Homesteading

Anything and everything homestead

Craft Time

I’m sorry I havent been on the blog in over a year. I’m still trying to find myself lol. Just kidding. Life has taken many turns and I’ll blog more about that later but for now I wanted to show you some stuff I’ve been working on.

I love to watch youtube and I found a lovely cat loom knit pattern. I love loom knitting because I cant knit to save my life but have always wanted the coziness of  a knitted hat and scarf. It’s different than crochet. Anywho..I saw this cat and have a great idea for it.

Right now with Halloween coming I’ve decided to make orange and black cats and sell them on etsy and to friends on facebook. You can find links to both on the side bar. I am also going to make some pink ones with a little cancer charm hanging from the neck. All money for those pink ones will be donated to cancer research.

So without further ado here is my cute Halloween cat in orange!

cat-loom-knit

Halloween Cuteness!!

Happy Homesteading!!!  😀

Categories: Skills, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Tips for living and eating healthy Part 1

Tip #1 is eat REAL food. It’s not cheap. This is why it bothers me that the lower incomes have to eat crap. Crap is cheap, many are on fixed incomes and to be healthy and actually eat real whole food is hard.  I told you in another post that it costs me $100 a week to keep myself on a great diet that allows me to be pain free. How many people do you know that have an extra $400 a month per person in their household to eat healthy??  I know of no one! I honestly didnt think we did either, but each week its there. Eating healthy has to be a priority. Dont fall into the Diet Shake trap. To me commercial shakes are not healthy, they are not full of stuff made in a lab not what God designed to go into our body. It has to be a conscience effort each week to find the best, cheapest way to eat real, not just grab yet another package of something that someone has taken the work out of to make it easy… Think Color and lots of it!!

Tip #2 It’s ESSENTIAL that you grow your own food!!  Every family, I dont care where you live, needs to grow something you can eat on your own. YouTube is chalked full of ways to grow food with limited space. Vertical gardens, window gardens, hydroponic, container gardens, you name it, its there. They not only show you how to do it, but many include videos on how to make whatever you need to start with. There just simply is no excuse for not growing food. Seeds are 50 cents a packet or $1.00 and that money will save you a $100 if you do it efficiently. They even have these videos on using a bag of miracle grow. You cut open the top and plant in the bag. That can be thrown on a deck. So $4 and you can grow tons of lettuce, spinach, kale, radishes whatever has shallow roots. Well what is that?? Look it up. It takes work. Nothing in life is free. There is no shame in learning! Be a lifelong learner and then a sense of pride comes when you accomplish something. Its amazing!! FYI garden seed become 3 for $1 at the end of the season so stock up and put them in the freezer for the next year. They will still grow 😉

Tip #3 You need to eat less meat. I”m not saying go Vegan or Vegetarian, although my body does really really well on a Vegan diet, I’m saying meat is expensive. Most families are eating it everyday. As a farmer I know how much it costs to grow out those animals. Cows take two years before you can eat them, unless you eat veal but then its less meat. Even grassfed, I still need to buy hay at $5 a bale.. this year my rabbits and baby calf..less then 6 months old, went through 100 bales of hay. So I bought the cow for $300, spent $500 in hay, will spend another $500 easily because she is now bigger, next winter, and then I have to pay 300-500 for butcher costs. And I’ve waited two years to eat any of this meat! Not to mention the hours spent in the barn hauling poo, and food, and water. I have to mark up the meat or I cant buy another cow to grow for the next two years. We bought a two day old calf for $160..thats a lot of money and now we buy milk replacer at $70 a bag…eat less meat.

But what about Protein????!!!   Omg if I had a nickel for every time I heard that, I’d have enough to buy a full grow cow lol.  Its why diet companies make so much money!! They all claim x amount of protein per serving! The more the better it seems. Tip #4 You are getting more protein than you think with vegetables. Why do you need protein? To build muscle. So what are you doing exercise wise that is building muscle? You have to be honest because if you are not exercising at all, you will get all the protein you need just from veggies alone. As you start to exercise your body needs protein to make and build muscle. If you dont do anything at all your body easily starts burning muscle instead of fat. If you are using it, the body is like..oh wait I cant use that, she/he is using that for pushups..I’ll use this stuff over here(fat). So please do something!! Many people insist you cant live without meat. Now personally my body likes meat..about twice a week. That’s it. If I eat too much my body feels bloated and gross, but that’s me. Get a fitness pal or Fatsecret app for your phone or use it on the internet to calculate your protein consumption. If you are working out fairly regular I’ve read you need half your body weight in grams. Ex. I weight around 180 for I need to have 90 grams a day. I think this is a bit high for me but I listen to my body and its important to know what foods have proteins in them, beans, nuts, any legume really like peas, and kale, broccoli… then eat accordingly.

