Is Recession Around The Corner?

retail sales growth

This post originally started as an email that I sent out to my friends and family. I’ve been seeing some disturbing trends in the economic data recently (who hasn’t), but the desperation in the reporting that I’ve been reading makes me worry even more. I’d love it if you added your opinion in the comments at the bottom. Retail Sales – Something’s Not Right All week I’ve been reading good news about how retail sales went up 0.8% in July and they were expected to…

Cat Tails Plant: Plants You Can Eat in the Wild

plants that we eat

Cattails are one of the most important survival plants for foragers to know. They are widely covered in edible plants books, but there are rarely details on how to prepare the cat tails plant after harvesting it. This post shows you how we prepare cattail stalks for use in a stir fry or other dish. Cattail stalk can be harvested from early spring till mid or late summer. We rely on this common edible weed as a staple food when we are on both long…

San Juan Islands, 7 S. Dungeness Crab – Week 2

Week two of the 2012 Dungeness Crab season and we are talking about pots, traps and all the different crab fishing equipment there is available! Crab pots and crab traps: Sherrie & I took care of some yard work on Saturday morning and then decided to hop on the boat and take a short cruise. Now there is a surprise! We left at around 2:30 PM with fairly strong tides against us, so it took about 3 hours to reach our planned destination. Upon arriving,…

Freezing Spinach Leaves

freezing spinach leaves

My home is in Skagit county, which is known for how well spinach grows. In my own garden spinach does extremely well, and due to our temperate climate, I can easily grow two harvests per season. By freezing spinach leaves, I can preserve spinach from the garden for use throughout the year. This is a great way to incorporate fresh vegetables into your diet during winter time when fresh vegetables are expensive. Freezing Spinach From The Garden The first step to freezing spinach from the…

Northwest Coast Clothing

DIY camping gear

One of the hardest things about trying to enjoy any recreational activity around the Northwest Coast is the inconsistency of weather that we have. While rain is extremely common, so is wind, cold, heat, sun, snow, and fog. Sometimes many of these conditions occur at the same time. It’s not uncommon to be standing in warm sunshine in the middle of a downpour, or hiking in a clear, sunny, but totally freezing January day. Along the Northwest Coast, fog is a common companion throughout the…

Marine Water Heaters–Camping and Boat Showers

We talked about the luxury and decadence of hot water showers in our previous article, “Boating and Camping Showers.” This article goes a bit further, with specific application toward our configuration. While the specifics are, — well, rather specific, — the principles apply across most marine hot water systems. The essential elements are an engine with freshwater cooling capacities, a heat exchanger, and a hot water heater that can take advantage of the he heat exchanger. Marine Hot Water Heater Replacement 3 years ago, we…

Oyster Mushroom Stir Fry

oyster mushroom stir fry

Ken, Sherrie, and I have written a little bit about our adventures with cattails. Thanks to our foraging adventures, I’ve discovered the joy of stir frys and other healthy five ingredient recipes. Not only does a stir fry need few ingredients, it also allows you to control the quality and quantity of oil you consume as well as allowing you to consume a maximum of healthy vegetables, both foraged and domesticated. I intended to cook with just a cattail and create a healthy five ingredient…

Charging Deep Cycle Batteries on the Hook

charging deep cycle batteries

This article describes some of the initial changes I made to our boats electrical system. It also explains how I’m expanding the system for charging deep cycle batteries from a wind turbine and solar panels as part of my solar off grid living plans. My electrical system is constantly evolving on the Rock ‘n Row. When we first purchased her, the 12 volt system was powered by two 8-D starter batteries in the engine compartment. This is how the original electrical system was designed, and…

Elderberry Toxicity and Edibility

red elderberry berries

Hank Shaw published an article at Hunter Angler Gardener Cook on elderberry fritters. I created this post to share my own discoveries about the Red Elderberry and foster some further discussion in the comments below about the edible and toxic parts of this plant. I’ve been investigating the edibility of many local, wild plants. The red elderberry is one that has caught my eye recently. Looking in Plants of the Pacific Northwest Coast, it mentions that the “stems, bark, leaves and roots” are toxic, but…

Boat and Camping Showers: Equipment and Strategies

Boat showers, like camping showers, are simple luxuries that can change a remote vacation from roughing it, to a pleasurable escape that you, your friends, and your family will look forward to year after year. One of the most luxurious and to my mind, necessary adjuncts to boat cruising, is being able to take a shower after 2 or 3 days. I can manage a weekend, a week or even a month without a shower, washing and rinsing as necessary to keep comfortable and not…

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