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Easy DIY Goat Mineral Feeder

Inside: A goat mineral feeder that is easy to make and won't waste any expensive minerals. ✓ Inexpensive! ✓ Easy to assemble! ✓ Durable! ✓ Easy to check and fill. This is one more great post on our raising goats resource page.

Besides water and hay, goat mineral is the next most important aspect of your goat management program. If you don’t believe me or would like more information, please follow this link, Goat Mineral, to learn more. Baking soda is also very important! You can read more here: Baking Soda for Goats

Seriously. This is not something to shirk on. If you don’t have goat mineral and baking soda out for your goats right now, stop reading and go get some.

I’ll wait…

😉

A goat mineral feeder for raising healthy goats. It's easy to make and won't waste expensive minerals. ✓Inexpensive! ✓Easy to make ✓Easy to check and fill.

PIN ME for later!

 

Follow this link to read the  Complete Guide to Goat Mineral 

 

Pinterest, oh Pinterest! You give me so many good ideas! And that is where I found this idea of making goat mineral feeders using PVC pipe. 

I started out providing mineral and baking soda, free choice, in the dispensers below but I realized after a couple months that this was not going to work well. So I modified the set up a bit.

Homemade Goat Mineral Feeder (That I Changed–more pictures below)

Goat-Mineral

There were several factors that helped me decide to change the goat mineral feeders shown in the picture above:

They were too tall. Goats like fresh baking soda and mineral and if something did go awry, the contents were ruined and therefore not eaten. It didn’t make sense to keep filling and filling to the top because there were three feet of possibility for things to go wrong and get clogged up.

There was also no protection from the weather. Although this is located on the east side of the barn and therefore usually out of the wind, it still allowed for moisture to accumulate into the openings and ruin the expensive mineral.

The deep opening and bottom. These fittings were too deep and allowed a bunch of mineral to go to the bottom and to be ruined and wasted. That doesn’t make sense, right?

What was the solution that worked? (Keep reading!)

The solution was to fill the bottom with self-leveling cement. This stuff is fun! It’s so easy to make and I love to have a bag around at all times…because you just never know when you might need it!

 

 

 Free Resource Page for Homesteaders and goat lovers like yourself! Cha-ching! You can have immediate access to 30+ FREE resources. Check ’em out!

 

As shown in the pictures below, I mixed water with the cement inside the bottom of the PVC pipe with a stick. 😉 I’m preeetty high tech!

Goat-Mineral-feeder

You can find the instructions on the bag of cement. I’ll be honest, I just mix until it’s just right. It’s pretty easy to handle!

Goat-Mineral-feeder

After mixing, the mineral feeders sat for 24 hours to dry and then the mineral and baking soda was added!

Goat-Mineral-feeder

The photo below shows that the green portions of the PVC pipes were also cut down considerably. It was cut to about one foot and seems to be the perfect amount to be filled every couple weeks to a month, depending on how many goats are using it.

The level of the cement is just right as well. The mineral is at the perfect level for none of it to get lost in the back or bottom of the feeder.

Goat-Mineral-feeder

They have no difficulties getting their noses into the openings and getting to the contents.

Goat-Mineral

 

Goat-Mineral-Feeder

After cutting down the size of the goat mineral feeders, it was also important to cover them as well. And what better way than a stand for them to jump on? 🙂

Goat-Mineral

Kids of all shapes and sizes enjoy the stand!

Goat-Mineral-feeder

And it’s the perfect set up for a first kiss. 🙂

Goat-Mineral-feeder

How the mineral and baking soda are displayed for goat consumption doesn’t matter. But this PVC pipe feeder for goats has been a great choice for our set up.

✓ It’s inexpensive!

✓ Easy to assemble!

✓ Durable!

✓ Keeps loose mineral off the ground and away from dirty feet.

✓ Easy to check and fill.

And that my dear friends, makes it a very good choice for feeding loose mineral to your goats.

 

 Free Resource Page for Homesteaders and goat lovers like yourself! Cha-ching! You can have immediate access to 30+ FREE resources. Check ’em out!

 

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Your Complete Goat Mineral Guide

Inside: Goat minerals are the most important aspect of your raising goats management program, even if you have only a few goats. It is integral to their health and it is more than just "putting out some mineral". What do you need to know? And what signs of mineral deficiency do you need to be aware of? Find out the most Important Goat Mineral Information and Guidelines below. Find more goat information on our raising goats resource page.

As a whole, I believe our nation is facing a very large health crisis mainly because most people are not getting their fill of vitamins and minerals.

And if not careful, like us, our goats can suffer very damaging consequences when their vitamins and minerals are not what they should be.

And your goats rely on YOU to give them what they need.… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

This Fantastic Steam Juicer Will Make You Feel Invincible

Inside: A steam juicer is a must in any canning kitchen. These questions answered: What is it, how does it work, which fruits, pros, cons, instructions, and tips.

A steam juicer is a must in any canning kitchen. These questions answered! What is it, how does it work, which fruits, pros, cons, instructions, and tips.

If you are curious (or in a hurry!):

✅ This Steam Juicer is stainless steel and has excellent customer reviews–5 Star Rating!

✅ This Steam Juicer is also stainless steel and it’s a great value!

✅ Compare Top Four STEAM jUICERS Here

Buying tip: watch that page above for deals on the Cook N Home NC-00256 11-Quart Stainless-Steel Juicer Steamer–if it’s under $100, it’s a GREAT  deal!

A Steam Juicer that makes juicing fruit a breeze (and makes you feel invincible)!