Tip #5 It’s important to know your own body. It took me a bit to get to where I understood what my body was telling me. When I first started juicing and doing smoothies I was tired, and lightheaded. There are a few reasons this happens. Well first my body was going through a detox time and my body takes longer to detox because of my fibro. Second reason was I wasnt eating or juicing enough. Your body needs a MINIMUM of 1200 calories. Always. Look up calorie intake calculations online for what your body needs or go to a gym and have them help you out. I need 1300-1500 calories on any given day or I get lightheaded. Lack of protein is another reason you might feel lightheaded. If you are working out and you dont fuel your body with what it needs it starts freakin out. That is why you will see lots of body builders drinking protein shakes after or during a workout. You need nutrition after you workout..right away or your body just starts grabbing it where it can, and you dont want it grabbing it from muscle! What works for me is a smoothie for breakfast and then I work out. I dont get sick because its a liquid breakfast. When I finish working out I grab my “snack” which is a juice. It has fruit sugars that can easily be used and it also has protein from the veggies. Now if I’m working extra hard or I havent fueled my body well enough I will start feeling “hungry.” That is when I grab a protein powder. I’ll talk more on that in a minute. Listen to your body, if you are hungry eat, but if you are bored, get a piece of gum lol. Dont eat whatever, have something healthy and just enough to stop you from feeling hungry.

Tip #6 Dont be afraid of Protein Powders. I dont do commercial shakes, but I do use a protein powder on occasion. If you are eating meat every day you probably wont need one, but with me only eating meat a couple times a week, I occasionally use a Vegan Protein powder. I usually put it in my juice for the day. I have learned how to tell if my body want protein for the day, by a feeling I get in the morning. Its usually that I’m hungry. I know weird, but I”m almost never hungry in the morning which is why I started doing a smoothie for breakfast. I dont get hungry normally until 10 am ish. This is the protein powder I use. protein

I wish honestly it was a little more natural but its the best I can find. What I like is it is Berry flavored. Many a juice recipe gone wrong, have been saved by this powder. Its a pea and rice protein instead of whey. Its your choice what you use but because alot of my juices have fruit in them the Very Berry works well instead of a chocolate. Plus I have sensitivities to dairy, eggs, gluten, and peanuts sooooo… many whey proteins give my body a fit.

 

 

 

Categories: Exercise, Skills, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Commercial Diet Shakes…no thanks! (long)

December 21st, 2014. That’s the day I decided I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. I have fibromyalgia. I will always have it, but it doesnt define me anymore 🙂   I am so greatful for the knowledge God has led me to and the monetary funds he enables us to have each month so that I can eat healthy.  There are SOOO many diets out there. Most I dont agree with, a few I do, but the point is you have to find something you can do long term that fits your life, or you will fail.  That’s not to say you wont fail, but I dont see something not working as failing. The only failure is the lack of trying!!

As many of you know I grow organic produce. I love knowing exactly where my food comes from. I dont trust others to make stuff for me. I try to trust people to grow things I cannot but you always have the greed of making a quick buck and knowing that person could easily lie to you. When you buy something you did not grow or make yourself, its a crapshoot. This is why I chose my particular diet to lose weight rather than do commercial shakes.

I used to do commercial shakes a lot. They were so good. Tasted like chocolate or vanilla, had lot of protein. The problem was it was so good and sweet that I kept drinking many a day. Many shake companies out there make shakes that arent real food. You cant take that food in your hand, put it in a blender, dehydrate it and come up with what they have. The ingredient lists are something you need the internet to find out what they are and you cannot pronounce it even if you tried. They claim to burn fat, to stop carbs from turning to fat or sugar, speed up metabolism, and a host of other things. Their plan is to get you addicted to the sweet chocolate you’re craving because you are eating healthier and therefore you buy more. It’s sole purpose is to have you buy more so they make more money.

