Category Archives: Reflection & Ramblings

They Say, Don’t Pull All Your Eggs in One Basket

Good Morning Lovelies,

It’s been super busy here on our little homestead and I can’t honestly say that I am overwhelmed, but I’m trucking along.  I have a lot planned for this year and I can’t help but wonder if I’ve taken on too much.  We are onward and upwards with repaying our debts, planning container and raised bed gardening, and I plan on canning a lot more.  I am dumbfounded how all of these homesteaders find the time to get it all done!  Most of the women I follow, do it alone while their husbands work outside of the home like me and the only things they have that I don’t are animals.  What’s their trick?  Anyone know?

In looking at how we live, how we are planning to live, and how we dream of living, I’ve french-kaolin-clay-detox-body-bar-mpdiscovered one thing.  I’m so much happier than I’ve ever been.  I know my husband feels it too.  There is so much joy and sense of self accomplishment in doing things for yourself, by yourself, and not relying on someone or a piece of machinery or that it will be available in the store.  It’s satisfying and yet exhausting.  I buy very little consumer products at the store and more recently even embarked on a new little journey of old fashioned soap making.  You can visit our Etsy Shop off our blog if you are interested.  Using the lifestyle of self sustainability as my guide, I make natural soaps using basic pantry ingredients and essential oils.  Last year I absolutely fell in love with essential oils and so much so that I have over 40!  My son loves them too and just found our during one mean head cold last week that inhaling essential oils can help him breathe and open up.  Now he thinks I’m the best mom ever!  Like I didn’t know 😉

I’ve got our little business off to a great start which is our third form of income again not putting all of our eggs in one basket.  I’ve been planning my order from Baker Seeds and I’ll have that on my agenda for the first of March.  We’ve purchased more guns and ammo, and will be going for our certification next month.  We will try water catching for our garden to save on water.  So much planning.  My brain hurts. All good things come with hard work and determination.  I was thinking of all of the things I do and I’m convinced I need a clone!

Canning, Gardening, Freezer Cooking, Cooking from Scratch, Bread Making, Dehydrating, Composting, Home Remedies with Essential Oils, Wood Fire Cooking, Soap Making, Fermentation, and all of my wifely duties on top of that.

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I’m exhausted.  For those who do it all, how do you keep up your energy?  Me and coffee are already besties and I’m pretty sure they don’t make it for an IV haha.  With January coming to a close shortly, this month was a busy one.  We are trying to stay proactive in our approach to homesteading because we want to be fully equipped to live the lifestyle we want, before we are forced to live it.  By incorporating different elements, we are on our way to self sustainability.  And I can’t be more excited.

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Busy! Busy! Planning and Homemade Soap

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Hello Lovelies,

I’ve been so busy lately!  We’ve started the new year with a bang!  Every year I do an overhaul on our planning.  I plan a budget, organize and file paperwork, organize closets, purge, and clean out my home management binder.  I find what didn’t work and I strive to change it.  I’ve found by being organized, I don’t miss a beat!  Our annual budget is now done, annual decluttering and purging is done, pantry and freezer inventory is done, and we’ve created a 3rd method of income.  Not only do we both work full time, but now we’ve started making handmade natural soaps and products.  Soap is a blast to make and keeps me very busy.  Every good homesteader has more than one resource for income.  If I ever lose my job, I have others to fall back on.  With our goal of “a country homestead” just four years away, every bit of planning and preparation along the way will only make our lives easier.  We may live in the suburbs, but how we run our home and hobbies you might think we live on acreage!

Besides all of that, I am planning our seed order to plant in the Spring.  I’m praying that I can get something to grow and stay alive this year.  We do well with tomatoes but our soil and the Texas heat are terrible even with mulch and diatomaceous earth (DE) added.  I’m going to try container gardening and start a little later towards March for planting.  We started in February of last year and had two frosts after that, killing everything I worked so hard to plant.  We hardly got anything.  It pains me to waste that much money, time, and effort.  I’m sticking with just three plants this year instead of planting more than that.  I figure if I can perfect three, imagine what I can do with five? ten? or more?

With all of the planning I’ve done as far as our finances, our garden, our business, I’m anticipating 2017 to be an amazing year!  How do you plan your year?  Some people do not have to plan and some like me, DO!  I’d go crazy otherwise.

That is all for now!  🙂

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Winter Prep and Football

Hello Lovelies,

I have had the best few weeks! My auntie came to visit us for 10 days and my Lord we never stopped. Canning, building our rocket stove pit,  baking, you name it. I think i gained a few pounds 😮. My son started football as a defensive line man and is in his 8th season of soccer as a goalie so needless to say this mama’s busy. I have to say watching him play football is really unbelievable. At his first game, I was at the bottom of the bleachers and spotted him on the field and yelled “Oh my God he’s beautiful!!” Just a little too loud. Thankfully HE didn’t hear me. But seriously, I cannot believe how old that moment made me feel when I finally sat down. 18 years ago, I was standing on the field in the same school colors cheering my heart out, feeling the rush of excitement as our boys ran on the field.  I did get a ton of video though and even my dad got excited watching them and going over the play with my son telling him where he went wrong. It made my heart smile. In my family, my sister and I were very involved with school especially cheerleading. We both helped coach the Pop Warner girls when we were in high school and for me I cheered nine years! Pop Warner, high school, and college.  Our dad played in high school and coached Pop Warner football so it was in our blood. Now, I’m on the other side of the fence. The funniest part of this, is that I can remember most of their cheers haha.

