Substitute teaching can be a pretty good gig, if you have the patience and discipline.
White Family Rotary treadle sewing machines are well-made and easy to operate – but the hand wheel operates backward of other treadles. Modern bobbins can be used, if one extra step is taken when winding on thread.
Learn how to use a well bucket in a drilled well to get water without electricity.
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Bryce Oates considers the burden of beef and explains why his Missouri family farm chooses to raise cattle.
The "Household Discoveries" book from 1909 instructs how to build an outhouse, with plans simple enough for any average 14-year-old schoolboy to follow.
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and West Missouri farmer Bryce Oates discusses why his family works so hard—both on and off of the farm—to practice subsistence farming.
A do-it-yourself portable solar cart allows us to have solar power without removing trees from the yard. We can also take it away from the home site and move it indoors before storms.
Bringing back Victory Gardens could help ease hunger and dependence as U.S. social aid programs, such as Food Stamps, are drastically cut.
The first bite of frost brings a frenzy of activity.
Author Marjory Wildcraft visits Cuba to learn how people learned to grow food after the country’s economic collapse when fuel and other imports stopped arriving.
To prevent algae growth deterioration by sun damage to a plastic rainwater tank, cover it with a painted bed sheet.
Some observations after demonstrating the Norwood sawmills in Pennsylvania and Kansas.
Helpful tips on keeping earth stewardship alive this holiday season.
HOMEGROWN.org blogger and West Missouri farmer Bryce Oates shares his thoughtful position on vegetarianism.
A hippie in the 1980s who demonstrated for a clean environment, particularly water, now owns an online water filter business where she shares her views about the scarcity and fragility of water, the toxins dumped in it and what we can do about it.
The old goat barn must go! Follow the progress as we choose how to best replace an aging (and dangerous) structure for livestock housing. Pole barns are an economical alternative to traditional framed barns, are long lasting and multipurpose. You can even live in one!
You decide you want a pole barn, what is next? Site preparation can yield some surprising findings. Flexibility when planning a pole barn is key to success and making adjustments to your plans early will be most beneficial; saving time, money and perhaps even improving on your original ideas!
The Food Is Free Project has become a food revolution in Austin, Texas
Shag rag rugs made of old clothes are durable, attractive, easy to care for and can be machine sewn in a few hours.
Used T-shirts can be turned into many useful household items, including weaving without a loom.
The documentary film “Beyond Off-Grid” is nearing completion and includes a dozen specialists across the United States living self-reliant lifestyles.
United Nations Climate Week invokes memories of first Earth Day and how far we have yet to go to clean up our environment.
A description of a pioneering workshop featuring no-till, cover crop cocktails and mob grazing. Douglas County Conservation Service educated local farmers in cutting-edge biological farming techniques.
Autumn offers not only a bountiful harvest, but also an abundance of art materials directly from nature.
Writer attributes eating wild food, game, homegrown vegetables and forest food to good health.
Water filter supplier offers recommendations to avoid radiation contamination following the Fukushima nuclear reactor disaster.
A recent trip to Vietnam presents an opportunity to study people-powered devices and transportation.
One woman’s fascinating journey from a high-rise apartment overlooking Hong Kong Harbor to sharing the earthly pleasure of growing food.
Junk mail, old books and other used paper can be easily recycled into something useful. Never buy notepads or envelopes again.
Tips on creating nature art, winter bird feeders and children's art.
A Texas mom created an all-natural toothpaste that whitens teeth and encourages her children to do a better job of brushing because it’s fun.
Sawing oversized sycamore logs with my Norwood portable sawmill was a huge job, but yielded a lot of great lumber, and salvaged the logs instead of dozing them into a pile and burning them.
One of the most exciting facets of raising goats is when kids are born on your farm. Knowing how to prepare for the grand event makes for a smoother and more successful kidding process.
Pre-spring work up for beehives coming out of winter.
Western Missouri farmer Bryce Oates shares his thoughts on the USDA's once-in-five-years census.
Fed up with cheap, easily breakable clothespins, craftsman Herrick Kimball is now making Classic American Clothespins and has a vision for inspiring others to make them in their communities.
Learn how to make a scarecrow from scrap materials that moves and makes noise to keep deer, squirrels, rabbits and crows out of the garden.
Home experiment reveals tomato seedlings started in water heated in a microwave do not grow well. How different are we from plants?
A mortarless rock-wall raised garden bed is easily constructed with simple tools and adds long-lasting natural beauty.
Cheap imported goods do not stand the test of time compared to locally crafted goods.
A blog about the joys of wood heat that covers comfort, energy savings, ecology and history of the trees and sustainable harvesting
What to do with all that surplus asparagus? Maybe you have too many pole beans? Or okra? This is the best ever recipe for pickling extra asparagus, and the recipe can also be modified for any thin vegetable you might have from your garden's bounty! Canning is such fun!
Roasting green coffee at home is not only easy, but the first step in making a truly great cup of coffee. Roasting at home also does not mean you are limited to small batches; follow the instructions below to roast 3 lbs of beans and get ready for a great cup!
Follow these simple tips on fall gardening.
