The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Morning on the farm

First cutting of hay.Lucy has found a rotting opossum and dragged it halfway home, dripping entrails and one-still discernable leg.  I pull my t-shirt up to cover my nose and hurry past, dodging piles of offal.

Past the unlimited green trees of our driveway, we reach the neighbor's hay field.  Lucy and I stop and gaze at new round bales forming a barricade along the property line.  Last hunting season, bright yellow "No Trespassing" signs sprang up here overnight, fraught with border tension.  But this wet summer's plentiful bales feel like a protective bulwark.

Back at home, I nearly delete an email from another neighbor.  "Meet Mr. Lucky!" it proclaims, and my fingers think the words are spam before I decipher the sender's name.  Do we want his spare rooster for our girls?  No, our white cochin has dropped her broodiness and reentered the world of scratching and pecking.  But thanks for asking!

Neighbors and the food chain --- each is colored by our own perception.  Life on the farm is what we make of it.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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