Sign in

Former city gal living in a country cabin as we build a forever home. Adventures in lowbrow homesteading and, of course, TV.

I wrote this back in 2012 while grieving the loss of my grandmother, Alice. It was originally published at http://farmergeneral.com/

We had an electric griddle when I was a kid. It had a cast iron top with bright orange trim, and you plugged it into the wall. It was hefty and unwieldy, made in the days before cheap plastic manufacturing overtook all but the most expensive kitchen tools. It lived stored sideways in the back pantry, near the cast iron frying pans and the seldom-used china set.

It was probably my grandmother who bought it. “Spend good money on an…


After you have a miscarriage, you hear the word “luck” a lot. You’d think this would come from friends, maybe a priest. Surprisingly, it’s what the doctors tell you. “Just bad luck.” they say. Hearing a word one associates with rabbit’s foot keychains coming from disciples of capital-S Science… Well, at the very least it’s unexpected. More honestly, it makes you want to stab someone.

Standing on my fertility soapbox, I declare that luck should never be the advice given, in lieu of tests, by any professional you go to for cold hard facts. And yet, I can’t deny that…


Our life, it seems, has been consumed by healthcare lately. In addition to the ever-growing vials of vitamins and woo woo fertility remedies on the kitchen counter, there are numerous antibiotics and ointments for our menagerie of pets. It’s been prescriptions and appointments nonstop, for human and animal alike. First because of the dying-of-Marek’s chickens, and more recently due to the development of a huge cyst by our curmudgeonly male cat, Marshall.

The cyst had been checked out by our then-vet a few months before. Despite its size, they suggested avoiding surgery as it was right where his leg connected…


Mr. Max and I have a lot of odd synchronicities in our childhoods. We are similar(ly odd) people, so I suppose it makes sense that this shared weirdness traces back to our formative years. Examples include a love of dinosaurs, whales and science fiction, recurrent ear infections, and — notable to this post — a conflicted relationship with the Cheers spinoff Frasier. When you’re a hyper empathetic kid (read: one who cries at an intrusive thought about the velveteen rabbit), you don’t respond well to humor based on shit repeatedly going wrong in humiliating ways.

Courtesy of COZI TV we’ve…


A friend on Facebook recently asked, what’s something you did in 2020, the pandemic year, that was hard and you are proud of?

I replied that my husband and I moved a 5 bedroom house by ourselves, from Massachusetts to New York State, while still in full quarantine. No help, no Dunkin’ Donuts stops — just us and our truck and many, many trips.

And it was true, in that version of truth you tell most people — the one that lies somewhere between Christmas party chit-chat and a job interview. The truth, but clean it up. Remove the mess…


First up, some meta business.

I’ll be re-posting some stuff over at Medium, including some TLC classic content I rediscovered when my domain renewed and I was reminded that this blog exists.

You can also probably expect, in general, a greater percentage of posts from life at the Little Cabin on The Prairie — my chronicle of homesteading on a small, temporary, and mostly inappropriate plot of land. Think of it like: Annie Dillard, if she watched a lot of TV.

TLDR: There’s a long tale of woe as to why I was living on a 4 acre property a…


Yesterday I took part of the afternoon to put potting soil in a bunch of containers and seed trays.

And today, this:

I know it will melt quickly but still, it feels like one of those not-as-funny-as-someone-thinks April Fool’s day pranks.

So — real talk — I really, really, really hate container gardening. Direct sow is more my jam; crops are supposed to start their life as seeds strewn carelessly into the ground via spray and pray. It’s a wonderful, loose, process — improvised and unfussy, the ‘jazz’ of homesteading. It works because it’s done at a larger scale, and…


This post was originally inspired by a rewatch of the ‘Dealbreakers’ episode of 30 Rock. While I don’t typically dabble in relationship advice, I feel this post — which was originally published over at The Lower Crust — has stood the test of time.

I’m a 30-something year old woman who watches too much TV…

…but I used to be 13 year old girl who watched too much TV. And back in the early 90s, I watched ALL the Snick shows. And like any flannel-wearing, wanna-be weirdo, I loved The Adventures of Pete and Pete. …


I’ve decided to, every Monday, feature a classic post from The Lower Crust, my recently-revived TV and other stuff blog. I wrote most of these around 2011–2016, while I was living in a small Western Mass city near where I went to college. This was the golden age of watchable trash, and re-reading this makes me miss those days of drinking beer and mocking things on twitter (oh, how I miss the good old days of twitter). Enjoy this walk down memory lane.

Everyone uses the end of the year as an excuse to come up with a list of…

Jessica Martin

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store