How to Naturally Treat Bee Stings

Homestead Bootcamp
June 2, 2017

Honey bees only sting when they feel threatened because a bee sting means the death of the bee, and each bee can only sting once. When a honey bee stings, it leaves the stinger stuck in the skin.

The first thing to do when treating a bee sting is to remove the stinger to keep the venom to a minimum. Bee venom is acidic which can cause a severe allergy in some people. Many other insect stings, such as wasps, have an alkali venom, so you may be allergic to bee stings but not wasp stings.…

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Our Indoor Greenhouse

Homestead Bootcamp
May 17, 2017

Every spring I start my seeds growing in the house, so I don’t have to buy plants. I start my plants in my dining room on a folding table. The table has a heated blanket covered by a thick plastic sheet to keep the water off. The plants sit on top of the plastic sheet. I keep a small fan on the table to simulate wind which helps the plants acclimate better when I put them outside.…

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Dehydrating: Drying Foods for Long Term Storage

May 16, 2017

When planning and planting your garden, consider how much produce you can use and how much you need. You don’t want to plant rows and rows of spinach only to have most of it go to waste because you can’t eat it fast enough and you find that you only enjoy it fresh. Most produce can be frozen, canned, dehydrated or otherwise stored to be used throughout the winter months when nothing is growing. Due to a variety of reasons (some more practical than others), our clan has been slowly moving away from freezing and focusing instead on canning and drying.…

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Rhubarb Bread

Rhubarb
May 3, 2017

I like to make quick breads for my kids to eat with their breakfast. One of the most popular is banana bread. I also shred and freeze zucchini in the fall for making zucchini bread throughout the winter. I don’t like to feel trapped with making the same breads over and over, so I set out to find something new.

I was quick specific in my searching because my rhubarb is starting to come up, and I wanted to use up some frozen rhubarb from last season.…

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The Many Uses of Stinging Nettles

Stinging Nettles
April 26, 2017

Over the past couple of years, I have unintentionally grown a pretty nice little stinging nettle garden on the border of my rhubarb garden. The young nettles are starting to come up now, so it is time to start harvesting them when they are in their prime.

So, what do you do with stinging nettles?

In a previous post, we talked about the benefits of nettle tea, but there is so much more than you can do with nettles.…

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Bottling Hard Apple Cider from a Mr. Beer Kit

Homestead Bootcamp
March 7, 2017

We have moved on to the next step of making hard apple cider with our Mr. Beer kit.

This time we are on the bottling step. First, we sanitized our bottles and added a little sugar to aid in the carbonation. We could have left the sugar out and went with a flat cider, but we don’t particularly like the taste of hard cider in general so that didn’t seem like the route we wanted to go.…

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Brewing Hard Apple Cider Using a Mr. Beer Kit

Homestead Bootcamp
February 28, 2017

You saw us making homemade apple cider last fall (check it out here if you didn’t). The apple cider is really delicious, but we decided to see what else we can do with it.

When my daughter was out and about shopping a few weeks ago, she came across a Mr. Beer Hard Cider Home Brewing Kit and decided to buy it. We figured we’d give it a shot with what was in the box, and if it turns out maybe we’ll try it with some of our homemade apple cider.…

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Saving Spinach Seeds

Homestead Bootcamp
September 23, 2016

In this video, I am showing how to save spinach seeds. You might be asking, “Why not just buy new seeds every year?” There are several reasons to save seeds.

Save Money
I realize that seeds are very inexpensive, but if you buy a lot of them it starts to add up. Saving your seeds may not save you a noticeable amount of money, but for some families every little bit helps.

Know What Works
We live in a plant hardiness zone where a lot of crops don’t do well because of our short growing season and extreme cold in the winters.…

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How to Make Elderberry Juice

Homestead Bootcamp
September 15, 2016

The ditches near our homestead have an abundant supply of elderberries in the late summer, so we like to take advantage of nature’s bounty by making elderberry juice.

Elderberry juice is not a drink that you take for the taste. It is often sweetened to make it more palatable. My husband and I each put a tablespoon of unsweetened elderberry juice in our daily dose of kombucha (which is a fermented drink). The addition of elderberry to kombucha makes both a little more pleasant to drink.…

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Homestead Bootcamp Has Launched!

Homestead Bootcamp
September 8, 2016

We are excited to announce that we have launched our new YouTube channel called Homestead Bootcamp. It will feature videos of our family teaching you how to live off the land!

Our first video shows how to pick and preserve Puffball mushrooms which can be found in areas throughout the world. You could be missing out on delicious mushrooms growing right in your backyard!

We know that there may be some questions, so here are some answers to a few that you might have.…

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