Category Archives: Homesteading

Radio-activity and Inactivity

Back in 2008, since the test kit was free from our county’s office of environmental services, we decided to check our very tightly-built and ground-contacted home for radon levels. We used short-term charcoal test kits in both the pantry, with … Continue reading

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Homeopathy on the Homestead

Never being one to blindly believe in something, I researched what I could find about homeopathy years ago, and none of its claims seemed to hold up under scrutiny. But these days you have to ask, “Who’s doing the scrutinizing?” … Continue reading

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A Smashing Success

For many years we had a really lovely set-up for crushing apples into pomace and pressing it for cider, but it was just such a pain to clean up, so noisy to operate, and it left the cider tasting a … Continue reading

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Second Edition

Good news! We just completed the 2015 revisions and additions to our book, “Feeding Ourselves – The Four-Season Pantry from Plant to Plate” and it’s back from the print shop. This second edition is eight pages longer (194 pages) and … Continue reading

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An Off-Grid Energy Storage Option

This winter we had a number of neighbors using off-Grid solar whose battery banks were nearing or at the end of their usable lives. They all were using what are known as “wet cell” lead-acid batteries, not much different than … Continue reading

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Clearly Superior

We were not entirely sure that we would get around to it this fall, but we recently completed the replacement of our clear polycarbonate hoop-shaped greenhouse with a better built, glass-glazed greenhouse. We were getting worried about the old glazing … Continue reading

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Hot Wax

It’s been very cold this winter, almost enough to be disheartening even to a hardy Minnesotan.  But we know that this season is crucial in getting ready for spring, even if it leaves us chomping at the bit.  As winter … Continue reading

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Aging Infrastructure

Ringing in the New Year brings with it an implied acknowledgement of the fact that everything on the homestead is another year older (hopefully).  There’s always a “to do list” of repairs and maintenance to keep everything functioning well.  But … Continue reading

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Holey Stuff

With so much focus at this time of year on the acquisition of stuff, it seemed as good a time as any to share our thoughts about an unusual group of handy items.  We’re talking about holey stuff, useful for … Continue reading

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Threshing by the Pound

Poppy seed pods are easily threshed.  If you only have a few, you can crush them by hand  and pour out the seeds.  If you have a larger amount, you can always put them on a tarp and step on … Continue reading

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