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How to freeze a bushel of corn in 15 minutes!

Thanks to a couple new farming friends I’ll never dread freezing corn again!

This past weekend I had the pleasure of spending time with my friend’s family, who happens to do a lot of vegetable farming. I spent all my time asking questions and taking in as much as I could from their 30 years of experience in growing vegetables, especially corn.  I love learning new things and this weekend I learned a new way to freeze corn.

I came home with a bushel of sweet corn and about that many tomatoes. I was a little worried about how I was going to get them put up before they all went bad.  However, with my new freezing method, I was able to get a whole bushel of corn done in 15 minutes.

This was the easiest method I’ve ever come across and they swear by it, It was really as simple as one, two, three…

1. “With a sharp knife, cut the silk end off pass the worm (if there is one).” 

2. With the husk left on, place the cob in a heavy duty freezer bag or seal-a-meal bags.

3. After the bag is filled and sealed, place the bag in the freezer

How much simpler can you get?

Straight from the freezer you can put the frozen cob it in the microwave for a few minutes, boil the cob in water or even let it thaw and cut it off the cob. For the first time, I cooked a couple ears in the microwave Sunday night for dinner and the husk steams the corn and it tasted great. You can even throw the frozen cobs; in the husk on the grill if you like that grilled corn flavor and the husk will protect the corn and steam it as it cooks.

What a great tip on how to freeze corn!

If you have not tried to freeze your corn this way take it from two very experienced southern gardeners.  Now…finding time to do up the tomatoes that are all over my porch is my next task!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

 

P.S. Do you like what you are reading? Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering to you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Want more? Read on.

The post How to Freeze Corn appeared first on Our Simple Homestead.

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Cheap Garden Beds – Using Recycled Building Supplies 

After four years of heavy use, my raised garden beds are starting to fall apart and need replacing. Before I gave in to spending money on supplies, I wanted to make sure there wasn’t anything lying around the farm that I could use instead of buying new. Learning how to build a cheap raised garden bed, while sticking to our budget, was a fun challenge. 

The first thing I did was take a walk around the farm to see what I could find to use. I found cinder blocks, a stack of pallets, a pile of bricks, a pile of downed trees and piles and piles of trimmed branches. 

With those items on my list, I went searching online for some ideas on how to build a cheap raised garden bed. I was so excited that I found a plan for each item on my list.

Brick Raised Garden by Vegetable Gardener

 Pallet beds by Garden Reboot

 Down Trees by Small Farm


Wattle Fencing
 by Apartment Therapy

Cinder Block Garden Bed by Miscellaneous Topics and Ideas by Dee

There are so many things we can repurpose to use for a raised garden bed. Now I just have to decide which old material to use and the greatest thing is I won’t have to spend a dime.

We even took our recycling to a new level by using discarded pallets to make this beautiful garden fence. If you want to see how we built this picket fence for under $200 click here.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

 

P.S. Do you like what you are reading? Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Want more? Read on.

The post How to Build a Cheap Raised Garden Bed appeared first on Our Simple Homestead.

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Clean your home with all-natural essential oil

There are so many options when it comes to cleaning our homes. All natural cleaning products are very popular, which is why more and more people prefer to save some money and time by making their own supplies. In case you’ve never tried this before, it is never too late to change that. Essential oils play a significant role in many recipes, so now is the best time to learn more about the individual qualities of each oil.

In specialized stores, you’ll find a variety of essential oils that will change your life for sure. Cleaning will become more pleasant when you won’t have to inhale toxic fumes. It’s no secret that ordinary cleaning products are filled with different chemicals that could endanger your health. The constant exposure to toxic fumes from those supplies could lead to unpleasant health complications. This could affect not only you but for the other members of your family as well. That’s why the sooner you start cleaning only with homemade eco solutions, the better. I’ve gathered a list of my favorite all natural cleaning recipes using essential oils.