I dont do commercial shakes because I like to see what I am putting in my body. There are no exotic super foods that are the new craze. There are no metabolism enhancers or fat burners. My shakes use simple nutrition that I can grow myself if need to. They use things my body are adapted to living in Indiana. They are things, that should I grow a garden, are now free nutrition. They are real tangible things I can hold in my hand, eat raw if I choose, or put into a blender or juicer. They are a way of life I can continue to do for the rest of my life.

Make what you put into your body, something that is do-able for the long term, not a quick fix.

 

Happy Homesteading!!   😀

Categories: Exercise | Leave a comment

Juice On!!

Today I’m going to share info with you. Info that I spent time searching up that will save you time. I hope you sat down and watched Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead on Netlix or hulu. If not please make it a point to do it. Dont worry about watching the second one, just watch the first.

Joe Cross has the best site I’ve found for starting to juice. I would suggest if you are starting out to print out is 3 day juice plan and start by using those recipes to juice once a day or however many times you want to. Here is the page with the plans. http://www.rebootwithjoe.com/rebooting/plans/  If you dont have a juicer there are many smoothie recipes on his site as well. Juicing is better if you are going to do it because your body doesnt need to digest anything. It will absorb the juice within 15 minutes. When you blend you still get the juice but with it is the pulp and your body has to take the time and effort to digest the pulp. Depending on why you are doing it, its not always a bad thing. For me my body needed rests throughout the day because I take a long time to digest proteins. So I smoothie or juice for breakfast. I actually get sick if I eat actual food for breakfast. A juice allows my body to take the time it needs to get started in the morning by not having to digest hardly anything. I then do my “juice” for the day and eat a light lunch and light dinner. If I’m hungry after dinner, which is usually my binge time, I will try really hard to grab a handful of seeds or other nuts (not peanuts) because again my body takes forever to digest them so I am full until bedtime.

Here is a great guide to colors of foods and what they do. https://dnetproxy.appspot.com/juicing-for-health.com/color-food-groups.html  This will help you as you put together juices for yourself. I ended up copy pasting into a word document and then printing it out on card stock as references for myself. Many of Joe’s recipes combine a couple, but he sticks to color juices which usually have more of that particular color. My week usually looks like 1 Purple day, 1 orange day, 1 red day, 1 Yellow day, 1 green day and then two days are free for whatever juice I can make with sale items. So lets say blueberries are on sale and black grapes..yup I hit the jackpot this week! I was able to actually make a blue/black day. I try to make two green days if I can and then most of the time I have another orange day. I save my white veggies for dinners and lunches except I drink 8 oz of ginger water each morning while I make my breakfast juice. There are many mornings I am not even remotely hungry. If I drink that ginger water when I wake up. It actually gets me hungry!

Another great site I found the other day is this http://www.justonjuice.com/ It has recipes and stuff on it as well. Their plans and grocery lists suck, but lots of good info you can read while drinking a juice or something!   😉

Those of you that are struggling with multiple food allergies, please look into Leaky Gut. I cant find the article I read last week but it said that once your gut is damaged, one food leaks through. You become intolerant because your body attacks the proteins leaking through. So you eliminate that food, only to find yet another you are intolerant to. Well that is because your gut is not fixed and the food you used to be fine eating has not started leaking through because you took away the other. Now your body is fighting against the new food leaking through. It causes you to keep eliminating “intolerant foods” and pretty soon more items are leaking through. Leaky Gut is a horrid thing. I believe I have this and that is the reason I have my fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. Leaky Gut takes forever to heal and you need to be on a super strict diet but little to no hope of eating your food again. By eating fruits and vegetables and juicing, for me, it has helped repair my gut enough that I can eat one of my trigger food, not much, once a week. I usually do greek yogurt because it has a lot of bacteria in it that my gut needs. It also talked about rotation of food and to not eat the same food for 4 days but I cant do that. I found this is working and I just keep away from the foods that cause me issues.

As I sit and type I’m regretting the chicken I had in my wrap for lunch.. argh. I found also that by adding Apple Cider Vinegar to my weekly juicing, that helps. If I eat something that is making me feel bad, like this chicken…. I just make a juice that has that in it, and it helps break that down some. Any acidic fruit helps me really. Lemon and ACV are the best. Its along the same line as what a marinade does to meat.  Here is the juice I make when I eat meat. I usually sip on it throughout the night after dinner.

