Gift Ideas for Homesteaders

hands with presentIf your Christmas wish list is average, it’s divided into roughly three categories: big-ticket items, smaller items, and stocking stuffers. If you’re a homesteader, soon-to-be-homesteader, or a wanna-be homesteader, Lehman’s is the place to find all three.

The best kind of gift for homesteaders is something that contributes to self-sufficiency. Does it help grow food? Raise livestock? Provide heat? Produce light? Make a job easier, safer, or more efficient? Reduce costs? Solve a problem? Deliver knowledge? If the answer is “yes” to any of these criteria, then it’s likely to be a welcome gift for the homesteader in your family.

Here are some suggestions for the do-it-yourselfer on your Christmas list: Continue reading

Disposing of Disposables

dad and son with reusable grocery bags

Reusable grocery bags help save on one-use plastic bags. Keep reading below for more tips and products on how to cut back on disposable items in your home.

Do you realize how many things we buy for no other purpose than to throw them away? Think about it: facial tissues, plastic cutlery, paper plates, plastic wrap, shopping bags, diapers, paper towels, even canning lids. It is estimated the average American throws away nearly $5,000 of disposable goods every year. What could you do with an extra $5,000? Continue reading

How to Use a Breathing Mobile Washer

breathing mobile washerWashing clothes used to be one of the most backbreaking chores for women. There were two reasons for this: the lack of automation, and the lack of modern detergents. The widespread use of both automation and detergents meant that what used to be an all-day task became a simple matter of tossing clothes into a machine, adding some detergent, and pressing a button.

However, this widespread automation means off-grid laundry is almost a forgotten art. Fortunately there have been amazing advances in non-electric laundry options. These new advances will work for those who are off-grid, living in apartments, RVers, or others who don’t have continuous access to a washing machine.

One of the most popular and inexpensive off-grid laundry options is the breathing mobile washer. Continue reading

Building Community as a Preparedness Strategy

neighbor helping neighborLast week our close-knit neighborhood experienced a terrifying event. A fast-moving wildfire swept through, burned one house to the ground, destroyed several barns and outbuildings, leveled fences, and torched majestic trees. Miraculously no lives were lost, either human or livestock.

The older couple whose house was destroyed has been reeling in shock – not just the shock of losing everything they own (except their livestock), but the shock of how strongly everyone has rallied around to help them in their time of need. Continue reading

Meet Farmer John Moody – An Expert on Elderberries, Soils and More

UPDATE 08/09/21: We’re so excited to announce that John Moody is coming to Lehman’s September 24-25, 2021. Keeping reading below for more about John and how to get your FREE tickets for the event!

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“I am not your typical farmer.” That’s the first thing John Moody says when he introduces himself.

In fact, Moody doesn’t consider himself typical in anything. The author of five books on the subject of farming and homesteading, Moody and his wife Jessica are determined to spread the news about the merits of real, honest food and the health benefits that result. (“One fun fact,” he adds. “I am a green belt in judo and performed multiple times in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.”) Continue reading

The Pleasure of Doing Things by Hand

Lehmans Dazey Butter ChurnMany years ago I had a discussion with some friends about how I learned to make butter using cream from our cow. It was an enthusiastic conversation on my part because I was so excited to learn something new and do things by hand.

At the end of the detailed recital, the husband asked, “But you won’t be doing this again, right? After all, it’s a lot easier just to buy butter.”

He’s right. It’s much easier just to buy butter. But the fact is, now I know how to make butter. Whenever our cows give too much cream, I know what to do with it. Over the years I’ve made butter dozens and dozens of times. It’s a component of our diet for which I know every last step – the health of the cow, how her calf is treated, how the cream is handled. From start to finish, the “chain of custody” for that butter never leaves our farm. Continue reading

Bruce the Alligator Man is Coming to Lehman’s

Bruce MitchellEditor’s Note: Mark your calendars – Bruce the Alligator Man from Swamp Adventures is coming to Lehman’s this August (2021)! In celebration, we’re sharing our interview with Bruce. Read on for more about him, about his upcoming visit to Lehman’s, and how to get your FREE tickets to attend this event.

It’s not often you meet someone who wrestles alligators for a living, but that is literally what Bruce Mitchell does. Honestly.

When Bruce married Janet back in 1980, he married into a family that ran the world’s first and largest alligator farm dating back five decades. Tucked in the swamps and bayous of Louisiana, Bruce started farming alligators at the tender age of 20, along with his wife and father-in-law. Continue reading

Leaving the City for a Simpler Life

father and son on farmThe year 2020 has brought about many changes. One of the most exciting is the number of people embarking on new journeys toward a simpler life.

These journeys take many forms. While some people are restricted to growing a windowsill garden in an apartment, a huge number are moving to suburban or rural areas and starting over. In fact, there has been an enormous exodus of people leaving the cities, anxious to find their own version of a quieter and more self-sustaining lifestyle. Continue reading

Meet Anne Of All Trades

anne briggsWhat do you do when you’re a low-tech person in a high-tech world? You harvest the best of both.

Anne Briggs was born of missionary parents and traveled internationally during her youth, but she envied her friends with ranches and roots. “I loved animals and always wanted animals of my own, but we could never have any because of our travels,” she remembers. “I always vowed that someday, if I lived in America, I’d live on a farm.” Continue reading

Paper Gardening: How to Grow a Successful Garden Now

Maine Garden HodJanuary and February – traditionally the coldest, bleakest months of the year – have one highlight, something like the gardener’s version of the swallows returning to Capistrano: the arrival of seed catalogs in the mail. Continue reading