Cathy McGuire's blog

Drying Food

  • Posted on: 5 July 2017
  • By: Cathy McGuire

drying fruit

The ancient skill of drying your food for storage is constantly being re-discovered and modified, and these days, there is a wealth of knowledge on the web (grab it while you can!) and locally (in many areas).

Closing the Circle - Lazy Gardener

  • Posted on: 30 June 2017
  • By: Cathy McGuire

Okay - this post will probably clinch my title as "lazy gardener" or at least "whimsical gardener". It's spring, and in the Pacific NW that means trying to catch up with weeds that have had all winter to grow. It's not good to disturb soil when it's too wet (which is most of the time here) because it really turns to rock-hard clay if you do. I've learned the hard way how true that is, so I've watched as the invasive grass latched onto my garden beds.

Lazy Gardener in June

  • Posted on: 30 June 2017
  • By: Cathy McGuire

I'm half ashamed to show this photo, but it does illustrate the dilemma of being stuck between two worlds. I am aware that most gardens are straight lines with bare dirt between the coddled and sprayed plants. I am also teaching myself some permaculture ideas, including the fact that bare dirt is not good, and that weeds can sometimes help rather than hurt.

The (Busy) Lazy Gardener

  • Posted on: 15 June 2017
  • By: Cathy McGuire

garden 6-15

Wow I can't believe we're already past Solstice and I haven't had a chance to post. Sorry... it's been a crazy Spring and Summer so far, and lots of "do this immediately" type stuff. But finally, after 9pm on a hot June night, I'm gonna try to summarize.


  • Posted on: 5 June 2017
  • By: Cathy McGuire

So I have been raising chickens for five years, and although I still have much to learn, I want to share some of what I’ve learned.

Where Progress Meets Sustainability?

  • Posted on: 30 May 2017
  • By: Cathy McGuire

I’ve been bouncing around various websites recently: OpenSourceEcology.Org, Sun4Living.Com,,, and looking at the ways that entrepreneurs are working to build tools and processes that they believe will be sustainable or at least a bridge into the post-oil future. And all of them seem to be a mix of the belief in Progress and the desire for Sustainability.

Emotional Prepping

  • Posted on: 5 April 2017
  • By: Cathy McGuire

Like some people, I don't go to movies anymore. Their sentimental "happy ever after" message no longer rings even slightly true to me, given what I see in the world. But I guess I still have the same youthful weakness for that plucky hero who overcomes odds.

Beginning Beekeeping

  • Posted on: 25 March 2017
  • By: Cathy McGuire


Once again, I speak as a beginner rather than an expert, but as I attempt to turn my garden into a full circle of grow-harvest-recycle, I have decided to introduce honey bees into my yard. I’m extremely excited about this, and I am very grateful that there are so many people sharing their expertise on YouTube and in local organizations, so that people like me can help preserve honeybees, which are in sharp decline.