How We Dehydrate Raspberries And Use Them Later

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

I was very fortunate this year to get two raspberry foraging trips.  I say fortunate because I really wasn’t planning either one.  With all the raspberries we scored, I knew I’d want to do more than just make up raspberry jam.  I made some raspberry sauce for treats, and I also had enough to dehydrate raspberries for later use.

When fall settles down into winter, I’ll start making granolas for winter breakfasts and one of our favorites is vanilla-raspberry.  There are also enough for snacks to take with us on our winter adventures.  And if any are left in the spring?  Well they make a good snack soaked in milk, or cooked into morning oatmeal.

Continue reading

How To Get Rid Of Gophers: Lethal And Non-Lethal Methods

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

Get rid of gophers in gardens and fields. Lists both lethal and non-lethal techniques.

Gophers are a pest known to many gardeners, and hated by most.  They live in all areas of North America except for the far north and east.

With their front claws and front teeth, gophers dig tunnels 6-12 inches below ground that can be up to 800 feet long.  These tunnels are concentrated in open fields, lawns, and the gardens we love.

While a mole will dig tunnels and eat mainly grubs and worms, gophers go right for our good stuff—our coveted produce and flowers.  They aren’t overly picky, and will eat buds, grass, nuts, roots, and vegetables.  Carrots, lettuce, and radishes are a favorite, although any vegetable that is juicy will do.  I have a particular problem keeping them away from my young pepper plants.

In our area, with it’s short growing season, gophers have one main breeding season, and that’s usually in June.  One minute we’ve got a few tunnels, and we’re planting our garden.  The next minute, we’re overrun with gophers.  I’ve learned over the years that if I can employ a variety of means to get rid of them in June, the rest of my season isn’t so bad.

If you live in a warmer climate, however, you could see 3-4 breeding cycles a year in your area.  How do you get rid of gophers?  It’s not easy to do, and it’s a task I have to tackle every single year.

Here are some ways you can try to rid yourself of these rodents from killing them to trying to convince them to leave on their own, and some other things you’ll need to think about as you consider your options.

Continue reading

What You Actually Need To Get Started Canning

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

If you’ve always wanted to get started canning–either pressure canning or water bath canning–then perhaps you’ve been hesitant because you’re not sure what you actually need.  I can completely understand that.

Jumping into this means of food preservation isn’t cheap when you’re first starting out.  The last thing you want to do is spend a pretty-penny on some equipment just to find out it’s not enough.  Even worse is paying for a large canning “set” only to find out you don’t even need all the things in it.

Let me help you out.  If you want to begin this year and you’re not quite sure what is needed to start off with, then read-on my friend.  I let you know just what’s needed, and share with you what I use.

Continue reading

Getting Started Pressure Canning & Water Bath Canning

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

You’ve been hearing about it all year.  You’ve even seen pictures of the beautifully filled jars in the pantries of others.  If you have homestead-y friends, then perhaps you’ve been the blessed recipient of such lovely glass jars filled with homemade foods at some point.

But when you think of actually canning foods yourself, doubt, fear, or hesitation creep in.  Your intentions are good:

  • You will learn this year.
  • You will make your own healthy foods to feed your family through the winter.
  • Your shelves will be beautifully adorned with various colors of filled mason jars this year.

Then the season comes…and goes.  What happened?  Will you ever learn?

Yes, you will.

Continue reading

ReCAP Fermentation Starter Kit Review And Giveaway

* I was provided the following reCAP Fermentation Starter Kit from Mason Jars Company in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.  This post contains affiliate links.*

 

Fermenting foods is a health trend that’s coming back in style right now.  Much like pressure canning, it’s a skill our fore-bearers used extensively to prepare and serve foods.  This skill fell by the wayside for awhile as tin cans and convenience foods came en vogue.

Currently, there’s a push to return to our roots, and fermentation is an excellent skill to bring us closer to our heritage.  Luckily for us, we’ve got it much easier than our ancestors did.  The equipment we have available today makes it easier to attain the same results with less inconvenience.