Invincible is a strong word, I know.

Around my house, it is so exciting to plant the garden.

But by the time canning season is in full swing with all of the produce from the garden and the urge to buy fresh, juicy, sweet smelling, aromatic peaches, pears, and plums from the man on the street corner can’t be resisted…I feel like I’ve been canning for…weeks, months…even decades.

And I wonder.if.it.will.ever.be.done.

But my husband saved the day when he gave me a steam juicer a handful of years ago for Christmas. It is the most amazing canning tool that I use and it makes juicing fruits for all of those yummy jellies so simple.

And it has been a great gift for both my mom and mother-in-law as well! 

And when canning is done, you feel invincible. Or is that just me…?

In this picture:

✅  Norpro Stainless Steamer, Juicer–Get more info:

http://amzn.to/2BoWbMU

 


A good question to start off with is:

How does a steam juicer work?

It’s a kitchen utensil that can be used to extract and separate juice from fruits, berries, and some vegetables by using the steam that is created in the boiling of the water in the bottom pot.

The fruit, berries or vegetable is placed in the top pot that has small holes all the way around it (like a colander) and is nestled inside the middle pot. This middle pot is where the juice is collected and the hose allows the juice to be poured into a separate container upon completion.

The heating process causes the cells of the fruit to burst and the juice trickles out.

What fruits, berries, and vegetables can be used with a steam juicer?

  1. Apples (look for my tip on making apple juice and applesauce at the same time below!)
  2. Grapes
  3. Plums
  4. Tomatoes
  5. Cherries
  6. Apricots
  7. Rhubarb
  8. Peaches
  9. Pears
  10. Strawberries
  11. Raspberries
  12. Chokecherries
  13. Crab Apples
  14. Blueberries
  15. Pomegranates
  16. Sugar Cane
  17. Distil water
  18. Steam blanching before canning.
  19. And more! Get creative!
  20. For instance, make bone broth! (I’ve never done this before.) Add bones to the middle portion with a splash of vinegar and steam! The marrow goodness will drain out the tube and the excess meat on the bones will fall off in the upper portion. Add onions, carrots, and celery for a great stock! This is something I definitely something I’m going to try!

↑ Check out more pictures here ↑ Check Current Price

What can the juice be used for?

The juice created from a steam juicer is ideal for making jelly, but can also be used for juice, wine, ciders, and liqueur.

Steam juicer Pros:

• No need to peal or slice!

• No mess, fast and easy process.

• Low labor.

• Clear, beautiful liquid.

• Works great for small AND large batches of fruit.

Steam juicer Cons:

• Some nutrients and enzymes are lost in the process of heating the fruit to release the juice. If you are looking for the nutritious benefits of raw juice, using a mechanical juicer would be your best option. A  juicer extractor breaks the fruit cells by grinding and crushing.

• Low to no fiber

The below picture would be an example of a great juice extractor that uses low to no heat and preserves the nutrients of the fruits and vegetables. Click on the image to see more details and reviews. 

↑ Check me out! (Click on the picture) ↑ Juice Extractor

Steam juicer instructions:

  1. Fill bottom pot with water, marbles (or pennies) and begin to boil.
  2. Wash fruit, berries or vegetables, and place in top basket.
  3. Put the middle portion on the bottom pot.
  4. Place the top basket inside the middle portion.
  5. Put the lid on.
  6. Double check that the hose is tightly closed with clamp or clothespin. (You don’t want juice running across your floor!)
  7. Set a timer for 30 minutes. Check fruit and juice at that point.
  8. Drain juice if needed.
  9. Set timer for 15-30 more minutes if necessary.
  10. Drain juice and immediately can or begin your jelly making process.
  11. Feed any unused pulp or skins to pigs or chickens. They will love you 🙂

Steam Juicer Tips:

• The length of time the fruit and vegetables are steaming will affect how concentrated your juice is. The longer the fruit is steamed the more water is added to the juice concentrate and therefore there will be more volume of juice in the end but it will be less concentrated. This will be your personal preference for how long to heat your fruit. 

• If siphoning the juice immediately after turning off the heat, be careful! The juice is boiling hot. Use caution.

• The riper the fruit, the more juice will be released.

• Do double duty! Strain the juice off of apples or tomatoes or any other appropriate fruit and you will have juice! But don’t throw away the pulp! Turn it into applesauce! Or a thick tomato paste!

• Pressing or pushing on the pulp will not release any more juice and the juice below will end up with pulp or skins mixed into the juice.

Steam Juicer Tricks:

• Use glass marbles or a few pennies in the bottom pan that is filled with water. You never want to run out of water (which I did once–gasp!) The marbles or pennies will make a racket when the water is low and will be a gentle reminder to PUT MORE WATER IN QUICK! Thanks for the tip Living Home Grown!

• Freezing the fruit will help them release their juice faster, most likely because the cells have broken open during the freezing process and the juice is released faster. Many people report that they actually get more juice from their fruits when they freeze them first.

• Place a stool or small table in front of the stove to hold the jar that the juice will drain into. Remember the steam and juice is hot!

• If you are low on time, get the water boiling and then put the fruit in the top portion and boil for 30 minutes to an hour. Turn it off and let it set for the remainder of the day without opening the lid. By the time it is cooled off, any remaining juice will have dripped down into the middle portion. Then you can deal with the juice and pulp after you get off work. 

I hope you are thoroughly convinced to be invincible this canning season with a new steam juicer! 

