Harvest of Daily Life | living simply
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living simply

Keeping chickens & eating them: Thoughts on our first experience processing

It's a cold and gloomy day here, we are in the upper 50's this afternoon and the vibe is very lazy. Everly has been watching childrens movies on the couch today, specifically snow related holiday ones. She knows the seasons are changing and is excitedly dreaming of lots of snow this winter. I've been spending some much needed time on my own blog's todo list between caring for the girls and the home. On days like today an effortless, home-cooked, nourishing meal is best. So, I've got one of our roosters in the soup pot in prep for Everly's favorite dinner, chicken and dumplings. Remember my blog post about Helga Crowing back in September? We always knew we needed to learn the art of chicken processing, for the sake of self sufficiency, homesteading and respect for the life cycle/...

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Critters in my back yard: Rabbits, snakes, spiders, frogs and more.

There are only about 3 weeks left until I'll be at The Farm. I am doing great and Tater seems to be planning to stay inside for a bit longer (thank goodness). I've told her she has to stay put until June 4th at least, that way she'll be full term! In the meantime we have been trying to do things to have fun and to keep busy while we are waiting for Tater to do her last bits of growth and development. Things like putting the house together the way we'll need it when Tater comes home, unpacking, organizing and even vegetable gardening have been a few of our pastimes these days (other than my excessive napping). It has sure been quite a critter filled weekend for us though! Late last...

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Wordless wednesday- things we do without…

Right now it seems there are more products I love and can't find to buy these days than ever before. Since leaving Arizona we've found ourselves unable to find so many items we've become attached to. Please send groceries! We've been looking at the local pet stores like crazy for this litter. It is amazing and we love it because it is natural and super absorbent! No stinky kitty urine smell, no clay stuck to the tub, less litter box changes...

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Getting in to the fall spirit…

On Sunday (when I found out I was pregnant and won my wedding dress on ebay) N and I also went to the Englebrecht Apple Orchard where we collected 2 10lb bags of apples and had some quality time. In October we love to pick our own apples and make all kinds of yummy stuff, we even have preserved our apple creations for future enjoyment in past years. This year we thought it would be yummy and fun to get a ton of apples and have some fun in the kitchen. We paid $8.00 for the 20lbs of apples, that is not a bad price at all. Plus we got to pick all the apples ourselves which was fun. I was woozy and overheated but that didn't stop me from climbing a...

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Save money on grocery bills by beefing up your kitchen skills!

The best way to save money on your grocery bills is to change your cooking/ eating habits. How many of your groceries are convenience items? Making items from scratch is an incredible way to save money and have more meal options. Did you know you can make your own alfredo sauce from cream cheese, milk and butter? You already have milk and butter in the fridge so if you can score an 8oz container of cream cheese for a dollar you can save $2-$3 by making your own alfredo sauce as opposed to buying it ready made. I love buying whole roasting chickens because I can get 3-4 meals out of them and they are cheap! For the first meal we eat my famous salt roasted chicken, the left over chicken...

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Happy Earth Day! Earth day tips?

Today is earth day and there is no better day to try and minimize your negative impact on the earth. How to you celebrate earth day? Do you plant something or maybe you pick up litter along the highway near your home. Every effort is helpful whether you are making it on for one day or if you are setting out to try and do something differently for the entire year. Some of the things we are doing year round are rain water harvesting and grey water harvesting. I take baths often and am always feeling bad about sending the perfectly good water down the drain afterwards. Since I use biodegradable shampoo and soap I have been eager to siphon my bath water out into the garden. We life in the...

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Did we conceive? My NFP-FAM charting and ovulation.

Oh boy, looks like our chances for getting pregnant were good back on Monday & Tuesday. Using natural family planing/ the fertility awareness method I was just able to confirm past ovulation that was within a 1 day window from the time of intercourse. Now I just need to wait 2 weeks before I can take a pregnancy test and confirm with my waking temperatures whether or not we conceived. Conveniently enough I have the "woman doctor" appointment in 2 weeks. Oh, the suspense is killing me! If you are trying to get pregnant or even if you are trying to avoid pregnancy you should consider learning the fertility awareness method, it offers great insight about how your body works and gives you much more control over your fertility! I bought the book...

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Upper respiratory infections in pets.

While we were moving in to our new place we were nicely greeted by a neighborhood dog. She was pretty and very friendly. She had a tag on that said her name was Lady and she apparently lived across the street from us. We gave her a pat, pat and our Dixie (our dog) played with her in our yard. Out here in the rural subdivision we live in people have the tendency to allow their animals and small children to wander about the neighborhood without supervision. I guess they must feel it is safer because we aren't in heart of a crime ridden city but still that is no reason to let everyone run amok. That is a rant for another day though. Anyway, we kept the friendly dog out of...

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Making my own braided rug- Prairie Chic Craft Idea

Braided rugs (or rag rugs) are not only useful around the home but they are also a great way to recycle fabrics. You can make your own braided rug using old t-shirts, boxers, linen and even scrap fabric from sewing projects! These are sometimes referred to as "rag rugs" they have great character and are a wonderful way to recycle and reuse. I have been wanting to make one of these for our home for quite sometime and I am finally making it happen this week. I like the idea of the braided rug because it is made from recycled material that I would otherwise throw away. Plus the rug has a unique, primitive charm about it. It is extra special because it is 100% homemade too! The instructions I found were...

