Personal Process: 5000 posts — and counting, down? And collards. And rabbits!

It may be that I am done with exopermaculture. Or it may be that I’m just going to “take a break” — not sure how long . . . It may be that the problems I’m having with seemingly random glitches in formatting since two days ago have triggered this decision, or it may be that the number “5000” also fed into my process. In any case, I do need to shift gears.

Partly because, also, of course! it’s summer, the absolute height of summer, and in the garden, everything decided to come on at once. So there’s lots of “putting up” to do. I’m going to freeze and dehydrate. Rebecca will do the canning. Me? Collards first. Cut and dried for soups.

sink

Yesterday and the day before, I processed about 18 giant leaves each day, to create altogether maybe four densely stuffed jars. Dehydrator running day and night in the greenhouse.

collard jar

Now there’s only one collard plant left to process today (just the outer leaves, that way the inner leaves keep growing). Here it is, on top of the first hugelkultur bed. An errant doe hopped the fence and ate most of the chard from that bed. Grrrr.

collard hill

So we interwove some willow cuttings into the gate that we think she’s been hopping.

gate

Next up for me? Kale.

kale

And of course, when the tomatoes finally turn red, we’ve got to stop everything and can, freeze and dry them. Basil already done, first cuttings, as pesto, frozen in ice cubes. Rebecca and I both made batches in our kitchens. I used hemp seeds for protein, plus of course, garlic, oil, and a splash of vinegar.

Oh yes, one more thing about the garden. We’re going hugelkultur crazy! Rebecca is beginning to convert old beds into hugelkulture mounds by layering hills of wood chips with composted dirt on top. Then she makes a hole in the center, for compost (throw a little dirt on top each time you put kitchen waste to compost in the hole). So that these small hugelkultur mounds work like my son’s Garden Tower does, composting kitchen waste from the centers, using worms that are already in the garden.

Think about it. Each time we make a hugelkulture mound for growing in the garden, we just about double the amount of ground we plant . . . Whoopee!

You can see one of these mounds here.

new mound

So back to my main topic: this blog. I’ve gone through many phases in my life, most of them involving writing, publishing, broadcasting of some sort. My dissertation, for starters (1972: “This Is Not A Book About Wittgenstein,” though at the exam, in order to “pass,” they required me to change the name.) Then, 1972-73, lots of journal writing with students at New College of California (then only a year old, in 2010 defunct), and a little in-house, no-holds-bared rag there, that ultimately got me fired, called “The Nutria” (long story). 1978-80: A tabloid magazine in my home town of Twin Falls, Idaho, called “OpenSpace,” that called out all the closeted freaks in that then very Mormon/Catholic/Protestant town, and gave us an open space to write, draw, photograph, dream, always opening space, opening space. Indeed, please, that’s my epitaph, want it handpainted on a sign somewhere: “She worked to open space.”

In the 1980s, for a couple of years, first the Nuclear Freeze newsletter out of Casper, Wyoming, then Heartland, a peace activist rag for the tri-state area of Wyoming, Idaho and Montana. Starting in 1989, and going for 12 years, Crone Chronicles: A Journal of Conscious Aging. I view all my projects as experiments, and this was the longest, by far, gained a certain national attention, prizes from Utne Reader’s annual awards, etc.

So, you see, most of what I’ve published has been community-based, for which I mostly wrote editorials. Hardly any of it ever paid me. Though I did pull $1000/month from Crone Chronicles for about the last five years, when it finally got big enough to cover that.

At some point the interviews from Crone Chronicles were collected and published in a book, What Matters, that I did not publish myself, and I don’t like what the publisher did with it, so I don’t talk about it, except just this once!

I did publish the book, This Vast Being: A Voyage through Grief and Exaltation, so it has the look and feel that I wanted — in 2007.

Then, in 2011, I started exopermaculture.com. And have been spending about 3-5 hours daily (research and writing) on this once it revved up, ever since, with small breaks, like the one I’m going to be taking now. At least a small break, maybe more. Or maybe a complete revamp. We’ll see. If you wish, I would love to see your comments as to how this blog does or does not help/inform/excite/attract you. Or not! I think you probably know by now, that though I love the interplay with others, I don’t depend on any outside source for my spiritual and intellectual food. It all seems to flow through from the greater universe, and has, for aeons.

