But I do want to learn it all.
Ed already told you how we got here, and what our basic livestock/gardening plans are, so I thought I give you my perspective. One thing Ed neglected to mention is that our new place is over an hour’s drive from our old one, and we came here without knowing a soul. We came with two of my three children, two half crazy dogs, and four completely crazy cats.
Although we had agreed not to do anything major until next spring, we had hoped to be a little farther into settling in to our new place than we are. We had some unexpected health issues that have slowed us down some. If you’re interested, you can read about my accident here. Things are better now, but still moving too slowly for my impatient self.
Ed and I both believe that people need to learn how to do things the old ways because one day, they just might not have a choice. For me, I think it goes a little deeper than that. I’ve always loved history, and as an extension of that, I want to know how to do things the way my great grandparents did them.
Grandma did teach me how to make bread, but wouldn’t attempt teaching me to sew or crochet, because I am left-handed, and watching me work “backwards” made her crazy. No one else in my family knew how, so I’ve muddled around off and on over the years, trying to teach myself. I’ve had more failures than successes, but I keep trying. I am, however, the family “go-to” person for homemade bread, and my oldest son can make it as well as I can. All three of my kids are bread kneading experts.
If I could, I would learn how to do everything. I would learn about caring for goats, chickens and horses. I would learn how to card and spin fibers, knit, crochet, and weave. I would learn to quilt and make our clothes, I would learn to make butter and cheese as well as all our own bath and laundry soap. I would learn to grow and preserve all our own food. I would grow and grind my own grain, and press my own oil. I would learn about wild edibles and medicinals, and take care of my families health through the real food we eat and natural medicine. I truly believe that when God created this world, He gave us everything we need. We just need to learn how to use it.
OK, well that is the short list of what I want to learn. Give me a few minutes, I’m sure I’ll think of more. Oh, yeah, I want to learn to play piano and guitar well. I can play some now; just not well.
I’ve been actually working on this list for a long time. So how am I doing? Well, as I said before, I’ve worked some on needle work and sewing. YouTube has been great for learning things left-handed. I have made laundry soap, deodorant, and lip balm. I have made lye from wood ash. I never got to the soap making part of that, but that’s another blog post. I have grown and canned some tomatoes. I’ve made apple and pear butter, and raspberry jam. I’ve grown herbs and learned to dry them (by accident). I’ve used said dried herbs for medicinal purposes. We are going to talk about Yarrow in a future blog post. Its great stuff! Last year, I attended a wild edibles workshop.
As much as we can, we try to limit our use of processed food in general and refined white sugar in particular. I’ve done a little research into essential oils and their uses. We have a few here that we use. Number two son swears by peppermint essential oil for headaches.
Almost everything I mentioned in the last two paragraphs happened before we moved here. I am so excited to have more room to learn things, grow things, build things and make things.
We are so glad to have you along with us on this journey as we create our homestead. We welcome any input, information or advice you have for us too. That way, we can learn from each other.