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Old-Fashioned Know How- Do it yourself remedies part 2

Good lord! The people have spoken and apparently old-Fashioned Know How- Do it yourself remedies are a favorite among my readers and fellow stumblers. A few days ago I shared a microwave cleaner I discovered and I also shared a home made recipe for spackle or wall hole patch and the comments/ hits went through the roof! It's surprising to me that others are also interested in my old-fashioned, simpler ways of doing things obsession and now I am not so embarrassed to share my tips. You know many people think a not so old girl sharing these discoveries/ tips is a strange thing but I am really into all this simple living stuff and I am glad you are too! So here are a few more of my favorite bits of...

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Old-Fashioned Know How- Do it yourself remedies

I have always been interested in homemade remedies/ do it yourself remedies. Often times the remedies are cheaper, healthier and easier than conventional remedies plus they make you more self sufficient and they get you back to a simpler lifestyle. In earlier posts I talked about how to make simple yet helpful cleaning solutions with products you already have in your home. You can remove stains, disinfect, whiten your teeth and much more without buying expensive specialized products. In the next few weeks we are moving out of our current place and into an new one. This means massive amounts of cleaning and fixing will occur and I am trying to find simpler ways of doing this. My first old-fashioned know how concoction I want to share with you is homemade spackle- hole...

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Make it from scratch blog carnival – Feburary 5th 2008

Being able to say you made something is a great achievement and Make it From Scratch Carnival has so many great make it from scratch ideas that anyone can try! The most popular topic for this edition of make it from scratch is food, these ideas are mouthwatering and I can't wait to try some of them out! If you are looking for creative recipes you have come to the right place. One of the best ways to enjoy the food you eat is the raise it/ grow it yourself. This is the ultimate in self sufficiency and it's easier than ever to Get Started Growing Vegetables. Home grown veggies are not old delicious but they are also very rewarding! I know I enjoy freshly grown zucchini, green beans and perhaps some salad...

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I have many free craft project ideas for you

I wanted to take a second to share a series of craft project articles I have published recently ans some that were published way back when and deserve some attention. If you are crafty or if you are looking for tutorials on certain crafts you are in the right place! I have tons of projects that you can try today! I have included a brief excerpt from each of the articles, if you click the excerpt it will take you to the article. Make your own braided rug/ rag rug - Braided rugs are not only useful around the home but they are also a great way to recycle fabrics. You can make your own braided rug using old t-shirts...

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Today is a snow day!! It's still snowing!

Well, school was canceled today! It's a snow day because the roads are not clear.. They are very snow packed. It's such a pretty sight! When we first move into this house (we are renting) we didn't think we would be her for the holidays because we are renting on a month to month basis since the house if for sale. We figured the house would sell soon and we would have to move out. Surprise, the house has not sold because it kind of over priced and the economy is not doing so well so we may not have to move for a while! This house would be a nice started home for if it was not so over priced. It's a 2 bedroom, 2 bath little home outside...

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Write for a blog carnival or read what others have written.

Occasionally I will post a compilation of several articles that touch on motivational living or on living more simply and naturally. I enjoy reading what others have written on these topics and want to share the articles with you also. You can read these compilation articles by selecting one of the two the categories that most interests you. I will summarize the interesting article and link to them so that you may visit them if you wish. | motivational living | living more simply and naturally | If you are writer that feels your article would be beneficial to my readers you can submit your on topic article by visiting the appropriate submission page for the particular category. If you are looking to draw readers to your own site that is...

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Have you put up your holiday decorations yet?

Several of our neighbors have really gone all out with holiday decorations. I am amazed at how many people have started and completed putting up their holiday decorations, it is only November 27th! We haven't even retrieved our holiday decorations from the storage unit yet and some of our neighbors have all their decorations up and proudly gleaming at night. We are either really behind in decorating or other are just jumping the gun. We are planning to dig out our decorations this week and this weekend we will go cut down our own Christmas tree. We are slowly preparing to do the holiday decorations and we have been eying the energy efficient Christmas lights that are for sale in the stores. We plan to buy some, it's cool how many...

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Energy saving lights for your yard!

You probably already know I am a sustainable living freak. We love saving our gray water for the garden, we like energy efficient appliances and just about anything that can save us money and energy. We even just started a “green blog”, greenpreferred.com The new energy efficient craze is LED lights. These are a very big deal right now, they are made for more and more household uses (including holiday lights) and a new company just came out with LED landscape lighting for your home! LED lights are great because they are an energy efficient alternative to a 100 year old technology. Switching to LED lights is better for the environment, they are safer and they will save you money too! If you have landscape lighting you might consider switching to a...

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The benifits of solar energy

Solar energy is a free resource this is available to all of us. Solar energy can power your home, you can sell any unused energy back to the power company and the government offers considerable incentives too! My mother lives on her own five acres of desert and she is interested in implementing solar energy to save money and take care of the environment. Today I found the perfect product for her an many others who are interested in renewable energy. Did you know that you can get a solar heating/AC System that can save you lots of money? This solar heating/ AC system is very popular in places such as Japan and these types of heating/ AC units have been around since the early 20th century! If you are looking for a...

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