From Now On…

For a New Year’s declaration on the Facebook page for this website, I vowed to spend the rest of my life continuing to #FirstDoNoHarm. It is not a new thing, but a continuing thing. It was really a declaration in hopes of influencing the thinking of others to do the same; planting seeds you know.

A stretch of the daily trek

A stretch of the daily trek

In my mind, and not out loud, I vowed to not let things keep me from going on my daily walk. For the most part, I have been rather diligent; but through Christmas I let myself go for almost a whole week on the days when a friend wanted to shop or just go sit for a spell to talk or it seemed too cold or too late or I was involved in something else… any excuse would do. It’s very easy to get out of a good habit with that kind of thinking. It’s perfectly okay to take time for friends, as valuable health-wise as walking, but it is important to get back to it as quickly as possible. So far, I am two for two since making the mental declaration. I’m off to a good start.

I did edit the ‘Our Story‘ of the Facebook page to include “Vegan Gardening” ahead of the rest of the story because it has become first and foremost in all of my gardening considerations. I think when I started the page, I was still under the misconception that external inputs might have a value. For me, it turns out that I no longer want to include them, especially if they are animal derived; definitely if they are animal derived. For one thing there are just too many problems with them. I won’t go into it now. Suffice it to say, ‘contamination’ in one way or another is a big part of the equation. But it’s enough that most often they require harm.

I will forage for some mesquite chaff in open areas possibly. Even that is disturbing habitat where it can be found in the wild. It would be best gotten from someone who is intent on an immaculate yard but then they usually spray herbicides/pesticides.

Best to just try to grow my own necessary resources the best I am able I have decided. A big challenge for me currently is finding enough carbon matter for humanure/compoosting. Since deciding to leave the leaves, that resource is scarce. I might need to take someone’s advice to dig a trench for it since our water table is so low.

happynewyear mice

I noticed that a lot of postings for the New Year seemed to have a common thread; replacing fear with love or just getting rid of fear period, especially ‘what-if’ fears. It seems that most of us are coming to realize that we are being manipulated to be fearful as part of a bigger, destructive agenda lurking out there. Even that is fearful thinking…that lurking agenda; what is it? who’s doing it? what are they doing it for? It turns out that there is very little we can do about any of it other than to quit being fearful and band together to accomplish a thing outside of that thing… We’ve got this!! It is up to us.

Fearless examples in nature

Fearless examples in nature; self-seeded broccoli plant.

Year after year I have been trying to get cool season crops to grow in this bolt-inducing desert. Year after year, Brussels sprout and broccoli plants have continued to sow themselves. Some go two seasons and more trying to produce. I am now seeing their value for producing caterpillars for the birds and Buster, the turtle, if not food for me. The white cabbage moths don’t seem to ever leave until it is literally freezing. So be it.

So my declaration here on this post is, from now on I will try ever more diligently to keep my head in gardening mode and bypass fear inducing propaganda.

Lovey dovey

Lovey dovey doves

Love or fear, what say you?

From now on…let’s choose love. Let’s garden more. Let’s garden without exploiting animals or ruining their habitats. Let’s really and truly love them. Let’s share what we grow with them. From now on, let’s not let those who would have us fear think that we can’t change the world for better.

One garden at a time. From now on…we can do this.



Thirty Seven Years

It’s so very important to be doing what you really love to do.

It’s important that this gets figured out as soon as possible.

It’s not always easy to do this.

I wrote a whole post years ago about how, as a child, I loved to go out in the open fields of my neighborhood and build imaginary neighborhoods where my family and friends would live. I dragged things around in these open fields to section off roads and plots that defined these spaces. I was very spatially oriented even then and would gravitate to a career that utilized those senses, Interior Design. It was a matter of being able to make a living doing something close to what I loved to do; which basically was simply to configure things, anything/everything in ways that pleased me.

I just turned 64 on June 22 and now, today, July 1, it dawned on me that 37 years ago today, July 1, 1981, I had a first date with a man who would be the most significant influence in my life to date. I thought that I was madly in love. Of course I know now that those feelings are transient and usually mean that it is going to be an experience of profound growth for me; which that relationship surely was.

True love is a whole different thing than madly in love.

Nonetheless, he impacted my life in ways I will never regret. We didn’t get married, we didn’t even move in together, but we never broke complete contact until just recently when he died. Several years had gone by since our last encounter and that encounter provided me with a release from all the thoughts of what could have been.

As it turns out, what could have been happened. He was everything he was supposed to have been for me. We would never have been happy as a couple; we were far too different in our passions and preferences. For one thing he didn’t really like animals all that much and that’s a very big difference.

The moral of this story is that all experiences nudge and plod us along in life to end up where we need to be. Some experiences have more significance than others.

As I shared in that story about my childhood, a publication about drapery hardware and beautiful window coverings had a profound effect on my life early on. That single thing steered my life in a direction. It made my heart beat faster. It gave me goose bumps. I couldn’t wait to get myself into that environment and I did everything in my power to get there and I did get there, step by step by step. And I’m still there. I still move things around, configure things to please me. I still love to handle fabric and fashion it into things of greater value. I still love to drag things around and create plots where my family and friends will live. My family and friend are now mostly pets.


Turtle found crossing the street lately on a morning walk around the neighborhood. I think I’ll call him Buster. “Hey Buster, where are you hiding now!”



A place for Buster to keep wet


Buster at feeding time

Thirty seven years ago today, I had a first date with a man who saw these values in me and encouraged them. He applauded my endeavors making it easier for me to go on with them. He saw things in me that I didn’t see. I felt special in his presence. For a very long time, I felt lonely without him. But because of him, I was stronger and even that was easier to endure.

I believe that everything happens for a reason and that everything will turn out right in the end and, to quote from the movie The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, “if it is not alright, it is not yet the end”.

I don’t know how thirty seven years went by so fast and I’m very sad about the fact that it has. I don’t want to spend another minute dwelling on things I can do nothing about or things that don’t utilize my skills in the best way possible.

There are a great many things wrong with the world and it is easy to get caught up commiserating about it. I think it is a far greater thing to do something about it. To my mind, permaculture practices and living a radically simple life are about the greatest things anyone can really do to effect change. And that is what I shall do. Certainly nothing else I have done has worked and this I love to do.

Life is far shorter than we start out thinking it is.

It is so important to do what we love to do.


What do you love to do?

Are you doing it?

Why not?