My attempt to move from Southern California and create a happy and sustainable urban homestead in North Dakota, with some musings on life with deaf dogs, a gluten free spouse, and the occasional mischievous garden gnome. Thank you for visiting and I hope you enjoy.



Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Homemade Tomato Cages

We had some serious trouble last year with our tomatoes.  Both the cherry tomatoes and heirloom/eating tomatoes got so large and heavy that they quickly wound up dragging on the ground and entangled in a huge mess.  Sure we used tomato cages, but quickly found that the small tomato cages are useless, the large "sturdy" ones are a bit better but they still collapse under the weight of all the delicious fruit by mid summer.

The solution?  Homemade tomato cages, with a large side dish of John overkill.
I read an article about homemade tomato cages using re-mesh (the stuff they use to lay on the ground to pour concrete over).  So I scampered over to the local hardware store and bought a roll of 5' by 50' 10 gauge re-mesh, some bailing wire, and large pair of bolt cutters to snip it with.  Construction actually went faster than I anticipated and I got two completed in about 45 minutes.  Subsequent ones will go much faster since I have a system now.*
*These are famous last words of mine.  "Having a system" always seems to work theoretically but usually loses some of its efficiency in practice.  I can't remember how many times I've "had a system" only to find that the system isn't as great as I thought.  It may even be that once I declare I "have a system" that I officially jinx myself and the universe must forcefully readjust the size of my britches since they have obviously grown too large for my own good.  Thanks universe. 

Friday, June 10, 2011

Follow Up - Escaped Prisoner Captured

Just to give you some closure on an earlier story I posted on the blog (Prisoner Escape In Cavalier, North Dakota), this story is from todays Grand Forks Herald. It's now safe for me and my people, folk of the red haired persuasion, to freely roam about Cavalier, North Dakota without fear of being mistaken for an escaped convict.

This article has one of the best quotes I've seen from a law enforcement official (I highlighted it below as well): “We weren’t treating him as someone who is a danger to the public, but we still have an obligation to the public that no one walks away from our jail,”. That's the new benchmark for public safety? That no one should be able to walk away from jail? Hmmmm.

Pembina County escapee captured in Fargo


Glenn Troy Stegman, the man who escaped from the Pembina County jail three weeks ago, was captured Wednesday at a home in Fargo.

Stegman, 34, fled from custody in Cavalier, N.D., on May 19 when he was returning to jail after a hearing.

Jeff Osvold, Chief Deputy Sheriff in Pembina County, said that Stegman was entering the jail through a series of doors known as a sally port. Somehow, Stegman was able to open the door that should have locked behind him and ran away, Osvold said.

Stegman was captured in Fargo on Wednesday afternoon by city police and agents from the state Bureau of Criminal Investigation, the Pembina County Sheriff’s Department said Thursday.

Stegman faces no charges in Fargo and will be returned to Pembina County.
There, he faces a felony charge of escape, and he may also face felony charges of burglary and theft. After fleeing the jail, Stegman allegedly entered a building and stole an all-terrain vehicle.

Osvold said the department believes that after escaping, Stegman headed for Fargo, where he had lived before being sent to Cavalier for violating probation.

He is believed to have spent time in a treatment facility in Fargo, but left.

“We weren’t treating him as someone who is a danger to the public, but we still have an obligation to the public that no one walks away from our jail,” Osvold said. “…We’re just very fortunate that we were able to find him again and happy to have him back so he can face the additional charges for the poor decision that he made.”

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Great Online Articles

Got a few minutes to read some very good online magazine articles?  These came up recently and I would highly reccomend them:

Just Deserts - From GQ Magazine, the compelling story of a modern day US Army deserter living in Canada. 

Madoff's Curveball - New Yorker article on New York Mets owner David Wilpon and his entanglement with the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme. 

Flacking For Big Pharma - American Scholar website article on how Big Pharma has taken over scholarly medical journals. 

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Deaf Dog In the Sun

How do you know when you're a spoiled dog?  When someone pulls your fluffy dog bed into the front porch so you can slumber in the sunbeam.  It's a rough life.