Who we are!

Hello all! We have had a nice influx of new people to our little blog since Mavis over at onehundreddollarsamonth.com featured my husband’s Blacksmithing hobby!

C6934D78-CCF7-43C9-9159-3CC08FBECBAE
I really appreciated my Mr. being chosen! 

1. So obviously, my husband is a backyard blacksmith! He’s pretty awesome and makes all kinds of metal creations, including my favorite dinner bells!

8EB9E6DF-0347-418C-9C21-3649FF45E64B
He even did the brickwork on his forge 
37C3E9A5-06EE-433B-BE1C-BE2ADB7EFDED
Dinnerbell in the works! 

2. We try to grow as much food as we can and preserve our over abundance!

IMG_8658
Our main garden. 
IMG_8725
We ❤️ Tomatoes

3. I am a beekeeper! I love having them to help pollinate everything, and also the delicious honey and wax for crafting!

9A13635F-7EC5-4DAE-BEDD-99E126689C4E

IMG_8671
Baby bees!

4. I also love growing lots of flowers to keep the pollinators happy, and have plans to grow a much larger patch of pollinator friendly plants this summer!

IMG_8734
Our state flower: black eyed susans!!
IMG_8882
My favorite flower: echinacea! 

5. We keep chickens to give us lots of delicious eggs and they help us create less trash by eating leftovers!

BC33EAE0-D5A6-4244-B50E-A6B82E79502D
Our ladies enjoying some leftovers! 

6. I’m the eco warrior at the school I teach at. I teach my sweet 3rd graders about caring for our precious Earth and do the recycling for our building! Someone has to do it!

F4D07124-D4D3-40D3-923C-80E17F8D2693
Recycling for the staff! 

7. I love crocheting and craft everything from toboggans to washcloths to sell at local craft shows!

DF35757F-6148-4C57-8C49-2995A94FE50E
Crocheting! 

8/9. I love both sewing and upcycling whatever is headed towards the trash into something useful!

404A9B22-BB10-4CA3-AB1D-4F97702292FD
Upcycling and sewing! 

10. We try not to produce an over abundance of garbage and strive to be zerowaste!

88B37DD1-CA50-485A-AF31-CDA7ADE14738
Less waste! 

11. We have been tracking our solar panels and how they are working out for the past year!

00AC2F83-3712-4CAC-87D1-A4531A2E672C
We are on year 2 of having our solar panels! 

12. We try to eat at home and cook all of our own food! It helps to save money and I know what’s in my food!

IMG_9384
My cinnamon rolls
IMG_8546
My pizza! (Don’t worry, I make lots of healthier food too!) 

So these are a few things that we have going on here on our less than an acre in a small town! We really appreciate anyone taking time to read about our tiny homestead happenings!

Baking/cooking and not spending $

This weekend is a continuation of below freezing weather. I’m really missing those warm summer days and growing my own food! However, I have been enjoying making soup with the tomatoes that I preserved and eating my own pickles, catsup, garlic and green beans!

I have been making most of our meals from scratch, and made some awesome cinnamon rolls earlier in the week and then a pizza that was perfection today!

95A9A77D-0AB5-4811-9D05-28B1E311D71E
Cinnamon rolls! 
A32C2CDA-1932-40E9-8BE8-DF262BA16F4E
Best pizza I have ever made! 

To keep busy, I have been crocheting lots of messy bun hats!

DF35757F-6148-4C57-8C49-2995A94FE50E
Crocheting away! 

I also made this matching set for an adorable little girl and her beautiful momma!

9551077A-F07A-4192-AF4C-AC3445DF0B08
I love the way they turned out! 

While I have been crafting, the mister has been out pounding on the anvil! This is a bottle opener for a friend out of a railroad spike!

0AC189D5-7F39-4BDA-9898-C65E59727BE4
Bottle opener! 

And the only extras that we have purchased so far: a McFlurry for my birthday boy and another for a neighbor that shares his day!

55A8CABB-058D-4B24-87B4-5148F9CAB09D
McFlurry x2

And we also bought the boy an ice cream cake for his day! It was a great deal at 1/2 off because it was a Christmas cake! I added some extra frosting, some sprinkles and put the 13 on it. No one knew it was a Christmas one!

C3C00B31-F8DA-4045-950A-F6E6DBA8D58C
Happy birthday to my big teenager! 

And I will continue to sit around and enjoy my footed pajama pants (feejays) and dream about warmer weather!

11D37DB9-0CB5-4795-A57C-6A2B7D189822
Love these pants! 

Is it so stinking cold where you live?! Stay warm friends!

 

Expanding the garden!

We are already thinking about the 2018 gardening season and how to improve our soil, because I don’t think that our soil could ever be too healthy! There is a nice area between the garden and the sheds that I would love to turn into more garden.

IMG_9455
More garden! 

Here is exactly what I have in mind:

IMG_9456
A girl can dream, right? 

Well, the Mr decided to help me get started on this idea! He worked on tilling the area, while I picked out some rocks and planted rye and wheat cover crop seeds.

IMG_9472
Tilling away! 

And now we are waiting for the seeds to sprout and we will have nice green manure for the garden in the spring!

IMG_9473
Finished for now! (And yes that’s a chicken finding crickets!) 

And since it’s Wednesday, I decided to share a few gardening pictures too!

IMG_9494
Last night’s harvest! 
IMG_9497
Strawberry popcorn that we grew! 
IMG_9460
A preview of our sweet potatoes
IMG_9464
Beautiful sunflower! 
IMG_9458
My first hybrid zucchini/pumpkin
IMG_9483
Zucchini cake made from the franken-fruit above! 