  • Clean floors with lemon oil – Hardwood and other floors need special care because their surface can be easily damaged over time. In order to preserve it in good condition for longer, you can prepare your own cleaning solution that will disinfect and deodorize at the same time. You can mix 10 drops of lemon essential oil with water and a little white vinegar in a bucket. Then you can clean every floor in your home with a mop.
  • All-purpose cleaner with lemongrass oilLemongrass oil is preferred for an all-purpose cleaner because of its light and fresh smell. If you want to try another scent like lavender or orange, feel free to substitute the lemongrass oil. After all, this is your all-purpose cleaner and it is important to feel good while you disinfect your place with it. Take a clean spray bottle and mix a little water with 5 drops of the essential oil and a tablespoon of natural soap. You can use this special cleaning solution for the prompt disinfection of every part of your home.
  • Disinfect the carpets with lavenderSimple vacuuming won’t be able to help when you want to freshen up the fabric of your carpets in depth. For this purpose, it is best to use a special solution of baking soda and lavender essential oil. If you’re not a fan of lavender, just use lemon or some other oil that you like. You need no more than 15-20 drops of the oil and a cup of baking soda. You can mix the two ingredients in a jar or some other container and you have to leave the jar in a dark place overnight. On the next day, you can sprinkle a little part of the final product on your carpets and then vacuum.

There is really nothing easier than making your own all natural cleaning products. Thanks to the essential oils and their strong odor, you will be able to disinfect in depth any object and surface in your home and enjoy the lovely smell for days. After the first cleaning, you may decide to throw out the old toxic cleaning supplies.

 

Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

P.S. Do you like what you are reading? Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering to you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Want more? Read on.

The post Refreshing Cleaner Recipes Using Essential Oils appeared first on Our Simple Homestead.

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Raising Baby Chickens  for Beginners

I would consider us seasoned baby chicken growers. We have successfully raised over one hundred baby chicks within the last couple years.

So when I got a question from one of my readers asking if I could give her any tips on raising baby chickens I had to share some things I have learned.

Much of our knowledge came from the old method of trial and error, but there are a few things that every new backyard chicken farmer needs to consider before bringing those adorable balls of fur home.

Here are 9 tips for raising baby chickens:
  • Environment – Make sure your brooder is big enough that all of your chicks can move around freely. You can make your brooder out of any materials as long as if provides about half of foot for each chicken. We have user livestock water troughs, clothes baskets, storage bins, and when I just had two chicks I used a bushel basket.
  • Heat – Suspend a red, 250-watt lamp about a foot above your brooder floor for warmth.  Keep the temperature in the brooder between 90-95 degrees F for the first week, and start decreasing it by 5 degrees each week by raising the light higher above the brooder. I have learned to keep an extra bulb on hand in case of burn out. 
  • Bedding – You wouldn’t think baby chicks are messy but they are and their bedding needs to be changed daily. Pinewood shavings are the best choice for bedding.  Newspaper and straw become slippery for small chicks.
  • Water – Baby chick learn fast, but there is one mother hen duty you must teach as soon as you bring them home. Dip their beaks into the fresh clean water from a baby chick waterer and let them drink 4-5 hours before introducing feed to them. Raise the waterer a couple inches off the bottom of the brooder to keep the bedding from contaminating the water.
  • Feed – Baby chicks are little-eating machines and will eat about 10 pounds of chick starter per bird in the first 10 weeks of their life. Find a good quality chick starter feed and that is all they need to get started.  If you buy your chickens from a reliable source and your bedding and brooder are kept clean, you should not need to medicate or add anything to their diet but the chick starter feed for their first 10 weeks.  I have always used the flip top baby chick feeders for my new arrivals.
  • Buying – To get started with your own backyard chickens you can buy chickens at any age, but we like to buy day-old chicks so we can watch their development.  It’s so exciting to see that baby chick grow into an egg producing hen. Purchase your chicks from a local hatchery, your local feed store, or online.  The last few batches we’ve ordered online from Meyer Hatchery.  If you’re just starting out they allow for small orders, where many of the other online hatcheries have a 25 chick minimum. Most hatcheries will routinely vaccinate before shipping. Be aware that day-old chicks are much cheaper than buying older pullets, but they do require some extra attention to get started. If you’re interested in egg production only, purchase all females since a rooster is not necessary unless you want fertilized eggs.
  • Breed – There are many different breeds to choose from, but we have found that Rhode Island Reds and Plymouth Rocks are our picks for a dual-purpose bird. They are good egg producers, have an easy temperament and double good as a meat chicken when needed.
  • Free Ranging – As your chickens mature you may want to let them free-range and allow them to become healthy happy chickens. I’ve had a lot of questions lately about our free ranging chickens and how we keep them safe from predators. Learning how to get your chickens to roost up at night can be a challenge, but we found an easy way to teach them to come back to the coop.
    • Teach your birds from an early age to follow you and come when you call. Teaching your chickens to return to the coop each night is your biggest obstacle to keeping your birds safe.
    • Most chicks become accustomed to roosting in their coop and will naturally return to their roosts at dusk.  But if you fear your free-range birds are in danger you will want to teach them early to come when you call.
    • Teach your birds to eat from your hands. 
    • Call to them while throwing dry bread or crackers on the ground. Young birds learn best by watching their elders and soon learn that your voice means snacks.
    • Once you have them coming when called start walking and calling them closer to the coop. After a week or so you can stand inside the coop and call them and they all come in for a treat.  Once they are all safely inside, you can close them in no matter the time of day.
  • Fencing – We have always liked to let our chickens out to roam during the day so that they can feast on bugs and crickets, eat fresh grass and dig for grubs and worms until they were stuffed. 
    • We have been homesteading for sn years now and in that time a wild pack of coyotes have killed, eaten, and preyed on over fifty of our cherished hens, roosters and turkeys. So to keep them safe we installed this Poultry Net Electric Fence. 
    • This affordable chicken fence keeps in our chickens and keeps the coyotes out.

