Top Navigation  
U.S. Flag waving
Office Hours Momday - Friday  8 am - 5 pm Pacific 1-800-835-2418
Facebook   YouTube   Twitter
Backwoods Home Magazine, self-reliance, homesteading, off-grid

 Home Page
 Current Issue
 Article Index
 Author Index
 Previous Issues
 Print Display Ads
 Print Classifieds
 Free Stuff
 Home Energy

General Store
 Ordering Info
 Kindle Subscriptions
 Kindle Publications
 Back Issues
 Help Yourself
 All Specials
 Classified Ad

 Web Site Ads
 Magazine Ads

BHM Blogs
 Ask Jackie Clay
 Massad Ayoob
 Claire Wolfe
 James Kash
 Where We Live
 Behind The Scenes
 Dave on Twitter
Retired Blogs
 Oliver Del Signore
 David Lee
 Energy Questions

Quick Links
 Home Energy Info
 Jackie Clay
 Ask Jackie Online
 Dave Duffy
 Massad Ayoob
 John Silveira
 Claire Wolfe

Forum / Chat
 Forum/Chat Info
 Enter Forum
 Lost Password

More Features
 Contact Us/
 Change of Address
 Write For BHM
 Meet The Staff
 Meet The Authors
 Disclaimer and
 Privacy Policy

Retired Features
 Country Moments
 Radio Show

Link to BHM

Living Freedom by Claire Wolfe. Musings about personal freedom and finding it within ourselves.

Want to Comment on a blog post? Look for and click on the blue No Comments or # Comments at the end of each post.

Archive for the ‘Rural and small-town living’ Category

Claire Wolfe

SuperBowl Sunday in SeaHawkland; and wrapping up the January minimalist-spending experiment

Sunday, February 1st, 2015

Walked to the grocery store this morning, arriving just before opening. The lot was nearly full and the street outside lined with parked pickup trucks and SUVs. Unheard of on a Sunday morning. Clerk opened the doors — and out of those vehicles poured guys. I’m guessing there were six men for every one woman.

It’s SuperBowl Sunday in the NorthWest and the local team is playing for the second year in a row.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Claire Wolfe

It’s not a bad life

Friday, January 30th, 2015

We’re having another of those moments where the sky is blue, the sun blinding, and the air so mild that fleece sweatpants and a turtleneck under the tee-shirt are almost too much.

So the guy who helps with my yardwork turned up to do some long-discussed brush clearing, trash hauling, and felling of small trees. (Totally blowing my January “minimalist” budget, but that’s another story.) Twice this week he and a couple of grubby kids (one of whom is his daughter-in-law, a tough bundle of charm) have crawled down the slope across the road and dug in. They’ve attacked noxious giant weeds (which my beekeeping neighbors won’t let me poison if I want to keep peace in the valley). They’ve taken down and heaped up small, malformed trees. They’ve hauled out every sort of trash, from microwaves and broken toilets to dozens of bags of cat poop.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Claire Wolfe

Sunday-Monday musings

Sunday, January 25th, 2015

My apologies, all you people there on the upper east coast. I hear that the ghastly weather you’re having is our fault. Something to do with this monstrous ridge of high pressure plunging down on us; creates a monster low for you.

Believe me, I was thinking of you this afternoon while I contemplated whether or not I should wear the tee-shirt with a turtleneck or skip the turtleneck for a dog walk. I felt soooooo guilty.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Claire Wolfe

Friday links

Friday, January 23rd, 2015
Claire Wolfe

A little catching up, including Santa, cool gear, and other stuff

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

Just catching up on a few overdue things …

Santa has been extremely, extremely good to me. Yeah, I know it seems sorta late to mention that, but not really. Apparently Santa hasn’t even finished with me yet.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Claire Wolfe

Tab clearing

Monday, January 12th, 2015
  • What is time? It rules our lives, but who can define it? Here are 10 mind-blowing attempts at explaining time. (H/T ML)
  • Dear Boston: Please say hell no to hosting the Olympics.
  • Oh my. Such a problem to have! Washington state pot growers and retailers face a glut of legal product. (Tip o’ hat to jed.)
  • Albuquerque cops finally facing murder charges for one of their most horrible caught-on-camera moments.
  • In the rage over Islamist attacks on the west and western values, let us not forget that the worst and most helpless victims are Muslims and those who live in Muslim countries.
  • Lovely, starkly designed cabins from around the world But who lives in these things and how do they get by without bathrooms?
  • Thanks, terrorists. From now on no more Mr. Wiseguy. :-)
  • Three more hopeful looks at Western-Islamic relations: An imam says Muslims must reject violence and governments must change course; Glenn Harlan Reynolds points out that Muslim leaders are finally realizing that their “brand” is tarnished by the acceptance of intolerance; author Irshad Manji is optimistic about the future between Islam and the West.
Claire Wolfe

Yipes! The deluge!

