Beauty Abounds

[JAN2022] There is much to learn from my dog Luna. We spend a lot of time together. Observing her on our walks, both on the property here and along our fave trails up in the Bruce Peninsula, is a constant reminder to always be curious, to live in the present, to be joyful, and to…

You don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone

[DEC2021] As we close in on the shortest day of the year, the sun and the renewable energy it provides has been on my mind more than usual. Not that it’s ever too far from my awareness seeing as this place is not connected to the power grid and runs 99%+ on solar energy. This…

In praise of volunteers

[SEP2021] There’s a usage of the word “volunteer” I first heard after moving from the ‘burbs to this rural area. When errant seeds from the previous year’s corn sprout and grow in the middle of this year’s soy bean fields, farmers call them volunteers. Likewise, the potatoes that I miss when digging them out to…

Solar-powered Bread???

[JUN2021] For safety, I let guests know if I am going to be doing tree felling and chainsaw work in the forest. It seems folks are too polite to say anything but sometimes I can see on their face an expression that shows a degree of displeasure about a noisy chainsaw piercing through the peace…

This year’s Big Improvement

[MAY2021] Probably the most common question/request I get from camping guests is whether there is a grill for the campfire. While guests are responsible for bringing all their own camping gear, I have wanted to still provide something but all I’ve had to offer thus far was a grill from an old BBQ which could…

Early Spring

[APR2021] The first prognostication of an early spring this year was from Wiarton Willie on Groundhog Day. Well, let me clarify that. This year, in a bizarre twist, nobody saw Willie… not just because the annual festival was virtual like everything else, but because instead of a groundhog we saw the mayor of South Bruce…

Cavities Can be a Good Thing

[MAR2021] A longtime friend was visiting this past weekend and caught some great photos during their stay, including this one of a woodpecker peeking out of a hole in an old Elm tree. Cavities can indeed be a good thing… when they’re in a tree anyhow. It’s all part of the amazing natural order of…

Go Nordic!

[FEB2021] I’ve been reading the book “NØRTH: How to live Scandinavian”. It’s a light-hearted, though accurate, look at how things are different in that cluster of countries across the Atlantic that share similar latitudes to us here in Canada. And often different for the better it seems, seeing as they usually seem to top rankings…

Snowshoe Season

[JAN2021] It’s an annual tradition… my “highly subjective declaration of official snowshoe season”… and thanks to a good dump of snow Friday into Saturday it’s now at that point when snowshoes are more-or-less required to get around the property easily. Though the depth varies a lot. In the open it’s 12-18″ in places where there…

What a difference a day makes!

[DEC2020] We had our first “official” (as defined by Environment Canada) Winter Storm last week. Not that a big dump of snow is anything out of the ordinary up here… we’re in the snow belt of both Lake Huron and Georgian Bay, depending which direction the wind is moving. So I thought I would try…

Thanks, Sun!

[NOV2020] Given that I am living off-grid and solar-powered here in Canada at a latitude half-way to the North Pole, it’s a different life compared to off-gridders in Arizona or New Mexico, especially this time of year when the days are short, the sun is low, and (living between two large bodies of water) there’s…

Trail to the Rising Sun

[OCT2020] Living surrounded by woodlands is lovely. But you don’t get much in the way of sunrise or sunsets. Several years ago, I added a short trail to a semi-open view of the western sky that offers great sunset views particularly during the weeks preceding and following the Equinoxes. With a little help from a…

Bleeding Tooth in the Forest

[AUG2020] There are a great variety of fungi on the property, especially in spring and autumn. Some are beautiful, some are “ugly”, some are massive (see blog post Aliens Emerging), and all are intricate. And some are downright scary! In early August I came across these along a path through the spruce tunnel in the…

Shower with a view, or not

[JUN2020] Restrictions on short-term rentals (e.g., Airbnb) relaxed a couple weeks ago. I try to approach hosting professionally so, proactively, developed a COVID-19 risk mitigation strategy. Potential guests can be clear on what is being done and make their own assessment as to whether that is sufficient. In addition to a minimum 3 day (72+…