Tuesday, December 7, 2010

By Way of Introduction

Hello there.

I’m not entirely certain who I am addressing, but whoever you are, I would like to henceforth issue my warmest greetings.

My name is Molly, y soy la compaƱera nueva de Don. I have been living in the little house for a couple of months now. Perhaps I shall regale you with the delightful tale of how all of this came about… but, some other time, for it is long and complicated and not entirely delightful. But here we are, and life is indeed quite blissful in this present moment.

For a brief introduction: I am a “twenty-something” and a student at the University of Illinois at Springfield, studying experimental psychology. I am interested in homesteading (obviously), brewing moonshine fruit wine, growing, wild crafting, herbal medicine, studying psychology and philosophy (particularly the phenomenological and anarchist varieties), reading and learning, and pretty much anything that gets slapped with the “radical” label.

I reviewed some of the Little House blog to see what it is all about before I start posting. The history of the Little House, as well as that of the Zomban community, is quite fascinating. The recent posts seem to have taken on a rather philosophical tone, but as I went back, I found many different focuses, including a variety of homesteading activities as well as the importance of community.

As for my focus, at this time I am deeply interested in gardening, and I will likely be posting a great deal about my various adventures therein. Given the fact that it is currently just the beginning of winter and, though I’d like to deny it, I saw snow flurries this very morning, I find it quite the misfortunate timing. To turn a problem into a solution, however, I am focusing on reading (I’m engrossed in a copy of Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew, which is acting as an excellent guide), planning, building, and experimenting with winter gardens and methods to get an early start come spring.

Speaking of winter gardens, I already have a charming little garden growing in our large, lovely, south-facing window. In a long thin planter, members of the mint family – lemon balm, mint, and tulsi (holy basil) – are growing quite vigorously. Along side, my basil plant has exceeded 18 inches in height and my little rosemary plant is flourishing. I’m sure though, that they will all be exceedingly happy after the solstice, as the days begin to lengthen and they get more sun.

I have plans to continue to expand on this garden, hopefully in the coming week. Mi compaƱero, after reading a chapter of Square Foot Gardening, noticed that our milk crates are 13x13 inches – perfect for the square foot method – and we began to formulate the idea of growing vegetables in milk crates. I’m planning to line the crate with cardboard, filling it with potting soil, and plant some carrots. Left near the woodstove, the soil would get warm enough for the seeds to sprout. Then, being in a portable milk crate, they can be relocated to the sunny window to flourish into food. If all goes well, we might build something more elaborate… but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

We’ll see what happens.



Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Circle Turns

Wow, it's been a while. Things have changed, things have stayed the same.

Sharqi and the sprout (she's more of a sapling now, actually) have moved to Urbana, which sounds WAY cooler than Springfield. I am back in the little house, feeding logs to the woodstove, snuggling with Snapper the Mouser, and scheming ... it's easier to imagine a complete sustainable utopia, than it is to see what steps to take here and now to get there!

I have invited my companyera, who's been spending a lot of time at the little house, to blog here. So y'all may be hearing from us, from time to time. Though we don't have Internet at the house, so we do it at the public library, where I am right now. And now I gotta catch the bus home, probably chainsaw some firewood, and get ready for my folks to visit.