Handmade/Homemade: The Half-Acre Homestead

When I start working on a book, it’s like setting out on an ocean voyage without a map. I get a theme, an idea, some kind of coherence on a subject, then start.

When I built my first house in Mill Valley in the early ’60s, my friend Bob Whiteley and I laid out the foundation lines in chalk on the ground. “What do we do now, Bob,” I asked.

Bob said “This,” and took pick and shovel and started digging the foundation trench.

It’s been my M.O. all my life. When I don’t know what to do, I start. Things (usually) sort themselves out in the process. (I know, I know, I’ve said all this before…)

This book is about the tools and techniques Lesley and I have evolved in building a home and growing food (and creating a bunch of things) on a small piece of land over a 40+-year period.

I started by writing it in chapters: The House / The Kitchen / Kitchen Tools / The Garden / Garden Tools / Chickens / Food / Foraging / Fishing / The Shop / Shop Tools / Roadkill / Critters … What we’ve learned; what’s worked, what hasn’t…

Then I went through some 50,000 digital pictures and picked out 700–800 photos, printed them out contact sheets (12-up) and started organizing them under the above categories.

Next step: starting to put pages together; I am totally excited. I have (kind of unknowingly) been gathering material for this book for decades.

Now I gotta get out of here. Not only is it a gorgeous fresh spring day, but it’s my time of the year. Tauruses are feelin’ good…

7 Responses to Handmade/Homemade: The Half-Acre Homestead

  1. Anonymous says:

    Sounds interesting. Also, as more and more folks are wanting to do/learn things on their own………..wanting to be independent….wanting to know what is in their buildings/their food…..I suspect there will be many who appreciate your work/time in putting together this book.

  2. These photos make me very happy indeed. That backyard is very exciting to see. Thanks once again for your lovely blog.

  3. Gary Roche says:

    Can't wait for you to finish so I can buy it!

  4. Laura says:

    I am super excited, Lloyd! I think I am the MOST excited about this book than I have been about your others, and that is saying a LOT, because I love them all! Can't wait!

  5. Rachel T. says:

    I also cannot wait for this book!!!! I have all your other ones and love each and every one!! But this one…is going to be special!

  6. Deva says:

    Love your homestead, your wife, your life and everything you do. When I grow up (I'm 66) I wanna be just like you!!! Go Lloyd!

  7. Unknown says:

    You are an example of the Japanese word ‘ ikigai ‘

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