Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Jury Duty? This will not work for a single girl homesteader!

Today I got called in to report for jury duty. I know it's my duty as a citizen but it also happens to be spring break. As a single girl homesteader this puts a serious dent in my grand plans for this week. On my planned agenda for the week:
  • fix the plumbing in my kitchen sink (a surprise task that I'm not pleased about having to deal with),
  • connect the irrigation in my front yard garden (requires putting tubing underneath a brick planter and a sidewalk - no small task!),
  • consult with my landscaping friend ( Camille about the irrigation in the backyard,
  • chainsaw a couple more trees (got two down already) and chop for mulch or put in the greenwaste bin,
  • chainsaw/pole prune limbs down on the tall Pittosporum to allow more light for the future citrus orchard,
  • Plan and plant future citrus orchard under pruned Pittosporum,
  • spread the 5 cu yds of mulch that's currently in a pile at the top of my driveway,
  • get rid of the enormous pile of grass stolon filled dirt that's all along the slope of my driveway,
  • add stones to Swan Song (front yard) beds to level the walls,
  • add stones to planter beds throughout garden where necessary,
  • paint bottom board and plan bottom board replacement strategy (and ant-proofing) for bee hives (choose if I want to try and capture a swarm and, if so, find location and set up new hive boxes),
  • sheet mulch newly solarized beds in the backyard and prepare for planting,
  • plant blueberries and strawberries in the pine mulch zone,
  • figure out I can keep chickens and start planning for a chicken coop,
  • plant seeds of corn, carrots, sunflowers in vegetable beds, and dianthus, chives, and other edible flowers in Swan Song walls
And that doesn't include any of the non-homesteading things on the list like sweeping my floors and re-organizing my garage. Sorry to bore you with my to-do list. The point of that (besides helping me get clear on what I intend to accomplish) is just to show that homesteading takes a fair amount of time. It's a way of life - not a trademark :) If all I have are weekends (and many of those get filled up with other tasks) then it takes that much longer to get homestead projects happily on their way. What I'm ultimately aiming for is a set of interconnected systems that feed into each other with only moderate tweaking now and again by me. This is likely at least a few years down the road. Bill Mollison (co-articulator with David Holmgren of the concept of permaculture) talks about the stage "When the designer becomes the recliner" after all the systems the permaculture designer sets up start to function independently and produce on their own with minimal outside input. I'm not there yet.
and that being the case, it feels like such a frustrating waste of time to be sitting here on the 11th floor of the Clara Foltz courthouse when it's a beautiful overcast day perfect for planting.
I'm often good at making the best out of any situation. I know that it's not such a big deal to give up a day of "work" to do my part for the justice system.
I just had so much I wanted to get done today at home. And I'm feeling glum anyway as recent matters of the heart have not gone my way (boo hoo) and it feels like I'll probably end up with no family or children and nobody who gives a shit about me when I get old. (When I start to downward spiral it goes there pretty fast) and at least nobody to help tackle my urban homesteading to-do list with. So here I sit when I ought to be planning for chickens to supply my neighborhood with fresh eggs (Check these out for more info on how easy it is to keep chickens in the city: and

News update: Enough of my whining. Biking rules! I got selected for jury pool selection for a case involving a kid who was riding a bike and got hit by a car. In the questioning I shared that I wish everybody rode bikes in LA and that our city would be a much more pleasant and clean place and that, though I aspire to objectivity, I definitely have a bias in favor of bikes where bike/car interactions occur. I hope the case goes well for both parties and I'm very happy my jury duty for this year was just one day.


  1. you know i can help, i'm just a call or text away

  2. Thanks Davey! That's awesome. If you've got any time Friday-Sunday morning I'll be working working working!
    I borrowed a chain saw :)