We have so much fun watching our baby chickens grow into egg laying, meat providing farm birds. Record their progress, take lots of pictures and don’t be afraid to try new breeds. 

 


Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

P.S. Do you like what you are reading? Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Want more? Read on.

The post 9 Tips for Raising Baby Chickens appeared first on Our Simple Homestead.

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Old Fashion by Nature – Simplistic by Choice

What it doesn’t mean is depriving yourself of the good things in life. What it means is to slow down life and enjoy life.

I was born in a small rural town in Pennsylvania where waking up to chickens crowing and gardens needing to be tended to was nothing but normal.  I guess you could say my old fashion simple lifestyle was born right into me.  I knew I was drawn to a way of life that the world around me was fighting hard to escape.  Fast cars, fancy appliances, and fast food were creepy in fast and I either jumped on or off the bandwagon.  I choose to jump off fast and I’ve never looked back.  Many of my friends told me I had an old fashion spirit and I loved because that is how I’ve always felt. 

I still remember 30 years ago being that girl who always hung her clothes out, used cloth diapers, made baby food and cooked everything from scratch.  While all the new mothers around me were trying to balance working full-time and starting a family, I was fighting to keep true to what I held dear …my old fashion spirit.  Really I think I was born a century too late:)

Like never before the simple living movement is taking the world by storm. The desire to be self-sufficient is all about learning to consume less and live more mindfully in the 21st century.

So you might be asking, how do you live a simple life? 

You can start by adopting some of these basic elements to simple living:

  1. Frugal Living  – The true sense of frugal living means aiming to live within your means.  It means finding every way possible to repay your debt and not incur more. It’s more than just saving money, it’s reducing your consumption and learning how to be more sustainable. It can also cross over into decluttering and choosing a minimalistic lifestyle. It’s the ability to learn how to live on less and be happy living on a lower income. 
  2. Homesteading – The term homesteading has changed its meaning over the last few decades. Now urban homesteading and backyard homesteading have taken on a whole new look.  No matter if you live in the city or in the country anyone can adopt a homesteading lifestyle.  That lifestyle can include growing your own food, raising backyard chickens, raising bees, choosing a community-based life instead of technology and so much more.
  3. Green Living – Sustainable living goes hand-in-hand with homesteading.  Concentrating on reducing your carbon footprint and living a healthy lifestyle is at its core.  Buying locally organic food to generating your own power are just a few ways you can “go green.” The motto for sustainable living is “reduce, reuse, repair and recycle’.
  4. Simple Living – Living a simpler life is all about restoring a healthy balance to your life. It’s filling your calendar with more “no’s then “yes’s and it’s moving away from all of those things that are dissatisfying. It’s reducing the activities your kids participate in and replacing them with more family time. And lastly its all about reducing the things in your life that cause you stress.  

