Monday, June 29, 2015

The Moon of Making Fat

The Moon of Making Fat is one of the names for the lunation that began with June 16th's New Moon, and is from the Lakota (Sioux) calendar. Upon considering this, my own contradictory nature irresistibly counters with, "Wait, aren't we more likely to burning fat at this time of year?" In the season of putting it in high gear cuz we gotta get it all done (and quick!), and/ or putting on our swim suits for the first time in months, it seems that we are doing anything but making fat.

All the humans I know around here are making plenty of things, of course. The business of our busy-ness seeps into almost every conversation I've had recently. As for myself, among other things, I have been:
  • making the ground as welcoming as possible for little seedlings; 
  • making the sheep a little more comfortable (hopefully) by sheering them 
  • making the conditions right for milk to turn into cheeses and yogurts; 
  • making it to the <insert ephemeral Spring wild edible here> patch to harvest before their fleeting season passes; 
  • making it out to the garlic bed before the weeds take over; 
  • making sure the goats and chickens stay out of the garden;  
  • making a schedule that makes sense now that the "littles" are on summer break.
Sound familiar? In other words, this is the season of making hay while the sun shines, making sure we haven't forgotten anything, making ourselves worn out. Maybe your list varies from mine a little. Or even a lot. But fat? No, it probably does not include making fat.

And then I remember. It's not always about us.

At this time of year, right in my very own refrigerator, a thick layer of heavy cream will rise to the top of fresh milk from my goats if left undisturbed for a couple of days. This, even though goat's milk is not supposed to do that, being naturally homogenized.

When I get caught up in this Moon of Aren't I Just So Busy and Important, it's good to remember the reason we decided to celebrate the cycles of the moon at Wagbo with Full Moon Feasts.

To take that breath and hold that space for a different perspective on what's happening in the world this season, this hour, this right now.

To recall, for example, the remarkable fact that at this very moment, ruminant animals on the farm and in the woods and fields are eating green things. I'm not just talking about the broccoli we just transplanted. They are chowing down on green things that are highly un-digestible for us. Like grass, for example. And they are MAKING THEM INTO FAT.

Yes, fat. Beautiful fat.

The beauty of this process is that the fat that these animals make now will help them survive through the winter season to which we so recently bid farewell at our north latitude.

Yes, fat. Essential fat.

Of course, fat is essential for other animals as well. I've read about Rocky Mountain Grizzlies eating moths (moths!) by the tens of thousands for... guess what! What else?

You got it, fat. Tasty fat.

We humans like the taste of fat too. But much of the kajillion dollar (approximate), celebrity endorsed weight loss industry and check-out stand magazine covers would have us believe that fat is bad, urging us to avoid it. There are many that might call this the "Moon of Last Chance To Get That Bikini Body."

Years before I would consider my own bikini body to be a thing to question, I considered my dad quite odd for preferring whole milk and for spreading butter as thick as frosting. Like many of my friends in the burbs in the 70's and 80's, skim milk and margarine were the norm and Weight Watchers weigh-ins became a weekly standard of my female kin.

As it turns out, however, without fat we don't absorb certain vitamins adequately or maintain our nervous systems, skin and other tissues very well. Good fats are finally and thankfully coming back into fashion. To our benefit, the "low fat" doctrine is slowly but surely being debunked.

So, in this season of running ourselves ragged with all the things, may we at least dance the frenzied dance of Spring-into-Summer knowing the real way to a bikini body. :)

As the moon waxes into fullness on Wednesday, let the growing roundness in the night sky remind us of the remarkable goodness of growing fat. Let us pause at least long enough to consider the richness in the rolling, rippling fields we pass as we race to our next appointment.

And if you make it to the Full Moon Feast here at Wagbo on Wednesday, we'll raise a glass (of whole milk) to that!                                    


Full Moon Feasts at Wagbo