This site is an archive of For the latest information about Susy and her adventrures, visit the Cultivate Simple site.
Thank you for all your support over the years!

Friday Favorite: Meeting You

August 31st, 2012

In this day in age it’s very common to know someone and yet to never have actually met them in person. Every now and then I get the opportunity to meet one of my blog readers and it’s always fun. Earlier this spring , Mr Chiots and I stayed with a blog reader in Maine. She said it was kind of funny to meet me in person because she knew so much about me having read my blog, but I knew nothing about her.

Yesterday evening I had the chance to meet another blog reader. Her and her husband came down to Chiot’s Run for dinner. I made homemade pasta and topped it with garden fresh veggies. She headed home with my cold frame and a few plants for her garden.

We enjoyed good food and lots of great conversation. In fact, it almost got dark while we were talking over empty plates and we almost missed the garden tour. A month or two ago, another reader stopped by for brunch when she happened to be in the area. I truly enjoy meeting and chatting with my blog readers in person, it’s certainly a pleasure to get a glimpse into your lives. If you’re ever in midcoast Maine, contact me. Swing by for coffee, a meal or even a night or two, we’d be happy to meet you in person!

Have you ever met an internet friend before?

Pardon our Dust

August 30th, 2012

Yesterday was drywall sanding day on the upstairs project, a dusty job to be sure. Thankfully our contractor is pretty good and we didn’t have to sand too much.

It still makes a HUGE mess and I’ll be dusting and vacuuming daily for a week or two to get rid of it all. Thankfully, we both have these fantastic 3M Professional Half-Mask Organic Vapor, N95 Respirator to wear. They’re amazing and work not only for dust but for odor as well, worth every penny. We wear them all the time!

We also managed to get everything primed and the ceiling three of the rooms painted. Needless to say, we’re super excited about getting this project checked off the list.

What creates the most dirt/dust in your house: pets, kids, spouse, gardening?

Stocking The Larder

August 29th, 2012

Yesterday, I spent some time cleaning the ‘Red Zepellin’ onions that were harvested a few weeks ago. They’ve been drying in the warm garage and it was time to move them to the basement pantry. These plants were grown from plants purchased from Johnny’s Seeds.

While trimming the roots and stalks off the bulbs, I was thinking about the security that growing your own food provides. Knowing that you can provide at least a small amount of nourishment for your family is truly priceless.

Sometimes when people mention that they can buy food so cheaply at the grocery it’s not worth the effort of growing it, I just shake my head. Sure, you can save money tending an edible garden, but the money saved pales in comparison to the other intangible value it provides to our lives. Besides peace and relaxation, the feeling of security is what I notice most when I’m tending the garden and harvesting food for our table. Knowing that I can keep food on our plates from tending the earth is deeply satisfying.

What intangible benefits of edible gardening do you value the most?


August 28th, 2012

Mr Chiots and I are TIRED! Sunday we spent the day working in Cleveland arriving home in the wee hours of the morning We slept in until 7, but that wasn’t nearly enough sleep. It’s hard to sleep in though when you’re used to getting up early. We were up until 9 pm last night working on the upstairs and fell into bed not soon after. Only a few more busy weeks and then rest will come.

That’s yours truly as a wee little lassie. This photo pretty much sums up what I’m feeling like right now. Good news is, we already have a viewing being scheduled for the house next week, which gives us the much needed motivation to keep going!

Are you an early riser or a night owl?

Sunny Volunteers

August 27th, 2012

Last year I ordered a number of different sunflowers to plant in the lower garden. The chipmunks dug up the seeds and feasted on them. Any that survived this gluttony were scooped up by crows when they germinated. I still had a few sunflowers in the garden, volunteers planted by chipmunks and birds.

Since we provide a feeder for the birds, we always have a few volunteer sunflowers scattered throughout the garden each year. Funny thing is, this year I have a few really nice ones in the exact place I tried so hard to plant them last year. I guess nature often gets the last laugh.

What’s your favorite volunteer in the garden?


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.