How to Make Fancy Sauerkraut

Fermented sauerkraut not only gives us digestive enzymes and probiotics, but the process itself makes all the vitamins and minerals present more bio-available. And it's delicious! We needn't eat a lot of it either. Condiments are vital go-alongs with our meals.

A Cool-Sipping Summer Honey Cocktail

This cocktail makes use of honey simple syrup, and simple to make it is. It’s just a 50/50 concentration of honey and water, simmered together. (Regular simple syrup is just water and white sugar, same ratio. Try it for sweetening ice tea.) The recipe calls for Ungava gin, and if you can’t find it, use any high quality gin that’s readily available, although Ungava would be preferred for its unique flavor.

A Year at Bees of the Woods Apiary: July

It's all about beating the heat at Bees of the Woods Apiary this month! We'll share some tips and strategies for keeping you and your bees comfortable during the dog days of summer.

Tips for Buying Kitchen Staples in Bulk

Buying certain foods in bulk is a great way to save money, packaging, and shopping time, while opening up new opportunities to support good farmers. Here are some tips and considerations for buying and handling bulk foods in a homestead setting.

Beginning Beekeeping: What You Need to Know to Get Started

Beekeeping is a fun yet rewarding experience. Not only you can produce a sustainable, nutritious natural sweetener, but you can also benefit the environment by keeping bees in your backyard. This post will help you get into beekeeping.

Interpreting the Buzz of Honeybees

Did you know that you can tell a lot about the behavior of a honeybee by the sound of her buzz? Careful attention to the sound of the honeybee’s buzzing can alert the beekeeper to the mood of the bees.

A Year at Bees of the Woods Apiary: June

It's another busy month at Bees of the Woods Apiary! Jennifer Ford will share what we have been up to in June 2016, including keeping up with honey supers and brood boxes — and the importance of knowing when you have enough hives.

How to Install a Top-Locking Chimney Damper (with Video)

Installing a Lock Top Chimney Damper is a common project among do-it-yourself homeowners. Many times the fireplace throat damper rusts apart and is non-functional, allowing heat and air from your home to escape through the chimney and vice versa. In today's chimney industry, we have top-locking chimney dampers that are easy to install, made of stainless steel, and completely seal a chimney flue when not in use.

A Year at Bees of the Woods Apiary: May

Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary shares what has been going on in the beeyard this month, including queen rearing and pollen production.

10 Simple Ways to Keep You Safe on Your Farm

Farm life has its risks and we don't need to add to them by acting in unsafe ways. Read more for 10 Simple Ways we follow here on Serenity Acres Farm to keep us safe.

Install a Solar Gate Opener to Save Energy and Money

An automatic gate opener is a great example of how simple and convenient it can be to use solar panels to power all of its tools and equipment. You can also get a 30% federal residential tax credit toward the cost of a new solar powered gate opener, accessories and installation, as long as you do it before December of this year.

Installing Bees in a Top-Bar Hive

Top bar hives are becoming increasingly popular with beekeepers as they help encourage bees to colonize in a more natural way than Langstroth beehives. Installing bees in a top-bar hive can be surprisingly easy if you take a few steps to ensure that your new colony is happy.

How Much Can I Save with Solar Panels?

If you’re looking for an investment that will help to save you money as well as conserve fossil fuels, solar power is great option for many homeowners and businesses. With the continual drop in equipment prices, the advantages of solar energy just keep growing. Before undertaking such a project, you may be wondering how much can solar panels save exactly? Here are the basics.

A Year at Bees of the Woods Apiary: April

In the Northeast, you never know what to expect in the beeyard in April. From snow to some very busy bees, Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will share what has been going on in the apiary this past month.

When Life Hands You Garlic Mustard, Ferment It!

Garlic mustard is the poster child of invasive species. Brought as a food crop for home gardens by settlers, this is a great wild food to pick with wild abandon. Eat it and ferment it while helping out local ecosystems.

How to Choose Cows for a Micro or Small-Herd Dairy

There’s a lot to think about when choosing the right cow for a small herd or micro-dairy, but it is worth taking the time needed to select an animal that will best fit you and your farm.

