Erica Daly

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since Mar 04, 2014
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Recent posts by Erica Daly

My plan of reusing greywater is to reduce new water consumption, energy to pump from the well, and trips to carry outdoors. Greywater systems not allowed here, and plenty of rain for the plants, indoor water is carried out, so reducing this is important, especially in the long winter and cold seasons of New England.
1 year ago
We collect the first part of the shower water while it's warming up in a bucket. That becomes the ultimate rinse water. The remaining shower water stays in the tub while showering. Then it is put in multiple buckets and used for washing clothes, floors, car, etc. A bit of soap is used in the first laundry bucket and then can be rinsed in following bucket(s). The dirty laundry water is used at tree, bush, compost areas and any grassy area or mulch. All by carrying via buckets to keep the body moving/lifting . Dirty water is used for the toilet also. The inlet to the toilet has been off for years. Water from cleaning dishes goes to a bucket and then carried outside to feed the soil. This visual of seeing our usage of water has helped my family minimize water consumption. My neighbor and I share a well (in my cellar) and septic (accessed in his garage).  Also we collect rainwater for the plants, and chicken. My soil once only grew pine trees, now supports a much larger variety of vegetation that could not have been accomplished as quickly without nutrients in the water.
1 year ago
My mother used to make a walnut cake only for special occasions when I was young. Us kids ground the walnuts, and she used about 4 eggs to hold it together. The nuts were the
'flour' and shortening. I think the remains after producing oil could be used immediately for cake or crackers or in some bread or nut-milk recipe, rather than go through the drying out process to make flour. Maybe even as a facial scrub? a suet cake?

2 years ago
As kids my father used a scythe when the grass on the hill was too tough for the reel mower. We started trying it ourselves to make paths for a baseball diamond, etc. It eventually disappeared (mother hid it for fear of bodily harm?) I'm surrounded by neighbors and my only chicken does not keep up with the grass trimming responsibilities. I go out when its cool and try to pull it like a cow or horse would. It's quicker than my weedwacker for my tiny plot. I save that for the difficult stuff. I try to not let it get too long because lyme disease is quite prevalent here and one reason I keep the old hen.  I save the seeds separately for her for the winter, and let her have the grass right away. I plan to try growing different types of grasses over the next years and when people complain, call it pollinator habitat and chicken predator protection. One neighbor thought they were helping and started mowing. Mowing smell makes me sneeze, but my way does not!
2 years ago

Capture Carbon, Plant a Tree

Trees soak up carbon naturally

Lets breather better air,, Plant a Tree

Carbon absorbing trees produce fruit and wood

Planting a tree brings the birds and bees

The greatest trees keep us cool!




2 years ago
Anything like chickens or other bird/creature that would be happy to eat the larvae or fly? I never heard of bot fly before and now need to investigate.
Sap of matatorsalo in Costa Rica (Wikipedia).
2 years ago
Since we have downpours more often now my gutters are always overflowing, especially on the back of the house (one long stretch and one down spout). Next time will have at least 2 downspouts and extra clips, perhaps one even in the center. For the overflow, I have been putting buckets of leaves, wood pieces, anything for mulch/compost/berm building, since it has been so dry this year. This way they are premoistened.
2 years ago
I never liked the bottled laundry detergent, but have been gifted some. It seems like you pay for the weight and shipping more than the soap. I found that since I hand wash and use powdered detergent that sometimes a bit of detergent in warm water in a container and shake it up makes the detergent dissolve since I don't use hot water to wash. I read somewhere long ago that detergent packages recommend twice the needed amount to boost the bottom line. I also think shampoo bottles have 'lather, rinse, repeat', for the times when people washed much less often.So I have reduced my laundry soap to about a spoonful (depends on what's getting washed), and dishsoap goes on a damp cloth, and when I need to add a drop or two more. When my supply runs out, I will have to use a dry soap or another alternative. Many times it is just water.
2 years ago
Several of my new methods have resulted from power outages. Making coffee is one. I still have a propane cook stove to use if I have a match. I originally heated water in a pot and poured over the coffee grounds in the filter, with the plastic filter holder resting on top of the carafe (drip coffee maker just without using the machine). Pouring hot water from a small pot a bit at a time in a candle lit room. I only allow candles on the stove top so the light was minimal. I decided next time I needed an option that would be safer to prevent burns, etc. A few months later the machine pump failed. Now I pour cool to room temp water over the coffee grounds, and just heat the cup of coffee I am ready to drink, saving any other coffee to use later. Unused coffee sits in the carafe, until I drink it, hot or cold or room temp. I had tried the cold brew in a jar in frig and on countertop in the past, but I think if I use a narrower jar, I will have more success with my current strainer and not knocking it over. Or I could have the strainer in the plastic filterholder over the carafe!
2 years ago
My improvements on reducing plastic come with strange looks from people. The grocery store cashiers don't like cleaning up produce bits that fall off, so I started using a plastic bag for say broccoli. When I get home, I remove it from the bag, turn inside out to dry and put it with my reusable bags, to reuse for purchasing produce, until it dies.  I reuse bread bags for bringing sandwiches, etc to work. And for storing cooked meat in frig when I run out of smaller containers, then eventually is used for holding garbage. My wood pellet bags are used for trash. They are reused until they smell or are otherwise gross. They are great for holding leaves, etc. They are also my recycling can/bottle/glossy newspaper containers. I keep plastic juice bottles that my mother keeps giving me and reuse for house hold water storage. Milk jugs store rain water, etc. Not much help in the plant growing as my ground and large plant pots seem to work better.It seems that other areas of the country allow bring-your-own bags for bulk purchases, etc. But they are not allowed here 'for health reasons', perhaps not enough of us are trying to avoid plastic bags! It seems the best way to avoid plastic is to make/bake/grow as much as you can.
I like the use of cans around growing plants, could it have saved my lettuce from last nights feast? My fencing efforts are not good enough.Since the plastic food -yogurt quarts, peanut butter jars are already paid for I wash and reuse them. I make some of my own yogurt, but my kids don't like mine, so I buy it and use some as starter for myself.
2 years ago