Meanwhile, I have three or four unpublished manuscripts that I want to get out again and look over for possible publication Especially one called “A Soul’s Journey,” about my first 30 years, an almost clinical description of the inner/outer evolution that I went through mentally, emotionally and spiritually. I’ve never seen anything like it, and I have a feeling a lot of people might benefit from reading it.

BTW: As of several days ago, I have now registered the domain name, “extinctionprotocols.com.” This may be a next step. It may be necessary. If so, it’s because if we are heading in that direction, then we need to find a way to do it consciously, with sacred intent. Besides, if we do that, it just might shift us into the kind of transformation that would bypass extinction in favor of, as they call it, “Ascension,” at least into our own better selves! Hard to believe, here on Earth, right now, as we head into August 2014, and the 100th anniversary of World War I, with all the currents of fear and hate and violence swirling around that this would be possible. But miracles abound. And we’re all about miracles, when you get right down to it, eh?

Tell me, is there some archetypal story involving the death of three rabbits? Because that’s what happened here, over the past few days. First, one of Rebecca’s hardworking Jack Russell terriers killed a rabbit in the garden. So Rebecca skinned and dressed it out, and last night we ate it grilled, for dinner on the back patio with our intern Jeffrey, and one of my new housemates, Katarina, and our dear young friend who helps both of us, Michaele.

Then yesterday, Alyce, our old old (12 years, I think) white rescue rabbit, and fertile source of rabbit poop for the garden, finally gave up the ghost. Very gently. In Rebecca’s living room, where she had brought him to protect from flies that were starting to land on his eyes and he didn’t have the energy to shake his head anymore. So we buried him next to my wonderful dog Emma (lots of posts on my process, following her untimely death), in our newly designated “pet cemetery.”

Then, I was out in the garden yesterday, and came upon a third rabbit —

rabbit— killed by Rebecca’s dogs, presumably. Told her about it. She was going to dress it for our dinner, but the dogs got to it first, split it in half, so each got his/her share.

We’re beginning to eat wild protein in the hood! Next up, deer?

So, what is that archetypal story?

With that much death, used also for nourishment, can rebirth be far behind?

Here’s one site from which a three-dead-rabbits story might, possibly, be gleaned:

Crone Magic.com: The Symbolism of Rabbits and Hares

 

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0 Responses to Personal Process: 5000 posts — and counting, down? And collards. And rabbits!

  1. Cindy W. says:

    Ann! Three hares! (okay, hare is not a rabbit, but still) Symbol in British/Dartmoor mythology
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_hares – Dartmoor tin mining – hat tip to Rima Staines, Dartmoor artist

  2. Tears forming in my eyes. I respect and honor your decisions of doing what is right for you at any given time. However, I cannot express adequately how much I appreciate your variety of posts.. I admire you, and I don’t want to lose you. I want to continue to be on your mailing lists–now and in the future. Showers of blessings upon you! ♥

    • Thank you so much! Seriously, a few hours after posting that, I sense now that I doubt I’ll quit this site, though I may not post so often. the key for me is, always, to follow where my guides are asking me to go. And sometimes I have to be sharply reminded? That’s what I think these formatting “glitches” are ultimately, all about. Something needs to change so that this doesn’t take so much of my life. Again, thank you! Now it’s off to a walk in InDiana woods with Rebecca and the dogs. . .

  3. lynn says:

    Ann, dear, (If I may I say that? That’s how I think of you…) you must take good care of yourself, rest, immerse yourself in the harvest, and follow your own inner guidance about your blog.

    That said, I would terribly miss reading your thoughts and carefully selected readings. It brings much needed wisdom to my experience. Thank you for all you do.

  4. laurabruno says:

    So synchronous, Ann! I have been feeling a shift coming on for myself — really not sure what that will be, but yesterday, I hit my head again. Hard! Whenever I hit my head, something hugely dramatic happens, a new direction in life, whether move or complete overall like with my 1998 TBI. No apparent concussion yesterday, just lots and lots of blood. The scar is perfectly hidden from the world, but will be obvious to me.