6 Things More Difficult than Building Yourself a Green Home

People think building is difficult. It’s not. And in the hope of encouraging a few more wannabe natural builders, I’ve compiled the following list. Because in my experience, there are far harder things in life than building a house.

Choosing Your Honeybee Breed

Who knew there were different breeds of honeybees? Choosing the best breed for you depends on your goals as a beekeeper. This post covers a few of the advantages and disadvantages of the most popular breeds of honeybees.

How to Install a Chimney Chase Cover (with Video)

Installing a chimney chase cover is a common project among do-it-yourself homeowners. Many homes were built with galvanized chase covers which rust after a few years – causing leaks and rust stains. Homes that were built with a masonry chimney eventually end up with a cracked and weathered mortar crown, also causing leaks and damage to the home.

Common Poultry Terms

There are a lot of specific terms about poultry you might not be familair with. If you’re thinking about getting chickens, ducks, geese, or other fowl, it’s good to get used to these common terms. Here are some of the farmyard poultry terms you might come across.

Choose the Best Garden Site (Video)

Are you looking to start a vegetable garden? Before you so much as lift a spade, you’ll need to decide on the best garden site to achieve excellent harvests.

5 Ways to Get Growing Earlier (Video)

Looking to do some early seed starting to get a jump on the gardening season? Late-winter seed starting is possible if you follow these easy techniques.

How to Breed Chickens Using the Clan-Mating System

Poultry expert Harvey Ussery describes how he breeds his heritage chickens. He relies on what he calls a “clan-mating system,” which reduces his time spent keeping written records but still maintains clean, genetically diverse breeding lines.

4 Ways to Remain Eco-Friendly During Winter

Winters can be brutal, especially on our homes when it comes to our energy costs. Winter tends to drive up energy costs but there is a way to prevent that from happening this winter including eliminating drafts, smart thermostats, and more.

ArkV Adventures, Part 2

So, the gals are on their way to New Hampshire to pick up heritage cows, and so far, it's going smoothly — but there are bumps in the road ahead, so hang on! (Spoiler alert: They all made it home fine: two cows, two pigs, and two galls.)

ArkV Adventures, Part 1: Transporting Livestock in Winter

The farm hasn't had cows in 50 years — but Kara wanted cows. Not any old cows; no, a special heritage kind. nd where were these cows? In the mountains of New Hampshire, half a continent away! Time for a road trip to pick up and transport livestock in winter!

How to Sprout Mung Beans (Video)

In this short video, you’ll learn how to sprout mung beans using a juice carton, so you can have fresh bean sprouts in a few days for dishes such as stir-fries and soups.

Unplugging to Reconnect: Homesteading and the Kids' Higher Education, Part 2

Less common, but proven, strategies for securing a child's college education can keep the child involved in the building and running of the homestead through their years of higher education while producing a more well rounded, responsible, mature, and competitive graduate, all at a fraction of the cost of more typical approaches.

A Year at Bees of the Woods Apiary: January

Have you been wondering what it is like to raise honeybees? Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will offer a peek into the life of a beekeeper in part one of a year long series. She will share what goes into maintaining a beeyard throughout the course of a year.

Is Honey Good for You?

If you need a treat and are choosing between refined sugar and honey, honey definitely has its benefits.

Why Home Insulation Is Important Year-Round

Home insulation can no longer be regarded as something homeowners simply put off as a vague way to be environmentally conscious. Insulating one’s home properly is the best way to cut down on those surging energy costs plaguing every homeowner.

Taking Care of Turkeys in Winter

Winter weather presents challenges for anyone raising poultry in northern climates. Here are a few tips for getting your turkeys through the winter.

Top 10 Immune-Boosting Tips to Survive the Cold and Flu Season

As we enter into the cold and flu season, it is the perfect time to be thinking about your immune system and practical ways to help boost it. Here are 10 tips to stay your healthiest this season and all year round. These tips are our tried and true suggestions for increasing immunity and maintaining good health all year long.