Digestion Drink

  • 4 Carrots
  • 1 Orange Peeled
  • 1 Granny Smith apple(use it because its more bitter)
  • 1 TBS Apple Cider Vinegar (with the mother)
  • 1 small Piece of Ginger

Juice the 4 carrots, orange and apple. Add in ACV and stir. Ginger you have two options. If you like ginger you can juice it too. If not my suggestion is to take some ginger and cut it up. Add a little water into the bottom of the jar to cover part of the ginger. Let that sit overnight and then you can pour off the water into your juice to add the flavor and enzymes. It really needs the ginger to help cover the ACV though so try to add some in. Its great for digestion   🙂

I’ll share one more recipe that I got from an ebook. I made this last night and this is my new go-to pudding. I cant eat pudding anymore..its tragic but dairy hates me although I love it! BTW I hate avocado’s..like mega hate but this is awesome so try it even if you hate them because this is a great way to get some into your diet!

Chocolate Orange Mousse

  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1 banana
  • 2-3 TBS unsweetened Cocoa powder
  • 1-2 TBS Maple syrup
  • juice of one orange
  • 1/2 tsp orange zest

Blend avocado, banana, cocoa powder, taste and add maple syrup. Add juice of an orange and blend again. Eat or chill in the fridge.

I found that my blender did not want to blend those three ingredients. I would suggest juicing the orange first. Then put the liquid in the blender with the ingredients and blend. In a pinch you can use orange juice. I added my orange pulp into my blender and I also waited on the maple syrup until last and stirred it in by hand. This dessert is 340 cal per serving and serves 2. When I made mine I put it into 3 jelly jars and got 3 servings. Avocados are high in fat and cals but its the good kind so eat up..just not everyday!

 

Happy Homesteading!!   😀

Categories: Juicing, Recipes | 1 Comment

Vegan Farmer?? Well Almost

Vegan and Farmer dont quite go hand in hand now do they? Nothing like telling someone, “Yah, I’m a farmer. I have sheep, chickens, rabbits, ducks, turkeys, and pigs that I raise for meat. Oh you want to go to lunch?? I need a place thats Vegan.”  They of course give you the weirdest look ever! So here is the deal. I’m NOT vegan, But I have to eat vegan..sort of.

About two years ago, almost three now, I started having issues. It was around the time I switched everything to organic around my homestead. It started off that I couldnt drink milk from the store. Well that’s ok because I wanted to go raw anyway and guess what? I could drink raw. Woohoo! Then I found out I had a gluten intolerance. Well that totally sucked butt and I did a post on that. I started freakin out because I love me my grain carbs and I was making everything from scratch!! Bread, pasta, cake, cookies…argh..I’m drooling! Then I found out I was intolerant to eggs. Soon it was peanuts… Yeah I was going nuts..not literally though!  What the heck was going on with me??!!  It’s come to the point now that I can not have any dairy at all..no cheese, no raw milk, no kefir, no yogurt… I feel nauseated when I eat peanuts, chicken, pork, eggs, gluten, dairy..turkey..am I missing anything;…Man I hope not because whats left?? Veggies and fruit!

How can I be a farmer raising meat for others and our family when I cant eat anything? About the only meat I can eat at the moment is grassfed animal meat. Rabbit because we feed no grain, grassfed beef, and our own grassfed lamb. Thats a short list..although two of those are extremely economical for us to raise here but still. Well on top of all this I am diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. So life so far as been a real bumpy, learning curve, trip right now. About 6-8 weeks ago I started doing Insanity…sorry I didnt finish posting on my days   :(..anywho I figured if I am going to hurt, I”ll give my body a reason! Well after a month into it I hurt my knees and they still hurt even after dumping that program. I have many other videos that I can use that are not so extreme but my weight is not coming off.  Researching the web brought about a lot of changes for me.

I came across someone saying I should watch Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. That is changed their life. So I did. Its on Netflix and Hulu, you guys should check it out because IT has changed my life!! Seriously.  This man Joe Cross is an inspiration. He was rich to begin with but now he’s even richer because he found a need in America and across the world and that is to eat healthier. He’s all about juicing to change your life. Now before I go any further, I’m going to tell you, its expensive. I totally get why poor people are unhealthy. We really cant afford for me to keep eating this way. Notice I said me..not my family. Here in good ol Indiana shopping at Aldi’s, its $100 a week just for meals for me. Then another $100 for the rest of the family.

