Who’s Gabbing and Who’s Gushing

Grow Sprouts at Home in Less Than 5 Minutes a Day

Posted on December 17, 2014 by Starletta Schipp, Sister #1927

Do you love having fresh sprouts for your salads and sandwiches? I do, especially this time of year when fresh greens are not available from my garden. If you have been purchasing your sprouts from the grocery, you will be amazed at the difference in both quality and cost when you grow them at home. Plus, the variety available to you is vastly more than just alfalfa and bean sprouts!

I have many favorites, from microgreens to grains and dill or radish, I have enjoyed every one I have grown. I do have a favorite supplier at SproutPeople but you can find seeds many places. Check out the link and look around at what might 'sprout' your interest ... Read more →

SOCK SNOWMAN

Posted on December 17, 2014 by CJ Armstrong, Sister #665

I love snowmen/snow people and have a collection of them. I saw a posting on Facebook about making a snowman, and decided to make one. Finding white socks without any other color/printing on them was a challenge, but I did find some . . . had to buy the "value" pack so I have lots of white socks now.So, with a bit of rice (to weight the bottom), some fiberfill and buttons, fabric scarf, he was pretty quick and easy to make. I think he's pretty darned cute, as well! ... Read more →

Tradition: Holiday Throwdown

Posted on December 17, 2014 by Debbie Tegart, Sister #4393

We have lots of traditions at the holidays. One of those is our family cooking throwdown over New Years. We get together with our girls and their significant others each year right after Christmas and through the New Year. We often go somewhere “beachy” although this year we will be at one of their houses due to scheduling challenges for travel. During our trip we select a night and a theme and each of the 4 couples compete for the coveted Throwdown Champ award. The prizes vary between puzzles (we always do a puzzle together on this trip), a game or something that someone has donated as a prize.

There are 8 of us so we crowd into a small kitchen where eight of us cook simultaneously ... Read more →

Etsy Finds - Homestead Helpers

Posted on December 17, 2014 by Sherone Taylor, Sister #1682

With Christmas approaching and January peeking around the corner, it's time to start thinking about planning the spring garden! I know, it's not even Christmas yet.

I like to start planning early, as we are always burdened heavily with Spring chores on the ranch and the homestead. In the months leading up to Spring, I try to make purchases of things we will need to have a successful summer vegetable garden.

Here are a few things I am considering buying during the next several months. I like to purchase from other Etsy shops. If you scratch their backs, maybe they will scratch yours? ... Read more →

Wild Bird Wednesday

Posted on December 17, 2014 by MaryBeth Schwartz, Sister #46

While we have a lot of resident Eagles this area along the Skagit River, it is a winter's retreat for Bald Eagles. They are arriving now. As soon as Salmon come out of the salt water to spawn in the rivers and creeks where they once were born the Eagles show up to take advantage of the large numbers of live fish and rotting carcases of spawned out fish. Bald Eagles come here from Alaska and Northern Canada ... Read more →

Christmas Cheer

Posted on December 17, 2014 by Karen L. Bates, Sister #377

I finally got a bit of decorating done ... can you believe it?

This adorable Santa was made by a friend, Debbie Noell. Isn't he just adorable. See that cute little mouse between his feet? I just love all the details ... Read more →

#1. Observe and Interact

Posted on December 17, 2014 by Sarah Houlihan, Sister #3828

Observation is a very powerful tool when working with permaculture. It also gives you an excuse to take a peaceful walk through the woods or sit and just look around. When you are still and just take in your surroundings, you will be amazed at what you can learn.

Permaculture has so much to do with following the patterns of nature and working with nature, not against it. Therefore, we need to take the time to look at nature and see what it does. Look at the patterns created, watch the cycles through the year, look at where different plants like to grow and which types of bugs live on these plants. Observe the different ecosystems and how all the plants and animals work together. They all produce “waste” that other living things can use and they all use some sort of “waste” produced by other living things.

You not only want to observe what nature does, you also want to observe what is going on with the particular site you plant to work with ... Read more →

Wholesome & Wonderful Recipe Hop #3

Posted on December 17, 2014 by Amy Maus, Sister #2791

Can you believe its almost Christmas time? I am done shopping which is wonderful and now I can turn my attention towards the food we will make.

We are going to try something new this year and cook a goose. We will also have ham, winter squash, stuffing and cherry cheesecake. Everyone in my family is getting super excited.

Anyway, thanks to those of you who participated in and read the last Wholesome & Wonderful Recipe Hop. I want to highlight the 5 entries from last time and I hope we grow even more this week ... Read more →

How My Garden Grows Through the Seasons 2014 ~ Part 1

Posted on December 17, 2014 by Rosemarie Thompson, Sister #6055

Here we are, almost at the end of 2014. This past weekend, I took pictures of my garden and how it’s growing in December. For those of you who may be new to my site, I’ve been taking monthly pictures of my garden and sharing them – with links to how things looked the prior month. Because this is the last month of the year, I’m not sharing just my December pictures. I’m sharing slide shows of my garden through the seasons, from the spring planting in April through December. My garden is so large, I’m breaking it up into two parts.

I have 21 raised beds in my garden, 18 of which are along my side yard. These pictures are taken looking down the side yard at all 18 of those beds ... Read more →

Diabetics on my list--what can I make them?

Posted on December 16, 2014 by Sylvia Jacobus, Sister #5389

What can I make these people who have diabetes? We often think of making "goodies" for Christmas gifts. This doesn't help my adult friends and family members who have diabetes. I needed to think more savory or just something different. I saw a recipe for a creamer. It called for non-fat dry milk in the recipe. I found a company that dries certain kinds of foods, so.......I checked them out to see if they had dried cream. I didn't want to make a coffee creamer with non-fat milk..sorry...that's YUK! Well, now off we go. I now realize I could make some killer creamer to give these coffee drinkers. The creamer also contains cinnamon known to lower and control blood sugar. Yeah! And, I chose to make it with stevia. Now, we're cooking ... Read more →

Shop Kitty

Posted on December 16, 2014 by Amber Conger, Sister #3912

This is why the Skwish is the official Refinerii mascot...too long out in the shop & he comes looking for pets. He will stand outside the door & meow until someone lets him in, & then he will proceed to jump up on tables & demand attention--no matter if we are in the middle of a project ... Read more →

Cooking with Honey - Peanut Butter Honey Spread

Posted on December 16, 2014 by Tracy Fredrychowski, Sister #2523

After the hives have been put to sleep for the winter, and the pollen has stopped running, it is time for us to reap the benefits of raising bees. For us, that is the sweet taste of my famous Peanut Butter Honey Spread. Added to a slice of warm homemade bread, this wintertime treat is a favorite of our grandchildren ... Read more →

4 Bee Products with Health Benefits

Posted on December 16, 2014 by Starletta Schipp, Sister #1927

The bee collects honey from flowers in such a way as to do the least damage or destruction to them, and he leaves them whole, undamaged and fresh, just as he found them. Saint Francis de Sales

What a learning experience our first year of beekeeping has been. I have become fascinated with these little, miraculous works of God. The culture of the bee society to continually work for the good of the others in the hive - just for the sake of protecting the home and doing the work to the best of each ability - is such a great example of how to live ... Read more →