Leaving a job with benefits and security to live a simple, country life, also known as un-jobbing, can be scary, but as we learned, so very worth it.
A small food producers' cooperative in Missouri wins a national award and will share with others how to form a successful co-op that focuses on bartering, sustainability and the economy of neighborliness.
Gardening is as easy as you want it to be!
As everyone gathers around this campfire this fall, unite this variety of flavors into one savory skillet that will be enjoyed by all.
With the increase in small-scale farming activities, people are looking not only at backyard poultry but also into raising backyard livestock. This post is about Mary Jane Phifer’s experience with Irish Dexter cattle, a small-sized dual-purpose.
A copy of "Good Housekeeping" magazine from 1944 reminds us how housewives found ways to stretch meals, repair household items and plant gardens to overcome wartime rationing hardships.
Use materials at hand—stumps, logs, railroad ties, and sawmill slabs—to build a firewood log deck that takes the effort out of lifting the logs, and holds them at a convenient height for splitting.
Because county health departments and public water systems check only for a few contaminants, homeowners are advised to test their own water, an inexpensive and simple solution for peace of mind.
After trials and errors with various forms of bread baking, it seems that for sandwich bread success, the key is having the right tools for the right job. Introducing the Pullman Loaf Pan!
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and West Missourian Bryce Oates explains how he and his family survive summer on the farm. Two words: swimming pool.
Why manual water pumps are making a comeback and how to select the right type for a homestead.
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Missouri farmer Bryce Oates traces the history of county fairs from their origins in the country life movement to his own kids' involvement.
Use a hand water pump to compress air for filling tires without electricity.
The morning started off with a decent lecture on poultry operation, production, and marketing. After a midday break, lectures resumed, this time being led by a different fellow, on the subject of free-range, humane certified broiler production. I won
A chirping predator may be an unexpected and unwanted visitor. Mountain lions do chirp and one set me on edge.
"Folk Medicine" by D.C. Jarvis, M.D., written in 1958, explains how humans would do well to watch animals that know instinctively how to stay healthy. Jarvis advises drinking raw honey and apple cider vinegar for good health and vigor.
Trendy purple sweet potatoes are a less sweet but no less tasty variety of sweet potatoes and are delicious prepared a number of interesting and unusual ways. Try this salad warm or cold for a scrumptious meal!
Every year gardens suffer from the "blight effect" on tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, and eggplants. If left alone, the disease can prevent plants from flowering and maturing altogether. Here are 5 easy steps I encourage everyone to take before next year's garden even begins to sprout.
The Missouri Organic Association is gearing up for its 2015 Annual Conference in Springfield, Mo, on February 5th, 6th and 7th at University Plaza Hotel and Conference Center.
So, yes, I have become a lover of goats (and ducks have won me over, too). But the truth is, I can’t wait to eat the boys.
Jenna Woginrich’s latest book, “One Woman Farm,” whisks readers away.
Intensive grazing management can answer questions regarding field carrying capacity, how much forage your animals need each day and how to manage what you have. Pizza, anyone?
Leading food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva will present “Cultivating Diversity, Freedom and Hope” in Kansas City. Many other farming and gardening workshops and events are planned for April 17-18, 2014.
Not enough hours in the day? Want to make tomato sauce but are short on time? Use this recipe to make great-tasting tomato sauce (using frozen tomatoes)at your leisure. Perfect for pressure canning and delicious!
Worrying about keeping up with Justin's chores while trying to maintain my 8-5 day job was a losing battle.
Evergreen Institute founder's Missouri home burns; wood furnace is suspected cause.
Garlic is resilient, easy-to-grow, highly nutritious, and a natural antibiotic.
All of us farmers,large and small, are a big part of the engine that drives the economy
of rural communities, rural counties and rural states.This year, we are learning a lot about what happens when that engine sputters.
After months of waiting, worrying and hoping, the clouds finally arrived here at Yellabird Farm last week and brought us the long-sought gift of good rain. It was a great two days of slow and soaking moisture that the cracked soil guzzled up...
Drought is hard on us out here in Farm Country. But drought in the midst of boiling hot summer is amongst the worst conditions I can imagine.
One thing I know for sure is that many in the local farm and food scene are working through the same issue. We are numbers people in search of numbers. We aren’t crazy unscientific loons like our industrial brothers and sisters think we are.
Clearly the NACE considers “useless” degrees to be ones in which pay is low and availability of jobs is scarce. However, shouldn’t measuring the usefulness of an education take into account the actual benefits bestowed upon the person doing the study
We wanted to write up a post about asparagus to explain how farmers look at the crop, but also as a sort of apology to our customers. We have spent many hours in the field and on the phone seeking farmers with an existing asparagus supply. We had man
Take a tour of the mills and mountains of the Ozarks of Missouri and Arkansas, home to some of the finest remaining historic gristmills that still exist in the U.S.A. Based on the popular Historic Ozarks Mills book created by award-winning photographer Mike McArthy. Hydropower's energy-producing capacity is getting well-deserved attention these days, and these old mills provide inspiration.
Discover the Ozarks region's natural beauty and adventure hot spots as told by Mike McArthy of Photozarks.