Around The Homestead

Living With Less

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Raising Livestock

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Getting Organized

Fall 2015 – pics

Spring 2014…Our Growing Homestead

This is our first season with our new garden on the new homestead.  When we first started planning our projects for the summer, I thought we were undershooting.  I wanted goats… like, NOW.  I wanted acres of corn… NOW.  I wanted to double the chickens and raise meat birds…NOW.  But alas, we did not accomplish all of that and I am so…GLAD.  What we have taken on has been more consuming than I thought.  The picture perfect dream of a productive homestead where I would go out to the garden in my perfect homesteading outfit (with apron of course) and harvest the produce, cook and can and blissfully appreciate all the God has given us is well….. not exactly how it all works out.

I’m learning that in the midst of our busiest days we find ourselves harvesting carrots before they rot.  On the rainiest days, a chicken gets sick and has to be tended to.  The beautiful sunflower hideout is infested with caterpillars that need to be picked and squished.  Yes, that is the reality of homesteading.  Oh, and my homesteading outfit?  How about pajamas, uncombed hair, glasses, chicken poop shoes and a cup of coffee.  Ha!

However, amongst all the chaos and imperfections I do find myself appreciating all that God has given us.  There are those moments of beautiful sunny skies when I see my kids picking produce or running with the animals, and I realize this is the dream we set out for.  Little by little, our dream is becoming a reality.

Here is a sneak peak of what’s been going on around the homestead this season.  In a perfect world I would post amazing pictures of the carrot muffins I made, or the best way to hardboil our fresh eggs… but when I start baking and cooking the kids in my house go wild and taking pics is the LAST thing on my mind.  So enjoy the pics I did manage to take 🙂

Our new shed/chicken coop in the works…

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The garden…

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Peach Tree                                   Apple Tree

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Tomatoes                                    Carrots

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Beets                                            Peas

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Peppers                                             Raised Beds


Blackberry Bush

Our sunflower hideaway is growing nicely…

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Our first carrot harvest….

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Thanks for reading.  Stay tuned for more updates (and hopefully recipes)!

🙂 Mama Nice


Bagworm Infestation on the Homestead

Now that it’s sunny and we can get outside, we’ve been busy prepping the garden, mulching and cleaning up the yard.  You know, the usual “Spring Cleanup”.  We’ve been at the new Homestead for one year now and it seems that each month teaches us something new.  This month – Bagworm Infestation 101.  Ew.

What is a Bagworm you ask?  It’s basically a moth that feeds on trees and then takes parts of the tree to form a cocoon with silk strong enough to strangle and kill the tree.  (For a more detailed description click here).

See this lineup of trees?  See the little dead one on the end?  Yup, that tree had the most cocoons hanging from it.


See those little sack like things that look like seed pockets?  Guess what? They aren’t seeds, it’s a bagworm cocoon filled with hundreds to thousand of eggs.  Again I say, EW.   140421_0006 140421_0008

So how do you get rid of them without spraying nasty chemicals?  You get your children to pick them off of the trees before they hatch.  Once picked, put them in soapy water and throw them out (in a sealed plastic bag of course). P.S. Papa Nice also helped, but he’s not in the pic 🙂


There are “safe” pesticides out there, and we might resort to that.  For now, we are picking them off.  I will keep you updated as the summer goes on to see what happens.  Right now, the Bagworms haven’t hatched so it’s hard to tell if we’ve gotten rid of the problem.  I also read that birds will get rid of a small infestation, so I’m hoping the cocoons we couldn’t reach up at the tippy top will serve as a tasty snack for some birds (as long as they aren’t Starlings – we don’t need another infestation of those nasty birds!!).

Playhouse Chicken Coop  – repurpose an old playhouse into a home for your chickens.  Save money, help the environment and start your flock.

Playhouse Chicken Coop

Fall 2013 

We’ve had one busy summer.  After moving to the new house, there was much to be done!  Here’s a look at what we’ve been up to!


The view from the second story of our home.  Our property goes to the very back tree line.  Almost 3 acres.  The middle plot will be a large garden.  We (mostly my hubby) spent the summer getting the land ready for planting next year.


The compost pile made from pallets.  They are working out wonderfully!

IMG_4989 This is the view of our chicken coop.  When we moved we downsized to 3 chickens because we didn’t have a coop at the new house.  I ordered this cheapo coop from Amazon and it’s awful.  I’m working on a new coop right now and I can’t wait to show it to you all when I’m done!

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Here are the chickens roaming the yard.  Our dog, Charlie, thinks they want to play ball and keeps dropping the ball in front of them.  🙂

IMG_5340 IMG_5338 After many months of treatments and tricks, the poison ivy seems to have been eradicated from the garden plot.  The soil was tested, manure and lyme were added.  We all have poison ivy.  It sucks.   BUT, as you can see the Winter Rye has been planted and is beginning to grow.  We should be ready for planting in the spring!

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