Simple Tips to Foster a Love for the Kitchen in Children

mom and daughters in kitchenChildren love what we love. They respond positively when we are positive, and negatively when we are negative. They flourish when they feel trusted, appreciated, and welcomed. I am working hard as a parent to foster a love of food in my child and with my nieces and nephews, which I hope will lead to a love of food preparation and kitchens, where so much of life takes place! Here are a few simple methods I use to foster and encourage a love of kitchens, and all the cooking, baking, and cleaning that happens there. Continue reading

Canning In A Small Kitchen

Enamelware CannerAt the point when you have (almost) eaten your fill of fresh produce, but still see tomatoes coming off the vine or onto the tables of your local farm stand, it’s probably time to consider putting some up for the cold season. There are no shortage of articles, books, and personal advice on how best to put food by, and I am nary an expert. Rather, I am a mother and a home cook who prefers to use seasonal ingredients year-round. In summer it’s easy to eat seasonally—corn on the cob is a meal in its own right! But when we are deep into February and I have exhausted every potato recipe I know, it pays to have cans of bright red tomatoes tucked away for just such an occasion. If it feels too cumbersome to can tomatoes in the heat of summer, remember: come winter, you will thank you. Continue reading

Bottle Up Summer With A Late Summer Project

late summer picnicSummer holds so much possibility, and while I might be more inclined to winter, I love how inviting the warm season feels. Now on the other side of June and July (and half way through August), it can feel like the height of summer is in the rearview. The days are shortening, and soon enough children will be filling their backpacks for the year ahead. (Or, if they are like ten-year-old me, they already have.) Hopefully you tried your hand at something new, or tackled that project you’d been thinking about all Spring. On our part, we got a heap of carrots and garlic into our big fermentation crock. And, hey, maybe you didn’t get to any of that because you were soaking up the sunshine or eating fresh peaches over the sink. That sounds pretty perfect, too. Continue reading

The True Worth of an Heirloom

cast iron skillet setThis past summer, we moved into my grandma’s house after she passed away. I had grown up exploring the nooks and crannies of her old brick house, eating after-school snacks and a homemade supper with her and my grandpa nearly every day. When my husband and I first walked into the house, I knew there would be treasure to unearth. Continue reading

Living With A Woodstove: 4 Tools That Shine

The wood ash, oh, the never-ending wood ash. It finds its way everywhere, eventually. When we moved into this one-room 1800s home, we did not anticipate all that heating our home solely with wood would entail. Continue reading

Homemade Butter: You Can Be A Homesteader!

spigos-butter-1

The tomatoes have long ago been canned, or maybe you just ate them fresh. Last autumn’s onions, garlic, root vegetables and squash have been happily sitting in your root cellar, or even on your kitchen shelf, for months. Continue reading

A Simple How-To: Making A Winter Wreath

finished-wreath

We had just trimmed our tree to help it fit into our tiny home, and what we were left with seemed too good to just toss back outside: branches and sprigs of fresh, soft pine with a fragrance incredibly befitting of the season.

Continue reading