Yes, you sure read that correctly. For a couple years in a row I have enjoyed entering our crafts and foods into the fair, but I just get this nagging voice in my head that screams that I’m not good enough. So let’s start with the good, what all we won!
And the boy won first place for his ceramic fish he made on art class!
Now on to the crappy part! Yes, I only have about three quarters of an acre. Nope, I will never have goats, cows or other poultry. It makes me feel like I’m just not enough. My garden isn’t huge and I can’t fully sustain myself from my home alone. I don’t solely live off the grid and I have a full time job, other than living off our tiny plot. So, I guess what I’m sayin is that life isn’t perfect! I’m doing ok with what I have and I am just going to continue to bloom where I am planted! There, I said it! I’m just tiny plot farmer!
Last weekend we had our first sale event here at the homestead! It was a honey and egg sale! We sold out of honey and sold a lot of eggs! Plus, people got to taste some cucumelons and look at my craftiness! It was great!
We also had several people notice our garage decor! Ha! I finally got the Mr to hang the hooks he blacksmithed for the onions and garlic!
I will be sharing a walk through the garden later on the week, but I thought I’d share an update on the fence line garden! The left was this week, top right is end of June and bottom right was the end of May!
The birdhouse gourds and growing all over the chicken run!
We have been having some great harvests this week too! Lots of onions, some zucchini, cucumbers and even a good many cucumelons!
We have hit some pretty good sales on things we have really been looking for lately! First up is an amazing pond insert. We were looking for something that we could add plants to so the bees would have a more reliable water source. Well, here’s our $10 yardsale find! (We had lots of digging and prying to do, but we got it finished!)
When we were buying some chicken food at tractor supply, I found an amazing half off deal on a gardening hat!
And while I was searching for water plants that weren’t there, Lowe’s had their perennials for only $3! So I snatched up some!
And On a totally different topic, Sherman has a play mate for a few days! We just love squishy faced dogs around here!
Have a great week and continue to bloom where you are planted!
We have been harvesting a fair amount of produce from the garden! It’s starting to look like a jungle in there!
We are growing a couple different varieties of peppers this year, but only the green peppers are growing so far!
Last year the cucumber plants were killed off almost right away. I was super bummed about that! This year, they seem to be doing much better! Pickle making will be happening soon!
A nice close up of the tomato jungle! In my defense most of these came up on their own and I just couldn’t kill them!
My efforts to combat squash bugs is working so far! That means picking off any squash bug eggs every few days, but it’s worth it!
I was also able to clean out the compost tumbler! I put a majority of the compost down where the beets are going to be put in the garden!
The popcorn seems to be growing nicely! I’m hoping to harvest some of this for the winter!
Now a totally different story is the green beans! Something, I think the groundhog, kept breaking into the garden and eating the plants! Hoping to get them growing now that I have located the break in area!
We also still have loads of blossoming plants, including the beautiful black eyed Susans!
The chicken coop was cleaned out well by yours truly, and the birdhouse gourds are finally trellising up!
And last, but not least, is that we finally got some shirts with our logo!
We are having a honey and egg sale here at the homestead tomorrow! I’ll be posting how that went after the weekend!
This week it finally rained a bit and now the garden is quickly coming to life! Everything is growing and we have been able to harvest around 40 cloves of garlic, 17 pounds of potatoes and I’m about ready to pull some onions too!
We have also been harvesting some squash, cucumbers and some adorable tiny cucumelons!
And my Sherman dog loves to help harvest everything! He has been known to pick his own green beans, eat cucumbers and zucchini from the plant and now this:
And the bees are taking off! (Well, 3 out of 4 are doing well.) The split that I did is not doing well, but I learned how I’d do it differently next year, so all is well if I learned something! The swarms we caught are doing amazing! This queen is a laying machine!
So much brood!
I was able to weed the beeyard, do a check in on all the hives and rearrange them a bit. I love the accomplished feeling after checking in on the bees!
For the upcoming fair I am entering some of my items made from my bees wax and honey. I’ve made some lipbalm already, but I’ve also made some melt and pour honey and goats milk luffa soap.
I was also being crafty and made a craft that depicts some part of beekeeping. So, I made a langstroth hive pillow.
Also, we have lots of flowers blooming and so much beauty around here!
And of course with the summer rain, comes some beautiful rainbows!
It’s really summer! We are starting to get some food from the garden including garlic and potatoes. I’m looking forward to gathering lots more this month!
1. Zero waste our home! We already do a good bit to avoid creating trash, but there is always room for improvement! The summer challenge is going well! We (all 3 of us combined) only sent about 10 ounces of garbage to the landfill this whole month!
3 weeks worth of garbage
2. Declutter 20 items per month. Last year I decluttered 2016 items from this house. We got rid of a big gaming table and a few other not played with things!
3. Create only 12 bags of garbage per year. Americans are super wasteful. We are going to try to only produce one 13 gallon kitchen trash bag per month! Yep, still on the same bag of garbage, #4! We might just make it through the summer!
4. Merge crafting and homestead business. This has been going pretty well! I had a craft set up at a local friend’s store and a few online sales. I’m sewing some round earbud holders now to see how they sell and the mister has been blacksmithing hooks for keys and hanging heavy things!
5. Create a summer kitchen. We will be turning a spot in the garage into a nice canning area. Thank goodness that I don’t need this yet because it’s not been accomplished yet! But I did just buy some peaches at the farmer’s market that I might need to can! Come on Mr. Llewellyn!
6. Expand the garden. I widened the area along the fence and planted plants all throughout my yard (grow food not yards, right?) And, it’s looking better!
7. Grow some different plants. Luffa gourds were so fun to grow last year, and we are growing more this year! We are also growing popcorn, okra and my favorite: cucumelons!
8. Make a chicken viewing area. Yeah, um, I don’t think we are going to do this now! I love watching the chickens, but life has kept us busy!
9. Green up my school. Schools create an absurd amount of trash! My class recycled around 150 pounds of plastic film this year, recycled their plastic cereal bowls and even planted a pollinator garden! Watch out 2017-2018 school year!!
10. Track our solar panels. This month we reached 1.9 MWh! And our electric bill was less than $6! 💚
11. Continue beekeeping. The bees have been doing well! I pulled off some honey to spin from our largest hive. I’m hoping to add more boxes soon!
12. Travel more with the family! We managed to visit so many places last year and have some major traveling ideas for this year! We were able to take the boy to an awesome indoor water park in Ohio on Lake Erie. It was a great time and we were able to go to a military vehicle show close by. (Of course the guys enjoyed that!)
If you set goals, how are yours going?
Yesterday was just a really great day and not for any one certain reason.
Ive been working on braiding the garlic that I’ve been harvesting! It will hang nicely on a few hooks that the mister made for me!
In the garden, the cucumbers are looking really good! That makes me pretty excited because last year I had a rough time keeping the cucumbers alive!
My pollinator garden has come back from its first year looking amazing! I think my cone flowers didn’t even bloom until August last year! This year they are huge and blooming now! There are always so many butterflies and bees all around it!
Last night, my pizza dough was spot on! Sometimes it’s just not great, but last night, perfection! (Can you tell that we are not big cheese eaters here?!?!)
While the boy was at vacation bible school, I was weeding the garden and harvesting a few more potatoes and some garlic.
And a lot of yesterday was spent chilling on the deck. The temperatures were perfect for hammock laying and playing some uno.
I hope that today is just as great of a day! Happy Thursday everyone!