Monday, January 5th, 2015

Every time I checked the weather between 4:00 p.m. yesterday and 7:00 a.m. today, it said current conditions here were “heavy rain mist.” Um … but that “mist” pounded so hard for all those hours that I couldn’t hear myself think.

Sure enough, woke up this morning overlooking a river. The one house I can see across the former wetland below is in at least a foot of water (if not more) and my neighbors across the street (who are, like me, on a hill) are joking that they’re going to list their place for sale today as “waterfront property.”

I’m good, though my driveway is worse for the wear and the seasonal waterfall on the slope behind it is roaring so vigorously neighbors have walked over to take pictures.

It’s an awful mess down on the flat, where of course the people in the mobile home park and the little low houses are getting it worse than anybody. Not life-threatening bad. But a giant, completely unpredicted mess. We knew a substantial rainstorm was on the way, but all the flooding was supposed to be miles from here. From what I hear, we got about 6-1/2 inches of “heavy rain mist.” (And it sure did sound heavy last night.)

I also hear that we’re completely closed off by landslides and flooded roads.

And yipes! this is low tide. High tide — and a king tide, yet — is supposed to hit in a few hours. The rain has slacked off, though, so that’s to the good and maybe the worst is past.

I’ll try and post some pix later.

Meanwhile, I’ve got the final portion of Vin’s interview pre-scheduled for noonish 11:00-ish PST, so even if the power goes out, you’ll still get your Vin fix.

Claire Wolfe

Trek to Raymond, Part II

Monday, December 22nd, 2014

Part I here.

One Raymond, Washington, resident expresses his enthusiasm for the town’s new status:



Washington state’s new recreational cannabis law is known for being a little less “wild westy” than Colorado’s. The Rocky Mountain High state rushed its implementation and has had some problems. Washington (which only legalized private liquor sales shortly before it legalized pot) went about things more slowly and bureaucratically.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Claire Wolfe

A trek to Raymond, Washington

Saturday, December 20th, 2014


You might think the above photo is terribly boring.

You would be wrong.

You’d know exactly how un-boring it is if you drove past that large blue building with the impressive air-handling equipment. The wafting aroma of cannabis will follow you for a quarter of a mile.

I recently made a little expedition to a town in Washington state that’s turning out to have quite a story. That building is part of it.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Claire Wolfe

Monday links

Monday, October 27th, 2014

Okay, not hermitting yet. So here are some newslinks.

  • Just vaporware so far, but Forbes thinks cops might soon add ‘Net-connected guns to their growing arsenal of monitoring gear.
  • Nastiest political tactic of the year: siccing SWAT teams on your opponents and critics.
  • A southerner apologizes for bigotry. But with the southerner being Fred Reed, things don’t quite come out the way northern liberals might wish.
  • Nooz you can use (if you’re really into alternative housing): grain-bin homes. (I love the stuccoed one, but I’d like to know how you keep these things from getting hotter than the hinges of heck, long about August.) Tip o’ hat, MJR.
  • More nooz to use: how successful people handle toxic people.
  • Mike V. on blood dancers and 4th-gen. warfare.
  • You forgot to add how useful those bags are for picking up dog poop. I live in a blue state and the closer you go to civilization, the more likely it is that you’ll have to bring your own cloth shopping bags. Misguided political correctness.
Claire Wolfe

Now this tiny house looks cool

Sunday, October 12th, 2014

Not long ago, I rolled my eyes and said the tiny-house movement had jumped the shark. Then this morning, friend G. sent me to this site. And this 192-square-foot house, the Axia.


While there’s a suspicious dearth of info (the link to TechDwell’s pdf brochure is 404), it’s a for-real thing. Portland, Oregon, is building a village of these for the homeless.

If they’re as easy to build (and unbuild) as they say … well, that’s remarkable. On price, on tech, on a number of measures, they’d beat the usual overpriced tiny house hands down. (That is, if somebody doesn’t get carried away and order all their yuppified options.)

Yes, yes, go ahead and tell me you can build something like this yourself out of old pallets, cardboard boxes, and strapping tape for much less than TechDwell’s basic price. That’s true. Joel’s Secret Lair is similar and cost less. But the tech on this is intriguing, as is the ability to tear it down and move it. Also, you can add your own options (solar, rainwater catchment, etc.) for less than they cost from TechDwell.

The look reminds me a bit of the UnitOne cabin. But if the TechDwell Axia is all it appears to be, I’d rather have an Axia.

Gads, what a great artist’s studio. Or guest house. Or pool house. Or vacation cabin.

Claire Wolfe

An underground life

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

Going underground and keeping silent for 43 years after committing an illegal act of principle.

This is a story of the “left.” But also the story of a bold & fascinating person and a creative life.



Copyright © 1998 - Present by Backwoods Home Magazine. All Rights Reserved.