Tag Archives: northwest

from the forest


Filed under fall

summer school?

It feels only a tiny bit more September-y now that the first day of school has arrived. Normally this week I’d be getting amped up for corn mazes, pumpkin patches, apple fritters, and the traditional first pumpkin spice latte of the season. We’re having some sort of rare, record breaking stretch of hot September weather here in the Pacific Northwest and it kind of rules. Hey, I don’t have to go to school!

This guy does, however – number 2 pencils and all. Sophomore year, we are ready to kick your ass.

Levi says he hasn’t felt this exhausted in awhile. Not surprising. He has been staying up until 3 or 4 all summer. We did enforce a bedtime this week, but this will be a rough adjustment. As a shift worker who flip-flops from nights to days every 8 weeks, I am an expert. Maybe it will start to feel like fall when I switch back to day shift in a week or so.

Let’s do a roll call on the boys around here while we still have four. In addition to the teenager, we’ve got:

expert chicken guard

Mr. Jimmy Rabies
window sill lounger

Cry-Baby Walker
not nearly as mean as he looks

Still no crowing. I don’t know if the day it happens we will suddenly be desperate to find him a new home. We have at least one interested future rooster owner, so we won’t panic. Yet.


Filed under chickens, family


Tonight we will dine on chanterelle pizza thanks to my little family of foragers. Our friend Anna has been sharing her mushrooming spots around town. Don’t worry moms, they take a field guide.

Even Levi, the notorious mushroom hater, has been getting in on the hunt. This child has disliked mushrooms since he was tiny. Back in the day, he would actually vomit if he tried them. I think our adventurous eater is now slowly starting to try a mushroom here and there.

I hope to join in on the fun next time. While you do have to be very careful with fungi, I am inspired lately to become more of a forager. Why pay $5 for a tiny container of blackberries or $15 a pound for chanterelles when these grow wild right around us? Conversations about foraging lately have caused me to take notice of the fear of food that doesn’t come wrapped in plastic in neat little rows at the grocery store. Thankfully this only inspires me to get more in touch with where my food comes from.

Now I just have to learn how to clean and cook these behemoths. I am ashamed to admit that the last time Jess brought home a lobster mushroom we let it go bad. And boy was that ever gross (not to mention baffling) to have our vegetarian fridge smell like rotting fish. Lobster mushroom recipe suggestions welcome, people!


Filed under family

20 x 20

Things are happening in our community garden plot!

Probably the biggest surprise: the artichoke starts that nearly died when we first planted them out are looking like they might actually produce! Last year our artichoke plants at home in containers never produced any food, probably because we didn’t choose a sunny enough spot for them. Our new plan is to dig these up before winter and store them in the garage in pots. We’ll see.

We’ve got a ton of green tomatoes over there. FINGERS AND TOES CROSSED!

Corn. Probably not going to happen this year but the sight of it still makes us happy.

Soy, corn, and volunteer borage gone wild behind. Our borage makes our plot very popular with the bees.


nasturtiums and zucchini (and maybe some weeds)

Jess has some interesting plans for this calendula

Jess’ favorite gloves

the view from our neighbor’s plot

the food bank squash plot

So glad I finally hauled my camera over there on a day I wasn’t going to get covered in dirt.


Filed under garden