And if you are looking for gift ideas for your canning fanatic, this is it. 

My steam juicer is, hands down, one of my favorite tools I use and recommend and makes canning jellies and juice so easy!

It’s the best part actually, except for eating the jelly. That’s actually the best part. 

Because when you are eating homegrown, hand picked, home-cooked grape jelly on homemade bread…wow. Do you ever feel invincible!


You also may be interested in why we only use Kamut wheat in our cooking!

 

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

27 [More] Goat Gifts You Will Absolutely Love…Really!

Goat gifts for your goat loving friend AND goat friends! There's an inner goat lover in all of us and there should be goat apparel surrounding us all day!

Goat Gifts for a Goat Lover

I believe there is a goat lover in all of us. It’s just that only some of us have allowed our inner goat love to surface. And for those lovely friends? They need a goat gift for every area of their life.

Right…?


Goat Lover MUGS

Before you wake up and mosey on outdoors to feed, milk and scratch your goats, you need to wake up first…

Goat gifts "I just freaking love goats, ok?"

Goat Gifts "Crazy Goat Lady"

Goat Gifts Mug "I never dreamed I'd grow up to be a super sexy goat lady, but here I am...killing it."

Goat Gifts Mug "I am 2 goats past normal"

 

I bet you want to know...12 Reasons YOU Need a Goat

Goat Lover SOCKS

And after you’re awake, sit on the side of your bed and pull on some comfy socks…

Goat Lover Socks Silly

Goat Lover socks I heart goats

I lover goats socks

relax goat socks

And it would be nice to know…What I Wish I Had Known Before Owning Goats

Goat Lover T-SHIRTS

…and then pull on a new t-shirt…

Goat Gifts "Goat Mom" t-shirt

Goat gifts "I heart my goat"

Goat Gifts Goat t-shirt

Goat gifts "happiness is goats"

 

All you need to know about raising goats

Goat Lover CALENDARS

As you walk out the door, don’t forget to check your calendar! Is it time to worm your goats? Trim their hooves? Get the kidding barn ready? You’ll know because it’s on your new calendar!

Goat gifts calendar baby goats

goat gifts "goats in trees" calendar

Goat gifts "goats" calendar

Goat gifts 2018 "goats" Calendar

Goat Lover SIGNS

Outside, you’ll squint into the sun but know that no goat hater would ever dare intrude onto your property. Your signs will make it quite clear who’s welcome…

 Goat gifts "Caution: area patrolled by attack goat"

Goat gifts "goat crossing" sign

goat gifts "Welcome" sign

Goat Gifts "Goat lovers Parking only" sign

Goat Lover Gift Ideas for ANYONE

Hang up your keys, make some goat cookies, take a bath and hug a goat…

Goat Gifts cookie cutter

Goat Gifts Goat Key hooks

Goat gifts goat milk soap

Goat gifts plush toy

 

Gifts to Give your GOATS

How could we be so selfish?? Don’t forget treats and gifts for your lovely, pet goats!

Goat treats

Goat Collars

Goat Brushes

Goat gifts blanket

We love our goats! And we love our goat lovers! Let’s make a pact to take care of them both this year! 

A gift of love, even for no apparent reason, can brighten anyone’s day! 

Oh, and if you or they don’t own a goat yet? That’s an important first step. Get a goat. You won’t regret it! 

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Can You Really Afford a New Horse Right Now?

Inside: A horse cost calculator is a great tool to help predict what a horse will cost. They are a large animal and do not come without cost! These tips will give a horse owner a great start to maintaining and controlling costs! This is one great tool from our raising horses resource page.

What does owning a horse really cost?

Horse are fun, and exciting and definitely an investment.

And they are so very worth it!… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Free Goat Shelter Plans [For 3-6 Goats!]

Inside: A simple and effective pallet goat shelter that is large enough to hold more than two or three goats. It will keep off the rain, snow and cold! Read more about Raising Goats on our resource page!

Pallets are a tool that anyone can use for so many projects. They are so versatile. They can be taken apart completely and each board used separately. Or they also can be left intact and used as a whole. Whichever way you decide to use your pallets, if you haven’t found a way to take them apart without a lot of difficulties, check out my video on how I take my pallets apart.

… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

DIY, Easy, Free Goat House

Inside: How to build a goat house using pallets. An easy and cost effective way to use easy to find material to make great winter shelters for your goats. Want more information about Raising Goats? <== Check them out!

How to build a “goat house” using wood pallets

Goats are a wonderful addition to a family! We appreciate them so much! But it was time to build them a sufficient goat shelter for winter. 

To answer the question, “Do goats need shelter in the winter”, yes, they do. Especially in our cold, snowy and windy climate. They do need protection from the elements as much as possible. 

This summer, I spent some time building some goat shelters they could tuck into during the long, cold, deep winter drift days of Montana. Here is the outcome. They snuggle in and are quite happy!

AND these are so simple to build!

… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

CD&T Vaccination for Goats: Necessary or Not?

Inside: The CD&T vaccination for goats: should you give it? Learn what it means, what it's for and what can happen if you don't give it each year. You can find more information in our Raising Goats Series.

Vaccinations are a pretty sticky subject that can cause a lot of inflammatory opinions, right? And whether we are talking about our kids or our…kids…goat kids that is, we need to make a decision that is well informed and then stand firm in that decision. 

In my first years of goat ownership, I didn’t vaccinate my goats. And then I did for a few years. And through all of those years, my goats were healthy and happy. And usually, goats can be healthy and happy with either decision. 

