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

What have we been up to all winter?


I hadn't even been over here to check comments for months --- sorry to leave so many of you dangling in moderation, especially when you were all so thoughtful and kind. Rather than answering you individually, here's a holiday-letter type of rundown from the last three months.

Shelf fungus

Most relevantly, we sold our Virginia farm. It was a bittersweet moment, but we're glad of the time and money freed up as we move on to new adventures.

Plastic production

Mark won a $100 voucher for our local 3-D printing workshop, but he hasn't used it yet. He also finished up an ultra-short documentary about our new stomping grounds and was pleased to have it chosen for our local community film festival. He continues to take one class per semester at the local university and to help other students with their films while he scratches his own creative itch.

Birthday cake

In December, we celebrated our 30-40-50 birthday parties with my cousin-in-law, in from Europe for the occasion.

Star Wars wall art

Then we repainted the living room wall and turned it into a Star Wars zone in honor of Mark's new decade.

Snow creations

It snowed and snowed and snowed and snowed, and the neighbor kids helped turn the white stuff into sculptures.

Door painting

They also helped sweeten the fact that someone kicked in our trailer door two days before Thanksgiving and stole our new chainsaw and two heirloom shotguns. So we replaced the door and installed a fancy security system...not that we have anything else worth stealing. (We haven't replaced the chainsaw or please leave our poor door alone!)

Tow truck

I broke Mark's truck...


...and he now cooks all the lunches. Our relationship is really very even...I promise.

(Yes, the truck is now fixed, just in time for hauling manure for the garden.)

Library fox

We got to see a real, live fox at the library...

Leo petroglyph

...and visited a Native American petroglyph, both of which fed into my fiction writing.

Soaking early peas

I started broccoli and parsley inside then gambled and direct-seeded early peas and lettuce. Many more crops are on the agenda for the months ahead, of course.

Tree shadows

And I went on hikes here,

Indian mound


Snowy trees

and everywhere.

Snow on mullein leaves

Until the next time I'm randomly called to upload photos...happy adventures!

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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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Glad to see the update but sorry to hear someone else felt they had a right to your things. I guess it's part of moving back to "civilization". You need a big dog or two. That is as good a deterrent as the security system. Anyway, glad your doing well. Post when you can because it's always a welcome sight.

Comment by Ned Tue Mar 5 11:51:16 2019

It is nice to hear from you again. :-) Also it is good to hear you've sold your farm, both financially and as closure.

Like you, I've had my house broken into once so I sympathize. It made me feel unsafe for some time afterwards. On the other hand, stuff is just stuff. The best heirlooms are your memories, and those can't be stolen.

Up to now I've refrained from commenting on your blogging vacation, because I was ambivalent about it. I have enjoyed reading and commenting on your adventures. But I can imagine it can be stressful. As an introvert myself I'm not sure I'd give the whole world such a detailed peek into my life! So if you continue blogging or not, you have my respect and thanks either way.

Comment by Roland_Smith Sun Mar 17 12:41:22 2019

profile counter myspace

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