    And then today: a dead rabbit. I buried the little one under wood mulch with a Tibetan quartz crystal on top. I’m not sure what it means, but I offered this young one who had been hanging around under my cantaloupe leaves the past week, the opportunity to become a garden guardian from the other side. I’ve not seen my faery landscaper in awhile either. She used to appear as a full grown rabbit who would chase the squirrels away from vulnerable plants. Tania Marie had some very potent dreams recently connecting with her magical rabbit friend, Nestor, who passed in 2008.

    I love the idea of you doing something with the Extinction Protocols. Such a great concept, and I agree, as with individuals facing a terminal diagnosis, sometimes the mere act of engaging the diagnosis completely heals the person. Why not entire species and planets?! Your other works sound engaging and important. I would miss exopermaculture.com, but I know we are not in any danger of total silence from Ann Kreilkamp! Something else will burst forth, and it will be exactly what’s needed at the time and (open) space.

    Enjoy those dehydrated collard greens. I did that last year, and we had garden greens all winter and early spring, even when it was too cold to go out to the cold frame. So tasty in soups! For kale, you might want to try this recipe: http://laurabruno.wordpress.com/2012/06/24/pizza-kale-chips/

    My personal favorite!

    Hugs and gratitude,
    Laura

    • Wow. Your head. Dead rabbit. Rabbit dreams. Much is in motion, eh? Maybe you and I to do extinctionprotocols together?
      You and I leave for Chicago, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and parts unknown in about one month . . .

      • laurabruno says:

        Yes, looking forward to it! Ended up buying camping supplies yesterday instead of borrowing them. Just seemed like a good thing to have on hand, as well as a reclamation of that part of my life that got left behind with the 1998 brain injury. 🙂 Let’s discuss on our trip! We will have ample time to strategize….

  5. Hello Ann.

    After reading the above post this morning, I was compelled to let you my experiences in reading your blog and the effect it has had on my life. I read this last line and it sounds a bit dramatic and yet, reading your blog has been very inspiring. Your blog was recommended to me in 2012 by a dear friend of mine, James McManus. At the time, I was having a hard time connecting with women. I was also and still am working through mother issues. He felt you and I had a lot in common. I took to your blog right away and have been following ever since.

    A bit about myself. I have a degree in Horticulture with a Landscape Architecture emphasis from Washington State University. I have always loved to garden and be in nature. I designed and planted my very first garden when I was 10. Since getting my degree, I have worked in Costco Corporate as a graphic designer (art being my second love), only to find out that I hate corporate culture and it was stifling me. We couldn’t even open the windows to get fresh air. That was my first desk job and my last. I followed that up with owning my own landscape design business, then I worked as a personal gardener for a very wealthy and hard to please man, that job lasted all of 2 weeks. I also worked at a bonsai nursery for a few years. I had a lot of spiritual growth in that job. I believe there was a sort of vortex for higher spiritual attraction and experiences at this bonsai nursery. The owner was very not into any of it but was ok with it happening all around him. It was a very interesting place. In 2010, we, my husband Michael and I and our two children, moved into an intentional co-housing community called Songaia (http://www.songaia.com/the-garden-blog). They had just hired a garden manager and were just starting to dive into permaculture. This was my first intro to permaculture. The summer of 2010 we went out to Orcas Is. to visit the Bullock Brothers and tour their permaculture homestead. That was it. I was so hooked. This is what I have been looking for. Immediately after returning from the Bullocks, I started designing a key hole design for one of the 4 quadrants of the community garden. It was a quadrant that had the rockiest soil and got the most heat and it was the least utilized. In Oct 2010, for the 350.org, we implemented the key hole design and added hugelkulture to the half that slanted down into the meadow. It was a success and still is. It looked like a piece of art and it attracted people down into the garden. Later that year we installed a food forest in between the parking and the garden. In 2012, I got the community to donate 20 fruit trees to start a new 250 foot long food forest that runs along the edge of the meadow. Since 2012, we have had WWOOF interns. This year I have been their guide in the food forest. Also, starting in Sept of 2013, I became the garden manager, specializing in no-till permaculture, at the Montessori School my two children attend. It has been wonderful to see the excitement and interest of the students. The majority of them being between the ages of 3 and 6. At recess time, I always get a run on kale, sorrel, and lambsquarter. Just recently we have had giant favas and sugar snaps and nasturtium flowers for the children to try and love.