It is a good idea for all goat owners to take the time to understand what vaccinations are and if they are needed in every situation and why.

Obviously, you will fall into one of two categories:

  1. You will not vaccinate your goats like
  2. Or you will vaccinate your goats like

Let’s dive in and look at what the CD/T or CD&T vaccination for goats is all about.

 

… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Easy Goat Gestation Calculator & Goat Care During Pregnancy

Inside: You need to know the best goat care during pregnancy. Pregnant does have many needs to support optimal health. You will also find a FREE goat gestation calculator. This is one post of many from our Raising Goats resource page


You gotta know when your cute, bounding baby goats are going to make their appearance so you can prepare adequately for them, right? So take advantage of this easy due date calculator. 

Goat Gestation

A goat’s gestation period is between 145-155 days, with an average being 150 days. So, pencil the estimated due date into your calendar but remember to be ready for action during that last week before the due date!

 

… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

6 Tips to Winterizing Bee Hives

Inside: These 6 tips to winterizing bee hives will give you and your bees the boost they need to get through the winter months into spring and blooming flowers! This is one article of many from our beekeeping resources page.

Getting bees on your own property is exciting! It’s hard work, and it may have some nail-biting moments as you wonder what your bees are up to inside their hives. You’ve watched them dance around all summer long, you don’t want all your hard work or their’s to go to waste with winter losses!

Winterizing beehives and getting your bees ready for winter is important. They need to be protected during the winter months from the weather, pests and they need to have enough food and working bees to last through the winter. In our area, we need to have our winterizing done by Halloween…. [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Mulching: Why is it SO important?

Inside: Mulching just may be the saving grace of the gardening year. Find out mulching options, what it does for the soil and the best techniques. Find more gardening tips here!

(Spring and fall mulching information are towards the end. 🙂 )

What if gardening could be made easier by implementing one simple technique?

This technique would make your garden:

• Healthier

• Have fewer weeds

• Be more drought-resistant

And if done properly, your garden would allow you to:

• Spend less time watering

• Weeding

• And fighting pest problems

Seriously, it’s true!

And what would this one technique be?

MULCHING!

There are so many advantages of mulching!

My first years of gardening went like this: begging my husband to till, weeds, 5-foot tall quack grass. And trying desperately to find actual veggies that *really* were planted. Amazingly, I was able to get quite a bit of vegetables, despite my lack of knowledge.

But! There is a better way.

First off, I implemented the “no-till” gardening method. And what a difference! This difference was first noted when there wasn’t a nagging war to get the tilling done in the spring! 😉 But there are so many other benefits! I’ll let the no-till gardening post do all the explaining.

Worried that not tilling will increase your workload? Please keep reading. Fears will be squelched!

I also began to understand why my garden had weeds in the first place. If your garden has weeds, there are very good reasons they are taking root! And you need to know why: Why does my garden have weeds?

There is also a very important tool that all gardeners should implement: cover crops. It has made an amazing difference in my garden!

I also started mulching with straw. Deep straw.

Mulching just may be the saving grace of the gardening year. Find out your mulching options, what it does for the soil and the best techniques.

Several different types of mulching materials can be used.

• Organic mulches (formerly living material)

• Chopped leaves

• Straw or hay (weed free)

• Grass clippings

• Compost

• Wood chips

• Shredded bark

• Sawdust

• Pine needles

• Paper

•  Inorganic mulches

• Gravel

• Stones

• Black plastic

• Geotextiles (landscape fabrics)

Both of the options, organic or inorganic, will keep weeds subdued. And there would be different reasons to choose one or the other.

(The Three Cardinal Rules of mulching below!)

(Take a look at the free stuff first though 😉 )

Organic material

Advantages of organic mulch:

• Breaks down and decomposes

• Helps to enrich the soil

• Helps to retain moisture in the soil

Keeps soil cool during hottest summer days

• Encourages earthworm activity

• Prevents soil compaction

Cons: 

• Some mulches, like wood chips and sawdust, deplete nitrogen in the soil

• The mulch retains moisture and can slow the soil from warming up in the spring

• Left touching the stems or bark of a plant or tree, mulch will rot the base of plants and may also encourage rodents to nest in the material

• Mulch may also harbor slugs and snails

Know when to water your garden: The Finger Test

Inorganic material

Advantages of inorganic mulch:

• Black plastic, for instance, will help warm the soil and keep heat-loving plants toasty, even during the night. In fact, the soil will be about 3 degrees warmer

• Keeps produce from rotting

• Keeps produce clean

• Helps to retain moisture in the soil

• With careful care and storage, it can be reused

Cons:

• Rain and water cannot permeate the material, so a soaker hose would be used for watering. Oxygen cannot penetrate through the plastic, so roots of plants and shrubs can be damaged long term as their roots grow closer to the surface. Shallow roots do not withstand drought or extreme temperatures well.

• Oxygen cannot penetrate through the plastic, so roots of plants and shrubs can be damaged long term as their roots grow closer to the surface. Shallow roots do not withstand drought or extreme temperatures well.

• Plastic is not biodegradable and is made from petroleum products

• Harder to find a place to recycle plastic

• Landscape fabric has some drawbacks as well. There are several things that can go wrong with these fabrics: roots from below can grow up into the fabric and weed seeds can germinate on top of the fabric. Both of these problems will cause the fabric to rip when weeds are pulled or the fabric is removed.

There are a few “cardinal rules” to mulching.

