Erik’s 2012 New Year’s Resolutions in Review

Thank you Kurt and Ben and all who helped build our adobe oven.

I never used to make New Year’s resolutions until I decided to flaunt them on our blog last year. And, of course, I made way too many. So how did I do?


  • Build adobe oven in the backyard: check! Thanks to Kurt Gardella and Ben Loescher who led a class in our backyard.
  • Plan out garden ahead of time instead of playing catch-up at the last minute: I did indeed plan out the garden but nature had her own plans including a destructive series of skunk attacks. I’ve switched to a hands-off approach to veggie gardening inspired by Masanobu Fukuoka.
  • Start a podcast (decided to make it a video podcast). You can subscribe in the iTunes store here (it’s freeeeee!).
  • Clean up the graphic design on the blog and organize information better: Thank you to our book designer Roman Jaster for doing this for us!
  • Return to the fencing strip (I’ll admit it’s a pretentious activity–sort of the artisinal mayonnaise of sports–but I’m addicted to it.). See the first topic on the incomplete list.

Fencing jacket is still hanging in my office as a reminder to get those knees working again!

Working on, i.e. incomplete:

  • Fix bad knees–retuning to the fencing strip gave me the worst case of runner’s knee I’ve ever had. This is a good thing because it forced me to get into physical therapy and fix the problem.
  • Improve writin’ skills.
  • Celebrate the wonderful awesomeness that is Mrs. Homegrown each and every day.

I’ve got the book but not the license.


  • Get HAM technician’s license.
  • Learn Morse code
  • Attend CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) classes.
  • Organize messy office so it doesn’t look like an episode of Hoarders.
  • Organize supplies in garage into labeled boxes: still messy.
  • Turn the garage into the ultimate man cave.
  • Increase running distance.
  • Organize bug-out box.
  • Backpack more often.
  • Camp on Santa Rosa island again.
  • Return to biodynamic practices in the garden.
  • Learn how to sharpen knives and tools.
  • Create an iPhone or iPad app.
  • Check email only twice a day.
  • Take more time to cook.
  • Keep the kitchen spotless.
  • Ferment vegetables more often.

My New Year’s resolution this year is to have a much shorter New Year’s resolution list. I’ll post that list tomorrow.

So how did your 2012 go? What did you accomplish on your homestead? Please share in the comments . . .

Leave a comment


  1. Hi there!

    I really like the adobe oven! That was a very long list! I’ve never honestly has more than two or three simple ones!

    I have already started mine for next year because I don’t remember what my goal was last year? Oh yes, re-enrollment in online classes, did that! Start a blog, did it!
    Weight loss, yes, no, yes….and for this year I’m continuing my walk in Faith and getting more involved in church as well as eating one healthy meal and exerciseing 20 min each day.
    Thanks for sharing!

  2. The fact that you have a list of resolutions at all (let alone a list as extensive as yours) is dang impressive. I usually utilize a more informal mental list of resolutions. This is great since I don’t have to commit anything to paper or my blog and thus can’t be held accountable.

    My resolutions tend to be along the lines of “One New Thing…” each year; canning one new jam or fermented item, planting one new veggie, learning one new skill, researching then adding one new perennial to the garden. More than anything I try to make it a mindset to always be on the lookout for one new skill/canned item/veggie to add to the repertoire.

  3. I never did have more than one resolution until I started raising livestock and gardening again. The list now gets longer and longer each year. I failed to grow broccoli – but found out by accident that cauliflower and kohlrabi are excellent brassica options. Planted 4 fruit trees and the hens have new and improved housing, but never got around to making bacon or setting up an indoor space for winter greens. I did park my car and have been commuting by bike – save for the few days of snow covered streets.

    This year (as with the beginning of every year) I am feeling optimistic.

    Good luck to you.

  4. I made cheese and used buckwheat flour and quinoa. I also grew quinoa but fed it to the chickens. 2013 I will figure out how to harvest it for human consumption. I didn’t render lard however (still in the freezer) Or make sausage. Curing meat is on the list for the coming year. Bacon or duck breast procuitto maybe….
    Indoor greens sound like a good idea.
    Here’s wishing everyone inspiration and motivation for the New Year.

  5. That’s quite the list! Many of those items are on my to do list. Cob oven and HAM being HIGH up there.

    This year I finally got my PDC done, we had some great guest speakers 😉 Also did a Natural Building Intensive in an intentional community, killing two birds with one stone. Moved off grid and learned/ing lots about energy independence. Managed to get laid off so now I have time to really get into projects.

    It’s gonna be a great 2013…

  6. Pingback: My 2013 New Year’s Resolution | Root Simple

  7. From one Fencer to another, it’s good to see you’re getting back into the game!

    • Took about 6 months to work on the knees, but think I’m almost ready for that fencing strip again!

  8. Hi – how are those knees? I am lucky to attend a pilates class where the teacher is a movement specialist. She has sorted out so many peoples knee problems – all stemming she says, from not using your ‘glutes’. Those are the muscles in your bum that should be tightened to pick up your knees, not muscles in your legs. Give it a try.

    • Hi Jean, I’m working with a personal trainer at the YMCA (something I should have done 10 years ago!). She’s working with me on strengthening all the muscles around the knee including the glutes.

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