Green burial news and updates as seen and heard from Piedmont Pine Coffins and its cottage industrial home, the off-grid Melleray Farmstead.

 

Checklist for those dearly departing

I’m not dying, the old soldier told me, I’m just going on a long trip. Well, I just started a long trip in Central America. Here’s my checklist for those dearly departing. Lemme ‘splain. If you’re catching up, this is Don from Piedmont Pine Coffins. I’m in Costa Rica — alone for a time, before family […]

Death and snorkeling in Costa Rica

In this part of Costa Rica, you see new beasts. New to a North Carolina lad, anyway. It’s Don from Piedmont Pine Coffins checking in. I’m on a sojourn at the jungle tip of the Nicoya Peninsula. While I’m away, my design partner John Jull will be making and delivering the coffins. Thank you, John! […]

Best cemetery in Cary NC — top three tips to help you choose

You want details on the best cemetery in Cary NC or surrounding areas. Well, this page is a good place to start. In the video top tips list below, you’ll find basic points that, frankly, few people know. To begin, I’m Don from Piedmont Pine Coffins. Over the last five years I’ve dealt with lots […]

Best Funeral Homes in Cary, NC

If you found this page, you probably want details about the best funeral homes in Cary, NC. To begin, I’m Don from Piedmont Pine Coffins. Over the last five years I’ve dealt with lots of funeral homes and cemeteries in Cary and the Triangle. You can view more about that here. I’ve been on the local […]

Pine coffins and skunk cycles of life and death

Message to skunks:  Safe passage on the roads. Mid-February is breeding season for skunks, and you are reminded of that every year because the poor polecats start showing up dead on the roads around here. Starting in late January, they crisscross country lanes looking to make family connections, and some of them meet their maker […]

GoFundMe funerals vs John 19:39-40

GoFundMe funerals. You’ve probably heard of them. Suddenly, on the motorway, a mother and her two toddlers are killed in an accident. The mother happens to be “too poor to die,” so her Christian church rallies to pay funeral expenses in excess of $20K. One member mounts a GoFundMe campaign that makes the rounds on […]

So that our love may blossom

I always listen to this one special song in December, and I catch a weep. Listen below, and you’ll catch some monastic wisdom. If you’re just joining us, we are Piedmont Pine Coffins. In our death work and off-grid farmstead life here in central North Carolina, US of A, we take inspiration from monks and […]

Top 4 Ways to Reduce Funeral Costs

How can a family bring down funeral costs for a loved one? Here are four top ways, tried and true. Enacting even one of these can save you thousands. First off, this PSA is brought to you by Piedmont Pine Coffins. We make green-manufactured pine coffins (actually, rectangular caskets, to be precise), and we help […]

What’s a Weep, and why I wish you one

Do you ever catch a Weep? I caught a Weep this morning from a memory 35 years old. The Spirit moves over the face of the waters, and these days maybe via blogs and FaceBook too, so permit me to explain. But first, for the many new readers: This is Don from Piedmont Pine Coffins, […]

Countercultural coffins and urns

In a radio interview I did recently, here are words that came out of my mouth: We always wanted to be countercultural — in an ADMIRABLE way.  Revelatory. Never knew I thought that till that moment. Really, the things a soul will pronounce on when you’re distracted by wires and microphones. I was referring to the […]

Decline and fall of the Romaine Empire

At Melleray Farmstead, cottage-industrial home to Piedmont Pine Coffins, there’s a big garden with a deer-proof fence. Go to market with lettuce? Yes, please, that’s the dream. But that was before the decline and fall of my romaine empire. For new readers just joining in, we operate on 32 pleasant acres of fields and woods […]

The outhouse joke

The outhouse joke. Recently, when coffinworks visitors Marshall and Donald toured our place, it called to mind their growing-up years on a dairy farm in Iredell County and the following outhouse story: My father had an outhouse with two seats. One day one of the hired hands went down to use it. Well he was […]

DIY Coffin and Edge-Glued Panels

DIY coffin enthusiasts: here’s news from the industrial woodworking complex: Edge-glued panels. Read on below for the details. For new readers, we are Piedmont Pine Coffins, and we help families hold more affordable funerals — naturally. We make and sell pine coffins (using hand tools only!) and we also offer a set of DIY coffin plans […]

The freedom to hoist one sail

I am ever and still caught in the breeze of a smile I once saw. The smile of a certain young monk. For new readers, we are Piedmont Pine Coffins. We help families do more affordable funerals, naturally. In our work and in our life, we take some inspiration from monks and monasteries down through […]

Grave digging DIY

Grave digging DIY: Yes, you can. Recently a family nearby bought a coffin from us and buried on their own land. Here’s how they prepared the gravesite. For readers just joining in, we are Piedmont Pine Coffins in North Carolina, USA. We spread the news about natural burial, and we make pine box coffins with only […]