hobbit day party

Happy Hobbit Day 2014

Yesterday our family hosted our second annual Hobbit Day party. In the fictitious world of Middle-Earth, Hobbit Day is the shared birthday of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins. In the real world, it happens to be the first day of Fall. Both are great excuses for gathering family and friends for an outdoor gathering. Intermittent rain threatened all day to cancel our plans but the skies cleared by late afternoon, settling into a brisk but lovely fall evening just in time. […]

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apple tree blossom

Photo Update Spring 2014

Wow! Our recent weather in West Michigan has been fabulous gardening weather. Several warm, sunny days with intermittent rain. Not enough rain to keep you indoors all day, but just enough to keep me from needing the sprinkler more than once. I’m so thankful! During this previous winter I realized that I simply didn’t take enough pictures of the farm in 2013. To remedy that in 2014 I plan to, at a minimum, take photos for a spring, summer and […]

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chickens

2013 Farmer’s Report

At the beginning of this month I delivered the final round of produce for our 2013 season. Now that the season has ended, it’s time for me to provide you with our second annual Farmer’s Report. The annual Farmer’s Report is an exercise that helps me analyze what went well, what went wrong and – most importantly – what I’ve learned so that I can apply those lessons to improving subsequent seasons. It’s also a great way for me to […]

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how to make homemade laundry soap

It’s January. Lots of us are working toward goals for better living as part of a New Year’s resolution tradition. If your resolution involves saving money or living healthier (or perhaps tackling one of our easy-peasy Resolutions You Can Keep to build your confidence) you should check this out: Yesterday I made homemade liquid laundry soap. The process was just as easy and fast as when I made powdered laundry soap last year. I love that the powdered version takes […]

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bunny hutch

As I write this blog post it is currently -11* outside with a windchill of -35*. Brr! It’s the kind of cold where your nostrils freeze just walking to the mailbox. We’re warm and grateful inside our little house, able to appreciate the beauty of the outdoors from inside looking out. Our animals however spend night and day living in this stuff. I don’t worry about them too much because, after all, they’re made for cold weather. But when it […]

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square foot garden plant spacing

Welcome to 2014! I’ve decided to ring in the new year by sharing my 2014 garden plans with you. For those of you who are unfamiliar, our farm consists of two principal gardens: The Main Garden and the Fenceline Garden. Today I’m going to be sharing the Main Garden plan. This year is certainly a transition for us because it is the first year we’ll have a giant garden but no CSA. The planning was made simpler by my established […]

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happy new year 2014

Our best wishes to you for a 2014 full of adventures and abundant harvests! _

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new year resolution

It’s that time of year when we make promises to ourselves in the hopes of making life better. Did you know that only 8% of Americans actually achieve their New Year’s resolution? In fact by the fourth week of January only 64% of us are still working to achieve the goal we’ve set. Maybe that’s why 55% of us infrequently or absolutely never make a New Year’s resolution to begin with. It doesn’t have to be that way. I’m no […]

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winter eggs

In mid-November I shared that our hens had stopped laying eggs completely due to molting, cold weather and minimal daylight hours. Though chickens can and will lay occasional eggs during cold, dark winter days, we decided not to endure an entire winter of feeding chickens who aren’t ‘giving back’ (or the shame of buying eggs at the grocery store)! After research and input form other homesteaders, we settled on the following plan: Add artificial light in the early morning hours […]

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