Sunday, January 18, 2009

Wish List

I couldn't force myself to be productive, per se, after we got back from our errands today, so I started in on performing MY bit of expertise. M's decided that planning the garden is his thing, so he's learning about what to plant where, how to plant certain plants next to each other, how to prevent pests, etc. So what was my expertise to be? Planning time, of course. With the planner I purchased two weeks ago specially for the occasion, I lay on the floor and grabbed one of our books from Christmas.

Three hours later, not a thing was pencilled in to our planner, and I had read only one chapter of that book, but I've added to our shopping list, added to the list of things we need for our emergency kit, and created a wish list. We decided last spring that our anniversary, because of its timing, is a perfect way to help the earth by planting something. No fancy dinners, no flowers, no cards...just me, M, a trowel or shovel, a bucket of water, and some gardening gloves.

And with all of this focus on building a home that can sustain us, we've decided that we really would prefer that people get us useful things. Not that we don't want fun things, but we're finding more and more that the useful things ARE the fun things. So we've created a little wish list, sort of like a bridal or baby registry. But this is our life registry. The perfect gifts for any occasion, in no particular order:


How to Live on Almost Nothing and Have Plenty by Janet Chadwick

Managing Your Personal Food Supply: How to Eat Better for Less by Taking an Active Role in Producing, Processing, and Preparing Your Food, edited by Ray Wolf

Practical Skills: A Revival of Forgotten Crafts, Techniques, and Traditions by Gene Logsdon

The Self-Sufficient Gardener: A Complete Guide to Growing and Preserving All Your Own Food by John Seymour

Storey’s Basic Country Skills: A Practical Guide to Self-Reliance edited by Deborah Burns

When Technology Fails: A Manual of Self-Reliance & Planetary Survival by Mathew Stein

Primitive Wilderness Living & Survival Skills, by John and Geri McPherson

Diaper Changes: The Complete Diapering Book and Resource Guide by Theresa Rodriguez Farrisi

Heart & Hands: A Midwife’s Guide to Pregnancy and Birth by Elizabeth Davis

Emergency Childbirth Handbook by Barbara Anderson and Pamela Shapiro

Childbirth Without Fear

Spiritual Midwifery by Ina May Gaskin

Small-Scale Food Processing by Emma Judge and others

How to Make $100,000 from a 25-Acre Farm by Dr. Booker T. Whatley

The Legal Guide for Direct Farm Marketing by Neil Hamilton

How to Direct Market Farm Products on the Internet

Where There Is No Doctor: A Village Health Care Handbook by David Werner, Carol Thurman, and Jane Maxwell

Medicine for Mountaineering & Other Wilderness Activities by James A. Wilderson, M.D., editor

Ditch Medicine: Advanced Field Procedures for Emergencies by Hugh L. Coffee

Deck of Edible Plants

Deck of Poisonous Plants


Battery- or crank-powered weather radio


Emergency First-Aid Kit

Knots “cheat sheet”—an 8 ½ x 11 laminated card with instructions for several key knots on each side

Old clothes or blankets that can be recycled into quilts or patches

“Umbrella” style clothes dryer or posts for clothesline

Canning supplies—especially jars (new or used) and lids, pots, cooking racks, cooling racks

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