It would be so easy to go on a $60 a month pill for my fibro versus $400 a month in actual food. I’m sure if you did the same juice multiple times a week it might be cheaper, but its about variety and color so I dont do that.  This is why healthcare is so easy to go to instead of using what God has given us here on Earth to use. A person making minimum wage with a house payment and a car payment cant afford to juice and smoothie, salad, and fruit their way to health. This is a sad world we live in, but its the truth!

Sorry I”m going off on a tangent. So I took the plunge one week when we had extra money. I juiced for breakfast and a snack after lunch. One juice split in half because it was about a quart. I still ate lots of processed stuff that I could handle because it was cheaper. I had no idea how to prepare meals that were real food that didnt have eggs, cheese, milk, flour, or meat in them! Those are staples for most Americans and the homesteader! Well I started noticing a difference in my body. I didnt hurt as much when I got up in the morning. That difference just in a week made me take the plunge to do Joe’s 10 Day plan.

In that 10 day plan you eat, juice, and make smoothies. He has a grocery list and recipes to follow, all Vegan by the way. Easy peasy!! So after the 10 days what have I noticed? Except for weather changes that affect millions of us, I no longer hurt when I wake up. I still have fatigue, but its so minimal I just schedule a small nap in my day, most days. Instead of being confined to the couch. I am able to work hard on my homestead and not have to take days laying on the couch for my body to recover like before. I can eat one of those “intolerance” foods again, but only one and only once a week. I havent noticed lbs dropping like flies like some other juicing people but fibromyalgia is an inflammatory disease. My body is working so hard to stay uninflamed that I am ok with taking forever to lose the weight…ok not really but I’m going with it   😉  I dont feel bloated, exhausted all day, FAT…my joints don’t ache, my stomach doesnt feel like I have heartburn, I can actually fall asleep at night. I feel awesome!

So for now I’m sticking with the whole Veganism because my body cant handle the things vegetarians and omnivores eat!  I listen to my body and if I want a small piece of lamb, a burger, or some rabbit soup made with gluten free pasta, then I abide. My body really doesnt crave it honestly. Yes I still raise animals and I”m not a Peta fan, but my body right now needs only fruits and veggies, minimal grains, and tons of water so I’m going to do it. I will find the money somehow to keep going as long as I can. I highly suggest if you are suffering from any sort of inflammatory disease that you give this a try. Be sure to add in cinnamon, tumeric, ginger, and garlic! Juice once a day if you have to, make a smoothie if you dont have a juicer, and get 90% of your nutrients from veggies and fruit if you can. It will change your life, I promise!  Even if you are dirt poor, watch Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. It will inspire you to do whatever it takes to try it just for a week. Use his plans on his site, he has pdf’s for free. As spring approaches I’m looking forward to a huge drop in grocery bills for me because I can grow so much on my own 🙂 I encourage you to do the same!

 

Happy Homesteading!!   😀

Categories: Gardening, Homesteading, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Insanity Day 57

Wow yesterday I was sore. I kept moving and walking to try to keep my hamstring from locking up but it was slow going all day. Not only did the muscles around my knees hurt from the previous days but now I had to try to compensate for this other leg. I decided to break out my old massage chinese liniments. There is an ice liniment, a heat liniment, and a combo liniment. I went with the combo. Its pretty much icyhot without all the extra crud you dont need. I smothered my entire back leg with it and around the knee. What people dont realize is your muscles have two attachment sites and if you dont put stuff on those..it really does no good. Because I knew anatomy I knew I had pulled my short head of my bicep femoris. I know.. fancy. So I made sure I placed liniment on both attachments of that muscle, set it in with some moist heat and went to bed. This morning I was good as gold!..ok about silver..ish…

Todays workout is a cardio recovery. We watched the video ahead of time last night so I could figure out if I could do it or not. He still does a lot of leg work in that video and its more of a yoga thing so I chose not to do cardio recovery. No way my leg would heal if I placed that much work on it. So today I opted for my go to core work video. I dont feel that insanity at this point was working my abs much so I opted for a Yoga/pilates mix from Crunch. I know…bad Eileen..its not from beach body..oh well Crunch videos are awesome and I have a few I love including this one. Here it is.workoutvideo

This is my all time favorite video for ab and arm work. Plus it was super great for my hamstring because only a few exercises actually use that and I could mostly modify with bending my leg and just using my glute. Dont let this cute girl fool you. You will definitely get an upper arm and ab workout and it is very comparable to the cardo recovery and I dont feel it is putting me behind at all.