If piles of materials are going to be gathered, it only makes sense that the materials are used to the best of their ability. It makes no sense to put down mulch only to have weeds and grass keep poking their pesky heads up.

Rule #1: weed first. This can be done several ways. The weeds can be pulled or the tops cut off just below the surface. The tops (before they have gone to seed of course), would be used as mulch and the roots would add organic material to the soil as it breaks down.

My garden area was grass…5-foot tall quack grass to be exact…before I turned it into my garden area. If I don’t pull every last bit of grass roots from my planting areas, there will be 5-foot tall grass growing faster than you can say “summer!” It’s dense, fast growing and would choke out any vegetables planted. So I’ve chosen to remove those pesky roots as much as I can.

Rule #2: lay down 4-6 inches of mulch to discourage the growth of new weeds. Another option to consider: lay down cardboard as the first layer and then add mulch on top of the cardboard.

You may also find that many weeds and grass can grow…seemingly endlessly…under any mulch or cardboard. When the mulch is lifted up, the plant can be followed to its beginnings and usually pulled rather easily. But that fact right there shows how desperately weeds and grass want to live another day to see the sunlight one more time.

Rule #3: If there are seeds or perennial weeds or grass in the garden bed, put down a layer of newspaper over the first layer of mulch and then lay several more inches of mulch over the newspaper.

The thickness of the mulch will directly impact how many weeds are able to survive. They lose energy as they are pushing up through the mulch and usually die before they are able to reach the surface.

When using the no-till gardening method, mulching will be the saving grace of any garden. 

But it goes beyond just keeping a garden weed-free. Mulch feeds the microorganisms in the soil. And the more abundant life there is down there, the more “food” (mulch) they will need. But the vegetables and soil will be all the healthier from the abundant life, weed free, moist and cool soil during the hot summer months. 

 Mulch, and don’t be stingy about it! 🙂

When to Mulch

Fall Mulching

When working with our gardens, it is so very important to work with nature. How do you do that?

Look around at what nature is doing, and replicate that. This will give you and your garden the best possible advantage.

So when does nature mulch?

The fall!!

Fall Mulching

And the best part is that many people bag up leaves every fall and need them removed from their property. This is when you can step in and take them off their hands!

And that’s exactly what we did. In the picture above you can see that we laid down our newly acquired leaves across our garden area. I’m hoping to pick up more bags after Halloween to finish the rest!

This is what fall mulching does for your garden:

  • After the leaves are spread out across the garden area, they will begin to decompose
  • The snow, rain, worms, and microorganisms will break down and work the leaves into the soil all winter long
  • These leaves are also food for the microorganisms
  • They will also protect the ground from erosion, and deep freezes
  • And will discourage seed germination and weed growth in the spring

Spring Mulching

Mulch can also be laid down during planting and on all the known pathways. And as the plants grow, it can be added to and moved closer to the rows.

Mulching in the spring also adds to the food source for the microorganisms. Don’t ever forget their importance to the health of your soil!

Spring is when all of life is bursting to live and weeds are resilient and have a much earlier start than our gardens do, so the fall mulch will help with keeping the weeds subdued and the weed seeds from germinating.

But the spring layer of mulch will be what your garden needs to stop those weeds that can poke through anything.

Retaining moisture and keeping the ground cool during the hottest of summer months is also a huge advantage of putting down more mulch in the spring.

Just remember, our earth is modest and can’t handle being naked. For the sake of the soil in your garden, cover it.

Mulching just may be the saving grace of the gardening year. Find out your mulching options, what it does for the soil and the best techniques.

 

A goat mineral feeder that is easy to make and won't waste any expensive minerals. ✓ Inexpensive! ✓ Easy to assemble! ✓ Durable! ✓ Easy to check and fill.

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

BEFORE Bringing Home Your First Goat

Inside: Before bringing home your first goat: before your goats get settled, you can compile this list (and more) to keep your goats happy and healthy! Find more information about Raising Goats here.

So, you’re convinced that your farm needs a goat (<== Check out these six reasons you need a goat!)

Congratulations! It’s a great choice! And although there’s a learning curve with any new endeavor and adventure, you won’t regret it.… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

What I Wish I Had Known Before Owning Goats

Inside: 9 things I wish I had known before owning goats. Don't you agree with #5?? But does it stop us from owning them?? Nope! Once a goat lover, always one. This is one of many posts about Raising Goats. Be sure to check out the rest of the information available. 

There are a few things I wish I had known before I brought home my first goats. And since those first few days of goat ownership, I’ve learned so much!

Here are a few things to think about before you bring your first goats home.… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Stewed Tomatoes

Print Recipe
Stewed Tomatoes
Servings
Ingredients
  • 4 Quarts Tomatoes About 24 large chopped, peeled, cored tomatoes
  • 1 Cup Celery Chopped. About 1 stalk.
  • 1/2 Cup Onion Chopped. About 1/2 medium.
  • 1/4 Cup Green Pepper Chopped. About 1/2 medium.
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar
  • 2 Teaspoons Salt
Servings
Ingredients
  • 4 Quarts Tomatoes About 24 large chopped, peeled, cored tomatoes
  • 1 Cup Celery Chopped. About 1 stalk.
  • 1/2 Cup Onion Chopped. About 1/2 medium.
  • 1/4 Cup Green Pepper Chopped. About 1/2 medium.
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar
  • 2 Teaspoons Salt
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large saucepot.
  2. Cover; cook 10 minutes, stirring to prevent sticking.
  3. Ladle hot vegetables into hot jars, leaving 1-inch headspace.
  4. Adjust two-piece caps.
  5. Process points 15 minutes, quarts 20 minutes, at 20 pounds pressure in a steam-pressure canner.
Share this Recipe
 
Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

How to Peel Tomatoes [6 Different Ways!]