10 Reasons to Build an Earthbag House

My earthbag home has liberated me from a mortgage. The technique has numerous benefits. Here’s my list of why anyone might want to think about an earthbag home.

Gardening, Artistry and a Beer-Infused Honey Mustard Recipe

Winter signals a retreating indoors for a slower speed in lifing — one filled with thoughtful reflection, the finishing up in processing of the foods my garden has gifted me, and returning to my arting. As a preview to my forthcoming cookbook, I have included my favorite, beer-infused honey mustard recipe below.

Not Your Normal What-I'm-Thankful-For List

We all are thankful for the things in our lives, but are we thankful for the right things? Tim Rohrer encourages us to consider things that we might not normally consider thanks-worthy.

How to Sell Surplus Honey

There are many ways to sell your extra honey and other products of the hive. Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will explain a few easy ways to sell all of that extra honey, including how to sell honey online, at work, at a roadside stand and more!

Harvest Honey from a Top-Bar Hive

In traditional Langstroth beehives, the honey is extracted via a centrifuge that spins the golden liquid out of the comb and allows it to run into your pot. In a top-bar hive, honey collection is quite different, as isthe rest of the top-bar hive beekeeping process.

Preserving Milk: How to Balance Dairy Production Year-Round

Dairy animals such as goats produce milk in a seasonal cycle, requiring homesteaders to handle both an abundance and shortage of milk during the year. Freezing milk directly, and making & preserving cheese, are two ways to ensure a reliable supply of dairy year-round. Allowing your diet to change with the seasons can also reduce the impact of low-milk periods, replacing its nutrition with food crops or meat when milk isn’t convenient to produce.

Fermented Kale Tips and a Recipe for Kale Kimchi

Kale doesn't ferment as well as some of the other members of the brassica family but we still find ourselves wanting to preserve this delicious and nutritious green. Here are tips and a recipe to ensure success fermenting kale.

Types of Beehives

For a long time, the only beehive you tended to see would be the traditional Langstroth hive. In recent years, new styles have become popular including the Warre hive, and the top bar hive design. It is important to be familiar with the various styles of beehive in order to choose what is most appropriate for your colony.

Gentle Heritage-Livestock Breeds for New Homesteaders

Starting with gentle livestock breeds is key to success for new homesteaders. Scottish Highland cattle and Dorper/Katahdin cross sheep proved easy-to-handle and good producers for a retired Missouri couple.

Lacto-Fermented Pickled Peppers Recipe

Instructions for lacto-fermenting hot peppers into delicious pickles. These tips will help turn your peppers, whatever the variety, into pickled peppers.

Nail-Polish Marbling

Upcycle old nail polish by using it in a DIY project: marbling! This craft can be used to brighten up a ton of items, from a plain coffee mug to a decorative cardboard box.

How Do I Find a Humane Bee Removal Service in My Community?

Bees have nested in your home. How do you get rid of them humanely? There are no easy answers to this situation. The editor of Bee Culture magazine outlines your options for safe, non-lethal bee removal options that are available to you.

Quick Visual Guide to Vegetable Fermentation Questions

Fermentation goes against many rules that we have grown up with — don’t eat food from a can with a dented lid, that is frothing, or that has a bit of mold on top. Here is a a quick visual guide to common fermentation sights — but I don’t want to call it troubleshooting because often these things that look wrong are in fact fine.

The Buzz on Honeybees

Honeybees have a complex social system - who does what is clearly defined and intricately divvied up. But where does the beekeeper fit into the story? Let's find out.

Managing Hive Beetles in Home Beehives

Small hive beetles are typically considered a secondary pest in the honeybee hive, paling in comparison to the Varroa mite. But they can be more than a nuisance. Left unchecked they may wreck the hive. There are ways to combat this secondary pest.

Selling Honey at Fairs and Festivals, Part 1: Planning Ahead

Have you thought about selling your extra honey and beeswax products at a fair or festival? In Part 1 of a three-part series, Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will discuss how to get started in selling your products of the hive.

