An Inside Look at Grow Your Own Spices and the Secrets of the Publishing Process, Plus Personal IOUs for the Holidays!

Hi all! First, I have some not-so-good news to share. We had to push back the release of Grow Your Own Spices to January 5th because the first shipment of books was damaged in transit. Now, on the upside, the new copies are all set to be shipped out starting on January 5th. I just received my early copy. So, I can now officially verify … Continue reading An Inside Look at Grow Your Own Spices and the Secrets of the Publishing Process, Plus Personal IOUs for the Holidays!

Fermented Food Fight Over Kimchi

I think food dishes taste better — and nourish more than our bodies — when they are steeped in long-standing traditions and cultural diversity. That’s one of the big reasons that kimchi makes my top ten list of all time favorite ferments. Not only is it easy to make at home, but thinking of those traditional Korean methods of making kimchi collectively as a community … Continue reading Fermented Food Fight Over Kimchi

Raising Ducklings – Week 3 (with video)

I’d like to start this post by wishing a Happy 70th (day) Birthday to the gorgeous stars of the duckling video in this post and also in my previous posts: Raising Ducklings Week 1 (with video) Raising Ducklings Week 2 (with video). I faithfully took videos of these 13 beautiful Muscovy ducklings every day for two months and will (eventually) share week by week videos … Continue reading Raising Ducklings – Week 3 (with video)

Growing, Harvesting, and Curing Saffron at Home (with Video)

Saffron is one of the most exotic seeming and expensive spices in the world. Yet I grow an abundant perennial crop of it in a weedy, but compost rich patch of ground in my North Carolina backyard. Okay, so my backyard isn’t exactly a typical yard. It’s a homesteader’s fantasy of organic food production meets ornamental farm meets ecologically managed wildlife paradise – complete with … Continue reading Growing, Harvesting, and Curing Saffron at Home (with Video)

Decorative and Useful Garden Fencing

You know that expression “good fences make good neighbors”? Well, I always thought of that turn of phrase as negative. That’s probably because Robert Frost’s poem, Mending Wall, made it seem so divisive and futile. Yet, it doesn’t have to be that way. Good Reasons for Fences There are many ways a good fence can enhance community. For example, think about a fence around a … Continue reading Decorative and Useful Garden Fencing

The House and Homestead

Hi Everyone! I’d like to share a link to The House and Homestead. This is a blog and educational site run by a former city girl turned modern homesteader, living in Canada, named Anna. Anna is a down to earth, thoughtful person with mad vegetable gardening and canning skills. She also does an incredible job of demonstrating effective ways to include young children in homesteading … Continue reading The House and Homestead

Growing and Harvesting Ginger at Home (with Video and a Peak in My Fall Garden)

Hi everyone! It’s finally fall here in Northwestern North Carolina. After the intense heat, humidity, and heavy rains we’ve had for the last two months, this weather is an amazing gift. I just wish I could wrap it up and share it with the West Coast for awhile to help all those brave people out there coping with this especially challenging fire season. For those … Continue reading Growing and Harvesting Ginger at Home (with Video and a Peak in My Fall Garden)

Raising Ducklings Week 1 (with Video)

Mama Madge, one of my free range Muscovy ducks, hatched out 13 adorable ducklings on August 26. Up until two years ago, we had so little predator pressure on our homestead, that she could have raised these ducklings to maturity on our large pond with no help from me. Unfortunately, the predators finally found us. Now it’s just not safe for baby ducklings to free … Continue reading Raising Ducklings Week 1 (with Video)

Must Love Ducks

My love for ducks was instant. After touring a traditional duck farm in France in my mid-twenties, I dreamed of having my own ducks someday. You know… in some distant, alternate future where I could create the life I really wanted. Back then, I mistakenly thought homesteading was only a make believe dream conjured to escape the tedium of an office job, a commute, and … Continue reading Must Love Ducks

Growing and Harvesting Mustard for Spice

As a homesteader, I grow most of our vegetables, herbs, and fruits. I also raise chickens and ducks for eggs and keep goats for dairy. But until a few years ago, I still bought most of my spices. Since I use tons of spices when cooking and making ferments, that meant I still had a pretty hefty grocery bill. So, spice by spice, I’ve started … Continue reading Growing and Harvesting Mustard for Spice

Epicurean Homesteading

I started writing this post for the purpose of sharing one of my new posts Morning Chores called Epicurean Homesteading: How to Be Self-Sufficient While Making Your Life More Pleasurable. But then I realized, to those who don’t know the history and philosophy of Epicureanism, this subject might seem silly in the context of a pandemic and ongoing protests for equality in our legal system … Continue reading Epicurean Homesteading