Living simply can mean different things to different people, myself included.

Here are just a few ways I surround myself with the simpler side of things:
  • Letting the bright sunshine dry my clothes while enjoying the sounds of nature around me. Choosing not to give the power company any more of our paycheck is just a bonus.
  • Listening to our wind-up antique clock, washing dishes by hand, and burning firewood to heat the house in the winter.
  • Watching bread rise on the counter while smelling dinner cooking in the oven.  There is very little if almost nothing in our house that is pre-packaged or processed. Our meals are homemade from scratch and I know exactly what is in every meal.
  • Opening my pantry to see a years’ worth of food we have canned, dried, and preserved. What we don’t grow and butcher ourselves we buy organic.
  • Seeing that my sewing machine gets a workout.  Everything is mended until it can’t be mended any longer and then it’s put to other uses. 
  • Enjoying a sunset evening or a storm rolling in with my hubby on our porch rather than an expensive dinner out or a trip to the mall.
  • Feeling dirt between my fingers, the smell of roses or the taste of a sunshine warmed tomato fresh from the garden.
  • Finding a good deal at the second-hand store while knowing the same item would have cost triple at the big box store.
  • Walking by the TV and knowing it has not been on in days and no one is missing it.

To me living a simple life means shunning the things in my life that add no value.  Living this lifestyle does come with a price tag and it usually requires a little old-fashion labor, but in the end, it forces me to slow down and gives me the peace I look for every day.

What does living a simple life mean to you?

Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

Here is one of the most popular products in our Shop Our Simple Homestead Store:

 

P.S. Do you like what you are reading? Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering to you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Want more? Read on.

The post What does it mean to live a simple life? appeared first on Our Simple Homestead.

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Goodbye to things, hello to simple living and living with less!

Living a simple, minimalistic lifestyle is all about reducing the number of possessions you own to only those things that add value to your life.

In our home, we live by the unspoken rule that if it’s not used in six months, it serves no purpose in our life.

Paring down the extra “things” in our life has not only been fundamental to our lifestyle it’s given us a chance to think about what really makes us happy and what we really need to survive.

We were just like every other typical American out there.  We thought in order to be happy we needed to buy and collect as much as we could afford. Unfortanley that also meant we needed more money to buy the things we thought we needed which ended up in massive credit card debt and an unsatisfying lifestyle. It was a vicious circle that we were all but happy to jump off of.

Seven years ago we started to purge and reduce the number of things that kept us tied to that crazy cycle we were on.  We now feel more content living with less, and it was liberating when we didn’t have so many things tying us down to a materialistic lifestyle.

When we started on this journey, we asked ourselves these questions everytime we agonized over getting rid of something.

  • Does this mane me happy?
  • Have I used it in the last six months?
  • Does it hold any sentimental value to me?
  • Am I saving thinking “I might” use it someday?
  • Does it add any value to my life?

If you answer “NO” to at least three of those questions, its time to let it go.

Here are 6 of the principles we use to live a simpler minimalist lifestyle while living with less:
  1. Don’t go into a store unless you need something and go in and out buying only that.
  2. Look to family and friends to borrow those items you may only need to use once or twice a year. Or choose to go in together and buy those more expensive items that are only required occasionally.
  3. Always look for used before buying new.
  4. If you do buy new, choose high-quality that will last longer than the cheaper version.
  5. Second-hand clothing is always an excellent option for growing children and always donate any items that have not been worn in six months. You should aim to minimize your clothes to 20 to 30 items.
  6. Only keep multipurpose items. If an object does not serve multiple purposes, ditch it to make room for something that does.
We’ve found life is more peaceful living with less stuff.

The world around you will consistently be showing you more and more ads for stuff they think you need to be happy. Instead of focusing on “stuff to make you happy,” focus on freeing up your time and money for things that really matter. Start focusing on the important stuff like relationships and experiences and stop focusing on just the physical stuff.

Here is an excellent way I’ve found to keep control of the clutter in our home.

