Archives for category: Simple Living


This Craftsman 1/2″ Drive Quick Release Ratchet V 44975 was left in an old tool box & forgotten. The selector switch was hard to turn and the ratchet action was very rough.

Took it apart today to clean & lube.

Had to go back and check the video half way through the job. Good as new now.


B.I.L. rolled up after spending the winter in Yuma.

Feels like a sunny & wintry day on Whidbey.

Pork & chicken with apple wood smoke on the grill.

A decent IPA:

Less ABV:



Today was a nice day to work outside.

We had fun with sunflowers last year. Today was the day to pull out the last of them, chop them up and add them to the compost pile.



Click image twice to show detail.

Changing seasons:

Bird Feeder Fun

















Watching this one come long.


In the ground for about 13 months.

Grass clippings for mulch.


Designated as fully nonessential in all 50 states.

An idea handed down from people who have more experience than we do.

Washing machine drum fire pit

Weenie Roast


Getting started with Black Oil sunflower seeds.

We’ll eat some and try to grow some in the garden.

April 30, 2010 Seattle Times

Yardsmart: Think big with sunflower seeds

The key is to look for black-oil sunflower seeds in the pet section, not the garden section. Most major discount stores as well as national pet-supply chains and home-improvement stores sell them alongside traditional wild-bird foods. A 10-pound bag costs roughly $10. That is thousands of seeds that can generate thousands of plants.”

Here is the video that got us interested in trying this:

More here:

Something Simple & Positive


Years ago, we did some sprouting at home. We got away from it as other projects came along.

Thinking about growing some sunflowers this year, and came across this really nice video:

We are ready to get back at it.

In the past, we tried alfalfa, clover, & lentils.

Alfalfa at top of page and below:




Here is an altenative media update with some ideas about price gouging laws:

I lived in coastal N. Carolina in the early 90s. During my time there, a hurricane had developed and the community was potentially in the path of a powerful storm.

A letter to the editor later described a small engine shop that was charging too much to tune up & repair generators prior to the storm.

I feel like I understand why the shop wanted to charge more.

The small engine shop was staffed for a routine work load. Here comes a storm and an unusual number of people who may not have maintained their generators. The shop is not a NASCAR pit crew. If it could hire the pit crew it would have to raise prices.

Maybe trim your trees and tune up your generator before storm season.


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The area where I lived in N.C. was surrounded by fresh and saltwater areas that were very appropriate for a canoe.

I found a used canoe and separately, a used outboard. In many cases I would leave the outboard off and enjoy quiet paddling and much in the way of wildlife sightings out and about in the stillness of rivers and wetlands. I made good use of this rig later in California and in Washington State.

In the photo above I’m ready to launch at Twin Spits (N.E. entrance to Hood Canal) on a low tide day.