This morning I asked my hubby if he was going to work out first and he said he couldnt physically do it right now. I know he is pushing more than I am but I know my limits and if I have to do the entire insanity program again I will. I love the workouts..well minus the cardio recovery really. But once I’m not in pain anymore I’ll end up dumping ellen and going back to the insanity and doing the cardio recovery.

Keep strong, keep fit, so you can keep

Happy Homesteading!!   😀

Categories: Exercise | Leave a comment

Farming by Months

Last January I wrote a post about Being Prepared. You can read that here: Being Prepared  It is now the next year and it’s October. So again the hype about the winter storms coming…it’s going to be the coldest most bitter winter we’ve seen in a long time….. really? Ok well are you prepared???  You’d think that after the horrid winter we had last year that people would be a little more prepared, but they are not. Yes most are buying propane now while it’s not $6 a gallon, but as far as other preps..non existent.

It’s mainly the time of  year that gets me thinking about this. On our homestead you have months pretty much mapped out. So in case you don’t have a map..here is what you should or could be doing for each month based on what we do. I’m sure we are not listing everything, but its a nice general list.

  • Jan- Start your cold weather seedlings such as celery,broccoli, peas, lettuces and other greens. RELAX!!
  • Feb- Start your beginning summer seedlings like cucumbers, green beans if you want, corn if you want, onions, leeks, whatever else cold weather you didnt start, start working on  your chicken, turkey, rabbit tractors- Start Un-Relaxing   😦
  • March- Start your warm weather vegetables like tomatoes, green peppers – start barn repairs and maintenance -Till part of the garden and Start planting cold weather crops late march (the jan seedlings), purchase live animals to raise for your freezer, finish your animal tractors
  • April- finish planting your cold weather vegetables( your feb seedlings and any other you seed straight into the garden)  and finish tilling the rest of the garden.- start pasturing your rabbits and chicks(on warm days)-deep clean out the barn and start compost piles mixed with grass clippings – do a food inventory and see what you have that you will be saving for the coming winter (start buying extras of stuff all summer)
  • May- Plant the remaining vegetables, weed, pasture animals, finish all other barn projects and start all your summer projects, start gathering wood for winter
  • June, July, August- farming is in full swing, harvest, weed, dehydrate food for winter, can food for winter, all the scraps from canning and regular eating dehydrate into winter food for the rabbits and chickens- dont waste anything!! Whatever you cant use should be in compost piles breaking down all summer. plant cover crops of buckwheat on places that are done harvesting, go on family fishing trips to gather more food for the freezer!
  • September- Do a food inventory and see how much you have on hand for winter-. finish buying remaining products and start putting compost onto the parts of the garden that is done.- Plant cover crops like oats and radishes for over winter on all late harvest areas. Start preparing the barn for winter. Start organizing the freezer to fit the animals you bought.
  • October- Butcher all animals and fill your freezer. Make sure you have your inventory list full or mostly full. Finish garden areas for winter, finish barn projects and get things ready for your year round animals to be overwintered. start hunting for more winter storage(if you cant hunt, find someone that does, if you dont like guns-learn to trap), finish yard clean ups, finish your wood harvest and if you havent already-move seasoned wood into a close area for easy winter reach.
  • November- Brace for that horrid winter coming lol. Finish your minor purchases for winter, finish anything you forgot about..RELAX!!
  • December- Continue to brace for the winter coming that has not yet come… Relax when you hear its still on the way because you have enough!!  RELAX!!

Recently we have been watching Extreme Preppers. Some people call them crazy, but if you watch you get many good ideas! Yes I agree some are just plain nuts, but honestly they all are doing things we should be doing..storing food, water, finding alternatives for when our power is out, and making sure they are safe. Those basic principles are what everyone should be doing. It doesnt matter if you live in an apartment or not. Find a location in the country of a friends house..your “bug out location” as they call it. Plant a garden with them so you can prepare for winter in your apartment. Grow vine foods in your windows, use your fish tank to grow some lettuce. Youtube is filled with prepping secrets and alternative ways of growing food. The only reason that anyone cant be prepared, in my opinion, is you are lazy and dont want to. Well dont be coming to my house! I’ve told you all here what do to!!

Check out my next post on making a food inventory list!

