5 Ways to Avoid Garden Burnout

5 Ways to Avoid Garden Burnout

As the seed catalogs flood our mailboxes, glorious thoughts of beautifully colored fruits and vegetables surround our minds.  We picture ourselves strolling through weedless gardens, as the birds sing, plucking the fruit of our labor, with just a glow of perspiration on our face!  Psht.  The reality of the garden is much different that the fantasy described above.  The truth is that manure must be spread, seedlings die, bugs come, equipment breaks and tools get lost, and the WEEDS.  Can anyone relate??  Let's get real and discuss "5 Ways to Avoid Garden Burnout"! How to Have a Weed-Free Vegetable Garden Over...

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What Homesteaders Really Want for Christmas

What Homesteaders Want for Christmas – Homesteading “Must-Haves”

I think all homesteaders look forward to Christmas!  Why?  Because it's a time when they look forward to sales (and possible gifts!) on the tools they want and need to be more sustainable!  If you love a homesteader, you need this "What Homesteaders Want for Christmas - Homesteading "Must-Haves""! You'll never find me at a Black Friday sale.  Nor will you find me at a mall, strolling around with bags in both arms.  Christmas  brings out the worst in a consumer-driven society.  However, on the bright side, Christmas can bring discounts on much desired items for your homestead.  Whether you...

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canning apples for baking

Canning Apples for Baking

I LOVE fall, it's absolutely my favorite season!  One of the things I look forward to is the gorgeous harvest of apples in all varieties!  We've simply got to stash some of that flavor away for winter, so let's get down to "Canning Apples for Baking"! What Are the Best Apples for Canning? Great question!  Jonogold, Braeburn, Granny Smith, Golden Delicious and Pink Lady all make great choices to can!  You want a nice, firm apple that will hold up to the processing! What Supplies Will I need?? 10-12 pounds of fresh apples Water-bath canner Quart jars, lids and rings (wide-mouth will be...

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How to Can Dry Beans

How to Can Dry Beans in a Pressure Canner

I love canning.  There, I admitted it.  The feeling of opening jars of homemade goodness during the cold winter months is unparalleled.  So today, let's explore one of my favorite meal starters with "How to Can Dry Beans in a Pressure Canner"! You're going to need a few things to get started: Pressure Canner (I like this one)  You MUST use a pressure canner for beans or any other low acid food!  A water bath canner simply does not get hot enough to kill botulism! Dry Beans (kidney, navy or pinto) Quart sized canning jars with lids and rings Salt ...

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Homemade Christmas Gift Ideas from the Kitchen

113 Homemade Christmas Gift Ideas from the Kitchen

  It doesn't have to be the holiday season to think about gift giving.   It's the height of canning season, which is the perfect time to be thinking about home canned gifts!  With more people turning away from consumerism and buying local, home canned gifts are always appreciated and will bring compliments for months to come!  So, here's my "Homemade Christmas Gift Ideas from the Kitchen"! I rarely purchase gifts for those outside the immediate family anymore.  Store bought gifts often times seem impersonal and last minute.  Homemade gifts, especially home canned food, sends a lasting message of comfort and thoughtfulness to...

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54 WAys to BE More Sustainable

54 Ways to Be More Sustainable

In "54 Ways to Be More Sustainable", you'll discover big and small ways and ideas to promote sustainability in your home...no matter where you live! Creating more sustainability and self-reliance in your life brings more freedom from unfulfilling jobs, stress and debt.  By becoming more sustainable, we gain confidence and freedom that we can indeed provide quite a bit for ourselves!  Where to begin to become more sustainable in our lives?   54 Sustainable Living Tips and Ideas 1.  Take Inventory  What do I mean by "take inventory"?  What I mean is to take a look around at what you have access to where you live.  It doesn't...

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chopped pineapple

Easy Recipe for Canning Pineapple

There's nothing more wonderful than fresh pineapple!  My family absolutely loves pineapple and can't get enough of it when it's in season.  So why not learn this"Easy Recipe for Canning Pineapple" when it's a loss leader at the store? How to Take Advantage of Grocery Store Loss Leaders I was able to score some large .99 (each) pineapple this week!  Since it's raining cats and dogs here in Ohio, and I can't work in my garden - it makes sense to get some canning done. Since pineapple is a high acid food, you'll be able to use the water bath canner.  When canning pineapple,...

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Mother's Day Gift Ideas for the Sustainable Mom

Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for the Sustainable Mom

Are you puzzled as to what the "crunchy", "homesteading" or "self-sustaining" mom in your life would like for Mother's Day?  As one of "those" moms, I've put together this "Mother's Day Gift Ideas for the Sustainable Mom"! I am particularly grateful and humbled on Mother's Day, because at one point in my life, I was told that I probably wouldn't be able to have children.  That was 9 kids ago.  Some came by birth, others by adoption.  Still others I never met.   Moms are some of the hardest working and most dedicated people on the planet! Moms give so much of...

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13 clever ways to manage leftovers and save money

13 Clever Ways to Manage Your Leftovers & Save Money

  I think everyone struggles with what to do with leftover food.  How do you get your family to eat leftovers?  What are some ways to make them last longer?  Can you plan meals around them?  Absolutely!  Let's talk about "13 Clever Ways to Manage Leftovers & Save Money"! Leftover food management is nothing new at my house.   Raising 9 children demands good food management, like it or not. Yet, I consider leftovers to be more of an asset than a liability today.  Given the fact that over 40% of food in America is thrown away, can you imagine how much money we...

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