Meg Mitchell

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since Jun 04, 2018
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Highly enthusiastic newbie gardener.
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Gulf Islands, Canada
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Recent posts by Meg Mitchell

I'm starting to look into buying a residential property and asked the mortgage advisor at my credit union about mortgaging bare land. One thing she mentioned is that a home must be built on the land within a year. The price of land alone is already stretching my budget a bit so I can't afford to just plop a manufactured home onto the site. I also don't think I have the expertise needed to be confident that I can build a home by myself within the year while also continuing to hold down a 9-5.

I think one thing I need to do is clarify with her what the definition of a "home" is. Home Depot sells some very inexpensive sheds that would make a good starter home. They are sans insulation, electricity, plumbing, internet but I could possibly make do with a Yeti solar panel/battery setup, humanure, Skylink and warm clothes/bedding. That is something I would be willing to do while I planned my next steps but I'm guessing the bank won't like this as a "home".

Does anyone have any ideas or advice? I am not in a huge rush to buy, thinking sometime in the next 1-5 years. So potentially I have time to build skills, network, etc. Thanks in advance for any help you can provide!
9 months ago
As someone working in IT it's also very common to use Google and find that the top results are forums where people say, just look it up on Google. 🙃 Google is not magic; somebody needs to actually put the information on the internet first, and it needs to be linked to often enough that the top results are actually relevant.
Here's mine! My kitchen smells like garlic now, it's pretty great.
3 years ago

- a picture of your journal page recording where the herbs came from, the date and method of drying.

Doesn't it make more sense to write this on the container? If you have gathered raspberry leaf multiple times, this would fill your journal up and make it less usable as you go on. Is the point of the journal to build an herbal or is it just for the course?
3 years ago
I have an existing herbal but I organize it differently. I keep base recipes for different preparation types and then alphabetize the herbs. Is this okay or do I need to reorganize for the BB?

3 years ago
I have some shrubby "St Johns Wort" in my yard that's being very annoying and keeps trying to take over. It spreads with runners and it's doing its best to encroach on all the other plants and my pathways. I think it might be hypericum calycinum (Aaron's Beard or creeping St John's Wort -- not medicinal as far as I know). How do I get rid of this guy without poisoning the ground for other plants? Will it help to keep sheet mulching on top of it with cardboard and friends? I think I want to get rid of it entirely because it's so aggressive.
3 years ago
Also FTR, my friend who said she thought it was a dating site, moved across the country with her current SO and was never a big dating-site person.

paul wheaton wrote:

The login creates a barrier that (technologically-speaking) does not need to be there.

I think you need to handle support for a few weeks and see if you still feel that way.  

As is, I think we have made it crazy super simple.  

And there are a lot of other factors involved.  We need to be respectful to the kickstarter supporters.   And we need to be thinking about the people that will lose their ebook and need to download it again.  There are probably a dozen more factors to juggle.  

And on top of all that, changes like the one you propose will probably take a year of development and test.  And that's if we determine it is a high priority.  

And then the bottom line:  I think setting up an account here is super fast.   And setting up an account for this sort of thing is generally accepted as how this sort of thing is done.  

If the software behind the site is open-sourced, point me in the direction of the repo and I'll be more than happy to help. I'm not trying to say this is an emergency thing that needs to be dealt with right now; I think it's a general barrier to participation that should be dealt with in the long term. If we can fix this in a year, that's perfect; it means next time a big kickstarter is done, we'll get much better participation. I haven't done support for permies but I have done support for most other software products that I've developed. The process required to get through "the funnel" is important if you care about how many people end up making it through to the other side. Most of my employers care about the funnel because it affects their bottom line; I think permies should care about the funnel because it affects how many people end up accessing and absorbing the information that you're trying to pass on.

IOW if you make people sign up to the site in order to access books/video, a lot will decide not to bother, even if they would otherwise read the books or watch the videos and put that knowledge into practice. If we want to maximize the number of people who read the books and watch the videos, and put that knowledge into practice, we should be working as hard as possible to make it easy. From what I've seen, the people most likely to put the info here into practice are the least likely to be willing to sign up to random websites. The friend I mentioned above owns a 10 acre farm and has a huge network of friends and family where she lives; I'm an isolated nobody on a half-acre plot who checks this site multiple times a week. It would be a lot more effective for permaculture in general if you were reaching her instead of me, but your site is scaring her off simply because of how it's set up.

Deb Stephens wrote:I also don't consider using melt-and-pour products to be true soapmaking since they are already made into bars of soap that can be used as-is if desired. None of the processes of soapmaking are involved when doing melt-and-pour soaps--they are merely melted on the stove or in the microwave and poured into molds to re-set.

You start with 1lb soap and end with 1lb soap. Or start with 10 and end with 10. Seems pretty logical to me that you're not making soap here, just modifying it. If you're not working with lye, you probably haven't made soap.

Deb Stephens wrote:By the way, what have you got against Castille soap? A well-made bar is really the best for making a quick version of homemade laundry soap. I grind my bars and remelt them as the base for my laundry soap (with borax and washing soda added). It works great and is a real timesaver when I don't feel like doing the whole hot-process liquid laundry soap. Personally, I find them too drying for regular use on skin, but they do make for a good cleansing bar.

I haven't tried it for laundry soap. For hand or body soap I find it really slimy and gross, and it doesn't bubble well, and a lot of home soapmakers feel the same way. Might be really great for laundry! I feel like Castile soap has a really weird reputation. The original recipe was invented for use in factory production but a lot of hobbyists go for Castile as their first soap recipe. The recipes recommended to at-home hobbyists aren't quite the same as the ones used in the factories and the soap doesn't turn out quite the same. Factory-made Castile soap is a luxury good, but most homemade Castile soap is kinda icky. To me it just seems like we're trying to duplicate a commercial process using at-home methods and failing badly at it, when we could be turning out something so much better with so much less effort. Maybe I'm just a hopeless lard-soap fangirl but I've never had any olive oil soap that was halfway as good as a lard soap.
4 years ago