December 12, 2009


Being frugal is not about doing without. It is about doing without money. We are creatures, animals of nature, and she can provide for us if we would only let her. It is now, when the grasshoppers are in turmoil, that us ants truly appreciate and are thankful for our bond with the earth.

This is a brag post. Not wealthy with cash, I am probably the most fortunate woman on the planet. Case in point tonight's dinner. Our cheese, our eggs, our tomato filling and camera shy was our own bacon. Only thing to throw away was the little plastic bag.

December 11, 2009

Cold Antler Farm

I read the best post ever about lonely country life. Please read it too, it will warm your heart on such a cold day. I have linked it to the title.

December 10, 2009

Wendell Berry 2009

This is THE guru of sustainable living. Reading everything he writes will put you in good stead to have food security in the future. The link is to a recent tidbit I came across in the Washington Post. Here is the link

Here is a little bit of the article:

Wendell's collection of essays, "The Unsettling of America," was published in the 1977. In it, he highlighted the same problems we face today: the disappearance of small farmers, increased chemical use, etc. Are you optimistic that this time something will change?

Berry: The tragedy of that book is that 32 years after it was published, it's still relevant. If it were obsolete, we'd be a lot happier. I'm not optimistic, but I think there's some reason to hope, because this conversation is broadening. We're building a constituency, an urban agrarian constituency that is devoted to farmers markets and community-supported agriculture.

Is that urban constituency important? In other words, are advocates right that we can "vote with our forks"?

Berry: You've got a farm population that's too small to count. So should we delude ourselves that we represent a politically significant population? No farmer thinks that. We're not going to get anywhere if we don't have urban allies.

Kirschenmann: One of the things that's changing, and it's still at its very early stages, is we're no longer seeing communities of farmers and consumers. We're starting to see them as food citizens. Part of what changed that is the food crisis of the last 24 months.

You mean rising food prices?

Kirschenmann: Yes.

More and more people are aware that our current food system is not as secure as we thought. One week it's [food tainted with] melamine, another week it's peanut butter, and so people, their consciousness around food issues is emerging and they're wondering what to do. They want a more trusting relationship with where their food comes from.


Reuseable Green Gift Wrapping

I tried to post this here but it is too big. The link is Gift Wrapping

My blog reading list is record long today. Winter has surely set in. Hope you are all warm and safe. Peace for all

December 08, 2009

Extreme Weather 2009

I have been following a site, prepared by a woman who records extreme weather and natural phenomenon gathered from print, for a few years now. She is a "just the facts" kinda person. Today's post should come as a surprise to no one. Go visit her site and check it out, it is very interesting. Here is the Global Disaster Watch.

U.S. - Fierce winds ripped away the roof of a police station, thousands of people lost power and drivers stuck by closed highways settled in to wait as storms swept out of the West to the nation's midsection today. Much of the Upper Midwest was covered in deep snow, and strong winds tonight were expected to create blizzard conditions. The storm had already blanketed much of the mountain west and drenched Southern California with rain. Ice was the problem Tuesday morning in Oklahoma, where Interstate 40 was closed for about 25 miles. "It's just a sheet of ice from Amarillo...It's a disaster." With travel likely to get worse, officials were warning residents in parts of the west and Midwest to stay close to home. Blizzard warnings were issued for most of Iowa as well as eastern Nebraska, southern Minnesota and southern Wisconsin. "Anybody traveling tomorrow morning is really taking a huge risk I would say- a risk of being stranded and not having anybody be able to help you for 6 or 12 hours, probably," said a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Iowa. A "classic, big, deepening winter storm" was affecting more than a dozen states. A foot or more of snow was expected in parts of Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin. Wind gusts of up to 50 mph could create snow drifts of 8 to 15 feet.
Heavy rain pounded some parts of the South. More than 4 inches were reported in spots in New Orleans, and flooded traffic slowed morning commutes. The storm also produced high winds and a possible tornado near Lake Pontchartrain.
In Buffalo, N.Y., meteorologists expect the storm to dump 3 or more feet of snow between Wednesday and Saturday in the mainly rural snow belts east of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. The storm had hit much of the West on Monday, bringing subzero wind chills in Washington state and heavy snow that closed schools and government offices in Reno, Nevada. In the Phoenix area, fierce wind brought down power lines, left four hospitals temporarily without power and created wide outages. Freezing temperatures in Oregon were suspected in one death. Big rigs were left jackknifed across highways in several states.
And more snow was coming: The National Weather Service said the upper elevations of the Sierra mountains could get up to 3 feet, with up to 4 feet forecast for the mountains of southern Utah. Two people were killed in traffic accidents blamed on slick conditions in New Mexico. Winds of up to 100 mph were reported on St. Augustin pass between Las Cruces and White Sands Missile Range, and the powerful gusts ripped away the roof of the White Sands Missile Range's police station. The storm dumped more than 20 inches of snow over Flagstaff, MORE THAN FOUR TIMES THE RECORD of 5 inches set in 1956. Cold temperatures also were threatening California crops. The chilly weather hit with only about 10 percent to 15 percent of the navel and mandarin orange crops harvested. "We've got a lot on the line. Both of them combined you're probably looking at over a billion dollars in fruit hanging out there on the trees."

This decade has been THE WARMEST ON RECORD and this year is likely to be the fifth warmest, according to the World Meteorological Organization’s assessment of global average temperatures.

Stay warm, peace for all!

P.S. The picture is from last year, we have no snow yet!

December 07, 2009

Chicken Feed

Ruralrose said:

I pull the amaranth plants by the roots and hang them to dry. I feed them usually in February when they are desperate for real food. They do pick the seeds off the stems, I think it gives them something more interesting to do than watch the snow fall. This works for pigsweed too. They do love weed seeds, in my head i am working on a device that would allow me to collect seeds from grass and weeds all summer. They seem to relish dandelion seed. It is hard to get a good feed mix they will eat year round. I use my mix in the winter when they can't be fussy. For the most protein it is best to grow sunflowers for the winter. I have not tried others grains. I do add apple cider vinegar, molasses and kelp to my winter feed. I also collect rose hips and berries for winter feed. I also put down a layer of mung bean and alfalfa seeds before a good snow. It makes for yummy sprouts in the spring. I am considering covering a corner of the yard with plastic before the snow too, to try and get a head start of food for them in the spring. If you come up with another idea please let me know.

P.S. Just put a search engine on my blog so you can look things up! Peace for all

December 05, 2009

CBC Radio Broadcasts Death to the Family Farm

Very important information from our national radio broadcasters, please hear our cries!

Part One -

Part Two -

Beading Gem

I got the last post item, Black Friday from Pearl at Beading Gem. She follows trends and her posts are always fascinating. Her site is a treasure trove of interesting reference items. I am always fascinated by her finds. Check it out for yourself. Peace

December 01, 2009

Organic Farm For Sale

Life through the cracks is living in stewardship with the land. If you are wondering what you can do to gain security in these uncertain times ahead, then please consider buying land. In my book I go into detail about finding a great homestead property. Two people can only really work 2 to 4 acres of land. We can strive for self sufficiency but the we really have to work with others to have a well rounded experience. This is the last week my new book will be listed as a free download, please take advantage and read it for yourself.

I saw this real estate listing in my province, and to Kris and everyone else looking for the ideal place, this sure could be close. It is way out of the price range for most, and living on an island has its own pitfalls, but reflects what can be done and how valuable growing food has become. Hope this link works. This property commands such a high price because of its proximity to a city. There are thousands similar properties dotting the continent, you just have to search out the one which is right for you.