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Category Archives: Sustainable living

Wild persimmons — and persimmon pudding

Persimmon pudding and cognac. Click here for high-resolution version. I had persimmon pudding today for the first time in at least 50 years. If you’ve ever once had persimmon pudding, you’ll never forget it, because there’s nothing else like it. I have my own persimmon trees now at last, so I have done my best […]

Donegal tweed

Click here for high-resolution version. I seem to have become a collector of vintage Harris tweed jackets, after a visit to the Isle of Harris and Lewis in 2019. That’s a slippery slope, because, before long, the tweed habit leads to Donegal tweed as well. Much has been written about Harris tweed. Less has been […]

Are you a prepper now?

I am 60 miles to the east of the epicenter of this earthquake. What next? We are in the midst of a pandemic that is getting worse in many areas, including the state I live in. A severe tropical storm just moved up the Atlantic coast. That was only the first blow from what is […]

The long history of hiding in the forest

Deer in the Forest. Painting by Eugen Kr├╝ger, Germany, 1832-1876. Source: Wikimedia Commons. Click here for high-resolution version. I’m about three quarters done with William Shirer’s The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. On April 9, 1940, Hitler’s armed forces started their attack on Denmark and Norway. Tiny Denmark fell quickly. Norway had the […]

It was 94F in the garden, though

Vegetables don’t like to be picked in the heat of the day. Early morning is the best time. But basil wants to be clipped five minutes ago, so this basil, squash, and tomato went from the garden to the supper table in 35 minutes.

Borage

Click here for high-resolution version. I had not previously encountered borage. I think it is not as commonly used in the U.S. as it is in Europe. But we grew some this year in Ken’s herb trough, starting from seeds in a variety pack of favorite German herbs that I bought on Amazon. The borage […]

Why I can’t have apple pie

The squirrels have been stealing peaches from the orchard for at least a couple of weeks. Now they are stealing apples. This morning, I saw Mrs. Squirrel in the backyard, coming down from the orchard with an apple in her mouth. I knew where she was going, so I had time to go get the […]

One last noble service from your mayonnaise jars

It bugs me how much food gets wasted inside retail food jars, no matter how much scraping you do when the jar is empty. With mayonnaise jars, my solution is to keep the near-empty jars in the refrigerator until I need a quick salad dressing. Add vinegar, seasonings, and herbs, shake it up, and you’re […]

Countdown to summer: 4, 3, 2, 1

The first pesto of the season may not be as exciting as the first tomato sandwich. But it’s pretty exciting. It would have been a crime to apply heat to a perfect little squash that was growing in a cool rain only minutes ago. So I et it raw. Speaking of summer, do we tolerate […]

Do we really need so much stuff?

It took almost a month to build the new shed up above the garden. For ten years, a shed has been much needed here, because I did not have a place to store the lawn mower, or the tiller, out of the weather. Plus my beloved Jeep needs to be sheltered. But when I stand […]