This week is moving at a turtle’s pace and I can’t wait for it to be over. I need a nice weekend to recover from my busy week! Keep on trying to bloom where you are planted!!💚

So much canning! (And fall garden prep!)

You’d think that mid- summer is the busiest time for gardeners. Not true! Im busiest in late summer and fall! It’s prepping, picking, and preserving all of that produce!

We had another sale yesterday! Only a few customers, but the rest of the produce was preserved for the winter months here!

IMG_9454
Another produce sale! 

The Mr.’s sister has an apple tree and doesn’t use the apples. So, we went and picked about a bushel of apples and made some yummy applesauce! And we have some leftover to turn into something else!

IMG_9475
A few apples left! 
IMG_9477
Making applesauce! 

I spent the majority of the day today making some chili sauce! That stuff is super labor intensive! It takes a ton of peeling and chopping of veggies to make! But, my Dad loves it, so I make it!

IMG_9484
Chili sauce! 

And just like every other Sunday morning, we are out of food for breakfast! So, I baked some zucchini cake using the last of our homegrown zucchini!

IMG_9483
There were 2, but it’s really good! 

The wheat and rye that I planted to help add fertilizer to the soil is growing fast!

IMG_9449
Future green manure! 

And now to leave off on a few beautiful things!

IMG_9478
A honeybee on my sunflower! 
IMG_9480
One of the adorable stray kitties around here! 

I hope that you had a productive weekend too! Keep blooming where you are planted!

Excitement and starting work

This year will be my 13th year teaching for the same county, so that’s starting to make me feel old! But that’s not the exciting part! We were featured on a page about gardeners from around the world! If you do Facebook, it’s on Humans who grow food and it’s the same on Instagram!

IMG_9344
We are almost famous! Ha! 

And on to more exciting times, the Mr and I celebrated our Anniversary! We are getting pretty close to being able to say that we have been together for half of our lives! Oh my! But, even though we were on opposite shifts, I still had a chance to make some apple pies to celebrate!

IMG_9305
Apple pies! Yum! 

And onward to more exciting things, the pollinator garden that my students planted in the Spring is looking gorgeous! Everything is blooming! I can’t wait for them to see it!

IMG_9312
The pollinator garden at school! 

We have been producing a surplus of veggies, so I started setting up a stand. The first week we had one customer and I felt like we should just not bother, but the Mr reminded me that I should keep trying! So, 3 weeks later and we are getting several customers! Even the mail lady messaged me that she loved it! Yay!

IMG_9339
Our tiny produce stand! 

And now for some garden pictures:

IMG_9317
How much we have been harvesting! 
IMG_9343
Our almost 10 ft sunflower! 
IMG_9328
Green bean teepee!

Next up is our mystery pumpkin! It volunteered from a monster sized pumpkin that I was given last year, I’m looking forward to watching it grow!

IMG_9332
Purchase funky pumpkin! 

Overall this weekend has been one great one! (Even the pup would agree!)

IMG_9302
He loves hammock time!

So, I definitely feel like this homestead is moving in the right direction! Keep blooming people!

 

Pollinators, gardening, relaxing

Yesterday was just a really great day and not for any one certain reason.

Ive been working on braiding the garlic that I’ve been harvesting! It will hang nicely on a few hooks that the mister made for me!

IMG_8517
Braided garlic! 
IMG_8512
Blacksmithed hooks! 

In the garden, the cucumbers are looking really good! That makes me pretty excited because last year I had a rough time keeping the cucumbers alive!

97545E43-1BE8-4722-BCC5-66560B0CDDAA
Almost ready to harvest! 

My pollinator garden has come back from its first year looking amazing! I think my cone flowers didn’t even bloom until August last year! This year they are huge and blooming now! There are always so many butterflies and bees all around it!

IMG_8534
Handsome monarch on echinacea! 

Last night, my pizza dough was spot on! Sometimes it’s just not great, but last night, perfection! (Can you tell that we are not big cheese eaters here?!?!)

IMG_8546
Homemade pizza! 

While the boy was at vacation bible school, I was weeding the garden and harvesting a few more potatoes and some garlic.

IMG_8553
Our harvest on the anvil! 

And a lot of yesterday was spent chilling on the deck. The temperatures were perfect for hammock laying and playing some uno.

IMG_8537
My hammock buddy! 

I hope that today is just as great of a day! Happy Thursday everyone!

Walk through the garden 6/16/17

It has been quite a hot spell this week with temperatures almost in the 90’s everyday. Therefore, I have not bothered the bees because they are already hot and I’m not one to anger already angry insects that sting.

I’ll start off with our tiny harvests! I picked a ton mulberries off the neighbor’s bush to make a pie! (Unfortunately, it turns out that I am not a huge mulberry fan! But, it wasn’t absolutely terrible!)

IMG_8436
Garlic straight from the garden
IMG_8417
Our first onion and some other yummies

The garden has seemed to enjoy this warm up! The tomatoes are full of blooms, as well as other plants!

IMG_8422
Tomato blooms! 
IMG_8423
Cucumber blooms
IMG_8425
Zucchini plant
IMG_8426
Green beans (plus lots of weeds!) 
IMG_8432
Pumpkin blooms 
IMG_8434
Tiny cucumelons 

While I was in the garden, I found a chicken behind me checking out everything!

IMG_8427
Rogue chicken

And the solar panels have been making tons of energy with these sunny days! Already over a megawatt by the middle of the month!

IMG_8441
Solar + longer days = loads of energy

We are hoping to be harvesting some more from our tiny homestead this month! Are you harvesting anything from your garden??