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I managed while my aunt was here to teach her how to pressure can. It was so much fun and I think I even raised an eyebrow once or twice! Ok! I call my pantry gorgeous and I jump with delight when my jars pop okay! 😊 I’ve gotten our pantry and fridge stocked with nearly 200 jars of jams, pickles, beans, meats, sauce, veggies, potatoes, soup, butters, and pickled veggies. We also dehydrated minced onions and bell peppers. It’s amazing how much water content is actually in peppers because the end result of a 6 bell peppers yielded less than half a cup dehydrated.

Winter’s coming shortly and we still have a ton to do. My fall decor is finally up! Fall is my most favorite season and reminds me a lot of home. Pumpkins, apple spice, pies, squash, soups, chilis, fire pit, and hot apple cider. Heaven on earth. So because the weather is cooling a bit or at least enough so the heat doesn’t kill us, we need to get ready for winter. The bushes need to be trimmed down, lawn needs edging, weeds pulled, sticks gathered for the fire pit, then there is inside. Canning, dehydrating, rug shampooing, and out comes all my cinnamon and candles! Yankee Candles of course. 

My auntie went home this weekend and already our home feels a little less full. Thankfully, babydoll is still home. My son had great saves as goalie of his soccer team yesterday during their first game! He was so pumped, it also made my heart smile.  He is truly beautiful and I feel so blessed. My son’s accomplishments,  my aunts visit, Fall is here, and life abundant.  
Happy Sunday Lovelies

Surgery and Reality 

Hello Lovelies, 

Life has a funny way of smacking you. Hard at that. It has a way to knock you into reality and will use any method necessary. I’ve always been a relatively healthy person, always runnin, always go-go-go. Let’s face it, before babydoll I ran like clockwork and on a pound of coffee. More recently, I’m starting to feel more my age. 

A few weeks ago I had quite the scare. I scared everyone.  It was a Sunday and I had to be up at 4a to bring babydoll to his truck. I woke up and immediately got sick. While this is nothing new and has been known to happen on occasion  (how late I eat, heartburn, etc.) this time was a little different.  I thought either I’m pregnant or something’s wrong. I came home, went back to bed, and then it started. 14hrs of agonizing pain in my right side, I couldn’t hold down water, and I had a high temperature all day. I’m one tough cookie and I’m not one to cave, give up, and get help. It takes a lot. I looked like death walking and I felt it too. 

I’ve never seen my son so scared and paralyzed before. Babydoll was over 1000 miles away and rushing home. I’m in pain, driving myself to the emergency room and thankfully we made it in one piece. A cat scan and a lot of morphine later I was told I had to be prepped for emergency surgery and will be transported by ambulance.  Say what!

During those few hours in the ER, I realized how good God’s been to me and my family. My very good friend got dressed as it was almost 8p, came and stayed by me the entire time. Another dear friend drove an hour to pick up my son and watch him for a few days including our dog.  Even though my hospital stay was lonely and I couldn’t kiss my sweet husband before being put under, I was protected. Protected by my faith, my family, and my friends. 

Now, I laugh at why I had surgery. I don’t know why, I just do. It was routine and no big deal so they said. Yeah, three incisions in my stomach, no big deal? It was by far the most painful thing I’ve gone through thus far and the worst experience. I had Appendicitis and due to my age I was in front of the nurses station in ICU and labeled high risk. Pretty fancy huh 😉 all I can say is THANK GOD my room was clean or I’d be toting my IV behind me trying to clean. 

Things ive learned is definitely never take water for granted. I was literally sick until they gave me medicine to help because I was severely dehydrated,  couldn’t keep down even a sip of water, couldn’t drink until they operated. Worst thing ever and everytime they told me no I was worse than a 2yr old! 

My friends are my angels and I assure you there aren’t many. I can’t begin to explain the emotions I felt knowing that I was loved that much. For people to go out of their way late at night for me was more than priceless and I’m so blessed. 

Reality, oh my gosh what an eye opener.  I do way too much, I have extremely high expectations for myself, I’m my own worst enemy, and I have so much in my head I want to do or try. I’m one person and as much as I’d like to think I’m superwoman,  I’m not. Stress is not worth getting sick. Surgery is surgery no matter the reason, but I’ve realized that my boys can’t live without me. Nothing and I mean nothing got done with mama being in la la land for a week. It could’ve made me mad. But knowing I’m needed makes my heart smile 😊. Sometimes we take life for granted. We push ourselves beyond our limits for thins that aren’t really that important. Cherish time. Treasure friends and family. And love yourself. One day, minor could turn into major and in a split second can all be taken away.