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I'm Cris; I have a passion for research, and I am obsessed with gardening, herbal medicine, cooking with real food, and much more.I dream of the day that I can finally own my own self-sufficient homestead, and this website is my journey towards that goal. Thank you for joining me!

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Most recent articles

8 Reasons Why I am Raising Meat Rabbits

Posted by on Apr 18, 2017 in livestock, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Last year, we finally started fulfilling our homestead dreams by raising meat rabbits. Before that, we only had a rather large garden. However, the goal has always been to have a mini-farm so that we can become more self-sufficient. First, meat rabbits. Next year, we’re hoping to add ducks. After that? Who knows. My ultimate dream is someday adding goats or sheep for dual dairy and meat purposes.  Perhaps you are wondering, why are we starting with meat rabbits for our homestead? Here’s a small list of reasons why I am raising meat rabbits: Why I am Raising Meat Rabbits 1. Rabbit is a High Quality Meat: **If you haven’t tried...

Nourishing Nursing Mother’s Tea

Posted by on Jan 14, 2017 in Herbs, Medicinal Recipe, Uncategorized |

I am a big believer in family and community support for pregnant women. I’ve always wished that I could live close to my loved ones when they were/are pregnant so that I could spoil them as much as possible. Fortunately, as I mentioned in my Gentle Healing Salve post, my wonderful cousin/friend is pregnant and due any minute now. She moved down here to South Carolina a year ago, just down the road from me, so I’m finally getting my wish to be able to support a preggers-loved one. 🙂 I’m creating a basket of supplies to bring her once her wee little one is born. Hmm…maybe I’ll make a post...

How to Make a Gentle Healing Salve

Posted by on Jan 2, 2017 in Beauty, Medicinal Recipe, Uncategorized |

Remember when I made my plantain infused oil (and dandelion infused oil, calendula infused oil, and comfrey infused oil) in the spring, and I promised to come back in fall/winter with some awesome DIY projects for you to make with your new oils? Well, I did not forget that promise.  Partly because I’m looking at these beautiful jars of super amazing infused oils and I just HAVE to use them in somehow. 😉 The problem was that I didn’t know which type of DIY project to make first. Talk about being overwhelmed. Do I make a beauty cream? Some homemade lotion? A neosporin-type all purpose salve? Ahh…I want to...

10 Plants for Attracting Beneficial Insects to Your Garden

Posted by on Dec 6, 2016 in Gardening, Uncategorized | 1 comment

I love winter. It’s the best season for getting prepared for a new gardening season. I love to cuddle up by a fire, drink some tasty hot chocolate, drool over my favorite gardening catalogs, and plan my future garden. It’s a lovely, peaceful season for dreaming about possible future garden productivity. However, I do NOT want to read only garden catalogs (for real!). I also love reading new gardening books. This has been tough to find. I read plenty of great homesteading books (like the ones I mention in my gifts for gardeners post), and those homesteading books have a section or two about gardening which are great to read. But sometimes...

6 Gift Ideas for Gardeners

Posted by on Nov 6, 2016 in Gardening, Uncategorized | 2 comments

It’s that time of year. Time to think about clever, cute, and/or funny gift ideas for your loved ones (or for yourself!). Here is a list of 6 gift ideas for gardeners. I tried to focus on just a few very specific gift ideas that I think gardeners will LOVE. Feel free to add other ideas in the comment section! 🙂 1. The Ultimate Garden Tool Set What gardener could resist a garden tool set (like this one), that comes with all the tools needed to garden and a nifty bag to carry it all (and keep it organized!). I drooled when I saw the one pictured below: 2....

8 Lessons from My Summer Garden

Posted by on Oct 31, 2016 in Gardening, Uncategorized | 7 comments

This year, my garden was much MUCH better. Unlike last year’s fiasco. Thank goodness.  However, even though this year’s harvest was a happy thing, I still learned plenty of lessons from my summer garden. So I thought I would share them with you all. Feel free to tell me about YOUR summer garden in the comments! 1. Drip Irrigation is a life changer. I hesitated to get drip irrigation in the past. This was for many reasons, including: I have a strict garden budget and I actually LOVE watering my garden by hand. However, my sweet hubby surprised me with drip irrigation supplies, so of course we set it...

10 Amazing Dutch Baby Recipes

Posted by on Sep 4, 2016 in Cooking recipe, Uncategorized |

Dutch Babies. Puff Pancakes. German Pancakes. Whatever you call them, they are amazing.  I am known in my family as the World’s Fussiest Breakfast Eater. Even as a child, I’ve always hated: cereal, oatmeal, eggs, sausage, french toast, pancakes, waffles, yogurt, bacon…yep, pretty much any breakfast foods. Sorry, readers, please don’t hate me. People usually have a love-affair with breakfast foods and immediately feel disconnected with me when I mention my hatred for breakfast foods.  I’ve also been told: ‘then eat normal food at breakfast time!’ and that doesn’t seem to work, either. I just cannot fathom the idea of having a tuna sandwich in the morning. Thanks a lot, brain....

How to Preserve Green Beans (4 ways)

Posted by on Aug 8, 2016 in Beans | 2 comments

How to Preserve Green Beans (4 ways) How does your garden grow? Unlike last year’s fiasco, I have a lovely thriving garden this year. True, my tomatoes and peppers did not grow past seedlings (possibly due to faulty soil mix?), so I have very few tomatoes and peppers this year. However, I DO have loads of zucchini and yellow squash, cucumbers and pickles, watermelon, and green beans.  I started my beans from seeds and they went crazy. I certainly have more green beans than we can eat in a week. We started out eating about 2 meals of green beans per week, but now I’m getting a bit sick of...

How to Make Dandelion Infused Oil

Posted by on May 29, 2016 in Dandelion, Herbs, Uncategorized | 2 comments

Every winter is happens: I finally have time to make salves, ointments, teas, tinctures, etc. and the recipes all require infused oils that use plants that are only fresh and free in my yard in the spring and summer. As an ambitious gardener, I barely keep my sanity during the spring and summer with my garden plans. I do NOT have time to make herbal remedies then! So I’ve some up with a compromise: I’m spending ONE day making Dandelion Infused Oil, Comfrey Infused Oil, and Plantain Infused Oil. When my Calendula blooms later this summer, I’ll then spend ONE day making Calendula Infused Oil and Yarrow Infused Oil. Since infused oils...

How to Make Comfrey Infused Oil

Posted by on May 29, 2016 in Comfrey, Herbs, Uncategorized | 2 comments

As a gardener, I’m pretty busy in spring, summer, and fall. Every winter, however, I FINALLY have time to make herbal remedies to prepare for the coming year. This includes salves, herbal teas, tinctures, etc. Especially salves. They last for at least a year, so I can make them when I have time in the winter, and then use them when I need them for the rest of the year. Here’s the problem: The recipes all call for infused oils with plants that are only available in my yard/garden during the spring and summer. Boo!  So, this spring, I made the time to gather plants for all of the following infused...