When Good Bees Go Bad

Most honeybee hives are calm and gentle. But every once in a while you may come across a hive that seems unusually aggressive. Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will explain what steps they take to deal with an abnormally aggressive hive of bees.

DIY Medal Key Chain and Magnets

Old trophies and medals are special reminders of triumphs in our past, but they can quickly pile up and become a large collection. Instead of discarding old medals, why not turn them into a keepsake that is both functional and practical?

How to Make and Can Jostaberry Jam

Jostaberries are a cross between black currants and gooseberries, combing the best of both fruits to make a tasty berry and an even tastier jam. You can use a water bath canning method to preserve this productive perennial fruit.

Wild Sauerkraut Recipe

Capturing flavor and the nutritional energy of foraged edibles through fermentation—one universal wild edibles sauerkraut recipe with unlimited options.

Meet the Polyface Farm Pastured Turkeys

During my time as a Polyface Farm intern, I never was able to grasp the turkeys as my personal responsibility. Now things are different. Get a glimpse through the eyes of a Polyface Apprentice as he raises Polyface Farm’s pastured turkeys.

A Kansas Family’s Journey to Self-Sufficiency Begins

Even though our goal is to be completely self-sufficient, one thing that I stress is that you don't have to be completely self-sufficient — just make it your goal to become more self-sufficient than you are right now. This blog will help people become more self-sufficient by leading by example, right or wrong. Here is your official invitation: Please come and join us!

DIY French Press Terrarium

This unique terrarium is a great way to repurpose a French press that has seen better days. Small terrarium plants or mosses are perfect for this tiny terrarium.

Fermenting Garlic Scapes

Garlic scapes, the young flower stems of the garlic plant, have delightful flavor and can be preserved through lactic-acid fermentation in pickles, a convenient flavor paste, or as an ingredient to kraut or kimchi.

Cork the Caulk

Did you know that every caulking tube comes with a cork? Save money by sealing your caulking between projects with this simple hack.

Mishaps in Making Mead

I started my first batch of mead after all these years back in October-November. You all may remember my post about the mead. Well, I had trouble with getting the damn thing to start. Here's what happened.

The Walk-Away Split Pros and Cons

The least expensive method to grow your apiary is to split existing hives. The walk-away split is the easiest way to do this.

Plumbing for a Greywater System (Plus Some Money Savings!)

In order to save money, water and energy, one couple is building a new home that will incorporate a simple, gravity-run, household greywater system to divert and collect greywater, as well as rainwater from their roof, for landscape use.

Cubed Spring Radish Kimchi and 5 Reasons to Make It

Radishes are the red and white stars of my spring pickling classes. If you have more radishes in your garden than you can eat, or if you are just looking to try something new—I say pickle them! Not convinced? Here are five reasons radishes are to be fermented and a recipe for Spring Radish Kimchi to get you started.

DIY Teacup Cactus Planter

A tiny teacup and an even tinier cactus make an adorable planter that’s easy to assemble. Small children’s toys, pebbles and other little decorative items add a whimsical touch.

Honey of a Mess

My surprise when I thought the mead making wasn't happening.

‘Perc’ Test: What It Is and How It’s Done

In order to secure a building permit to construct a new home, many counties require a septic system inspection and approval. Here’s how one couple had a successful “perc” test done at their future home site, along with a quick explanation of what a perc test is.

Gardening with Chickens in the High Desert

My garden started out as just a need for feeding my family in the summer months. Over time, it not only needed to feed my family, but needed protection from various critters—including backyard chickens—that inhabit my yard. Learn how to construct raised beds, install shade cloth and build a fence to protect your plants.

A Greenhouse, Chicken Coop Combo

These two structures for creating a sustainable homestead are not often associated, but with the right planning they can be integrated into a single multi-use structure that enhances both environments. A greenhouse/chicken coop becomes a year-round food-producing machine, giving you a bounty of fruits, vegetables and protein all in one.

Repurposed Clementine Crate

Repurpose an empty wooden clementine crate into a stylish organizer. All you need is some paint, papers to collage with and glue!

Keep Track of Crop Rotation (Video)

Crop rotation is good for your garden, but can be difficult to track. These tools will help you chart which crop families you plant so you can mix it up the following season.

