Current Events 10/26/2015

      Comments Off on Current Events 10/26/2015

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure for more information.

It’s been a pretty good week everyone. Let’s do a little recap!


What I got up to:


Last weekend Clarissa and I did a little hiking at Blackhawk State Historic Site. It’s ten minutes from our house, and has some decent little trails. It’s particularly lovely now that the leaves are colorful and crunchy, so if you’re in the Quad Cities area, check it out. We attended a little Halloween/Autumnal party that evening and went to a pumpkin patch on Sunday. A good weekend. My wife detailed some of last weekend’s activities over in her blog if you’re interested.


I’m still rehabbing my hand, so I haven’t gotten many projects underway this month. It seems to be getting stronger and more flexible, so hopefully the pain will subside soon and I can get back to doing and making things. I’m still aiming for full use by November, but we’ll have to see what happens. I am also still looking for a small tree, roughly 3 to 6 inches in diameter that someone will allow me to cut down legally. If you know of someone in the Quad City area (or Coles County, IL area, since I’ll be there in the next couple months) who needs a large sapling or small tree taken down on there property, let me know. This is for a project I want to start from scratch, but I don’t want to get into too much detail just yet.


This weekend has been full of good times. Our friends Anna and Nick got married last night, and a wedding is always cause for celebration! Additionally, it meant we got to see some friends that we love to hang out with, and the opportunity doesn’t come around as often as we’d like.


Anna made a lovely bride.

Anna made a lovely bride.

As an added bonus, we got to ride the ferris wheel at Modern Woodman Park!


The one behind us!

The one behind us!

We also spent some time hanging with the same friends today before they had to hit the road. We checked out the nearby Dan Nagle Walnut Grove Pioneer Village. It’s an interesting place, and the history and museum nerd inside of me enjoyed exploring the various buildings. It’s a little sparse on interpretation, but we had good company and really enjoyed ourselves. After a good lunch, I was sad to see our friends leave, but I look forward to when we can see them again.


This week’s books:
I’ve been doing a lot more reading lately, and thought I might share some of the pages I’m turning.


I picked up Kaplan and Blume’s Urban Homesteading based on a recommendation from my friend Chris. It’s an interesting read about how you can engage in a more sustainable lifestyle, regardless of where you live. The book has two different approaches; one is ideological, perhaps even philosophical, when it comes to conservation, environmentalism, community and materialism. The second approach is practical application, and there is something for everyone, at all skill levels. If you’re new to this, you can start with gardening, composting, or making your own yogurt. If you want to go further, Kaplan gives good starting points for raising animals, developing graywater systems, and turning human waste into compost.


We’re definitely not picking up that last one at the moment. We’re more in the beginner’s section of self-reliance. Having seen the awesome hauls that several of our friends have grown in their gardens, we will make a more conscientious effort to grow some of our own vegetables come spring. I’m eager to make my own yogurt, which seems pretty simple. That’s actually what brought the book up in conversation with my friend Chris in the first place. In his words, “even if you mess up, it’s still just milk.”


I’ve been a comic book reader for awhile now. I love superheroes but I’ve become a little disappointed with the recent books put out by both Marvel and DC as of late (except the current Batgirl run- it’s the best thing in the superhero stable right now). So, I took the leap, cancelled my subscriptions, and have decided to walk back through some older graphic novels. My wife and I are big Arrow fans, and I have read a number of Green Arrow comics in the past. Combine that with my recent interest in archery, and I thought reading some of the old Green Arrow graphic novels would be the way to go. Written and illustrated by Mike Grell, the Longbow Hunters delivers the tale of a forty-something Oliver Queen just after moving to Seattle to live with girlfriend Dinah Lance. As the Green Arrow, he abandons his arsenal of trick arrows and gets back to basics; traditional archery equipment, a Robin Hood inspired costume, and the mentality of a hunter. We see him come to grips with getting older, his relationship with Dinah, and his role in Seattle. Additionally we meet Shado, a mysterious female archer sporting a dragon tattoo, whose path keeps intersecting with Ollie. The art in the book is fantastic, somewhat ethereal, and with what I would call classical influence. The plot is solid, and we’re treated to Ollie’s take on his time marooned on an island, as well as some interesting backstory of Shado. Obviously if you’re not a comic reader, this probably won’t be for you. But if you are, and you’re interested in non-powered heroes, check out the Longbow Hunters.


I recently stumbled upon some clips from Alone in the Wilderness, a documentary about Dick Proenneke, made film footage he shot and entries from his journal. I found them fascinating, so I set out to learn a little more about him. In 1968, Proenneke set about building his cabin home at Twin Lakes, Alaska. He’s a fascinating individual, and I learned that in 1973 Sam Keith, a friend of Proenneke’s, published One Man’s Wilderness: An Alaskan Odyssey, based on Proenneke’s journals but with some editing done by Keith. I knew I had to read it, and I tore through it this week. It’s really amazing getting into the mind of such a capable outdoorsman and craftsman. It’s an easy read, and written very conversationally. It won’t take long to get through it, but I found it inspiring on several levels; it urged me to continue on my path of outdoor adventure, as well as to develop my skills at making things, and being self-sufficient. In some ways, this made One Man’s Wilderness the perfect companion to Kaplan and Blume’s Urban Homesteading for me. There are additional works on Proenneke, as well as several documentaries, and I look forward to reading and viewing them in the future.


This week’s posts:
Monday I posted, “You’re not Bored, You’re Boring.”
The title makes me sound like a jerk, and maybe I am. That being said, If you’re having trouble getting started in your adventures, if you feel like you don’t have the money, or if you feel like there’s nothing to do in your area, this post will give you kicks to the butt as well as some practical advice to help get you started.

Thursday I posted, “Rule #13 for Intrepid Living.”
This week I talk about competition. Like most things, it isn’t inherently positive or negative; it can be a good thing, it can be a bad thing. Read about how competition should bring out the best in you.

And Friday I (finally) posted, “Honeymooning; Part 2.”
The long awaited second post about our Honeymoon adventures. This post details our trek up (and back down) Harney Peak, as well as our visit to Mount Rushmore.

If you haven’t given them a read, I’d appreciate you taking a moment to do so, please and thank you!


What else is going on:

My friend Ryan has embarked on a cross country camping trek on his motorcycle, something I would very much so like to do in the future, though I have a lot of progress to make in my life before that can happen. I don’t even own a bike yet! Ryan is miles ahead of me in motorcycle experience, both literally and figuratively. I love seeing his photos on social media, and I’m really excited that he’ll be sharing his progress. He’s only getting started, but I’m already enjoying following along. Check out his blog here.

That about sums it up. I hope I put out some content you enjoyed, or linked to something that caught your interest. I’ve got some new posts coming down the line, so don’t be a stranger. Find me on Twitter or Instagram, to see what I’m up to, and keep checking back for new posts. Until next time, stay intrepid!