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: Herbal Steam

January 31st, 2014

There’s nothing I love more than breathing herbal steam when my sinuses are feeling the pressure. If I have fresh herbs I’ll use those, if not essential oils. My favorite scents are: eucalyptus and peppermint, sometimes I’ll add rosemary and a drop or two of thyme oil as well. Nothing clears up my sinus pressure like breathing steam!
I became a believe in herbal steam a long time ago when I had antibiotic resistant pneumonia. After a few rounds of antibiotics my pneumonia just wouldn’t clear up. I started breathing herbal steam with: oregano, peppermint, thyme, rosemary and eucalyptus every couple hours and within a week I was almost back to normal.

Do you ever use herbal remedies?

Working Hard

January 30th, 2014

Dexter is our workhorse cat around here. While the other two indoor cats sleep peacefully on the sofa, Dexter makes sure no rodent that enters the house leaves again. Here he is with his trophy catch last week.
Dexter and his mouse
I watched him catch it with speed an precision, it was an amazing thing to see. Having a good mouser is wonderful when live in an older less than sealed home!

Do you ever get mice in your house?

Will You be Joining us Again?

January 29th, 2014

Well, it’s officially time to start talking about the 5×5 Challenge once again.  I’ve had a lot of people excited about doing it again this year and more that watched last year and are ready to jump in and start a garden this year.  I’ll be using my raised bed outside the front door again for this challenge, this year I’ll be growing different vegetables.  I haven’t decided which ones, perhaps you’ll have suggestions.
5x5 garden
This year we’ll hopefully be joined by a few members of the tiny house community, Tiny House Magazine will be running an article about the 5×5 in the next issue.
5x5 garden challenge
This year we’ll continue with the same schedule, Wednesdays will be the challenge days. The posts here on Chiot’s Run will focus on garden education, tasks to complete in your garden, and updates on my 5×5 garden.

Who’s in? Did you do the challenge last year? Are you a new to gardening?

A Clean Slate

January 28th, 2014

We finally started painting here, a much needed task indeed. The walls show their long life and aren’t really colors that suite our tastes. For years, we’ve painted colors on our walls, this time we decided things would be different.
painting 1
I have a few boards on pinterest filled with ideas for the home, probably none of them will ever come to fruition, but some of them will inspire changes around here.
painting 2
We wanted to create a blank slate. Everything will be white – classic white, the ceiling, the walls, and the trim. The bedroom was tackled first, it took 4 gallons of paint to cover the blue walls and trim  in this large room.  The floor is painted subfloor and will be painted black.  Hopefully we’ll get a very large seagrass rug that will cover most of it and soften the surface.
painting 3
Funny thing is, we painted this room first because it was  our bedroom and now we’re thinking staying in the smaller room because it’s darker and cooler being on the north side of the house.
painting 4
The nice thing is that now this room is going to become my sewing room and probably a guest room as well. We’re definitely excited to see something finally come together and organized. It’s starting to feel less like a college dorm around here.

What’s your favorite wall choice?

Cultivate Simple 63: Stew 6.0

January 27th, 2014

This week it’s a Stew episode so you never know what you will find. First we discuss Home Improvement and share some tips that we have learned (most the hard way). Then we discuss our process for making big decisions in our life. We have a doozy of a decision coming up so we have been going through this process all week.

Home Improvement
– Having the right tool
– Prep is key
– Don’t rush
– Sweat the small stuff

Big Decisions
– Discuss
– Anticipate
– Calculate
– Decide
– Don’t look back

Brian’s Geeky Corner

Check out If This Than That. Organize all your online activity and make various services work together.

Books of the Week


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.