Why Did My Bees Die?

Sometimes a colony of honeybees dies. Colony-collapse disorder is all over the news, but what else might have happened?

Preparing for Spring Beekeeping

Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will offer some tips on preparing for a successful start to the beekeeping season!

Carpet-Sample Rug

Turn a collection of carpet-sample pieces into an eclectic rug for your kitchen or bathroom! This resourceful DIY project can be made with just four materials - some of which may already be in your home.

How to Build a Guitar from a Wood Pallet, Part 3: Sound Chambers

Ah, the fun begins for building a wood pallet guitar. In this post, we apply the following building steps: planning material, matching the right tools to the wood, shielding cavities, and basic electric guitar electronics assembly and testing.

DIY Framed Floral Arrangement

This framed floral arrangement made with dried flowers and corsages is a lovely and sentimental art piece. It can be made with flowers saved and preserved from many occasions, or from this year’s Valentine’s Day flowers.

How to Design a Year-Round Solar Greenhouse

How can you create a lush naturally abundant indoor garden year-round? With these 7 simple principles, you can create a greenhouse that is completely self-sufficient, relying only on the sun to provide all of its heating needs. Moreover, solar greenhouses can grow much more than traditional greenhouses - citrus, avocados, guava - using less energy, water and resources.

How to Build a Guitar from a Wood Pallet, Part 1: Materials List

This post is an overview of my wood pallet guitar. It explains the material sources, how they were obtained and preparation involved with little or no budget, along with the story of my life. Also, you’ll learn the benefits of recycling, repurposing, and reclaiming.

Using Honey to Make Mead

Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will explain the basics of a fun winter project - how to make homemade mead!

How To Boost Nutrition Using Whey

Whey is the liquid that remains after milk is curdled. Full of protein and nutrients, whey can be used to soak beans or grains, as a substitute in baking, and for lacto-fermented vegetables, such as sauerkraut.

Homemade Cat Toys

It's important to keep indoor cats occupied to help them live long, healthy and happy lives. These homemade toys will do just the trick! The supplies are low cost and/or can be made by re-purposing items you already have at home.

Lentil-Coconut Soup Recipe for a Snowy Day

This lentil-coconut soup recipe offers a rich and unique way to prepare protein-packed lentils using coconut milk and Indian spices. The masala and ginger will help cut the winter chill, transporting your taste buds to someplace warmer.

So, You Want to Be a Beekeeper?

Don't wait if you plan to start beekeeping this year. If you want to be a beekeeper, now is the time and this blog post will provide you with information to prepare for the coming season.

How to Not Get Stung

Being stung is the most often quoted reason for not keeping honeybees. This was also my fear before I started keeping bees. There are ways to reduce your chances of being stung. With just a few precautions, you don't have to let this keep you from a rewarding hobby.

My Beekeeping New Year's Resolutions

Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will share her beekeeping goals for the New Year, along with some tips on how to make them happen.

The Dog Ate My Chickens

An anecdote that illustrates a few of the realities of farm life and raising livestock.

DIY Holiday Card and Mail Holder

This simple DIY project is a great way to display this seasons' holiday greetings, or to keep your mail organized. The materials are free or low-cost, depending on what’s in your recycling bin and craft or junk drawer!

Let's Make Granola

Healthy homemade granola; easy on your budget, good for your family.

Comparing Commercial and Locally Produced Raw Honey

What could be lurking in the commercial honey you buy? Maybe it’s not honey at all, and would you think honey is healthy if you knew it contained corn syrup? Let’s talk about how commercial honey is produced and why you might want to find a local source for raw honey.

DIY Metal Tray Magnet Board with Button Magnets

This simple DIY project is a quick and easy way to repurpose a metal tray into a pretty place to display photos, notes, even holiday cards. The supplies needed may be found in your home or bought inexpensively at a local craft/home improvement store or found at a thrift shop.

December Bees

A brief update on how the bees are faring during a break in the freezing weather.