We live by the 3 Month 3 Step Program.
  • Step #1  Set a box in the middle of the room that is beginning overrun with clutter. Put anything in the box that has not used in three months.
  • Step #2 – Tape the box shut and store it in another room, out of sight out of mind.
  • Step #3 – Mark on my calendar 3 months from the day you filled the box. If after 3 months you’ve not opened the box, donate it.
  • This 3 Month – 3 Step Program works great for weeding out toys from a kids room, kitchen clutter, closets (excluding seasonal clothing), garages and knickknacks.

There is something about organizing your life and getting rid of the extra things that surround you that is liberating! Try it, and you’ll be amazed that after trying the 3 Month 3 Step Program you’re well on your way to living on less and a simple, minimalistic lifestyle without even trying too hard.

Here is one of my favorite organization products for the Shop Our Simple Homestead Store.

 

Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

P.S. Do you like what you are reading? Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering to you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Want more? Read on.

The post Living with Less is Liberating – Living Simple appeared first on Our Simple Homestead.

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Jump Rope Songs and Rhymes

One of my first memories of singing jump rope songs were in elementary school jumping rope to “Down in the valley where the green grass grows there sat Tracy sweet as a rose…” 

What I also remember is my white knee high socks falling down and being so mad at them I took them off and jumped rope in my bare feet.  When recess was over, I got in trouble for taking my shoes off and got a note sent home to my mother. Oh…the simple days of jumping rope and recess!

This past weekend I had my granddaughters, and I was trying to teach them to play jump-rope.  I was also teaching them some of those old-time favorite jumping songs.  I had to look a few of them up, but they came right back to me, and it took me back to 1970. 

I sure hope the young girls of today find as much joy in a simple game of jump rope as I did was when I was a child.  If you have little ones in your life, please take a moment to teach them some of these old fashion jump rope songs, you will be making wonderful memories for them!

Johnny gave me apples,
Johnny gave me pears.
Johnny gave me fifty cents
To kiss him on the stairs.
I gave him back his apples,
I gave him back his pears.
I gave him back his fifty cents
And kicked him down the stairs.

Laura and David
Sitting in a tree,
K-I-S-S-I-N-G
First comes love,
Then comes marriage
Then comes Laura
With a baby carriage.

Down in the valley
Where the green grass grows,
There sat Tracy Sweet as a rose.
She sang, she sang,
She sang so sweet.
Along came Craig
And kissed her cheek.
How many kisses did he give her?
One, two, three, tour, five…

I went upstairs to make my bed.
I made a mistake and bumped my head.
I went downstairs to milk my cow.
I made a mistake and milked a sow.
I went in the kitchen to bake a pie.
I made a mistake and baked a fly.

I love coffee.
I love tea.
I love boys.
And the boys love me.

Cinderella dressed in yellow
Went downstairs to kiss her fellow.
How many kisses did she give?
One, two, three, four, five…

Do you have a favorite that you remember?  Please share it with us, and maybe we can pass on this old time favorite game to some young children of today!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

P.S. Do you like what you are reading? Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering to you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Here is a list of some of our favorite 70’s toys:
(Contains Affiliate Links)

Connect Four Wiffle Ball & Bat Jumbo Jacks
Slinky Green Army Men Giant Pick Up Sticks
Operation Game Lincoln Logs Tiddly Winks
Jacob’s Ladder Pot Holder Loom Etch A Sketch
Barrel of Monkey’s Chinese Checkers Checkers
Tea Set Cabbage Patch Doll Radio Flyer Red Wagon
Pedal Fire Engine Pink Pedal Car Banana Seat Bike
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When life makes a complete circle here on the farm …it’s time to make beef bone broth.

Our freezer is once again full of grass-fed beef and with it always comes plenty of beef bones for beef broth.  It’s one of the many staples I always like to have on hand. It’s easy to make I don’t mind at all spending a few hours preparing it for a great tasting homemade beef bone broth.

Simple step-by-step instructions for making bone broth:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Lightly coat a baking sheet with olive oil.
In a single layer place soup bones on a baking sheet.
Lightly sprinkle soup bones with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
Bake for 1 hour.

