PGM 21 | Learning from the Land with Audra of Girl Meets Dirt (SPECIAL EDITION)

Apr 16 2015

During the market crash, Audra Query Lawlor, left a high-powered job on Wall Street to relocate to the modest, Orcas Island in the Pacific Northwest. Simultaneously, she created a blog, Girl Meets Dirt, and after learning of the island’s unique heritage, began to make her own preserves from the heirloom fruit of local island farmers—Archipelago Preserves. Both the blog and the preserves possess a distinct flavor that invite you deeply explore the rich and wild landscape of island life. You could say, that Archipelago Preserves, like Audra, are not your everyday garden variety. In episode 21, listen to her and Celine’s conversation on learning the land, starting anew, and how the natural world taught her to embrace the ebb and flow of life. Also, be sure to get a copy of Volume 10: The Heritage Issue to see Audra's full, print feature!

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PHOTOGRAPHY courtesy of Girl Meets Dirt
PODCAST produced by Ben Goldstein

3:38 The impetus that led her to change
9:00 How the tiny Orcas Island lured her and her husband there
12:19 Her self-initiated exploration into making preserves at home and how that led her deeper into the heirloom-fruit culture of Orcas
21:01 “To me, it seemed like a great opportunity, to help take care of fruit that wasn’t being brought to its greatest light, and also to help revitalize an industry” - Audra on working with small family farms and using varieties of heirloom fruit
22:57 “I just love the idea that some of these trees have been producing for a hundred years” 
28:55 The effect Orcas Island’s ecosystem and microclimates have on the produce Audra uses for her preserves 
34:50 “What we do is all about the fruit […] to add anything else […] is totally not necessary” 
35:16 “Everything we need is given to us”
38:35 Why she only uses unrefined, organic cane sugar in her preserves 
44:28 “Just watching the natural evolution of things taught me a lot about the ebb and flow of life” — The lessons she’s learned from working with the land and how Girl Meets Dirt Archipelago Preserves were born out of coping with hardships
55:50 “Dive in […] learn to live with uncertainty ” Audra’s simple but potent advice on how to make a big shift in your life