How To Transition Healthfully Through Life Changes and Challenges

Practical tips for transitioning through life's changes mindfully and healthfully. This will cover simple ways to get back on track and stay focused forward. Alex and Ashley share their own personal experience with picking back up and moving forward.

Gifts from the Hive

Jennifer Ford, of Bees of the Woods Apiary, will share how she uses honey and beeswax from her beehives to make useful and creative gifts.

Hoarding: Greed, Part 2

What is the difference between hoarding stuff and money? Is there any difference?

Annie’s Green Tomato Salsa Recipe for Water Bath Canning

This year I took several liberties in developing a new version of salsa verde. I don't grow tomatillos so I use green tomatoes. I won't call it salsa verde (except on the lids of my jars), because it isn't authentic. But let me tell you, it is GOOD. Here is Annie’s Green Tomato Salsa Recipe good for use when water bath canning.

Beekeeping: Try Before You Buy

Beekeeping has its benefits: raw honey, beeswax and pollination. With a quick check, you can find out if your community offers a rent-a-bee program. For a fee, you'll get a queen bee, hive colony and a mentor to get you started.

Beekeeping with a Honeybee Allergy

Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary talks about her experience with developing an allergy to honeybee venom, and how she manages this allergy to be able to continue beekeeping.

Honey Wine or My Foray into Mead

Way back when, I made mead. I think it was back with Leif Erickson or some guy by that name. Of course, back then we had rotary phones, the Internet existed as ARPANET (look it up), and I was on the cutting edge when it came to computer development. I also stumbled across a USENET post for how to make mead.

Removing Bees From Honey Supers

It's time to harvest honey and there must be a way to evict the bees from the super. This post covers three possible options.

Folk Medicine Book Advocates Honey and Vinegar

"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.

Lessons from the Mother Earth News Fair

At the Mother Earth News Fair in Puyallup, Wash, I listened to lecturers cover topics from re-newable energy, small-scale farming, green building, organic gardening, simple living, and citizen solidarity building. While I listened, I pondered ways to weave these powerful themes into our children's lives.

Time to Thank the Bees

In all that can go wrong in beekeeping, it's time to be grateful for a good season.

Chimney Sweeps vs DIY

Should you do it yourself or hire a chimney sweep to clean your chimney?

At the Hive Entrance

Did you know that you can learn a lot about the condition of your beehives simply by watching the entrance of the hive? Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will explain what to look for, and what it might mean. No smoke or hive tool necessary!

Why Homestead

A stack of cast-iron pans and a chainsaw helmet sum up why these homesteaders do what they do.

Health Benefits of Honey

Raw honey isn’t just delicious — read on to learn some of the medicinal uses for it.

Do Not Feed the Bees or the Nucs

In this blog, I hope to convince beekeepers that not feeding the bees is better for the health of the bees and for the beekeeper's bottom line.

Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training

The true essence of Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training and Archi’s Acres is about lending a helping hand and empowering veterans to create a sustainable positive future through agribusiness.

Can Bee Propolis Be Sustainable?

Propolis is becoming a very popular “bee product” in the natural health arena. The fact that it is produced in nature does not make a product sustainable. We must always be aware of the toll that the harvest of that product makes on the organism that creates it.

Honey Harvest

Here I describe the honey harvest and how it varies from year to year.

Selecting a Guard Donkey

In previous posts, we have looked at how guard donkeys work and we’ve examined the pros and cons of using a donkey as a livestock guardian. If you are contemplating using a donkey, let’s look now at how to select a good candidate and how to integrate him or her into your stock.

World Environment Day Biodiversity Symposium

On May 27, the Rachel Carson Homestead Association and the Carnegie Museum of Natural History are hosting the Celebrate Biodiversity Symposium in Pittsburgh, Penn., to celebrate the United Nations World Environment Day. Read to find out more and to register.

April Showers

Finally some sun, too bad it is during the work week!

'Cooking With Fire' by Paula Marcoux

From roasting on a split to baking in a tannur, you'll find rediscovered techniques and recipes that capture the flavors of wood-fired cooking in "Cooking With Fire" by Paula Marcoux.

