Kite Hill

"We shall never achieve harmony with land, any more than we shall achieve absolute justice or liberty for people. In these higher aspirations the important thing is not to achieve, but to strive." -- Aldo Leopold

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Soil and Health Library

Friends and neighbors, today I want to tell you about a remarkable find I made the last time I visited Tasmania (in the virtual reality of my dreams and the internet.) I discovered a remarkable site hosted by Steve Solomon. Mr. Soloman is formaly from Oregon where he ran a very successful seed company for many years. In addition Mr. Solomon wrote a book on gardening during draught conditions that is the final word on the subject.

Instead of me stumbling through this, I am just going to quote from Mr. Solomon. I hope he doesn't mind.

"Health begins in the soil; Healing begins with hygiene; Liberty begins with freedom.

This website provides free e-books about holistic agriculture, holistic health and self-sufficient homestead living. There are secondary collections about social criticism and transformational psychology. Upon special request the Soil and Health Library provides custom-made digital copies of a wider range of books in the same subject areas for its patrons, delivered on CD-ROM by post.

When all the library's subject areas are comprehended as an inter-related whole its books constitute a self-guided course of study or a self-teaching curriculum that connects agricultural methods to the health of animals and humans, shows how to prevent and heal disease and increase longevity, suggests how to live a more fulfilling life and reveals social forces working against that possibility."

I don't know what more I could possibly add to that except the URL is There is a one-time life-time membership donation of ten pounds (about $13.50) requested.

Me and Bear

Bear is the one with the pointy ears - the long black pointy ears.

I'm the one with the hat. Lou took the picture. Thanks Lou. :-)

Monday, August 21, 2006

Well, It's About Time ...

Finally, I can get back into edit mode on the Kite Hill blog. Something went ka-blooey (or maybe it was "sproonnnggging".) It any case, I haven't been able to make any enteries here for quiet a while.

There is a lot to write about. Retirement is coming up September 15. I found that termites had eaten away most of the foundation of my front porch - had to rip it out and am now replacing it. But the best news is that I have a new dog, or maybe he has me. In any case, his name is Bear. He is twelve weeks old. He is a solid black german shepherd. Pictures soon.

Monday, August 07, 2006

When the Student is Ready ...

... the teacher will appear.

Busting out the yucking concrete front steps with an eight pound sledge hammer. It is hot and I'm looking for an excuse to take a break.

The concrete has rocks in it as big as my head - really. For those who are new to the art of pouring concrete, the aggregate in concrete is usually small. Walnut size gravel would be about max. I'm thinking the person who poured this must have been pretty simple.

Out by the road, I see the excuse I've been looking for. My neighbor from about a quarter of a mile down the road walks by headed for his house. I go out to say hello.

"It's gonna be a hot one," he says.

"Yeap," I agree. Sweat is running off my body in rivlets.

"Gonna replace those old steps?" he asks.

"Yes," I say. "Those are just too dangerous. Whoever poured them sure didn't know much about concrete." I say (- as if I do.) "Those steps have rocks in them as big as my head."

"Well," the old guy said, "that may be, but they did know how to make use of what they had."

We had a few more pleasant exchanges and then he went on down the road and I went back to busting concrete.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Song of the South

Mowing the pasture and I'm surrounded by at least a hundred golden brown dragonflys. There are also a couple of black butterflys and a yellow one that seem to be following me around. A blue bird hops down the wire of the near by fence where he is occassionally joined by a robin and a cardinal.

I'm thinking "Song of the South." I look down at my knee and there perched quietly in the uproar and rattle of the mower are two tiny pastel pink butterflies. Yeap. This is enchantment.

For those of you who don't know, "Song of the South" is a Disney movie. It was made back in the late fifties or early sixties I think. It was a whimsical little movie about Uncle Remus and Brer Rabbit. It can't be bought in the U.S. any more although it is available in Europe and other markets.

Why? Weeelllll now, I'm glad you asked ... . It seems it profiles slaves as too happy, too well treated and too devoted to their "mastas." I'm not really sure who objected to this portrayal. All I know is it didn't stick to the "party line" so now it is commercially unavailable in the land of "free speech" and "free enterprise."

You get to thinking about funny things when you are mowing the field and it is over a hundred degrees. "Zippa Dee Do Da. Zippa Dee Yah. My, oh my what a wonderful day ... "

Speaking of profiles, has anyone ever seen "Deliverence"? Now there is some profiling. This time of hillbillies but hillbillies are white so profiling them is alright. I can still never even think of Warren Beatty without hearing him squeal like a pig.

Last time I was in Wal-Mart, "Deliverence" was for sale in that bastion of family virtue for five bucks.

Excuse me. Think I'm going to go play a few bars of "Dueling Banjos." Let's all join in now.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Summer Time ...

"Summer is the time when one sheds one's tensions with one's clothes, and the right kind of day is jeweled balm for the battered spirit. A few of those days and you can become drunk with the belief that all's right with the world." - Ada Louise Huxta

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Postcard Farming (and Hannah's Birthday)

Hey, I think I just invented a new term. I was emailing a friend of mine and trying to explain what it is I am trying to do at Kite Hill. Finally, I stumbled on it. I said:

My goal is to build a "postcard" farm. I went on to explain that a Postcard Farm is a small producing and diversified farm that is picturesque in every detail. A farm that is reminiscent of family farms of the past but not necessarily intended to provide all income or sustenance for the family.

Is this different from "hobby farming?" I think it is. Hobby farming seems to imply a faze that one is going through; something amusing someone is doing to pass the time. I think a Postcard Farm is more indicitive of a total change of life style and attitute towards the world.

This is something that requires more "research." Can I get a government grant for this kind of thing? --Just kidding.

And today is Hannah's Birthday. She is Sweet Pea Three! Happy Birthday to Hannah. Happy Birthday to Hannah! Haaaapppppyyy Birthday, Haapppyyy Birthday, I love you sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo......................!

Monday, July 03, 2006

Treasures of Kite Hill

What can I say. Wish everyone could have been there. I need another hammock nap.