    Perhaps knowing that about me you can see why I am drawn to your blog. Reading about all the permaculture projects and experiences on your blog has been inspiring. I love hearing what is going on in the GANG garden and your thoughts and ideas around permacutlure. I am always reminding my husband that permaculture is more than gardening and your blog definitely encompasses that.

    There is one blog you posted late last year or early this year about the Ringing Cedars of Russia. After reading that series, I was filled with joy and sadness at the same time. It was complete nostalgia for me. I experienced such a renewed sense of purpose and a deep yearning for home. This is the only way I can explain it right now. It was a wonderful awakening for me to have read these books and I thank you for blogging about them.

    I live in the greater Seattle area. If you ever return to the Seattle area, I would love to show you what we are doing here in our 10.5 acre suburban oasis. The greatest upliftment for me during these turbulent, sometimes visually unchanging times, is to see others engaging in permaculture principles, and interacting with the 20 something year old WWOOF interns. When I experience this, I know nothing is really lost and that we have entered a golden age. It has started from a seed and now we are at the roots of it and it seems as if it just might be breaking through the hard asphalt right now.

    In Common Unity,

    Katie

  6. Sandra Zarins says:

    Ann, “Extinction Protocols” sounds right-on. And given the level of excellence you have given to Exopermaculture it will be tremendously helpful. We have nothing to go on except what is in collective memory and I dont know how to tap that deep into it. But I also don’t want to give up Exo…there is nothing like it and I for one really depend on it to galvanize a wide range of excellence that I would find impossible to accomplish on my own. Is it possible to do both? AND dust off your manuscripts? Transfer some attention away from other things…SOME, not all?

    Sent from my Galaxy S®III

    • We’ll see. It’s all a big order, and perhaps some of it needs to be in cooperation with others. Certainly, Extinction Protocols needs to be a site for many people to tell their stories — about what’s going on inside them, memories, dreams, imagination, how they’re preparing their children, stories from their children, what the elders say, and so on.

  7. bumpercrop says:

    “As of several days ago, I have now registered the domain name, “extinctionprotocols.com.”
    Anne, you have the intelligence and the gift for tapping into the unspoken zeitgeist.
    For a few years I have come to the awareness, that we are committing collective species suicide.
    I don’t see this silent awareness being addressed anywhere. The field of psychology is certainly not addressing this shadow.
    For those aware and intuitive to the unspoken and unheard, there is a definite need for grief support. Despite all of our best efforts, it appears as if collective humanity prefers species extinction other than a shift in consciousness and thus,behavior.
    But I would be so bold as to say, that their is a large and exponentially growing number of humans who are recognizing our position on the precipice and are realizing that a shift must occur, for our species survival. But sudden positive changes do occur, and so I believe in miracles too.
    Here is some scientific proof of miracles:
    (BTW-my favorite myth archetype is Sophia and her counterpart- Christos, a Gnostic story found at Nag Hammadi in 1947, Check out metahistory.org,for more information.
    Scientists at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have found that when just 10 percent of the population holds an unshakable belief, their belief will always be adopted by the majority of the society. The scientists, who are members of the Social Cognitive Networks Academic Research Center (SCNARC) at Rensselaer, used computational and analytical methods to discover the tipping point where a minority belief becomes the majority opinion. The finding has implications for the study and influence of societal interactions ranging from the spread of innovations to the movement of political ideals.

    “When the number of committed opinion holders is below 10 percent, there is no visible progress in the spread of ideas. It would literally take the amount of time comparable to the age of the universe for this size group to reach the majority,” said SCNARC Director Boleslaw Szymanski, the Claire and Roland Schmitt Distinguished Professor at Rensselaer. “Once that number grows above 10 percent, the idea spreads like flame.”

    – See more at: http://news.rpi.edu/luwakkey/2902#sthash.jeUNOVQ5.dpuf
    as always, thanks for your endeavors to enlighten, through honest, intelligent, and inspirational,
    original thought, without being pollyannaish

  8. Am still very much enjoying your blog from over here in Japan. Do selfishly hope that you keep it going, as your particular blend of spiritual and political perspectives is something I have yet to encounter elsewhere. I am sure that the extinctionprotocols concept would be equally illuminating as that of exopermaculture, but of course you have got to follow your own heart and journey. Much gratitude to you in any case!

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