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jen_stotland
If you haven't seen my professional blog yet, please take a look at http.barefootpermaculture.dreamwidth.org
for my adventures in permaculture design and urban homesteading. This week, I tackle home mushroom-growing.

http://barefootpermaculture.dreamwidth.org/6319.html
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possible, additional security breach at LJ
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jen_stotland
http://boundbooks.dreamwidth.org/100381.html

THought I'd inform those I like

When the days lengthen the cold strengthen
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jen_stotland
Happy solstice everybody!

shout out to mystical types
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jen_stotland
I am putting out a call for your well wishes and whatever strength and healing you want to pass along, if you are so inclined. Even if I am not going to tell you what is wrong. It's going to be a rough month.
Much appreciated.

interesting events a few days ago
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jen_stotland
So work has slowed down and I am attempting to make money with a sprout selling business, in collaboration with a fellow I met during my weed walk workshop. We'll see how that goes. At least i have time for my other projects. Today I took part in a root cellar tour put on by the Ecology Action Centre and got to see three very different systems of storing food. i plan to put one in my basement. We rent the house so it will be removable- wall panels that may just be bolted with screws to the joists and each other. I will put the glass back in the window when we leave.

Last Thursday I hooked up with <a href="http://wayofthepreserver.com/wiki/index.php/Main_Page">Way of the Preserver</a> who have a truck but cannot drive it, and away we went to the scrap yard to get timbers and supplies for the root cellar and their greenhouse. I learned quickly enough how to drive standard and am feeling impressed with myself. The WOTP kids are quite crazy, above average intelligence and they know it, the kind to put Ubuntu on their phones. They are old enough to live on their own but not enough to do the dishes or cook proper mealsl. we almost got kicked out of Value Village when they started juggling basketballs. On our way out they bitterly critiqued our culture's oppressive standards of maturity.

We arrived a bit late at the scrapyard and the kids got locked out while I was dropping the first load at their house. Not all of it was there and the workers at the yard had tried to change prices on items several times so we were suspicious that the omission was intentional. we decided to come back the next morning with reinforcements and, well, enforce the matter.

The next morning I was touched that two other members of the secular order were there to assist me, expecially considering that as a person of faith I am not a true member but a welcome ally. Their leader took his responsibility seriously to care for and defend his flock. In a country without a king I can see the value in having such a figure, who takes those responsiblities seriously. We got the shortfall fibreglass indeed and picked up some 2x4's. "TT" is a slight young man with no respect for authority and a desire to climb everything. When I arrived that morning he was wearing bunny ears and had been chatting online all night. When we got back he had passed out on the couch like an emaciated, shaggy atheist puppy. I can't help but scratch his ears when I'm around him.

So all's well that ends well, I enjoy hanging out with the apocalyptic crew while the Transition members are still digging their way out from underneath piles of work deadlines.

another obituary
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jen_stotland
My paternal grandfather passed away this morning in the wee hours. He was 93 and had been sick for a long time, and delerious.

It's hard to find anything to say about him. We were never very close, but then he seemed to dislike everyone. I always found it hard when people would condemn my father for being irrational and spiteful but couldn't see the obvious source of my father's pain. I suppose I can find it in myself to wonder what happened to Joseph. What happened to begin this chain of abuse, was it always family or was it political at one point, the stigma of antisemitism in Poland or elsewhere just too strong to be borne? He got the fuck ot of Poland before the second world war, that much can be said. The rest of this branch of the family would not have survived otherwise.

He came to Montreal before the age of ten. He became a travelling cloth salesmen, like many people in Montreal, and a dentist. During WW2 he put bomber pilots' jaws back together. He was an avid golfer. Something of his rage must have given him extra strength. I'm told he was charismatic.

Aaron and I are going to attempt to fly to Montreal tomorrow. I hate being the cause of such emissions. Duties to the Earth and to kinship in conflict here.

Lots of unfinished business in this one. 

Jen makes Acorn Bread
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jen_stotland
I'm leading a workshop on edible wild plants tomorrow evening and I decided to take the opportunity to make some wild food. Besides the usual salad and stir-fried greens (pigweed and nettles in soy sauce) I decided to try to serve acorns in a wild fruit turnover with acorn flour. I boiled and mashed elderberries, rosehips and hawthorn berries, then froze them. Slightly sweet. Good enough.

