The Homesteading Hypocrite

NWEdible_Hypocrisy_Trap

The moment I launched this website I started down a path towards raw hypocrisy. I had no idea at the time that this was what I was doing, and it certainly wasn’t my intention. Nonetheless, looking back over the past year+ of posting, it is clear that hypocrisy was inevitable. I have these ideals, you [Continue Reading...]

Don’t Buy These 5 Williams-Sonoma Agrarian Products

img49o

Last week Williams-Sonoma branched out from French dishwear, excellent knives and seasonal high-end cocoa mix into urban homesteading gear. With the launch of their Agrarian line, Williams-Sonoma now sells gardening gear, chicken and bee keeping supplies, seeds, edible plants, fruit trees and preserving supplies. Some people in the hardcore DIY community (you know who you [Continue Reading...]

Kim Kardashian’s Tomatoes: 5 Thoughts on Blogging

Kim Kardashian loves tomatoes.

Here’s something you might not know about blogging. If I write headlines like these: What Kim Kardashian Can Teach You About Tomatoes 20 Ways to Grow 1,000 Pounds of Vegetables In 10 Minutes A Day Why Overpaying For Seeds Is Costing You More Than Just Money  …there is a huge chance you will click on the [Continue Reading...]

The Simple Decisions of a Complex Life

Eggs

Want to know why I really keep backyard hens? The eggs are great, the chicken TV is a blast, and the deep-litter compost might actually make our hens a financially reasonable investment. But that’s not really why I have the girls. I keep laying hens because the sum total of the work involved in feeding, [Continue Reading...]

The Book Burner and The Bermuda Grass: How To Become Your Garden’s Gardening Expert

Last week I wrote a post encouraging people to smother their lawn instead of ripping it out before planting veggies. There’s some solid soil science reasons why I believe my suggestion to sheet compost the hell out of your sod is a good one, and I stand by the post. But apparently there’s this thing [Continue Reading...]

You Know You’re A Veggie Gardener If…

Territorial Seed Company Store

You go to Costco and buy one thing – Sluggo in bulk – and ask for 8 large cardboard boxes to take it home in so you can smother more lawn. You frequent a horse stable even though you have no interest in riding horses. You have a ridiculous multi-component compost hierarchy to handle kitchen scraps and you assume [Continue Reading...]

Getting Out Of The Foodie Bubble

Are You In The Food Bubble?

Every girl should have a friend who’s witty, opinionated, drives really fast motorcycles and is equally comfortable cooking French food with hand-foraged mushrooms or drinking wine out of a half-pint canning jar. For me, that friend is chef and author Lisa Simpson. Lisa was kind enough to contribute her thoughts here on the perils of [Continue Reading...]

That Awkward Moment When The Room Goes Quiet And You’re Still Talking

Have you noticed that some of the Big Boys are pretty quiet right now? Have you wondered why? Well, let’s just say that if the road to hell is paved with good intentions, then the US Congress is one heckova brick-maker. This quick video explains the likely legislative consequences of the Stop On-Line Piracy Act (SOPA) [Continue Reading...]

Should You DIY or Hire A Pro?

DIY Infographic

Sometimes we face the question of whether to Do It Ourselves or cough up some cash and let a professional handle the particulars. Let’s say there’s a spectrum: make jam would be an easy DIY call. Perform brain surgery on your child would be an easy Hire The Pros call. In between, things are less obvious. [Continue Reading...]

Are You One Of Those "Organic" People?

Some couple friends of ours came over last week and the wife of the couple mentioned that a friend-of-a-friend was, “one of those organic people.” At this point I had to say, “Well, I roll pretty crunchy-granola, too, ya know.” “Yes,” my friend responded, “but you’re not – you know – one of those ‘organic’ [Continue Reading...]

Confessions Of A Total Garden Failure

A woman – a great photographer – came by and took pictures of my garden for a book she is doing on urban homesteaders. She was interviewing me and I said something like, “I think if I bought vegetables at the store at this point, I’d feel like a total failure!” This was one of these things [Continue Reading...]

The Political Act of Making Dinner

Emily Matchar recently wrote an excellent article for the Washington Post raising the question of whether the “new domesticity” was a step back for women. She asks if the burgeoning popularity of Gen-X jam making is a betrayal of the career-mom-and-microwave-meal life made possible by Baby Boomer feminists, and if radical homemakers risk setting our [Continue Reading...]