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...]

No Use For Coupons

I hate coupons. I consider myself frugal, and I love saving money, but grocery coupons just don’t do it for me. I’ve tried. About every 10 or 12 months, I forget that I hate coupons and decide that I could shave some money off our grocery bill if I just applied myself to couponing. So [Continue Reading...]

Greeny Guilt

A few days ago on the Facebook page I shared a link to an article called, How to Create a Zero-Waste Kitchen and asked the question, “how green is your kitchen?” I gave myself a B-, which, in this era of grade inflation, isn’t a particularly good grade. B- Really? Do I really work this hard – [Continue Reading...]

Monsanto Announces New SoyBee’n Self-Pollinating Soy Bean!

Late month, noted seed and biotech company Monsanto announced the purchase of Beelogics, a company with a product in trial that may help prevent colony collapse disorder in bees.* In related news, Monsanto has successfully built bee DNA into insect-pollinated crops through genetic engineering. Though the technology is currently being trialed on a limited 3,000 [Continue Reading...]

Fall The Wife

I’ve been thinking about this. Fall is my favorite harvesting season. If I had to marry a vegetable growing time of year, it would be Fall. Spring is a virgin. She makes you wait. You want Spring in April, but she doesn’t actually put out until late June. I’m all for keeping it buttoned up [Continue Reading...]

What’s In A Name? The Beyond Organic Backyard Egg Question

My mom was over and asked, “Are your eggs are organic?” “Oh yeah, of course!” I said, “We use organic feed.” But I’ve been thinking about it, and here’s the thing: I’m not sure our eggs are organic. Not really, not technically. I mean, our chickens have a good life. Compared to battery-caged birds they [Continue Reading...]

The Rich Man, The Mormon Mom And The Dice Rolls Of Life

This is not a political blog. Sometimes my political leanings (which can be summed up as, “leave people more or less alone and don’t be a raging asshole,”) probably poke up, like so many unnoticed weeds in the raised bed of my life. But I try not to focus on politics here, or in my [Continue Reading...]

Wifery, Money And Not-Work

Urban homesteading, householdering, radical homemaking….call it what you will, the world of glorified housewifery seems, perhaps unsurprisingly, to be dominated by the wifery. Certainly the world of blogging about all this stuff tends to be the realm of the gentler sex (though I’m not sure how much gentler I looked as I slaughtered that chicken or shoveled that [Continue Reading...]

Which Caricature Are You?

People come to gardening for many reasons. Have you ever wondered where you stand in the great big world of edible gardening, environmentalism and social awareness? Well not to worry, we’ve designed this Cosmo-inspired quiz that will lead you to greater self-awareness of your particular gardening caricature. Just answer the following questions and check your results [Continue Reading...]

No Place Like Home – Appreciating the Urban in Urban Homesteading

I had a commitment in Eastern Washington this weekend which necessitated a little family road trip to the hot, sunny, dry part of the state. When we returned Sunday night, we followed I-90 west, eventually climbing up the Cascade Mountains to the summit at Snoqualmie Pass and returning back down to the cooler, greener side of [Continue Reading...]