 

Happy Homesteading!!!   😀

Categories: Homesteading, Skills | 1 Comment

The Do Nothing Farmer

This post comes as a rant really. I have some die hard customers who are awesome. Lately I’ve had a few new ones try to come around. It seems that everyone thinks that farmers do absolutely nothing all day and that they are always home. In today’s culture of the busy city folks, two family incomes, and working 12-14 hours a day, the farmer seems to somehow be exempt from all that.

Here is the reality. We are busier and work longer hours than you do. I mean all of you. Not only do we wake up at the butt crack of dawn to feed everything we have, but we continue till dusk. We feed, we water, we scoop poop, we harvest, we plant, we weed, we take care of injuries, fix things that are broken, chop wood, go to auctions, meet clients, we take care of not only the farm stuff but if your a woman farmer you are taking care of everything else in the house as well. We do dishes, vacuum, clean the entire house, can things, dehydrate things, bake things, make yogurt, make cheese, crochet or knit or spin yarn, we keep the household animals aka children alive. We fix their injuries and fix breakfast, lunch, and dinner. 

Oh to sit behind a desk all day or have actual conversations with grown adults.,,  To think your farmer has time any hour of the day you choose and whatever day you want for you to show up is just plain WRONG. In case you didn’t know, I’m giving you the heads up now. Farmers are extremely busy all day every day. We dont get snow days off, rainy weather off, or 90+ days off. We are outside working on something or feeding something at the very least.

If you are new to this whole homesteading thing, I’m sorry I’ve come off a bit irritated. You have to be extremely considerate of your farmers time or they will drop you as a client as fast as you can say Manure. When you call and say you are coming at a specific time be ON TIME. We have to drop what we are doing and rearrange our schedule a bit so that we have time to meet with you and talk. If you pick a specific day to come DON’T reschedule unless you absolutely have to. Most of us have our days planned a few in advance and have to again rearrange things so that we have that time. We dont want to be scooping poop while trying to chat with you because you needed to reschedule and the barn should have been cleaned out the last time you were suppose to meet, but we put it off because you were coming and then didn’t. If you have to reschedule DON’T WAIT TILL THE LAST MINUTE. That is the worst thing ever. That is rude and disrespectful. 

Today I had a guy text me and tell me he wasn’t coming tonight. Why am I so upset. Well we were suppose to meet last week around wed. We set up a time for him to come, 6:30. He canceled at 6 because he wanted to bring his wife and she couldnt make it. That is fine. I totally understand. He is a new client and wants to see the farm together. So we set up a time for saturday at 6:30. He texts me again at 6 and tells me he cant make it because he would like to bring his parents out also and they have previous engagements. Sigh..ok…so we reschedule for Monday at 6:30. He texts me again around 5 ish to tell me that he is unable to make the appointment because a client of his needed something. So being the nice person I am I reschedule again for today at 6:30. So far each time he has picked the time and the day. He also had pre-ordered 25 meat birds. I really needed to talk to him about the size he wanted them and if he cared if some were a bit smaller because I would like to give them to him all at once. Today we text a few times and of course it had rained a ton all day today so at 5 he says its still a bit rainy. I text back saying there are no more storms in the forcast and tonight is still fine to come out. He text me at 6:24 saying he will not be out because his wife doesnt feel like coming out.

ARE YOU SERIOUS?? I’m sorry but I have been more than nice. I put off projects today because I knew I wouldnt get them done before his arrival. One project that got put on hold was putting in a new window into my rabbit barn because it broke out the other day and I dont have one!! The rain has been pouring into my rabbitry for the last few days because he was suppose to come and I didnt have time between the rain and his arrival to start the process of putting it in. I sent him a polite text that I was hoping to talk to him about the chickens. I will just get them butchered and he will have to accept the size they are. If he decides he doesnt want them to let me know so I can resell them. I also told him that the next day he schedules he needs to come and not reschedule because it has been stressful trying to be home.

