Growing Potatoes in a Crate-Trial Gardening

I like looking for gardening ideas that would make life easier. There are a lot of ideas out there, but I never know if they would work well for me. So I do a gardening trial each spring. This year I wanted to try growing potatoes in a crate because digging potatoes is hard for…

Seed Saving Basics

The reasons to save your own seeds for short term storage are numerous. The number one reason to many may be cost savings compared to buying seeds year after year. Now more than ever, since GMO’s have invaded our lives, and our gardens we need to learn the art of seed saving. If you have…

How to make Sauerkraut in 3 easy steps

Ingredients: One medium head of green or red cabbage canning/pickling salt or sea salt     Step 1 Shred the cabbage. I cut the cabbage in half or into quarters to remove the core. Some cabbages are so juicy they split with the first insert of a knife, especially garden picked cabbage harvested after a…

How to make your own Natural Ginger Ale

Two years ago I gave up drinking commercial sugary drinks including soda pops. I tried to go off sugar completely, but this is not an easy task. Every where I went I was confronted with foods with added sugar. At times, I took the food offered to me by family and friends, so as not…

Runaround America-Visiting the Glass House of the Biltmore Estate

Designed by architect Richard Morris Hunt, this glass-roofed building nurtures exotic orchids, ferns, and palms. During the Vanderbilt’s time, it provided flowers and plants for Biltmore House. Biltmore’s Conservatory is a 7000 sq ft glass house on the grounds of the Biltmore estate in Asheville North Carolina. It is an beautiful example of a 17th century conservatory…

Runaround America-A North Carolina Detour

Meeting interesting people is one of the things I love about back roads America. People can be interesting in different ways. On this day, while driving down Gerton Highway US74A we came to the little mountain community of Gerton at the base of BearWallow Mountain. To our surprise, nestled in the side of the mountain was…

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula-A Photo tour

A Wild wilderness waiting to be explored! Oh, yes I love Michigan. Going to the UP, as we call it here in the lower peninsula is an unique experience for all who love nature. There are pristine shorelines, numerous light houses, quaint villages and shops. The largest cities are spread out across the upper peninsula with…

Fire Cider-Organic Recipe

Boost your Immune System with this powerful immune boosting tonic! Before it freezes here in Michigan I gather up extra snippets of herbs, harvest the horseradish, pick the reddest hot peppers I can find for a cold and flu tonic that is sure to make hair curl. Vinegar based herbal tonics are not a new invention and are highly adaptable and…

DIY Frozen Smoothie Mix in 3 easy steps

Homemade smoothies are very easy to make! Today I found a great deal on a half bushel of peaches. What better way to preserve them than to make some frozen smoothie bags. I love making these from fresh ingredients for future use. It makes morning rush time less hectic. Gather your produce and wash it….

Haunted Rooms-The Jewel of Kalamazoo

Visiting Henderson Castle Although this might be a good place to meet entities, the reason I traveled to SouthWest Michigan to tour Henderson Castle wasn’t to come face to face with the castles favorite ghosts. They boast of 5 deaths over time inside the castle and pride themselves as a paranormal hot spot with the property situated across…

Creamy Tomato Soup Canning Recipe

A Country Garden Recipe I gave up buying processed canned tomato soup a long time ago. The taste of making my own organic soup far surpasses processed soups from the grocery. The newly discovered fact that canned soups have toxic BPA in them should be a wake up call to all of us. So today…

Make dry Soup Stock from Juicing pulps

After Making several batches of V-8 juice this past month I was having a hard time throwing out all that yummy smelling vegetable pulp. My mom always taught me not to waste stuff so when it came time to throw all the pulp away from canning bushels of produce into V-8 juice I was having…

Crafted Vegetable Juice-Better than V-8

How to home can all Natural Vegetable Juice in 4 steps With all the studies about toxic BPA still lurking in store bought canned foods I decided to double down on crafting my own organic natural vegetable juice for my family. So if you are committed to making good healthy food for your family you may want to consider…

Simple Refrigerator Sweet pickles in 5 easy steps

  As cucumber season is coming to an end here in Michigan getting in one last taste of yumminess from my vines is a pleasing prospect. Here is a recipe that needs only a few cucumbers to make and is really easy. No canning is required and it will last for months in the refrigerator. Deep into…

Preserving Garden Fresh Basil

Planting a row of basil in my kitchen garden gave me plenty of fresh leaves during the summer months for immediate use. It is so delightful to pick my own organic vegetables and herbs straight from the garden to the kitchen. The flavors cannot be any better. Trying to save these garden fresh herb flavors for…

Reduced Salt Half-Sour Fermented Deli Pickles

Laboring in my garden and harvesting my own food is rewarding. What is not rewarding is when I open a jar of my own fermented pickles and spit them out in disgust. That is what happened to me when I tried various pickling recipes found on the internet. For me they are way to salty, inedible for my palette….

The lost Art of Making Artisan Jams & Preserves without commercial pectins

Interested in learning more about making Artisan Jams and Preserves without using store boxed pectin? If so read on.   The day I realized I did not need store bought pectin was a day for celebrating. A day of feasting on delicious Jams and Jellies I had made myself from all natural ingredients grown or harvested from my…

Calendula infused Oil

What is Calendula? Calendula (calendula officinalis) is a plant originating from the Mediterranean region and is sometimes called pot marigold. However it is different from the marigolds found at plant nurseries in the USA. Calendula has been prized for centuries for it’s healing capabilities. Calendula, is a genus of about 15–20 species of annual and perennial herbaceous plants…

Edible Flowers

One of my favorite things to do is wander throughout my yard and collect flowers to eat. Some come from my gardens while others from the meadow. This time of year is ripe for some awesome flower picks. Flowers have traditionally been used in many types of cooking from all over the world.There are many…

Empty Nest

Sometimes blessings come in unexpected places. This is what happened to me this Spring. Mother’s Day brought my adult children home to visit and I was presented with a beautiful flowering basket. After that day passed I began the nurturing process to ensure the beauty of the flowers didn’t languish. Doting over the flowers as if they…