After removing bones from baking sheet, deglaze the pan with hot water, scraping the bottom of the pan for browned particles. Add deglazed particles to large stock pot.
In the same large stock pot add; bones, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, bay leaves, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, garlic powder.
Cover with water.
Bring to a boil and then simmer for 2 hours.

Strain vegetables from broth and let cool to room temperature and freeze in quart jars. (See instructions below)

How to freeze beef bone broth:

I always store my homemade broths in the freezer.  It saves me time from having to dig out the pressure canner every time I need to make a batch of bone broth. It’s quick and easy to pull a jar out in the morning to thaw when I need broth for a supper meal.

  1. Cool beef broth to room temperature.
  2. Leave a small layer of fat in broth to create a seal between lid and broth.
  3. Using clean quart size canning jars fill jars 3/4 full. Leave more than enough room for the broth to expand when it freezes.
  4. Once all of the jars are filled, wipe jars down with a clean cloth, paying particular attention to threads around the jar.
  5. Dry threads completely before placing lids on jars. Use solid tops and not two-piece banded lids.  Hidden moisture here can cause breakage later on when the liquid freezes and expands.
  6. Place the jars in the freezer, with ample space between each jar so that there is no chance of condensation forming between jars that could potentially freeze the jar to the surface.

Beef Bone Broth
Simple rich beef broth recipe.
Print
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
3 hr
Total Time
3 hr 15 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
3 hr
Total Time
3 hr 15 min
Ingredients
  1. Approximately 5 pounds beef bone with meat
  2. 1 1/2 whole onions, skins left on
  3. 2 cups chopped carrots
  4. 2 cups chopped celery
  5. 2 teaspoons chopped garlic
  6. 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  7. 2 teaspoons pepper
  8. 1 teaspoon salt
  9. 3 bay leaves
  10. Water to cover all ingredients.
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Lightly coat a baking sheet with olive oil.
  3. In a single layer place soup bones on a baking sheet.
  4. Lightly sprinkle soup bones with salt & pepper.
  5. Bake for 1 hour.
  6. After removing bones from baking sheet, deglaze the pan with hot water, scraping the bottom of the pan for browned particles. Add deglazed particles to large stock pot.
  7. In same large stock pot add; bones, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, bay leaves, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper.
  8. Cover with water.
  9. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 2 hours.
  10. Strain vegetables from broth and let cool to room temperature and freeze in quart jars.
How to freeze beef bone broth
  1. temperature.
  2. 2. Leave a small layer of fat in broth to create a seal between lid and broth.
  3. 3. Using clean quart size canning jars fill jars 3/4 full with broth. Leave more than enough room for the broth to expand when it freezes.
  4. 4. Once all of the jars are filled, wipe jars down with a clean cloth, paying particular attention to threads around the jar. Dry threads completely before placing lids on jars. Use solid tops and not two-piece banded lids. Hidden moisture here can cause breakage later on when the liquid freezes and expands.
  5. 5. Place the jars in the freezer, with ample space between each jar so that there is no chance of condensation forming between jars that could potentially freeze the jar to the surface.
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Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering to you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Want more? Read on.

The post Old Fashion Jump Rope Songs – Memories from the past! appeared first on Our Simple Homestead.

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My home canning supplies list

I am in the midst of canning season, and while  I was looking through my canning cupboard I realized just how much I have collected over the years. Most of my home canning supplies came from second-hand stores, yard sales or passed down. I enjoy canning so much I would be lost without some of my tried and trusted supplies. I remember the first-couple years of canning I had to borrow everything from my mother, but over the years I have added to my collection and now have everything I need.

I was very fortunate to grow up watching my Mom can, so I had a good idea what I needed. I was digging through all my supplies I got to thinking that beginner canners may be at a loss to know what they need so I took an inventory of everything I had and compiled a basic canning supply list.

If you are new to canning don’t feel you have to go out and buy everything new. Watch for yard sales and pick up one piece at a time, or better yet go in and share supplies with a friend. Most of these canning tools are only used a few times a year so they are perfect for sharing. When I was younger I had a friend that I would can with. Our kids were all the same age so we would plan a day where they could play together and we spent the day in the kitchen. I have very fond memories of those canning parties and would highly suggest new canners to look for canning partners. 

