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

Green and sweet snow day

Red-shouldered hawk

"How about staying inside today and taking it easy?" said the Red-shouldered Hawk. After seeing how much effort it took to push my way through 8.5 inches of snow just to do my morning chores, I decided the hawk was wise.

New fig leaf

Indoors, my winter-mood-stabilization projects are greening up nicely. The Mars Seedless grape cuttings I started rooting six weeks ago are opening their leaves, as is the little fig tree Sprouting poppy seedsI left inside for the winter. In contrast, Reliance grape cuttings started at the same time are still dormant above ground, which actually is a good thing --- the longer cuttings work on growing roots instead of leaves, the better.

Of my Valentine's herb seeds, all except the fennel and lovage have already sprouted! Shown here are poppy seeds that I planted far too thickly. But I won't mind thinning once they poke up their cotyledons --- a race to green which has been roundly won by the chamomile seedlings.

Snow ice cream

When I got sick of writing, I headed to the kitchen. How about some maple syrup snow ice cream? 2 tablespoons of milk, two tablespoons of cream, 1.5 tablespoons of maple syrup, and a big bowl of snow per serving. Delicious!

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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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Wonderful hawk picture! I presume you took this? How'd you get so close to the bird without him/her flying away? I've been having cardinals visit the feeder I have on my back porch. The cats are in ecstacy!
Comment by Na Yan Wed Feb 18 10:19:39 2015
Na Yan --- Our new camera has a phenomenal zoom, although not as good of a super macro as my previous one. The hawk was pretty close by my standards, but I took the picture from at least fifty feet away through the kitchen window.
Comment by anna Wed Feb 18 19:04:41 2015
Awesome camera but waaaayyyy outta my price range. I'm looking to upgrade from my old 7 megapixal camera.
Comment by Na Yan Thu Feb 19 17:28:10 2015
Nayan --- Yeah, it looks really expensive when I just clicked my own links and reminded myself how much it cost. Not sure how Mark talked me into it... I guess because a camera is one of my most important tools for writing, maybe.
Comment by anna Thu Feb 19 18:10:17 2015

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