Using Essential Oils for Honeybees

Essential oils can be a useful supplement for honeybees. Lemongrass, spearmint and thyme essential oils are being used to encourage brood development and the overall health of bees.

Fix a Leak

Chase down household leaks and fix them to save water and money during the Earth Gauge #FixALeak Week.

Sustainable Farming with Reynaldo Ochoa: Rainforest Hero

Reynaldo Ochoa, the subject of a new short film, grows with a goal of teaching and practicing permaculture unique to an individual's region, emphasizing sustainable farming as opposed to “slash and burn” agriculture.

A Winter Bath

Taking a bath in the winter takes a little more planning at our off-grid, no-plumbing home.

Six and a Half Money-Saving Tips

Inspired by the recent Mother Earth News article, "65 Money Saving Tips", this piece shares how we at the Be the Change Product spend little and live better.

Introduction to Home Distilling

The spirits industry is changing dramatically. However, owning and knowing how to use a still could be of great benefit to you. Knowing how to make a strong alcohol puts you in an immediate position of power.

World War II Magazine Emphasizes Frugality

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.

The Importance of Beekeeping

Colony Collapse Disorder is threatening the future of bee pollination. Here's what we can do about it.

Appreciating the Tastes of Regional Honey

Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will discuss how to enjoy a little taste of summer in the middle of winter by developing a new appreciation for honey!

Bees of Winter

Describes the winter hive life of the honey bees.

Gaia Shrugged

Musing on how most of us believe "the end" is near for various reasons.

Resolve to Stay Curious and Live Passionately in 2014

In 2014, I resolve to stay curious about the incredible world that we live in and continue to ask plenty of questions each day. I resolve to learn new things and stay informed and aware of global issues.

One of the Best Gifts for Gardeners!

A Garden Planner subscription is a budget-friendly gift that offers the satisfaction of spending the chillier chunks of the calendar plotting the bounty ahead.

For the Beekeeping Newbees!

Encouragement for new beekeepers who may be confused and overwhelmed about all the conflicting advice about keeping bees.

Why Having Pets Makes Us More Human

Through all of the tears and the heartbreak, I have found that having a pet makes us more human. Please why everyone should have at least one best friend that is furry.

How to Make Your Own Kefir

Kefir is very rich in probiotic nutrition and quite simple to make at home. This blog will help you learn how to do so.

Kit Homes Survey: Which Features Would You Choose?

If you are hoping to build a new home or weekend cottage, we would appreciate your participation in this short survey, which will gauge your interest in a variety of possible kit home features.

8 Natural Bee Sting Treatment Options

To get fast relief, here are eight natural bee or insect sting treatment options you can use at home. You likely have what you need in the kitchen cupboard!

Having Guests Visit Your Beeyard

Having guests visit your beeyard takes a lot of planning and preparation. Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary shares her experience having visitors in the beeyard, along with some tricks and tips to make the visit go more smoothly for everyone.

Aladdin Kerosene Lamps

Cherished Aladdin lamps were on display at a recent collectors show in Topeka, Kan.

DIY Whiskey Barrel Chairs

You can make these outdoor chairs for less than $80 by recycling a whiskey barrel and using a few other supplies from your workshop.

Homesteads as Agricultural Zoos

Homesteads are keeping alive old skills and ways of raising crops and livestock that are being lost in the age of agribusiness.

Early Autumn in the Beeyard – Preparing for Winter!

Although winter may seem a long way off, starting to prepare your beehives for winter now will pay off later. Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will describe what they do to get their beehives ready for winter.

Canine Sudden Acquired Retinal Degeneration

A sudden onset of a canine eye disease called SARDS leaves dogs totally blind very suddenly. Bruce McElmurray explains this disrder from a personal perspective.

Pastured Turkey Cooking Tips

Choose a pastured turkey rather than an industrial turkey this Thanksgiving. Follow these turkey cooking tips and discover why heritage turkeys are a better choice than commercial turkeys.

Honeybees and Robbing

Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary explains how to prevent, identify and stop robbing in the beeyard.

