My 2013 New Year’s Resolution

A day after writing about all the things I didn’t do in 2012 I understood the main problem with my New Year’s resolution list. And it’s not that the list was too long. The problem was that I was treating my life as a collection of merit badges. I think it’s an obvious trap for a how-to book author and homesteading blogger to fall into. My merit badge accumulation better served my ego than those around...

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Happy Mayan Apocalypse!

...d not happen. Either that or I’m blogging via a HAM link from the Root Simple bug out location. So what is the official party line here at Root Simple on the whole 2012 deal? I’m hoping the uneventful passing of this day will mark a peak in interest in apocalyptic scenarios. While I could opinionate about the Apocalypse meme, as John Michael Greer calls doomsday thinking, I think it would be best just to quote Greer from his book Apoc...

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Saturday Linkages: Speedos, Blue Eggs and the Rise of Rye

A rancher of the future according to the 1981 children’s book Tomorrow’s Home. Trojan Horses, Recipes, and Permaculture http://www.patternliteracy.com/770-trojan-horses-recipes-and-permaculture … How bad for the environment are gas-powered leaf blowers? http://wapo.st/14bgqIQ  In Pursuit of Tastier Chickens, a Strict Diet of Four-Star Scraps http://nyti.ms/15yN8EY  Rye’s Rise: New Loaves That Are More Than a Vehicl...

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Getting my Ham Radio License

...Most of this scavenging takes place at Los Angeles’ massive central library on lower level two, where all the how-to books are shelved.  This month I’m finally acting on something I’ve contemplated for years: getting my amateur radio (i.e. Ham) technician’s license. I’ll be taking the test in the middle of the smart phone era. Curiously, when I’m deep in the cultural dumpster I often run into fellow scavenger...

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001 Transplants vs. Seedlings, Josey Baker Bread, Gluten Intolerance and Rats in the Compost

...in mind, I’m finally putting up the first (after a few false starts) Root Simple audio podcast. Right now the format is Kelly and I recapping recent blog posts and going into greater detail. Plus we answer some long overdue reader questions. When we get more comfortable with podcasting we’ll start having guests. In this episode of the Root Simple podcast we discuss transplants vs. direct sowing, the book Josey Baker Bread, gluten int...

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Cactus Thief Strikes Again

...could even lead to the first ever Root Simple Upworthy style clickbait headline, “Thief Steals Cactus and the Thorny Response Will Have You in Tears.” Stoic philosopher Epictetus set me straight on what I should really do. He says, “Stop admiring your clothes and you are not angry at the man who steals them . . . our losses and our pains have to do only with the things we posses.” (Discourses Book 1.18) And wanting to pos...

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Loquat season is here!

...s one of the pleasures of walking at this time of year! Ripe loquats tend to be a little larger and fatter than the unripe ones, and the color is darker. They also have a tiny bit of give under the fingers. You’ll get a sense of how to tell which ones are best with experience. I usually rub the fuzz off the skin before eating, which, in my book, counts as washing. Beware the pits! Some trees have better fruit than others, so if you try a l...

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How’s the Sugar Free Experiment Going for Erik?

...Robert Lustig’s video six months ago, and I do think he makes some important points (plus I learned a lot about the biochemistry of intermediate metabolism from him). However…I’d still go back to this whole idea of vilifying a single ingredient. Americans are all still eating way too much processed food overall, and processed food is the larger culprit, in my book, especially because it’s cheap to add fat, carbohydrates, and salt to processed fo...

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Making Tofu From Scratch at the Institute of Domestic Technology

...n a new IDT class taught by author Andrea Nguyen on how to make tofu from scratch. Nguyen is the author of a couple of cookbooks including Asian Tofu: Discover the Best, Make Your Own, and Cook It at Home and a new book, The Banh Mi Handbook: Recipes for Crazy-Delicious Vietnamese Sandwiches . She began the tofu class with with some soy beans that were soaked the night before. The pre-soaked  beans were ground up in a blender...

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008 Grind Your Own Flour With Erin Alderson

On the eighth episode of the Root Simple Podcast we speak with Erin Alderson about milling your own flours at home. Erin is the author of The Homemade Flour Cookbook and blogs at naturallyella.com. In our conversation Erin mentions that she uses WonderMill Grain Mill . We also discussed where to get unique grains.  Erin mentions a few sources in her book: Bob’s Red Mill Arrowhead Mills Nuts Onlin...

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