Welcome to MY ADVENTURE OF DAILY LIFE. I have long since wanted and been encouraged to document the plethora of items I work on, learn, and in general tinker with. I travel and experience new things far and wide and love to share what I gain from them. Here I am sharing with you not just the amazing but the every day as well. They may not fall under the category of "daring adventure" but I am usually having a blast doing them. Enjoy!
Homesteading is not for wimps. Especially if you don't love to work really really hard. I love the physical aspect of it and enjoy my time in the garden and with the animals, with the sun on my back and the wind in my hair. I enjoy my job in an office too and since it's still paying the homesteading bills, it's here to stay. We know there are many others like us out there who would jump in and take up an opportunity to thrive with us. We would love the help but where to begin to find the right person?
I asked some of my Facebook groups and here is what I gleaned:
- Background checks - They are neither unreasonable or unwise. A serious person will agree it's a good idea. Someone who is up to no good will balk.
- References - Honestly, though, who gives out a bad reference? Might still be good to call them and ask what they feel their strengths and weaknesses are.
- Work Exchage Contract - When it comes time, I will consult a lawyer and make sure I understand my state's laws surrounding this type of set up. Also need to know what to do with squatters if the need arises. Some states grant the house and land to someone who has lived there for a certain amount of time. Be sure to have a plan on how to address this.
- A Very Clear List - List all work duties, all scenarios, what's expected, what's not expected, what's provided, what's not provided and everything in between!
- Release of Injury Form - Stuff happens on farms and you don't want to loose everything because they got hurt. They should have health insurance or something like it and perhaps keep them away from the really dangerous stuff.
- Require a renters policy - They will be living on your land and your dwelling fire policy will protect you, but if someone trips and falls, it may fall on the tenant and you don't want to lose valuable people due to being uninsured. Explain the need and find them a good rate!
- A Trial Period - At least 4 seasons so they know what they have gotten into and if they want to stay. You also just experienced them under most anything that needed to happen. By this time you should know if it's going to work or not.
- Make Some Calls - Call their local police department and find out if the have a history with them. The public has access to any records as well of court cases.
- Two In Person Interviews - Invite them to come stay a weekend or two. Really get to know everybody.
I think that should cover it as far as I know, but in the end be sure to go slow and trust your gut!
Most people homestead to grow their own food and we are no exception. This time of year the garden is exploding with food and we are trying to scramble to get it all put up for the winter. Squash and cucumbers are the biggest producers right now and trying to come up with creative ways to use it is starting to wane.
For the squash we have 50 bags that are shredded and ground to be added to ground meat for meatloaf or meatballs. This is also the wonderful addition to flour and other ingredients that ends up being zucchini bread. Even better is Hawaiian Zucchini Bread! It has been sliced for sauteing and cubed for adding to stews. We love our squash and try to use every bit that comes out of the garden. If one gets too tough or too many seeds, thank goodness for the bacon-ators out in the paddocks who have never turned a squash down.
Cucumbers have been coming in droves. Here is a picture of what I picked after having not picked for a week:
Whoa, right? Actually most of these were given to a neighbor who lost all of his cucumber plants, but there sure are a lot of pickles in this picture! I also slice them length wise in half, scoop out the seeds and use them for tuna boats or any other fun dish that usually has a bit of relish in it. Again if I get too overwhelmed or if they are too big, off to the piggies they go, who eat them up with great delight.
Mr Brawny helped a neighbor fell a tree that was threatening to fall on a house. Luckily he missed all buildings but he did manage to swipe the side of one of her pear trees. So after he got home, they brought over three buckets of unripe pears so I am trying to figure out what to do with them. I posted on Facebook for ideas and I think I am going to try my hand at Pear Relish! It looks divine. Here is the recipe I thought would work best for me. Would you like to try with me?
I am trying to grow beans for the second time this season. The first ones, I first thought never came up. However upon closer inspection I see the little stalks that used to have those lovely two little first true leaves of beans. My tomatoes don't seem to be faring my better this year. You can see where the vines have grown outside of the cage and have been nipped off high. Who else would be able to do this if not the deer?
We had bought deer fencing but unfortunately it was used for fencing in chickens. So I am trying to come up with some alternatives to keep these rascals out of the food supply patch.
So far I was able to give Mr Brawny a haircut and just sprinkling that around where I planted the beans seems to have helped a great deal with the rabbits. I have also read planting marigolds around the perimeter. This seems like it would be a great expense, especially if I purchased them as plants instead of seeds, but if it works I am up for anything! Another person suggested human urine. This may be true but perhaps it needs to be reapplied every so often. I use my own urine as a fertilizer on a regular basis but not normally with beans. I try and make sure that the heavy feeders like squash get the majority of it.
For the deer, I think I would like to try this method I found!