All posts filed under: hitting the spot that loves pickles and kick

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 …

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, …

hot & sour soup hack, from A Raisin & A Porpoise

ooh, Mommy

Just recently we were treated to a display of weather extremes dramatic enough that you’d think most of the outliers on the “climate change” matter would have been convinced.  In the course of a couple of days, the mercury did a 60 degree cha-cha, from sub-zero up to 50 and back again.  If you are not in the Northeast, maybe you saw it on weather television.  For those of us playing along at home, it meant not only wardrobe and internal thermometer confusion, but also, for giggles, gooshy mud and enormous puddles that overnight became a thick sheet of ice slip-covered (and I mean that) in a thin layer of slide-y snow. Even on a prairie, those conditions would make it challenging to get to the chicken coop, a few hundred yards from the house.  But we live on a picturesque hill.  The trip to the coop was so treacherous one day last week that once I arrived there intact, my relationship with the Lord restored and updated, I engaged the miracle of cellular technology …