I found some acorns from White Oak, the less bitter kind though unfortunately not native to here. These I shelled; a third or so had larvae taking advantage of this available food source and these acorns I discarded (threw them in the freezer to kill the grubs then in my compost). My fingers grew greasy like I was eating potato chips as I did the shelling, an indicator of this rich source of fat. The shelled acorns soaked in my rain barrel for a week. After this time they were still eye-wateringly bitter but I was able to force myself to swallow the bite (no such luck with acorns straight from the tree). I have read that it is better to soak after pounding them into flour, but that one can boil the flour in several changes of water. I ground the acorns with a food processor. It was necessary to add some water for them to grind smoothly. THe result looked like porridge, and the water  obviously had soaked some of the virtue of the food. The paste grew darker as it stood in the air, an indicator of starch.

When I put the paste on the stove the gruel on the bottom burnt and stuck almost immediately. Stirring it constantly meant it was never going to boil so after a while I just put it through a rice-strainer. the liquid I was to discard had the colour and texture of peanut butter, and the odor of roasted tree nuts. There is some sort of polysaccaride or protein chain present because the mass was glutinous. A shame to waste but still too bitter to eat. It is off to fortify my compost! Finally I ran the contents of the strainer, now resembling flour somewhat, under cold water in the sink. Finally, bland enough to eat! Just a slight bitter aftertaste but quite palatable. A labourious process. I can see now why ancient peoples just let their pigs out in the woods to eat the acorns, then ate the pigs!

I do Nocturne after all
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jen_stotland
I was still feeling bitter about not getting accepted for the third year in a row, and not so keen on attending, but I got invited by a couple friends. Aaron's away at a boardgaming tournament all weekend and so I spent some time this rainy afternoon studying more Irish at a cafe, then headed down over.

Some highlights:
Ste Mary's University was exhibiting some guy whos name I forget who is gay and native. The show lacerated the 'noble savage' stereotype by exhibiting huge paintings of montains and landscapes in the romantic tradition with friezes of cowboys and feiminized natives engaged in suggestive frolicking. In the centre of the room were two "tipi" structures. One was made of crystals on threads in a cone shape trailing from a single point in the ceiling to the ground. In the centre of this was a chandelier and a film being projected onto a fake buffalo hide of the artist as a self-parodising gay indian in stilletto heels and pink feathers. The second tipi was made of tapestry brocade fabric edged in red crystals. Inside this was a sepia-toned silent film in which a White filmmaker character is filming two Cree men, and a complex love triangle ensues. The feminization of the conquered people by the colonist is detourned and exposed by being made completely ridiculous, while the artist proclaims his double-minority status with humour yet pride.

I hung out downtown for a while, as I was going to meet a friend at 8pm at the beginning of the route for the "Miscellaneous Marching Band". I ended up being later than that for stopping to look at other exhibits but the band came to me, and I walked around with them and played my shaker-egg, which has gotten a fair bit of mileage at jamming situations. There were some drums, a horn section, and lots of people with kazoos, tamborines, lantern-floats, flags, signs, costumes, facepaint and singing voices. Reactions varied, most people smiled, children loved it. Some people shouted enthusiastically, a lot took pictures, and some scowled or looked confused or bored. A woman and two men in a hotel room window exposed themselves to us.

When that ended I got my face painted and met up with another friend, and we watched the Smokin' Contra Band as they played on the Dartmoth ferry. I also got to see a piece in which robotic devices floated in a public fountain, their light and movement governed somehow by data transmitted from buoys that measured wind speed and direction.
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Hung out at Shambhala, just like everyone else in Halifax
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jen_stotland
So I attended open house meditation night at Shambhala tonight. I would like to make it to this event every second Wednesday (yeah, I know), when Transition meetings aren't happening. I think this is a good schedule for me to start off with because even though I did do quite a bit of meditation under Matt, I just haven't for the past few years and having someone else offering guidance makes the difference between me doing it and not.

There are many reasons for my doing this, besides payment for a communication from Odin (though that is a major motivator). My progress in practickal magick is being slowed for lack of mental discipline, as well as are other areas of my life. Id like to gain control over some impulses, and last time I did this it had good results for creativity (I think in the realm of "overcoming fear"). I also had some strange results last time, from improved balance, to resurgence of Old Pain, to hearing the music of the spheres! However that was also smack in the middle of my calling experience and things were already pretty weird.

I'm pretty relaxed and euphoric. I gather euphoria isnot what I'm going for but, meh. It is just super good for me to sit down and shut up once in a while, and have some context for realising that most of what I worry about, constantly, is just not worth any stressing.

new ways of living and a mind-expanding week
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jen_stotland
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