My column would have run for the local newspaper last weekend, but that paper now no longer exists. A little piece of me goes with it. Not only did I spend 25% of my lifetime writing for it, the terrifying process of coming up with something original each month made me into the writer that … More Gleanings from the book of Eli
Rotting debris, intentionally piled as if sculpted, is beautiful. What some cast aside as worthless becomes valuable. What had been reviled is renewed. Redeemed, if you will. Ripe for obsession, I was introduced to hugelkultur through the impressive urban farming efforts being undertaken by The Duluth Grill. Pronounced “hoogel culture,” it’s a style of gardening … More Rot and Renewal, or “The Happy Hugeler!”
That’s right people. I just earned cold hard cash by doing farm work! This was so important to me that I even biked 30 miles just to get to work today, and boy am I tired. This after just three hours of harvesting tomatoes and squash. It turns out that farming is tough work! I’m … More It’s official. I’m a bona fide farmer!
Rather uncharacteristically, I worked 100+ hours over the past 10 days without a break while painting a beautiful house and rushing to get it done before a lovely young family returned home. It seems fitting to post the conclusion to this list, begun last month (you can peruse the living intentionally category if you like), … More Practical Ways to Cultivate Awareness and Gratitude in Daily Life, Part 3
This post is in response to a reader who passed along a thoughtful comment in reaction to my newspaper column (pasted below). Her comments were rather encouraging, but they provide an opportunity to expound on something I’ve been thinking a lot of these days. The barrage of social media in our lives can produce an overwhelming … More Reflections on a great activity, inadequacy, thrilling in the chase.
Cultivating awareness can be taken as an activity pursued in solitude for no greater purpose than that of enriching ourselves, as a kind of ego-centric navel-gazing activity. However, this is certainly not the goal. As we become more “aware” and exude gratitude for a multitude of blessings that have been showered upon us, we can … More Practical Ways to Cultivate Awareness and Gratitude in Daily Life, Part 2
Awareness and gratitude are a chicken and egg situation. Which comes first? Are they one and the same? Being fully aware of the world around you, having knowledge of it, and experiencing it in all it’s subtle shades and endless variety is something that comes gradually as our perception becomes more and more capable of … More Practical Ways to Cultivate Awareness and Gratitude in Daily Life, Part 1
Cabin life is enjoyed by nearly everyone. This is due to its stripped-down minimalism that emphasizes the things that really matter to one’s self. Possessions, clutter, busyness, and a frenetic lifestyle are all left behind. Being in tune and in touch with the natural world promotes true reflection that can lead to positive and lasting … More Joy, Nakedness, and Tolstoy.
Each and every day, I wait expectantly for the mailman. I am fortunate to receive my mail as early as 8:30 am, and still this often doesn’t feel early enough. Anticipation builds and builds. Inevitably, I’m crestfallen to discover nearly useless junk mail. Day after day the scene plays itself out in the same way. Not … More The Power of Writing Letters
From the forest, a vast boreal civilization, our family obtained our Christmas tree this year. As the kids went in one direction to hunt for options, but instead delighted themselves in sledding down a hill, I ducked, bowed, twisted, and turned through a tangle of alder. I was scouting a clearing, where the few balsams … More Gratefulness In and Through Scarcity