All posts filed under: beans

packing tips + pickled beans | a raisin & a porpoise

how we bean

Today’s theme is HARD TO GET THE STUFF IN THE PLACE. Not too long ago we traipsed into the wilderness for our annual camping trip. Then we traipsed back out again, little bits of soot and ash and pine needles stuck to our selves and to the mountain of gear that continues to lurk around the house, in need of shaking and rinsing and hanging and—most arduous of all—folding back up into the little origami pellets that the corresponding stuffsacks demand. My wilderness travel tip remains unchanged from last time: travel with Greek persons, or, if those elude you, travel with anyone who only feels comfortable heading into the wilderness for two days with a minimum of 7 heads of garlic, 8 eggplants, 14 lemons and a pontoon (metric measure) of olive oil. Some of our travel Greeks (we are lucky enough to have a whole set) had to leave early, and as my friend packed up her share of the goods, she offered me her bottle of oregano. I declined. Are you SURE? she …


launch date

When my sister’s firstborn left for college, she called me and wailed “but I’m not done!” I reassured her (correctly, as it turns out) that my nephew was a super guy and well-situated for a nice life.  But I was talking out my ear, as we both well knew in that moment, because in that moment how fine he was going to be was not at all what she was getting at. My own children were mere tots at the time that I was giving hollow reassurances to my sister, and as they get larger and more capable and closer to the door (one of them even got loose, I’m afraid–flew the coop for college in September while I had my back turned), I become more acutely aware of what I have and haven’t gotten around to teaching them, and how as a result they are (or aren’t) prepared for what will come their way.  I am fully aware, thank you very much, that efforts to prepare them undertaken by myself and others may have …


staple remover

January has been up to its usual crazy hijinks.  Thaw! Freeze! Snow!  Repeat.  So basically what we have is a thick layer of ice that will probably not melt before August (this is the kind of despairing idea that takes root in mid-winter), slip-covered (and I mean that) in a topcoat of snow. I actually kind of like winter, but I could do without the luge-track conditions here on the hill, conditions that turn every jaunt to the car or chicken coop into a dance with fate.  I did a triple toe-loop last week trying to bring the chickens some water, magically escaping knocking myself unconscious in either of the two ways that immediately came available (bonking head on ice; braining self with metal water pot that went completely airborne and landed a few feet away), giving the dogs (the only mammalian witnesses) a little case of PTSD, and doing my already-ailing back no favors.  I begin to comprehend why people of a certain age de-camp to warmer climates, and their more reliable walking conditions, …