Many of the big box stores carry home canning supplies so you can just about find them anywhere.  I found everything on my list at Amazon just so I could show you a picture of each item, but shop around and don’t be shy about asking seasoned canners if they have supplies they no longer use.  Many of my canning tools came from older people who no longer had large families to feed. 

Here is a list of everything in my canning cupboard:
  Steel/Porcelain Water-Bath Canner with Rack, 21.5-Quart – I have two canners that get a work out from May – September every year. I can so much that it helps speed up the process by having both of them going at once. This canner holds 7 one-quart jars, 9 one-pint jars or 13 half-pint jars.
   
 7 Piece Home Canning Set
It is the little things that make canning easy and this canning set provides the essentials needed for canning at home. Steel canning rack holds 7 pint- or quart-size jars; sterilizing rack holds 12 lids. Also includes 2 stainless-steel funnels, magnetic lid wand, jar lifter, and cheesecloth.
  Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving
I do not know what I would do without my canning book.  I have been canning for years and always refer to my book just to refresh my memory each time I start a canning job. Ball Home Canning Products are the gold standard in home preserving supplies and the experts at Ball have written a book destined to become the “bible” of home preserving.
  Food Strainer and Sauce Maker
Canning tomato sauce is a big job every year, and I could not do it without my food strainer.  This sturdy one-piece heat resistant hopper, stainless steel screen won’t rust and resists wear. A must for sauce canners!
  Ball Jar Heritage Collection Pint Jars with Lids and BandsI added these vintage jars just because I love them! Any canning jar will work but I just love this vintage color and ordered some for myself just because I like to make canning fun! This new vintage blue color comes with embossed logos and a brushed silver lid.
  Ball Wide Mouth Quart Jars with Lids and Bands, Set of 12
Ideal for preserving jams, jellies, sauces, fruit and anything else makes its way to your kitchen. These time-tested sealing compound helps ensure a quality seal with each lid.
  Ball 8-Ounce Quilted Crystal Jelly Jars with Lids and Bands, Set of 1
Ideal for preserving jams and jellies. I use this size for my fig butter every year. Custom time tested ceiling compound help ensure a quality seal with each lid.
  Tattler Reusable Wide Mouth Canning Lids & Rubber Rings – 12/pkg
BPA Free! Indefinitely Reusable.  I have been using these reusable lids for three years now and other than the lids that come with the ball jar sets I have not bought a normal disposable lid in years.  I can see where I have saved money over the years by using Tattler Lids.
  Grips Food Mill
I cannot can enough applesauce to last all year and couldn’t do it without my food mill.  It makes processing warm apples into the sauce a super easy job! This food mill includes 3 stainless-steel discs for preparing foods of fine, medium, and coarse textures.
  Canning Accessories Jelly Strainer Bags
We make a lot of blackberry jam in my kitchen and these jelly bags make straining out those blackberry seeds super easy. This strainer bag has an elastic band around frame opening. Ideal for soups, sauces, jams, and jelly making.
  Stainless Steel Canning Ladle
A  must for every canner! Dual spouts pour from either side. 3/4 cup with 11-1/2-inch handle. Take the mess out of putting food where you want it to be. Dual spouts pour from either side.
  Ball Pickle Crisp 5.5 oz. Jar
I wish I could say I have good luck with making pickles crispy, but I just have never had good luck with making them crispy, so I rely on Ball’s Pickle Crisp to help me. One jar makes 80 quarts of pickles. Easy to use measure and add to jar.
  Ball RealFruitTM Classic Pectin I love that they now have a reduced sugar recipe for healthier jam. It has been reformulated for improved flavor and performance. Capture the freshness and flavor of handpicked fruit anytime. Up to 22 half-pint jars per package.
  23-Quart Pressure Canner and Cooker
The only method recommended safe by the US Department of Agriculture for canning vegetables, meats, poultry, and seafood. Doubles as a boiling-water canner for preserving fruits, jams, jellies, pickles, and salsa; Handy as a large capacity pressure cooker. I have to admit when I first using a pressure canner I was nervous, but ever since I started to can meat it is a must and I could not preserve without it now. For a step-by-step tutorial on using a pressure canner please visit The Homesteading Hippy.

