Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Mother/Daughter Green Weekend

My daughter Lisa, who blogs at RetroHousewifeGoesGreen, and I attended the Oklahoma Sustainability Network's annual conference this past Saturday. It's a two day conference but we planned to just attend on Saturday. It's nearly a 2 hour drive so we were getting psyched up for the prospects of pulling out of town at 6:30 a.m. when my dear son-in-law offered to get us a hotel room up there for Friday night. Isn't he a sweetie?

Lisa and I left early Friday evening and stopped at our favorite "hippie restaurant", otherwise known as The Pink Elephant Cafe. We just love this place. All the food is prepared fresh each day from mostly local and/or organic ingredients. They don't even have a freezer but shop early each morning. Not only is the food delicious but the people are very friendly and I just love the laid-back ambiance.

This time I had the chicken salad on a croissant:

After we ate, we made a quick stop at Native Roots, a store specializing in Oklahoma products and also carrying many organic and natural items. Lisa and I had both brought organic Earl Grey tea bags with us for breakfast so I picked up some organic half and half here to go in our morning tea. We generally use milk in our tea but they didn't have any small cartons of that so we opted for the half and half. Hey, sometimes you do what ya gotta do.

We arrived at the hotel around 9 p.m. and then proceeded to talk and check out which green blogs we each have on our Google Readers. I think we finally turned off the lights around 1:15 a.m. The next morning we got ready, prepared our tea which we put in our insulated Klean Kanteens and headed for the conference.

We were surprised and pleased to see someone we know from our town there. Doug teaches at the local university, serves on the board of the recycling coalition and also the United Campus Ministry board which I am currently chairing. We sat together throughout the morning sessions.

The first session was about organic/sustainable gardening and was hosted by Paul James, of HBO's show, "The Gardener Guy". I remember watching him on the Oklahoma public broadcasting network many years ago, before he became famous. He's really funny, down-to-earth and informative. He spent a long time answering audience questions. I can't believe I forgot to take a picture but I was so busy taking notes that it completely slipped my mind.

Next up was a panel which discussed sustainable home improvement topics including heat pumps, energy audits, insulation, renewable energy, etc. This was the one part I wish David had been there for. It was quite interesting and I took a lot of notes.

Panel Discussion

Then it was lunch time. Lisa and I had been given free lunch tickets along with our media passes but the food consisted of cold cuts and cheeses for make-your-own sandwiches and wasn't anything special. I do hope OSN will give serious thought to offering a lunch made from locally produced foods next year. That would be more consistent with their message.

As we left to get our own lunch, I noticed the car that had parked next to me. It's not just every place in Oklahoma where a Smart Car ends up parked next to one's Prius.

In case you're wondering, my license plate says "TREHGR".
Tree hugger...get it?

Lisa and I opted to eat at Chipotle's. It's the only sort-of-fast-food place Lisa will eat at these days because the food is fresh, with some organics, locally grown and/or humanely produced meats. I've only eaten there once before - last year when we attended the OSN conference. It's really, really good!

Chicken soft tacos

Upon our return, we noticed this car in the parking lot of the conference:

We got back a little late and missed the awards but one of them went to the owners of Native Roots, the store where we had bought the half and half. Good for them!

Next up was the keynote address given by Katharine Hayhoe, an author, professor and climate scientist. She spoke on the important issue of climate change and was very interesting. She has written the book, "A Climate For Change: Global Warming Facts For Faith-Based Decisions" along with her husband, Andrew Farley who is also a pastor. She had some of her books there for sale so Lisa and I each bought a copy which Ms. Hayroe was only too kind to sign for us. I look forward to reading it.

Climate Change Discussion

Katharine Hayroe signing our books

We then attended a couple more sessions, ending with a very interesting one about citizen journalism. One of the topics was blogging and it turns out the the blogger chosen to discuss this part of the session blogs at "Peak Oil Hausfrau" and I've been reading her blog periodically for a long time. Lisa and I had the opportunity to chat with her after the session. It's always fun to meet someone in person whom you've only encountered online.

The conference ended around 4:30. Lisa and I decided we needed one more meal before heading home so we stopped in Oklahoma City at Sage, a fairly new restaurant in the Deep Deuce area near Bricktown. David and I have eaten there once before and Lisa and Justin have also been there a few times. Again, this is a restaurant that uses fresh, local and some organic ingredients. One of their specialties is macaroni and cheese. They offer several types. Lisa had the Three Cheese and I tried the Greek-style. Yummo!

Greek macaroni and cheese with chicken, feta cheese,
tomatoes and black olives,
served with Waldorf salad

With our tummies full we made one final stop at Native Roots so I could pick up some locally produced chicken and bison, as well as a couple of other items. By this time, Lisa and I were both exhausted but oh, what a fun time we had. I just love the fact that we share so many interests and that more than just being my daughter, Lisa is my friend.

*Note: You can read Lisa's account of our trip here.



Peak Oil Hausfrau said...

Good to meet you in person! Glad you enjoyed your trip. The Pink Elephant sounds tasty - and it's funny you posted a picture of Susie Shields' car (one of the organizers of the conference).

Deanna said...

Good to meet you, too! Is Susie's car the one with the bumper stickers or the Smart Car? I'm guessing it's the one with the stickers. There's a part of me that would like to do the same thing but my husband's not fond of bumper stickers on paint and my adult son told me that "Cars are not Trapper Keepers." ;) I settled for a personalized license plate and a simple peace sign which manages to get me some dirty looks anyway.

Cherie said...

Great license plate! And that you were parked next to a Smart Car. I've wanted a Smart Car since I first saw them overseas years ago. I don't have a personalized plate, just two bumper stickers on my rear window (not on the paint). One is a Quaker one that says: War is Not the Answer. The other is our churches' motto and says: Love Wins.

Deanna said...

Cherie: Love your bumper stickers. David and I saw several that we liked at the Hippie Gypsy store in New Orleans. We joked about buying them and taping them to the back window the next time we attend a family function with the relatives who think environmentalists are evil. ;)

Lisa Sharp said...

It was a lot of fun. :)