Category Archives: conservation

Moving home: (re)thinking the organic South.

Sometimes I think “home” in my mobile life has become less a specific place than a kind of place where certain conditions obtain — the sense of comfort, practicality, and freedom that comes from being able to move around on … Continue reading

Posted in community, conservation, food, gratitude, politics, resilience, self-reliance, the South | 6 Comments

Pigs among the windfalls.

September, with the smell of fall caught and blowing around in the trees as Keats inevitably rustles inside my head: season of mists and mellow fruitfulness….  One afternoon I take a break from my massive sabbatical writing project — which … Continue reading

Posted in animals, conservation, Driftless region, food, gardening, resilience, seasons, the past | Leave a comment

Gardening in public.

Our little town’s gardening group has been buzzing after two of our members — following a neighbor’s anonymous complaint — were notified recently that they might be in violation of a city ordinance against gardening in the “boulevard,” the strip … Continue reading

Posted in community, conservation, Driftless region, food, gardening, politics, resilience, self-reliance | 6 Comments

The Lenten closet.

Yesterday I went to Minneapolis to buy some sorely needed new clothes. Just a few good pieces that I was lucky enough to find on sale.  This afternoon — energized by what Marilynne Robinson in Housekeeping called the “swift, watery … Continue reading

Posted in body, conservation, gratitude, home, money, self-reliance, stuff, women | 4 Comments

A vermicular update — and some home composting lessons.

A couple of posts ago, you read about my new experiment in home vermicomposting. But since then I’ve learned there’s definitely a right way and a wrong way to go about it.  Basically, I now wish I’d started with one … Continue reading

Posted in animals, compost, conservation, gardening, home | 6 Comments

Mary, Martha, and cheapskate intellectualism: the New Year’s organizing dilemma.

Every year, fresh from days away at my family home where there are friendly differences about — shall we say — organizing styles, I return to my own little house and see the place with fresh eyes.  Somehow, as good … Continue reading

Posted in conservation, gratitude, home, seasons, self-reliance, stuff | 12 Comments

Polar bears on a Coke can.

Today, just before Christmas, finishing up my grading and trying to cut down on the caffeine that’s one of the many things spiking my blood pressure this month, I picked up a can of Coke from the cooler in our … Continue reading

Posted in animals, conservation, corporations, culture, politics | Leave a comment

Cheep-cheep-cheepskate?

So I suppose it was inevitable: when a friend and fellow backyard-gardener told me last week that she and her husband and toddler are moving into a new house on the other side of town with a large yard and … Continue reading

Posted in animals, conservation, food, gardening, home, self-reliance | 5 Comments