Inside: When a pile of tomatoes are ready to be worked with, it is so important to know how to peel tomatoes quickly and effieciently. Here are 6 different ways to get that peel off those tomatoes!

Confession: One year I didn’t peel my tomatoes…it seemed like an impossible job with so many tomatoes piled on the counter. I was running out of time and I didn’t want them to spoil. So I canned them.

They made yummy tomato soup sauce. And when it was time to make the soup? Well, the end result was small rolled up tomato skins throughout the entire soup. Still edible (and very yummy!) but not the desired outcome.

How-to-peel-tomatoes

Now?

Now I know how to quickly handle those pesky peels with no problems! And it is so easy!

Without further ado, let’s peel some tomatoes!

There are several ways to peel tomatoes. They all are very good options worth considering!

How-to-peel-tomatoes

Let’s explore those options. Each way will be broken down into a step by step process of how to peel tomatoes!

1•  Peel tomatoes using boiling and freezing water.

This is a great way to peel bulk tomatoes because quite a few can be boiling and cooling at the same time. The peels come off very easily. The main thing to watch for is not to cook them too long because you don’t want to be peeling cooked, soft tomatoes. 

STEP ONE:

Hull the tomatoes. In the clips below I didn’t hull them until after taking off the peels. It works either way!

STEP TWO:

Boil water. And place the tomatoes in the water for 45-60 seconds.

STEP THREE:

Place the tomatoes in FREEZING cold water. Adding ice cubes to the water may help too. We don’t keep ice trays in our freezer so it works just fine without them.

STEP FOUR:

Peel the tomatoes. The skins should slip right off.

STEP FIVE: 

Pile them up and amaze everyone with your speed and awesomeness. Now the peeled tomatoes can be used for canning, making soups, sauces and anything you can think of!

 

 

2•  Freeze tomatoes.

When life gets hectic this is a great option because it allows you to come back to them later when life is less busy.

Wait…when is life less busy…?

Anyways, it means you can finish canning or freezing the other garden produce before it spoils and then come back to the tomatoes later. 

STEP ONE:

Freeze the tomato(es).

If you have a lot of tomatoes to work with, put the tomatoes on a cookie sheet, not touching, in the freezer. (Later, when they are frozen, they can be put in gallon size freezer bags for a more condensed storage.)

STEP TWO:

When the time has come to work with the tomatoes, take them out of the freezer and run them under hot water. The skin will loosen up.

How-to-peel-tomatoes

STEP THREE:

Peel the tomatoes!

STEP FOUR:

Hull the tomatoes.

 

 

 

3•  Hold over an open flame.

What a great way to peel tomatoes! It is fast, easy and doesn’t cook the tomatoes at all! (Unless they are held over the flame too long.) Be ready for the tomato to “pop”. It scared me the first time. But the peel splits in several places and then is very easy to peel off. 

STEP ONE:

Stab the tomato with a fork.

STEP TWO:

Turn on the gas stove burner to a medium flame.

How-to-peel-tomatoes

STEP THREE:

Put the tomato over the flame and turn it as it starts to “pop” (don’t jump!). The skin will start to crack. Don’t forget to get the top and bottom areas of the tomato. And also don’t cook the tomato too long. When the skin looks loose, has a yellower look to it and has split, it is ready.

How-to-peel-tomatoes

STEP FOUR:

Peel off the skin!

STEP FIVE:

Hull the tomato!

 

 

 

4•  Rub knife over tomato.

No extra bowls or water needed. This probably took the longest time out of all the options but it worked! The peel came off very paper thin but also wasn’t as loose to pull off as the other options. 

STEP ONE:

Rub the knife over the peel very firmly without squishing the tomato. Be sure to get all the sides and top and bottom. 

How-to-peel-tomatoes

STEP TWO:

Test to see if the peel pulls off easily.

STEP THREE:

If the peel doesn’t come off easily, rub some more!

STEP FOUR:

Peel off skin.

STEP FIVE:

Hull tomato. 

 

 

5•  Cut off peel with knife.

The master chef can show off! A great way to get it done if you don’t mind the occasional wasting of some of the tomato when it’s cut too deep. It’s fast, efficient and requires precise cutting skills. 

STEP ONE:

Hull the tomato.

STEP TWO:

Depending on the size of the tomato, cut into fourths or fifths.

How-to-peel-tomatoes

STEP THREE: 

Very carefully cut off the peel staying as close to the skin as possible. The less waste the better!

 

6•  Grater

This is a great way to peel and cut the tomatoes all at once! The end result is a cut up, somewhat liquified tomato, but for some recipes, that’s exactly what you want!

STEP ONE:

Hull tomato

STEP TWO:

Cut tomato in half.

How-to-peel-tomatoes

 

STEP THREE:

Gently push tomato half into the grater.

How-to-peel-tomatoes

STEP FOUR:

Towards the end, being very careful not to cut any fingers, push the skin into the grater and grate off the remaining tomato. 

Peeling tomatoes is easy! And when they are peeled you are one step closer to having canned stewed tomatoes, soups, and sauces all winter long!

How do you peel yours? Are there any other ways to add to the list?

 

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

How to Milk a Goat [7 Easy Steps]

Are you curious about how to milk a goat? Watch the full unedited goat milking video below and then follow the step by step instructions including pictures.

