The Longest Night 2017

Today marks exactly a year since we left our house in town to live in the middle of nowhere with our garden and animals.   I love the long,  dark nights of winter,  when you can wake up in the middle of the night and feel the quiet emptiness around you, and the soft breath of…

The Lost Art Of Clothing Repair

Clothing repair is a lost art, but I don’t mean to suggest that this post will replace all the art that has been lost!  This is just one way that I’ve found to be a satisfactory way to repair clothes. I used to just throw away clothes with rips and tears, but when I got…

Home-grown Soap

Ever since we put our first beef in the freezer, I’ve wanted to try making soap.  There were suddenly so many jars of creamy-colored tallow taking up the kitchen shelf.  I read about it, and bought some lye, but I never was brave enough to make the attempt.  Caustic lye, plus the possibility of an…

Hung Out To Dry

It’s terrible to watch this struggle that is going on between people, money, and our environment.  It’s happening at Standing Rock, and it’s happening here in Florida.  I’ve felt this strong desire to refrain from consuming fossil fuel energy as much as possible.  One way I have begun striving for energy independence is by getting…

Yarn Along: Crocheted Rag Rug Tutorial

It has been awhile since I’ve had anything other than lace yarn to work with, but now I am jumping over to crocheting a few more rag rugs.  There are several reasons for this drastic shift in handwork – 1) Lace requires WAY too much concentration for me right now.  It is so sad to…

Painting and Whitewashing

One thing that we had been meaning to do for way too long was to paint the inside and outside of the barn.  It was sheathed mostly with recycled plywood we salvaged from the brewery that supplies us with small loads of malted barley mash for the pigs.  Bare wood in Florida does not last…

First Pig Harvest

Getting started….   All of these fresh organs are used to make delicious traditional foods….     We harvested the first of the spring piggies over the weekend.  Everything went so well, and we were careful not to pack too much into one day this time.  The scald water was the perfect temperature, and scalding…