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Our Third Week on the Farm: Stalled & Wet

I startled Jill from sleep last night when my ice-cold elbow touched her back as I came to bed. Ice cold because I have to soak my elbows in ice water several times a day to keep the inflammation down: chronic tendonitis from too much...

Our Second Week on the Farm: Digging Out

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="400"] Everything we own in one place[/caption] It's been a tough second week, I will not lie. Jill and I have been weeding, digging, raking, mowing and mowing. It's one thing to let a farm go "natural"; it's a very different thing to...

Our First Week on the Farm

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Good Contrivance Farm, circa 1960[/caption] If a fortuneteller had waved a hand over her crystal ball--let’s say 10 years ago or even 3--and told me that I’d be living on a farm right now and spending hours and hours every day mowing...

Our Massive Move Out of 2746 Saint Paul

Jill and I are camping today, trying to recover from our move yesterday. The move -- emptying 5,000 square feet of belongings we’d spent 15 accumulating -- took two days. Yesterday we got up at 6:00 and didn’t finish clearing out our house, once and...

How To Sell A House

I’ve never sold a house, so I don’t really know how it's supposed to go. And I never imagined I’d sell this one. But here it is, for sale: Fabulous Baltimore Victorian for Sale! It’s the only house I’ve owned. Jill owned a tiny house many...

A Return from China

A package I sent to China last September just came back to me. What’s remarkable is not the fact that it has been in the mails--going to and from--for six months but, rather, that it came back at all. I didn’t imagine anything that went...


This morning, while changing a light bulb in the kitchen, I smelled burning plastic. Odd, I thought. Usually, our neighborhood smells of oak woodsmoke from the excellent, new restaurant a few blocks away: it has a wood-fired grill. I stepped onto my porch to get...

How I Got Burned at the Flea Market

If you’ve watched “Antiques Roadshow,” you’ve seen segments where a collector believes he’s brought in a priceless artifact--like a Ming vase--only to be told by the Roadshow appraiser that he’s got a fake or a reproduction or he’s grossly over-estimated the value of the item...

Christmas in the House We Love!

      Christmas is a special time at our house. We really enjoy dressing up the place in a traditional style. Every year we try something different, including new (old) ornaments. Jill can't stop collecting antique ornaments we find at flea markets and garage sales.   Click here for...

Assateague, MD
Where the Wild Horses Are

Jill and I spent the weekend at Assateague, Maryland's coastal island and home to its famous wild horses. It was cold and windy but lovely--we had a heater in the van (a new addition). And we took the dogs, of course. They always make travel...