Have I missed anything?  Please share with me your favorite canning tool!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering to you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Want more? Read on.
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It’s Vegetable Garden Planting Time

There is something magical that happens in the spring, things that I can count on every year. The birds sing louder, the sky seems bluer, the grass is greener and I love planting a garden.

I have an old book that I devour every year, and I especially pull it out for vegetable gardening tips. My favorite part of the book is reading about old-time planting lore. 

How many of these vegetable gardening tips and old-time planting lore have you heard of?
  1. Plant corn when the oak leaves are the size of a squirrel’s ear.
  2. Sprinkle plants with wood ashes to keep the bugs off.
  3. Bury a piece of rhubarb in the row when planting cabbage to protect it from club root.
  4. To keep cabbage heads from splitting, give each young plant a half-twist in the ground.
  5. When planting corn, be generous. “One for the woodchuck, one for the crow, one for the slug, and one for me.”
  6. Plant beans when the elms leaves are as big as a penny.
  7. When you see growth on green ash, grapes, and oaks, it is safe to plant tender vines, annuals, and perennials.
  8. Wrap tape around your hands’ sticky side out to remove aphids from your plants.
  9. Make measurement marks on the wooden handle of a rake. Use it as a measuring tool in the garden.
  10. Use sandpaper to scratch off old plastic gardening labels in order to use them repeatedly.
  11. Make your own garden labels using painted rocks or roof tiles.
  12. Cover plants with an old plant pot at night to shield them from frost.
  13. Use a spray bottle to keep your plants hydrated.
  14. Drill a few holes in the cap of a water bottle and cut the bottom out. Turn it upside down and use it as a plant waterer.
  15. Keep all your extra water from cooking and use it to water your plants.
  16. For seeds with tough outside covers like peas, soak them in warm water the night before planting.
  17. Use flat rocks around peppers as mulch. Rocks heat up during the day and will keep plants toasty at night.
  18. Go around to your local coffee shops and ask if they would save their old coffee grounds and filters. It makes excellent compost.
  19. Plant your potatoes under only half an inch or so of dirt, then cover them with a few inches of straw or grass clippings. When it comes time for harvest, you only need to rake back the straw and brush the dirt off your potatoes. 
  20. Learn your weeds – many of the most common are edible (usually extremely nutritious) and/or medicinal.
  21. Before you plant anything, watch the sunlight in your garden. Depending on what is around your gardens like trees or your house etc, you can have a garden space that is fairly open, yet receives either too much or too little sunlight throughout the day. 
  22. Composting is totally worth the time and effort — your kitchen scraps are gardening gold.
  23. Learning crop rotation and cover cropping is a high investment in time learning and implementing, but it keeps the soil healthy and also helps keep bad insects out and good insects in.
  24. Be prepared to water. A lot. Every other day in the summer. 
  25. Soil ph level is very important and worth testing.
  26. Bonus: For those really tiny seeds use a tiny seed dispenser like this one. It pays for itself by saving you seed and time.

These are a few of my favorites and what is so special about them is I remember my dad telling me some of these as I was growing up and learning how to garden.

Do you plant your vegetable gardening tips you use that you can share?  I’d love to hear them!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tracy Lynn

P.S. Do you like what you are reading?

Are you looking to slow down and live a simpler life?

I am so happy you’ve landed here and I can share some of the simple living principles that have made a huge difference in our lives. 

To give you a place to start I have created a 5 Steps to Simple Living Guide that I am offering to you free.  

Along with this free download, is included a complimentary subscription to our weekly Our Simple Homestead Newsletter. Each week you’ll receive simple living tips, homesteading ideas, old-fashion recipes and every once in awhile a touch of the Amish lifestyle.
 
Click here to receive your free download of 5 Steps to Simple Living today!

DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation from affiliate and sponsored posts on this blog.

Want more? Read on.

The post 25 Vegetable Gardening Tips + Old-time Planting Lore appeared first on Our Simple Homestead.

Read Full Article

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