The Harvest Supper has been a family tradition for many years. It is hands down, my absolute favorite day of the year. This year Gatherhaus sponsored it, in our little backyard in the middle of the city.
During set up that afternoon, there was a bike tour of all the community gardens in NoMi (North Minneapolis) including our garden on the lot next to our home. While the tour was in progress, the paper stopped to interview us about the importance and necessity of the community Harvest Supper. It was fun to share with the reporter my heart, and what Gatherhaus is about.
(I can tell you in its current state, Gatherhaus is a community and FB site. In its near future it is a gorgeous blog with more community events. Its dream future is a brick and mortar location on lots of land. Like us on FB to keep updated and stay connected.)
I believe that by simply existing, those who attend are drawn to this sacred table and enchanting evening because it stands in stark contrast to the modern age American prize, convenience and consumerism.
This Harvest tradition sets aside time for people to gather together, around the fruits of their labor sitting at leisure, enjoying not only food and drink but the lives of old friends and new.
The Harvest upholds the time honored tradition of making your feast from scratch, and this year it was a celebration with pie! One family does not make the meal for all party goers to consume, but in order to have a feast, each family must bring something to the table. The table then is a wide pallet of flavors and colors and representations of the people who made them. In order to have the harvest supper, all must participate. It reminds us that we are in this together.
Together we plan and create.
Together we gather and eat.
Together we drink and sit and enjoy.
It is not convenient. This Harvest Supper takes time and in so doing communicates the importance of the people in your life. It says, "Before you even enter this gathering, I have thought of you. I have walked my garden and found food to serve you. I have searched my grandmother's recipes to find a pie that will be pleasing to you, my friend. I think of you as I plan my days around cooking and cleaning for your arrival. You are important to me because I choose to spend this time creating something beautiful and flavorful for you and I to enjoy together. I carry you, my friend in my heart as I prepare a space for us to be together."
Creating space is incredibly important. I share thoughts on that concept that you can read here.
I love taking what I already own and using it to transform a space. More than that, I absolutely adore being able to give new life to family heirlooms. Using mine and Paul's grandmother's quilts to sit for dinner or lay across our laps by the fire connects us to history. It reminds us that we are not alone, and that there is a great big world that went before us and will continue after us. We need that reminder to pull us of our independently obsessive nature. It grants us perspective that there is more to the world than our seemingly small lives.
We eat on plates and use silverware that was a wedding gift to past generations. The table cloths are old bed sheets. The vegetables displayed in buckets and baskets are directly from my garden to be preserved into sauces the next day. The flowers that grace the tables and give beauty are cut from the yard. Everything that surrounds us reminds our souls that we live in a history filled with life and love and connection. It warms my heart to know that we together can gather our average, everyday belongings and turn a back yard into an enchanted garden where we sit for hours under twinkle lights and reconnect to the earth and each other.
I think one of my favorite things about the Harvest Supper is having it in the hood, in the middle of the city. There is something so inherently lovely about carving out farm land in the midst of brick and mortar. To grow food and have native grass land right alongside boarded up homes that have been affected by arson. That life and death would coexist alongside one another. That an extraordinary gathering would happen in an ordinary place.
We transformed a city yard into something magical and when we did, people came in droves. Neighbors stopped by and brought their friends. People drove hours to participate and spend time in the city. And in NoMi where we are only known for how many days we can go before someone else dies in a gun fight, we created something magical and enchanting and beautiful.
Friends came early to decorate.
Everyone brought pie and wine.
Kids bobbed for apples and played lawn scrabble, twister and glow in the dark bowling.
After families left, new and old friends sat around the bonfire feasting on pizza and rum chata pumpkin milkshakes.
And when the evening was growing quiet, everyone pitched in, washing dishes, putting tables and chairs away, and together we wiped the remnants of the lovely evening storing it away for another gathering.
THE HEART OF THE HARVEST
For me, this sacred supper draws all of us back to what our soul longs for to feel alive.
Good, local, real, homemade food.
A connection to the past which enhances our present.
Being outside with the grass under our feet and the clouds as our ceiling. To eat alongside the garden where the food came from, reminding us that we are connected to the earth. A connection that drives us towards fulfilled living.
Love. Love for each other. Love for food. Love for the earth. Love for the unexpected.
The Harvest Supper is a celebration of life and love and friendship.
To view more amazing photo's of the Harvest Supper captured by Studio Laguna, check out their blog on the event! All photos posted here were captured by Studio Laguna in partnership with Gatherhaus. They seriously are the best and I love working with them every chance I get!