5 Holiday Gift Ideas For The Male Domestic Geek

Black Friday is just around the corner, and let’s just suppose that your idea of a good way to spend the morning after Thanksgiving does not include any of the following: Waking up at 4am to queue (I haven’t done that since the last time Pink Floyd went on tour). Receiving trampling injuries from someone [Continue Reading...]

Brew Or Buy: Is It Worth It? It Depends.

Chow recently kicked up some great discussion in the homesteading community with their article “DIY or Buy?” I’ve gone through this exercise quite a few times with my homebrewing, pricing my expenses vs. the cost of running out and buying a sixer. And my results may not be what you expect, regardless of what you [Continue Reading...]

Herding Chickens

If you had told me ten years ago that I’d spend part of my Sunday herding chickens through a vegetable garden, I never would have believed you. But as I spent part of last Sunday herding chickens through our vegetable garden, something struck me: herding chickens is essentially – perhaps entirely – probabilistic. Gently persuade [Continue Reading...]

The Sweet, Sweet Taste Of Beer

The other night, over a glass of porter, Erica asked me how to make a sweet beer. It was a reasonable question – the porter in question is big, boozy, and sweet in the same way that a bar of Sharffenberger 62% is big, chocolatey, and sweet. “Put a lot of sugar in it,” I [Continue Reading...]

Taking The Homestead In For Lunch

I used to pick up lunch at work. You know, a cheapo sandwich from Safeway, a burger from the cool indie burger place across the street, takeout teriyaki from the stand that seemed to have new owners every week. Back in the day, four years or so ago, I used to budget $6 a day [Continue Reading...]

Homebrew Husband’s Top Ten Homesteading Surprises

Now that you are an urban homesteader, let’s talk about some of the surprises. Yes, I’m sure you knew how rewarding it would be, you expected that sense of satisfaction that only shoveling a quarter ton of fresh compost can generate, that pride that that comes with lacerating your entire torso in pursuit of just [Continue Reading...]

Adventurers Of A Corporate Gleaner

Location 47.58 degrees North by 122.155 degrees East: a top secret blackberry patch adjacent to the offices of a major mobile communications provider. Date Friday, August 12, 2011 Time 09:34 local, 16:34 Zulu Mission Initial reconnaissance by the operative codenamed “Homebrew” on Thursday, August 11 revealed an exceptionally large blackberry patch at a previously unsuspected [Continue Reading...]

Frugal Friday: Detox From The Treat Spiral

I’ll be honest.  I can’t wait for no spend month to be over. I can’t wait to spend money again. This is how I’ve felt every time we’ve done the no-spend exercise – by the time the month is over, I’m ready to start laying down some cash. We all feel better for the occasional splurge, for a treat [Continue Reading...]

Father’s Day Dreams

As boys, we are taught to dream big.  To throw the game-winning touchdown, to fly the Space Shuttle, to slay the dragon. The world is our oyster, we can be anything. Over time, the probabilistic realities of life and our own limitations get in the way. We grow up and take the jobs that our [Continue Reading...]

Of Watts and Watt-Hours

This post has nothing to do with gardening – but it does have a great deal to do with sustainability and environmental awareness. It follows up to Erica’s experimentation with the Kill-A-Watt with a (brief) engineering lesson. Please, don’t be scared. I studied engineering for three years before realizing I hated it switching to English [Continue Reading...]

Homebrew Husband Plants Something!

A few weeks ago, our garden witnessed an unusual event: I planted something. Usually I confine myself to hard labor, philosophical musing, or self mockery and only get down and dirty with the plant life when following specific orders (“no, more to the right…now turn it a little…”). But fresh back from the Seattle Tilth [Continue Reading...]

Urban Homesteading for Corporate Tools

For those of you transitioning from the corporate world to the homestead, I have prepared this helpful guide, dual homed with one foot in a Muck Boot and the other in a Wingtip Oxford. Though they may seem divergent, the core competencies of gardening and cubicle wrangling are not so different after all. The language [Continue Reading...]