Last week was rather eventful. There were three major crises, one after another.

Crisis #1: Baby Ian has been in and out of doctors’ offices while we try to diagnose his tummy issues. He has been in a lot of discomfort and pain. We think we’ve figured it out, though, that it’s severe acid reflux. So the doctors have prescribed a variety of medications to help keep things flowing smoothly and relatively painlessly.

Crisis #2: Just as we were beginning to resolve Ian’s medical problems, Wifey got the call for her outpatient surgery. So she went in on Friday. It went well and she’s doing fine now, but the timing wasn’t ideal. We had arranged respite care for Ian but our respite provider came down with the flu, so I had to pick him up before mommy’s recovery was over.

Crisis #3: As we were heading out the door Saturday morning for another of Ian’s doctor visits, our 12-year-old kitty, Spaz, practically knocked me over trying to get inside. It took me a minute to realize he wasn’t moving his hind legs. Apparently he had been hit by a car. I had to take him and LE to the emergency vet while Andrea took Ian to his appointment. Spaz had a fractured pelvis, a fairly typical injury for an auto accident. Surgery was recommended but would cost over $3000, and as much as we love our kitty we can’t justify that let alone afford it. He has a very good chance to recover on his own, so we got kitty pain meds and a pet crate. He will remain in the crate (with a few outings for lap time) for the next eight weeks while he heals up.

Things are a little more settled now. Ian is feeling much better, mommy is feeling much better (though still sleep-deprived), and Spaz is pooping (which is a great thing if you are a geriatric cat with a fractured pelvis).


If you’ve been following this blog for a while, this might come as a bit of a shocker.

We aren’t going to build our homestead in Benson after all.

At least not for a while. A while being like ten years or more.

It was a really hard decision to make. We’ve invested a lot already and it’s hard to switch paths in the middle. And we were this close (visualize my thumb and index finger almost touching) to getting a building permit. But we know sticking around our home in Tucson is the right thing to do. (more…)

I stumbled on this article today and…wow.

It’s long but well worth reading. It is thorough, well-written, and balanced.

To sum up: there’s good news and bad news.

The good news is that climate change is probably not as big a deal as we might believe.

The bad news is the reason why. We are using fossil fuels so fast and in such great quantities that it will become less and less economically viable to extract them starting, well, about now… with the likelihood that demand will outstrip supply around 2030. There aren’t enough fossil fuels left to destroy the planet with CO2 emissions.

If you think last year’s gas prices were bad, hang on. It’s all downhill from here.


Okay I’ve always wanted to build my own house, but I have to admit this is cool.

First harvest, 2009... sorta

First harvest, 2009... sorta

Our first harvest… sort of. We have a gallon freezer bag full of beans and we’ve been picking green cayenne peppers here and there, but this is the first harvest of our “big” veggies: eggplant, squash, Hatch chilies, the first red-ripe cayenne, and a wee cherry tomato.


After five years, it just keeps getting better.

After five years, it just keeps getting better.

Wifey and I celebrated five wonderful years of marriage this weekend. Well, actually we celebrated on a trip to Rocky Point at the end of April, but we did get a date night out on our anniversary too! We went to Zemam’s (one of our favorites) and there shared our highs and lows of marriage.

Our highs were basically those times when we could get away by ourselves and really enjoy each other. And when we welcomed our daughter LE, now 2, into our family. And when we welcomed our son Ian just two weeks ago.

Our lows, well, those centered around a painful, heartbreaking loss we experienced last year (if you know us you’ll know what we mean). More recently, I suspect our lows have a lot to do with sleep deprivation.

The past five years have been a blessing and I am very thankful for them. I have the best wife ever, and my kids have the best mom ever. Here’s to the next five, and the next fifty after that!

So I have to decide how we are going to plaster the outside of our straw bale house. I mean, I have to decide now. Or at least before I submit our revised plans for review. For some reason details like that have to be figured out before we actually start building, so say the building officials.

There are basically three ways you can plaster the exterior of a bale house: cement stucco, lime stucco, or earthen clay. There are lots of arguments for and against each one and lots of people have done thorough comparisons. Sometimes it can even feel like a religious debate within the bale community. I don’t want to get into all that, I’m just trying to work out what we’re going to do with our house.