I will give you a little tip. If you are constantly late and rescheduling times, please dont bother to contact me at all. It’s normally a 3 strikes you’re out rule for me. I will let you in on another secret. I dont NEED you to be a client. I have people who would gladly show up and meet with me. They will buy my stuff the same as you, but they wont inconvenience me. I try really hard to be available but just imagine if all my clients were constantly rearranging and rescheduling. I would never get anything done. Please dont be one of those people. Make your farmer your best friend and treat him like you would a king. Remember he’s the source of your dinner   😉

 

Happy Homesteading!!   😀

 

Categories: Homesteading | 1 Comment

Pictures of Mary Moo

Well after a very hard couple of days, Mary Moo is now finally eating steadily. Just FYI make sure your calf is being weaned when you tell them you are coming to get her… grr… Not only did she miss momma something terrible, but she hadnt been on her own until the afternoon we picked her up. It was not the best transition. Anyway, it’s in the past and I’m really trying hard to let it go, but it was just mean how they did it and they made us take part.

So we have been working with her on halter training, leading, and today she got a lunge line tie out session. She is doing very well. She is probably..maybe 2 months old. I’m going to go with that for my own sanity. She is a Jersey calf. She will be sweet one day, I know it. Right now she’s just not understanding what is going on. She does however have a small bond with me..come on over and try to walk towards her..lol.

ok without further ado..here she is.

Happy Homesteading!!   😀

Keeping a close eye on us.

Keeping a close eye on us.

She's not really that skinny..she was a LOT freaked out, but she is underweight.

She’s not really that skinny..she was a LOT freaked out, but she is underweight.

First picture home

First picture home

Tie out trial run, with me having a watchful eye

Tie out trial run, with me having a watchful eye

Resting in the field.

Resting in the field.

Irritated I snuck up and took this picture.

Irritated I snuck up and took this picture.

 

Categories: Homesteading, Livestock | 1 Comment

Mary Moo

Hi guys! I know it’s been forever right?! How are all you doing? How’s the homesteading going? I hope well. Here is a very strange year. I don’t like moving to a new place. I’ll just say that right now. Glad it’s not going to happen anymore in my life. It’s been 3 months of chaos really. I think we have everything done with the house that needs fixed quickly. Now more projects are on the back burner.

I’m one of those people that seems to have to have everything done now and God has shown me that is so not what he is like. Lack of money is really hindering my homestead. My garden has been the worst its ever been yet somehow I”m still surviving with the garden shares..even if I have none left for me really. There are things that I didnt tell them I was growing like onions and potatoes. The corn didnt grow, the green beans grew but I still wasnt happy. The leaves were yellowish green instead of green. I dont know how those beans made it to maturity. My cabbage piddled out. My carrots never grew…two plantings at a friends garden and one at mine..no carrots..what is up with that?? Not all the same seed or the same company so I guess no carrots for us this winter unless I buy a bunch of organic at the store and can those. I might. Despite all that I seem to be selling things.

Not only have my garden share people been happy enough, but I am selling these dark cornish hens like crazy. I actually have a 3rd batch hatching right now!! I cant have enough it seems. Some person bought 25 and didnt bat an eye at my price..which made me think I should have charged more! I have bunnies up the wazzoo right now, 38 babies to be exact. Luckily those are destined for my freezer minus a few to a guy who is trading meat for a beehive set up for me   😉

Anyway..so with no money, a part time job and not everything done…hey what’s one more thing right?? Well I’ve decided I now hate driving 40 minutes every friday for my meat and milk. I still buy burger and milk where I used to. I still will for at least 3 years..but we are getting a calf!!!  I contacted my beef guy and he has a little jersey heifer available.  We plan on getting a little boy of some sort of breed for meat this year also so my new calf wont spend the winter alone. We pick her up next weekend. I’ve been paying on her here and there when I go buy my meat from him. He is a super nice guy. I will have pictures up as soon as we get her! I’ve decided to name her Mary Moo.  It’s just hard to build a stall when you are so busy babysitting and working that you dont have a spare minute. What minutes I do find I am either in the garden or in with animals. I still have 6 hides to flesh out and tan, plus now to build this stall. Oh did I mention we have no grass lol. Stupid lack of rain around here has me a beautiful brown lawn. Luckily when it was raining in june I was able to get some of my grass baled. I’m still hoping for one more cutting before winter but we are already feeding the lambs hay and have been for about 3 weeks. THAT is why we are getting a calf and not a cow. I could get a cow and make payments on her. She is ready to have her baby in two months..but I cannot feed that big of a girl plus a baby right now. I’d rather work my way up with Mary Moo and get to know her for a few years before I go to milk.

Well there you have it.. a chaotic post about my chaotic farm and our new addition coming Sat the 16th   🙂

 

Happy Homesteading!!   😀

Categories: Homesteading, Livestock | Leave a comment

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