Are you curious what it takes to milk a goat?

Watch the video below as Delci takes you through the milking process from beginning to end including:

• Cleaning before milking

• Using a strip cup

• How milking helped her carpel tunnel symptoms

• What abnormalities to watch for

• Pro tips to make it easier on goat and handler

• Step by step process

• Check out our FREE resource page

With no edits to the actual 5-minute goat milking video, you can see exactly what to expect from a reliable milking doe and how long it takes to milk a goat by hand.

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

How to Milk a Goat by Hand [Video]:

How to Milk a Goat [Step by Step with Pictures]

After the step by step process listed below, there will be more details provided about why each step is important.

STEP 1: PREPARE TO MILK

Prepare the area by gathering the grain or goat treat of choice. My goats are partial and will only eat rolled barley. Other options would be alfalfa pellets, organic grain, hay, or a mix of grains. I will also be joining the fodder movement soon and will begin feeding my goats barley fodder.

Also, prepare and lay out your rag and ointment or cleaner of choice for wiping down the udder.

Have your milking bucket and strip cup ready and easily accessible.

If you are new to milking, being prepared for when the goat is on the stand will help you not get flustered and nervous. And being ready to milk from beginning to end will help you feel more confident.

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

STEP 2: CLEAN THE GOAT’S UDDER

Let your goat into the milking area and onto the stand. Clean the goat’s udder thoroughly, focusing on the tip of the teat where the bacteria would be residing in the opening of the teat. Shaving the goat’s udder may also be necessary and make it easier to milk.

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

STEP 3: USE THE STRIP CUP

Your next step will be to use your strip cup. There are several options to choose from. You can simply use a separate small cup or pail or you can use the strip cup milking hack that I use. It makes it easy to collect the first milk and then immediately continue milking into the main milking pail.

Squirt 1-3 squirts of the first milk into the strip cup.

 

via GIPHY

STEP 4: BEGIN MILKING!

Your doe will begin with a full, tight udder.

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

Begin milking by squeezing with the thumb and first finger as high up as possible on the udder.

Trap the milk with those fingers.

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

And then squeeze the remaining fingers while continuing to trap the milk. This will force the milk out of the teat.

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

The first squeezes may result in nothing coming out but repeat the process again to open up the orifices (hole) in the teat that allows the milk to flow out.

Repeat this process with both hands. A back and forth, steady rhythm.

via GIPHY

STEP 5: GENTLY WORK OUT REMAINING MILK

As you are reaching the end and when the udder feels empty, gently punch or work the remaining milk down into the teats (like the kids do!) to release the next let down and to ensure that the doe is milked out.

The udder will now look empty and wrinkled with no milk remaining.

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

STEP 6: USE UDDER BALM

Apply udder balm to the udder and the teats.

And that’s a wrap!

STEP 7: CHILL

The milk that is. Well…you may actually need to chill while your goat finishes every.last.bite.of.grain. But the most important part of keeping milk tasting yummy and fresh is by chilling it as quickly as possible. And keeping it in a fridge that is very cold will ensure that it remains fresh for up to ten days.

via GIPHY

More Information on How to Milk a Goat

The Milking Stand

It is not absolutely necessary, but a milk stand may make it an easier process. There are three ways to milk a goat:

  1. Catching the goat’s head in a head catch (or tying them up) and sitting on a bucket (or stool) set on the ground and milking the goat from their left or right side while they are standing on the ground.
  2. Use a milk stand and a head catch and milk from the left or right side of the goat.
  3. Use a milk stand and a head catch and milk from the back side of the goat.

Whichever way is chosen, is solely based on what is most comfortable for the milker. There is no right or wrong way.

Cleaning a Goat Before Milking

This cleaning process is so important. Your goat may have been laying down in the straw or area where there is manure or urine. Bacteria may find a way to the opening of the teat. If the goat’s udder is not cleaned thoroughly, the risk for foodborne illnesses becomes possible. These would be like Salmonella, E. coli, and Listeria.

Wiping down the udder also releases oxytocin, which stimulates letdown and the release of milk.

There are many homemade solutions that you can use to clean the udder. I personally use a very watered down iodine solution.

Trimming the udder and sometimes even long leg hairs may also be necessary because the hair can get in the way of your hands during milking but also can carry bacteria that may contaminate the milk.

milking-strip-cup

Why Use a Strip Cup?

The strip cup is also an important part of the milking process. Although cleaning the goat will sterilize the outside of the udder, if there are any bacteria inside in the first milk, the strip cup will capture this bacteria, and keep it separated and then this milk will be disposed of.

The strip cup does two things:

  1. Collects any of the bacteria that may be present in the first streams of milk
  2. And allows you to check the milk to make sure that there are no abnormalities, blood or clots that would indicate mastitis or any serious issues that would need to be addressed immediately.

During the Milk Process

The step by step instructions above show what TO DO. But there are a few reminders and things NOT TO DO.

• Do not squeeze, pull or yank on the teats or udder because this could cause damage. Even in the frustration of things not working, it is important to not cause unwanted damage in a moment of frustration.

• Even in the frustration of things not working, it is important to remain calm. The doe will pick up on emotions.

• It is also important to understand that there are different reasons for how long (or short!) it takes to milk a goat:

• The size of the does udder

• And the size of her teats

• The size of the orifices (holes) in the goat’s teats

• The handlers experience

• And how well the doe behaves on the stand

When you first begin milking, you may find that your arms feel weak. But with practice, your arms will be strengthened, just as muscles are in a workout program. So keep at it!

