Mom Stories: Spiders

My mother is a great storyteller, and although I currently live as far away from her as is possible, we talk on skype once a week. She grew up in the North Country of New England. Her stories paint a picture of an America I never experienced and I’ve decided to try and capture some of them in writing. Here’s my first attempt: Continue reading


“Fear is the possibility of…”

This is in response to the Daily Prompt: Quote Me

Do you have a favorite quote that you return to again and again? What is it, and why does it move you?

6 years ago I read a book about a woman living in a small Norwegian town. I can’t tell you the title of the book, as I have forgotten it. I believe the book is being stored in my Jeep Cherokee behind an auto parts shop in Portland, Oregon. There is one quote in this book that is constantly wandering the back of my mind: “Fear is the possibility of freedom.” Continue reading

An app for sweatshops

An idea popped into my head a few days ago. It’s rare that I will buy new clothing, mostly what I buy is new hiking gear. I love thrift stores and that’s where I get most of my clothes. A lot of people do buy new clothing though and many of them (including myself most of the time) simply don’t know where it’s coming from. Since there seems to be an app for just about anything, why not an app that allows you to scan the bar code of clothing to see what country it came from? Did it come from a sweatshop? Slave labor parading as a wage? Just scan it.  Continue reading

Forbearing Optimism

This is in response to the Photo Prompt of the week: Optimistic

This week show us something you’re optimistic about


We’d been out there in the desert hiking for 7 days. We were in Northern Territory, Australia hiking the Larapinta Trail. We still had 2 weeks to go and I was having an absolute blast. The food drops along the way would cost us about $400 so we cashed in on my Yankee Thrift and decided to lug 20 days worth of food on our backs. Thank Gandhi our base weight was ultralight. But then there were those sections a few days earlier where we had no water for over a day and had to lug several kilos of the liquid gold. Continue reading

Life without computers

This is in response to the Daily Prompt: Life After Blogs

Your life without a computer: what does it look like?

In 2005, when I was 17, a family member took pity on my mother and I and bought us a computer. I remember what life was like before that internet connection to a very large world. I amused myself in many different creative ways, most of which involved me running around outside kicking a ball or finding other ways to put holes in the knees of all my pants.  Continue reading

Missing a furball

This is in response to the Daily Prompt: My Favorite

What’s the most time you’ve ever spent apart from your favorite person? Tell us about it.

People are overrated. I left my best friend behind when I decided to leave everything I’d ever known and drive over 2000 miles across the country to my new life at age 20. She had tan fur, weighed about 20lbs wet, and couldn’t hold a conversation on the phone if her life depended on it. It was a tough decision to leave Molly behind. She was my mom’s dog too and it was comforting knowing that I wasn’t leaving my single mother alone.  Continue reading

What a bore…

This is in response to the Daily Prompt : ( YAWN )

What bores you?

I am bored by a great many things. Sexism, racism, classism; I get bored by how similar they all are yet people can’t see the connections. Kind of like how all major religions tell a story that is one big plagiarism of another yet still pride themselves on being at the top of the pack. Stuff like that makes me snooze. Continue reading

Another one kicks the bucket…


Friendly Beaches, Tasmania

This is in response to the Daily Prompt: Kick It

What’s the 11th item on your bucket list?

My bucket list is constantly evolving and is not in any particular order:

  • build a tiny house and/or an eco home (straw bale, adobe, earthship, rammed earth, cob etc)
  • travel for extended months with only a medium sized backpack
  • Bike across the U.S. with the help of amtrak
  • Bike from Canada to Mexico
  • complete or do the fun parts of a thru hike (PCT, CDT, AT, Te Aroroa in NZ)
  • Hike Colorado Trail, Wonderland Trail, John Muir Trail, Tahoe Rim Trail, the Long Trail, 100 mile Wilderness, Arizona Trail, Pacific Northwest Trail, Timberline Trail, Vancouver Island, etc
  • write a book
  • get a small patch of land and grow a food forest jam packed with such things as Nut Trees, Fruit Trees, Herbs, Heirlooms, Grains, Nitrogen Fixers, Berries, Bees
  • Become such a minimalist that I’m not buying anything new for years at a time
  • Reduce my needs substantially so that the money I need is small and I can focus on doing things other than paid work such as, volunteer, hiking, biking, music, reading, writing, photography, building etc
  • Become certified in holistic nutrition
  • Adopt a dog or two
  • Become involved in the local politic scene to help enact positive change within my community including such things as, land conservation, recycling, health care, living wage, anti-gentrification policies, access to resources for the homeless, animal rights, making streets more bikeable, food forests instead of food deserts, sustainable public transport, anti gun laws, more inclusive elderly services and antiscam laws, etc

A good boss

This is in response to the Daily Prompt: Reason to Believe

In Reason to Believe, Bruce Springsteen sings, “At the end of every hard-earned day / people find some reason to believe.” What’s your reason to believe?

I grew up 300 miles north of where Bruce Springsteen grew up. He is one of the musicians I have a deep respect for because he never forgot his working class routes. He’s known to play for 3 hours or more every show and the band gives it all they’ve got. To me this is growing up in the Northeast, gritty perseverance meets calling it like it is.  Continue reading

Welcome to Fandom

uswntThis is in response to the Daily Prompt: Teen Age Idol

Who did you idolize as a teenager? Did you go crazy for the Beatles? Ga-ga over Duran Duran? In love with Justin Bieber? Did you think Elvis was the livin’ end?

It’s a few days after my 12th birthday and the year is 1999. I’m spending this day with my second family. I grew up with these kids as my surrogate siblings and my mom went to college with their mom. All pivotal moments in my life thus far have included The Goodman’s, so why would this be any different? Continue reading