Author: The Farmer's Wife (page 2 of 22)

The Secrets To Growing Summer Squash And Common Varieties

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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:

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Brother SE1800 Sewing And Embroidery Machine Review

* I was provided the following sewing and embroidery machine from Sewing Machines Plus in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.  This post contains affiliate links.*

 

One of the highlights of this winter’s sewing season was receiving a Brother SE1800 Sewing and Embroidery machine from Sewing Machines Plus.  Any avid seamstress knows the excitement—your mind fills with the colors of the season, the texture of fabrics, and the femininity of laces and fine stitching.

It was delivered to my doorstep in only a couple days, and I immediately got to work.

As soon as it arrived, I pulled the Operators Manual out and read it front to back, highlighting and marking everything I wanted to do for this review.  Since it’s such a magnificent machine, I am unable to go into the details here of all of it’s capabilities, but I’ll share all the ups and downs of what I’ve been creating with it these last few weeks.

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How To Grow Tomatoes: Tips From A Large Scale Gardener

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Probably the most common vegetable you will find in any food garden is the tomato—which is technically a fruit.  Both new and experienced gardeners alike love to grow tomatoes for their color and fragrance in the garden as well as their flavor and versatility in the kitchen.

Because of the diversity of varieties tomatoes come in, you can grow a different size, color and even shape of tomato every year and never get bored.  Red, yellow, green, black, purple, and white are just a few colors you’ll find when you start researching these tasty treats.

Whether you’ve got a large plot to grow in this year, or just one pot of dirt, you’re sure to find a variety that will work for you and give you an abundant bounty during your growing season.

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Planning A Focused Garden On Intense Homestead Years

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There’s no doubt about it, some years on the homestead are so intense that you need to cut back in certain areas to get through it all.  Perhaps you’re learning a new skill that takes up your time.  Maybe finances, weather, or family circumstances keep you from your full homesteading capacity.  Whatever your reasoning, changing your regular garden plans to a focused garden plan is going to make that one area more manageable.

In my book, Raising Young Children On The Homestead, I talk about the basic principles of a focused garden, and how it will get you through your intense homestead years (such as when you have a newborn).  It discusses how to plan a unique focused garden that will meet the needs of an individual family.

I also tell you how and when I started doing my own focused gardens to meet the consumption needs of my own family.

This year is one of those years—an intense homestead year in which I have to cut back in some areas.  Gardening is one of those areas, and I’m falling back to the focused garden plan we’ve used in the past.

Here is the focused garden plan that works best for our family during the intense years.

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Repairing A Frozen Water Pipe On The Winter Homestead

Every winter it happens–we discover a frozen water pipe.  It’s just a fact of life here.  This isn’t the first time we’ve repaired a frozen water pipe, and I’m sure it won’t be the last.

If we hadn’t repaired this pipe as soon as we noticed it was broken, it could have warmed up and made one huge muddy mess once the ice inside it melted and the water started spewing out.

Luckily, repairing this frozen pipe was easily done with tools we had on hand.

In order to fix this frozen pipe, we needed:

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19 White Fruits And Vegetables You Need To Grow This Year

It’s time once again to plan our gardens for the upcoming season.  Have you got everything planned out?  Have you got your seeds ordered, mapped out your garden plot, and written your plans in your garden journal?

No?

Then perhaps this year you’ll try something new–like a white themed garden. Did you know many of the most delicious  fruits and vegetables out there come in a white variety?

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10 Things A Homestead Kitchen Needs To Be Self Sufficient

*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 for some reason the grid went down tomorrow and stayed down for an extended period of time, would your kitchen meet the needs of your new self-sufficient life?  Perhaps your kitchen would keep functioning just the same way it always has.  Maybe you’d get by, but it’d be a bit uncomfortable.  Or possibly, your kitchen wouldn’t be much use at all.

If you’re looking to increase your self-sufficiency, or decrease your footprint (or both), then your kitchen may need some of the following items.

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