Traditionally, vegetables have been fermented (mostly for preservation reasons) by the process of lacto-fermentation.  Vegetables are submerged in a brine and kept in a cool, dark place.  In this manner, naturally present bacteria (usually lactobaccillus,  or bifidus strains) or yeast begin breaking down sugars and starches, giving off gasses.  This results in the need for “burping” the jars, or special equipment to allow the gasses to escape.

I was blessed with the reCAP Fermentation Kit from Mason Jars Company to use and review early in the spring and I’m very excited to share it with you today.  If you’ve ever been curious about this process, or the kit, then I hope to answer your questions here.

Continue reading

13 Ways To Use Frozen Cantaloupe (Plus Recipes)

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

A couple years ago, I showed you how I freeze cantaloupe for long-term storage. While much of it was thawed in bowls and eaten with breakfast or lunch, we did enjoy it some other ways.

If you’re wondering what you too can do with cantaloupe after you’ve frozen it, then you’re in the right place.  Here are 13 ideas to try with your frozen cantaloupe to get you started.  (If you’re unsure how to go about preparing them, I’ve also included links to help you out.)

Continue reading

The Secrets To Growing Summer Squash And Common Varieties

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

The term squash generally includes summer squash, winter squash, and pumpkins.  Summer squash are the weak-stemmed, tender annuals that usually grow as a bush and include zucchini, yellow squash, and patty pan squash.

They are usually eaten in their immature stage while the skins are still thin and tender.

If there’s one thing anyone can grow, it’s summer squash.  With little maintenance, these fast growers quickly take over any space in a garden.

Continue reading

8 Classy Aprons For Mothers (With Mostly Free Patterns)

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

Every country mother has a collection of aprons.  Let me reassure you, that doesn’t mean we wouldn’t welcome another one.  Most of us could window shop for aprons endlessly.

If that sounds familiar, then let me help you out.  Here are 8 of the classiest aprons I can find—most of which have free patterns or instructions.

Whether you are looking for an apron for yourself or for your mother, you are sure to be inspired by one of these.

Continue reading

Why Mosquitoes Prefer Certain People (And How To Get Them To Buzz Off)

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

Mosquito season is April through October here in the Northern Hemisphere.  Of the 3000 species of mosquitoes in the world, 200 of them are found in the United States, and I’m convinced I’ve met at least half of them.  You see, I fall into the statistic of being the one in five people that mosquitoes find especially appetizing.

When I was a little girl, my mother used to tell me mosquitoes were attracted to people who ate sugar.  I believe she came to this decision since my siblings were all diabetic and obtained relatively few mosquito bites.  I always doubted this as a reason, however, since I really never consumed sugar.

When I began my studies in the health field, I found out the real reason I was so appetizing, and it made perfect sense.

Are you one of those people mosquitoes seem to prefer?  Here’s why you might be, and how to deter them from favoring you so much.

Continue reading

How To Make Sure Your Kids Hate Homesteading

It would be so easy to do:  make your kids hate homesteading.

Having never even been around a farm while growing up, it’s been quite the learning process for me to be married to a man who’s never known anything else. The differences in our upbringings became especially noticeable when it came to raising our own children on our homestead.

It only makes sense that the only way he knows how to parent is to let children run free on the farm, as that’s how he grew up.  Likewise, it only makes sense that the way I know how to rear children is to keep them safe—away from the dangers of a farm and homestead—since that’s how I was raised.

We have both learned to compromise in our parenting.  The Farmer has reflected on his childhood and I can’t count how many times he’s come to the conclusion, “I can’t believe we all made it to adulthood.”  He is now more cautious with our children than he was when he was growing up.

And me?  I’ve had to let go of, “Don’t go near that horse!  It’s a wild animal after all!”

We’ve met somewhere in the middle.  He has realized that if you let them run completely free they’ll get hurt, or killed.  I have realized that if I sequester them too much, they’ll hate their farming experience and ultimately hate homesteading.

I don’t want them to hate this life that I love, so I’ve had to identify what I could do as a parent that would cause this, and I’m sharing that list with you.

Here are a few things to do to make sure they hate homesteading:

Continue reading

« Older posts

© 2017

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