read your comment on another blog about the time you spent in St. Charles and Barrington.
I grew up in Elgin. My parents met while they were both working at Quaker Oats in Barrington. When my oldest daughter was born, I was working at the KinderCare nursery school across from the Kane County Fair Grounds in St.Charles. I was also in 4-H when I was growing up, so I spent a lot of time at the fair grounds.

denise said...

Wow, indeed! :) I lived in St. Charles during Jr/Sr year of high school. And for an Elgin connection, I went to ECC for a summer after HS to get started on some credits (before going to Columbia College in Chicago)! So where else did you live? Any time in Kansas City? Albuquerque? Santa Fe? Chicago? Los Angeles? ;) Ha. I performed at the Kane County Fairgrounds a few times too - and loved the flea market there. I left the area for downtown Chicago when I was 18, but my family lived in St. C for many years after that. Small world, as always!

ladybug-zen said...

yes! you are so lucky to be able to get SO much from local producers. how wonderful!

Crescent Moon said...

I came back to check your response. This is fun!
I went to ECC for 2 years.
Yes, we lived in Kansas City, Mo. for a short time, just before moving here, so that would have been 6 years ago. Before that, we lived in Columbia, Mo. ( I met my husband at the University of Missouri ).
I never lived any place in the South West, but after leaving Madison we lived in Dubuque for awhile. I've also lived in Erie, PA, and Woodstock, IL.
I never lived in Chicago, but my sister did for awhile. She was going to school at the University of Illinois Chicago Campus, but she enjoyed the Chicago club scene a little too much and ended up back at junior college.

caitlin said...

I love the first picture. Thanks for such a fun corner view.

Jane said...

Madison looks like a great place to live. I'd love to visit someday-I've never been to Wisconsin. It's fun to get a look into your community.

Lisa Anne said...

Great view of your corner of the world.

Lisa Anne said...

Great view of your corner of the world.

Dawn said...

Wonderful peek into your shopping experience.
Local fresh produce is greatly missed around here most of the year... Coming from California that has been a huge adjustment!

Ritva said...

i like this!
good for you!
enjoy!!

trinsch said...

oh, what amazing shopping opportunities you have. love the first one with the sign. if i had to pass that sign daily i'd probably give in after a week and get a goat. we're seriously talking about it, but not there yet :)

Eluciq said...

this part of madison is just so appealing...i think there is just one farm that participates in CSA here in the valley...and quite a challenge to jump on board.

our little shops are closing quickly due to the economy...so sad...and it is not because big stores are pushing them, as we have no big stores...they just can't survive financially.

your entry is uplifting...and i love the summer months here at mom in madison, cuz' their is so much outdoor goodness!

MODsquad said...

Oh, my goodness!! These are such great pictures!! I love that CHIP program!! What a great cause! I agree... this is the best way to shop!! Thanks for sharing!

Have a lovely day!

...Lisa

RunninL8 said...

Viva la family run business!
Down with box stores!

Schanett said...

cooool!
I would like shopping a sheep!!
;-)

Yarrow said...

Love this post, I love the community of it. Blessings.

Lizz said...

Fresh!

Julie said...

I love these posts! You inspire me to seek out more local stuff, I'm determined!

Dawn said...

Looking forward to your CSA posts!

Always like to see what others are getting...

We are going to increase to once a week pick-up as well. With is being almost Summer the bounty is too good to pass up!

Have a great weekend~ :)

Lizzie said...

oh wow, i grew up in madison and used to live right behind the co-op on spaight street. i moved to from madison to chicago for grad school, and i miss it so!

NYCity Mama said...

My husband, in looking at other blogs nominated for Parent's Picks found your site and forwarded to me : ) I am nominated also, but in NYC. It will be a year in May since we left Madison. We lived in Monona. I am a NYer through and through, but hubby is from Madison, which is how we ended up there. We lived there for 3 years. Seeing your blog brings back fond memories...I love it! So glad I found your blog : )

Angela said...

This is a great idea- and I love the garden boxes! Thanks for inspiring me with so many great ideas!