Income Resilience (Surviving A 20% Paycut)

paycut

Early last week, late in the afternoon just before I, with my farmer’s hours schedule, was ready to sign off from my day job for Anonymous Giant Corporation, I received an email from my boss. It had all the hallmarks of something sent in haste, in response to someone else’s urgent email, also sent in [Continue Reading...]

Seven Solar Surprises!

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It’s been three months since we put solar panels on our roof, and there have been a few surprises. There were things about ourselves and the technology and physics that we didn’t expect. So, as part of our ongoing look at Project Solar, here are a few things I didn’t expect. 1) For Easy Energy [Continue Reading...]

How To Beat Stress Naturally (When You’re Ready To Scream!)

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As my regular readers know, last week was kinda icky around here. My son was sick and super cranky (but without losing any of his trademark energy of course), there was a backlog of laundry, a sick kid crawling into bed every night meant sleep was a rare luxury, and nearly every surface of the [Continue Reading...]

Does Solar In Seattle Work? {Reader FAQs}

Solar in Seattle

In early April, after about five years of deliberation, we had solar panels installed on the south and west facing portions of our roof. On April 15th our panels “went live” and since then we’ve had a chance to evaluate what it means to be solar powered in Seattle. We’ve been sharing moments of our [Continue Reading...]

Dos and Don’ts for Cheapskates

Cheapskates

I recently heard about a show called Extreme Cheapskates that sounded like it might be full of interesting money saving tips. I watched a few episodes on Netflix while I was washing dishes. Man, some of the folks profiled on that show aren’t just frugal – they’re nuts! They are stealing from restaurants, embarrassing people, [Continue Reading...]

Eat From The Larder Challenge: Week Four Wrap Up

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They say it takes 21 days to form a habit. As it turns out, “they” are totally full of crap, but for the purpose of this post that doesn’t matter. We are at the tail end of this Eat From The Larder Challenge, and I feels like I’ve found my groove. It feels like the [Continue Reading...]

DIY Non-Toxic Weedkiller That Works

Weed Killer

There are situations where you want certain plants dead, but hand weeding is difficult or counter-productive because it will bring fresh seeds to the surface to germinate. This may be a situation for an herbicidal spray. I approach this topic with hesitation, because some of you stopped reading at the second sentence and are right [Continue Reading...]

Eat From The Larder Challenge: Week Three Wrap Up

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Let’s imagine for a moment that this isn’t a corner of the internet dedicated to growing vegetables, cooking good food, hanging out with chickens and periodically swearing. Let’s image this is Upworthy.com, a website dedicated to sharing mildly interesting and/or uplifting things marketed with the most annoying yet compelling headlines ever. If Upworthy were to [Continue Reading...]

Eat From The Larder Challenge: Week Two Wrap Up

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Well, here we are, two weeks into the Eat From The Larder Challenge. I’m starting to get resentful about constantly having to feed people. And this is weird, because I typically love feeding people. This past week was Spring Break, so the kids were home. It’s like they get hungry 74 times a day. I [Continue Reading...]

The Psychology of Limited Choices: Eat From The Larder Challenge Week One

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“Mom, can we go to The Muffin Store?” asks my son, again. Visits to the local cafe he calls The Muffin Store – because the muffins are fabulous – had become something of a post-preschool tradition for us. A few times a week after I picked him up, we would walk the several blocks to [Continue Reading...]

Eat From The Larder Challenge

Eat From The Larder Challenge

In February I wrote a post called Food Storage For People Who Don’t Hate Food. Most of the feedback I got on that post was very positive, but a few readers seemed skeptical of my claims that eating from the pantry for six months was reasonable, even if one had the food stored. This floored me [Continue Reading...]

Food Storage For People Who Don’t Hate Food

Food Storage

In the preparedness world, things like this list go around periodically: This is a guide to building your food storage on $5 a week. Ignoring for a minute that food prices have clearly gone up since this list was put together (5 pounds of honey for $5? I don’t think so), my reaction every time [Continue Reading...]