Child of hoarder evolving at a glacial pace toward minimalism

My wife and I have a lot of conversations about my clothes. I have to agree that I have far too many. If she really loved me she would make a quilt out of my t-shirts. That would really put a dent into the problem of my overflowing dresser and closet! Being a child of a … Continue reading

Shame Be Damned!

This is a love story. Not romantic love, but that which is forged through fire and abuse that was endured. Today I spoke with the abused child referenced in the first chapter of my book: Though I hadn’t spoken with her in more than a quarter-century, we immediately connected over the phone. There was no … Continue reading



  This is my newly stacked cache of firewood, illuminated by the light of the morning after: All of the wood used to heat my small writer’s “shack” is hand-cut. Most of it is junk wood that is eschewed by everybody else. Following walks with the dog, I often arrive home dragging a branch that previously … Continue reading


Thankful for Simple Pleasures

Here I am working at the same small table with my wife. Normally I’m out in my small writer’s “shack,” but about once per week I delight in sharing the same small space with Shawna. I love seeing her paintings in various stages of evolution. A shared pot of tea rounds out the experience perfectly. Enjoying silence … Continue reading

Common Toad (Bufo bufo) taking an earwig.

Experiencing the Sublime in 24 Inches of Dirt

It was a busy time of life with graduate school and worries over money. While tending our landlord’s garden I found myself fully prostrate, spread out on the ground and pruning a rhododendron bush. What followed was a spiritual experience that was ethereal in nature, and yet firmly rooted in the solid terra firm of … Continue reading


It’s Time To Secede

There is no place I’d rather die than in Duluth, Minnesota. Likewise, there’s no place I’d rather reinvent the notion of vocation. This is the land upon which I choose to live, and to live abundantly. For 12 long toilsome years I found myself latched on, clutching to a gigantic and seemingly life-sustaining corporate teat. … Continue reading

The Face of Child Abuse

I’m writing this after arising from a nightmare this morning. For the first time ever one of my children had entered with me into the living nightmare that marked a portion of my childhood. We were eating dinner with the family of my former babysitter, sitting across from one another at the table in their house. … Continue reading


You can take the boy out of the hoarder, but not the hoarder out of the boy

My tour de force for the upcoming week, a feat requiring great virtuosity and skill, will be the tossing of these shoes into the garbage. For this child of a hoarder, such matters are handled with gravity. In the end I’ll have an exhilarating victory. Perhaps they still have a little life left in them, … Continue reading


Child of Hoarder “Wolf Boy” Finds Path to Full Humanity

We did not intend to hoard the feces, but once a home gets beyond a certain point in terms of filth, you cease to be repulsed. It was simply our reality. Our situation had become so bad that Mom and I cleaned the house in a near panic the day the home inspector came to … Continue reading


Anything Worthwhile Requires Effort. Amazing Vacation at the Lily Pond Cabin in the Fabulous Porcupine Mountains.

  Anything worthwhile, literally anything, requires serious effort. Here my family and I are returning from obtaining a bucket of clear, cold, and fresh, spring water during our stay at the Lily Pond cabin in the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.  Each journey to obtain the precious drink involved … Continue reading


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