Full Circle: a WWOOFer’s Perspective

A WWOOFer (Worldwide Opportunity on Organic Farms reflects on her second visit to an organic herb farm, where she learned more about plant harvesting, medicine making and natural building

Planting a Fall Garden the Easy Way

Our Vegetable Garden Planner assists you in planting your fall garden by giving you planting dates specific to your location, projected harvest dates and more.

Honey Harvest - Part One

One of the most fun parts of beekeeping is harvesting honey. Here we will look at the first part of the honey harvest, removing the honey supers from the hives, and how to store them safely.

City Food for City Bees

Bee populations in urban settings are increasing, but urban settings aren’t set up to provide lots of forage for honey bees... or are they?

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Notes on immigrant farm labor and livable wages.

Thinking About Self-Sufficiency

The sweet spot in self sufficiency is to have just enough...with a bit of surplus to meet your needs and a few friends and neighbors.

Farming By the Book

Local farmers lease Amherst College land to provide for the school’s dining hall.

Simple Gifts

A western Massachusetts community rallies to save a generations old farm.

Buffalo Gals

The story of two ladies and their small CSA in the Rocky Mountains.

Gutter-Planted Garden Greens

It was becoming pretty obvious the crowding and lack of light were real limitations to my mini garden. Then, the idea of a trough on the windowsill came to mind, combining a way to water all the plants uniformly and efficiently all at once. Great, now how to make this trough? Wood? Sheet metal? The choices all seemed expensive, clumsy, prone to leaking...then the light bulb went on in my head: gutters!

Soda Can Gift Tags Tutorial

Learn how to make creative, impactful, and (surprisingly) classy DIY gift tags from soda cans and thumbtacks.

A Growing Trust

In this section you will find stories of real farmers across the country that made it work. You'll find their story, how they did it and who helped them. We hope these stories will inspire and educate new farmers, as well as land owners and community members to become involved in the new agrarian movement. A growing trust.

Swarm Care

Catching a swarm of bees is awesome. Now learn how to take care of them.

Seed Starting Video and Tips

Have you started your tomatoes and peppers yet? 'Tis the season to start seeding long season crops indoors. If you normally buy organic starts from your local nursery, try your hand at seed starting.

Not Your Ordinary Potato Stamp

The traditional potato stamp gets a makeover in this tutorial over how to use a spud to make a work of art (and gratitude).

Delicious, Nutritious Barley Risotto

A healthier version of the classic rice risotto, delicious barley risotto is easy to make and can be modified with whatever ingredients you have in your kitchen.

Walking Home

Making the most of a winter walk to home.

Hockey Day in Canada

Cam discovers he isn't as young as he once was while enjoying a sense of community at the local arena.

What is ‘Modern Homesteading,' Anyway?

What exactly is ‘modern homesteading"? There are as many definitions as there are people doing it. What does the term ‘modern homesteading’ mean to you?

Walking Water

We haul our water from the river - walking water!

Growing Calcium

Grow calcium in your garden with collards, kale, and parsley. Suggestions are given for including these crops in your meals. Learn about companions to plant among your collards and kale to deter harmful insects.

Teaching Homesteading--in a Nutshell

Growing Local Food is a new book that encompasses all the needed basics to grow plants, keep heritage breed animals and bees. The author is a homesteader and physician who gives the readers the basic information to grow or find nutritious, local food

Essential Oils on the Homestead

Therapeutic grade essential oils have a tonne of uses on the homestead - here's how we've used them effectively, and how they bring us peace of mind.

Voyages in Food Security

My boyfriend and I traveled from Orlando, FL with the expectation that we were going to encounter a life-changing experience. It was well worth it. I felt like a kid in a candy store.

Nuts About Nuts

The factory farm creates the wealth for the doctors, lawyers, government regulators, and bankers … is it ironic that these same professionals will choose a Beechnut Turkey or an Oaknut Ham from Big Horn Ranch for their family gathering?

How to Pick the Right Chicken Coop

How do you find the best chicken coop design for your new flock? We'll help you walk through the evaluation process AND get a free analysis spreadsheet to help you decide.