Our First Month on the New Homestead

Our First Month on the New Homestead

So we’ve just finished out first month (month and a half, really) and I wanted to share what we’ve done, and haven’t been able to do in our first month. For those of you who haven’t been following our blog, however, a little background first: My husband and I grew up in a small farming town in Northern Virginia — yes, there were small farming towns here 20 years ago — and enjoyed childhoods of chasing fireflies, riding our bikes on dirt roads, and generally getting into good, wholesome trouble. We both feel “at home” and “ourselves” when we’re outside […]

Guide to Saving Tomato Seeds

Guide to Saving Tomato Seeds

Your tomato plants have given you an entire summer of produce. However, the leaves are starting to brown, you’re not getting any more blossoms, and the days are getting shorter. As you’re wrapping up your last canning jars of spaghetti sauce and pizza sauce, it’s a good time to start planning for next year’s garden. Sign up for our newsletter

How to Make Butter At Home

How to Make Butter At Home

Over the weekend the Mr and I ran out of butter. Since I’ve been on this green/organic/homemade kick I decided I would make my own instead of buying from the store! According to Bon Appetit it may be a waste of time, but I wanted to be able to call it my own. I love the idea of making butter! You put one ingredient in and get two ingredients out! Making homemade butter couldn’t be more simple! Ingredients heavy whipping cream that’s it! No, really! Have fun with it and try adding the following: cinnamon and sugar chopped fresh herbs garlic […]

This Is Why We Homestead…

This Is Why We Homestead…

This is the reason that we homestead: Meet Jack. This sweet, bubbly, happy, FULL of energy little boy is my one and only. When my husband and I first got married, we decided we didn’t want kids. We loved our laid-back lifestyle. We loved sleeping in on the weekends and having the freedom to do whatever we wanted. However, about a year into marriage, I changed my mind. We weren’t lazy people by nature. We both thrive on projects, accomplishments, and challenges. So this lifestyle we enjoyed so much, was actually very counter to our own natures. It was too […]

Easy Crockpot Applesauce For Canning

Easy Crockpot Applesauce For Canning

This easy, two-part recipe for applesauce is one of my favorites for Fall. Apples are incredibly abundant in the Fall and can be collected at a Pick-Your-Own, a local farmer’s market, or, if you’re lucky, your own backyard tree. In fact, I used this recipe, minus the sugar and cinnamon, to make a large batch of applesauce/homemade baby food for the little one and froze it into ice cubes. You can make your applesauce following the same recipe in a saucepan on the stove if you’re short on time. However using the crockpot is much easier and you don’t have to […]

How to Make an Herbal Tincture

How to Make an Herbal Tincture

Herbal tinctures are an excellent way of consuming medicinal herbs and preserving your herbal medicine for a very long time. I’m currently learning all about making tinctures, medicinal teas, and salves in Herbal Academy’s Introductory Herbal Course. When I was a kid, playing in the woods behind my house, I used to collect different stones, bark, ferns, etc. and combine them all together in a giant washpan filled with rain water. I knew even back then that plants and minerals held “magical” qualities. Now, taking this course, I’ve discovered that that childish play was what I was always meant to […]

How to Protect Your Plants From Frost

How to Protect Your Plants From Frost

Planting a Fall vegetable garden is always a gamble. You never know when the first frost is going to come, how many weeks of good weather we’ll have, or if a freak snow storm is going to wipe everything out. I like this resource by the Farmer’s Almanac that gives you the estimated last and first frost dates for your area: Frost Dates. Simply put in your zipcode and click “Change”. However, your local topography can affect your likelihood of frost. The Frost Dates given by the Farmer’s Almanac are for a light freeze – 29° to 32° – which will likely […]

Homemade BBQ Sauce for Canning

Homemade BBQ Sauce for Canning

The internet is full of recipes for homemade BBQ sauce. If you do a google search for homemade BBQ sauce, you get 2,280,000 results. Over 2 million! (HINT: most of them combine ketchup, mustard and brown sugar and call it done!) Taking three store-bought, pre-made condiments and mixing them together and calling them BBQ sauce, doesn’t quite do it for me. Another motivation for me to start making BBQ sauce at home is the wee little one. I pour my favorite BBQ sauce on everything – meat, fries, mac n cheese. Everything. Little one has figured out if mama likes it, […]

20 Must Haves For Your Equine First Aid Kit

20 Must Haves For Your Equine First Aid Kit

Horses are often a common animal on a homestead – whether as a pet or recreational animal or as a plow-puller or form of transportation. A first aid kit is a necessity on any farm and is often something you should have handy before you need it. Build a kit for both the barn, and the trailer if you have one, so you’ll always have what you need, when you need it. The list I’ve compiled below I made with caring for the horses in mind, but many of these can be used for humans and other livestock as well. Add a […]

Composting 101: a Guide to Making Nutrient Rich Compost at Home

Composting 101: a Guide to Making Nutrient Rich Compost at Home

If you’re gardening, you should also be composting. Composting is a simple, easy and free way to add quality nutrients to your soil, and better soil means happier plants! But the thing I love most about composting, is that is takes what would normally be scraps that would end up in the trashcan and re-purposes them. It gives them a second life. That banana that you ate will go to fuel you, and the peel will go to fuel your garden! It’s a perfect cycle and nothing gets wasted. Sign up for our newsletter