Also, if for whatever reason, you cannot milk with both hands, there is nothing wrong with using one hand to milk out one side and then switching to the other side to milk with the same hand.

Always be aware of distractions and look for ways to eliminate them. Flies can be frustrating and annoying to both you and your goat. If they are a problem, use a fan during milking.

Or if there are goats with nimble noses, who can open unlocked doors, remember to lock the door after the milking doe is let in. There is nothing more distracting than the other goat running at you and the milk stand vying for the grain while you are trying to milk! (Ask me how I know!) 😉

As you begin to learn the mannerisms of your doe, you will also be able to read her better over time. And this helps because you can (usually) tell when they are going to kick or step forward into the bucket. But not always! Just pay attention so that you can be ready to stop a leg or foot with your wrist. It is so very frustrating to have a dirty hoof in the milk or the bucket tipped over.

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

At the End of Milking and Using Udder Balm

A doe in milk is continually making milk, so it is almost impossible to “strip out” every last drop because once you stop, they are already making more milk! I have never had a problem with mastitis, and although I do milk out what I can, I do not pull on the teats in any way to get out “every last drop.”

All does are different. Some does will have an udder that milks out very easily and it is very easy to tell when she is done. Other goats require a bit of massaging or “bumping” to get the remaining milk. With each milking, you will understand and realize which type of goat you have.

Using udder balm or teat dip ensures that the opening of the teat is protected from bacteria entering. The teat end and streak canal remain open for up to an hour after milking and it makes it easier for bacteria to enter. It is a good practice to feed your goats after milking so that they are standing for a period of time after milking which allows time for the streak canal to close.

Udder balm will also soothe the skin and help keep the udder from becoming chapped or irritated.

You also may find that one hand is stronger than the other. My right hand is stronger than my left, so I usually finish that one first. 🙂

How-To-Milk-A-Goat

Chilling the Milk

The chill process is really an important part of this process. Get the milk in the bucket, get it inside and in the fridge. Many people chill the milk in the freezer for half an hour before putting it in the fridge. The faster the milk can be chilled the better it will taste and the longer it will last.


Around the world, goat milk is the most favored and most drank milk there is. And we shouldn’t be surprised: there are astounding benefits to drinking goat milk.

But this also shows that many, many people milk a goat every day…and it can be done by you too! There are no reasons why you shouldn’t get a goat and although there may be some nervous butterflies the first few milkings, they will pass and both you and your goat friend will be a pro at the milking process from beginning to end.

With every milking you get under your belt, the seven milking steps mentioned above will become natural instincts and you won’t think twice about how you get it done.

For the small homestead, a milking goat is an excellent option for several reasons:

• Their size is optimal for small spaces

• Their poop is less and smaller than a cow’s

• They eat considerably less hay

• Their milk production is the perfect amount for one family

• They are sweet and considerably loving and become a member of the family very quickly

Are you convinced yet that you need a goat? If not, you can become convinced even more: Reasons You Need a Goat . ← Hop on over there and you will find 12 reasons you need a goat. You can thank me later 😉

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Weed Control When Your Garden is Full of Weeds [5 Best Steps]

Inside: 5 best steps for weed control when your garden is full of weeds. Gardening is hard work, so help yourself take back control, it's not too late. Find more gardening tips here.

Finally. The last seed was safely covered in the moist dark soil. It made all the work seem worth it, even with the help of two toddlers…who…well…made it a tiny bit…ack! Who’s to be kidding?? A HUGE bit harder.

But then there were swimming lessons to rush to and the warm weather made life just…BUSY.

And back in the garden two weeks later…ah…there’s a corn and a bean…way under there. Under the canopy of thistle, lamb’s quarter, a vine of some sort and the borage, which, truly, has gotten out of hand. And what in the world is that new weed??

Oh! What a mess! How could it have possibly gotten so out of hand?

5 best steps for weed control when your garden is full of weeds. Gardening is hard work, so help yourself take back control, it's not too late.

Who has time to spend every evening from eight to ten weeding a garden only to turn around and have it taken over again almost immediately?

No one.

A garden needs to produce as much food as possible with the least amount of work. Is gardening hard work? Oh yes! But with a few weed control management techniques, it can be almost set on automation…the weed control at least. Because once it starts producing, a whole new set of work commences, now doesn’t it? Harvesting, canning, storing….eating…

The first thing that needs to take place is a complete mind switch about weeds.

They are valuable and many of them are very edible and even quite nutritious. They have saved our land from east to west coast in the years of drought and when the wind assails.

It would be well worth the time to read this article: Why Does My Garden Have Weeds? Here’s Why and How to Fix It.  The answer may be surprising.

Of course, many people are avid weed lovers. Dandelions are great in salads, soaps, and for the bees, they are absolutely a necessity. And many people use thistle and burdock roots, and nettle makes a nutritious tea. The uses for weeds is endless, but in the garden, they don’t need to take over.

Without weed control, weeds will starve vegetables for sunlight and will take the water and nutrients needed elsewhere for their own use.

After the treacherous weeds have staked a claim in the garden, what can be done?

First off, there are a few things that need to be done and understood BEFORE the gardening year begins to help with weed control from the start.

Implement the no-till gardening method.

This is a key factor in weed control. Tilling stirs up the soil and brings to the surface weed seeds buried deep down. There are many other detriments to tilling as well, so take a moment and read the article provided above before leaving.

Companion plant.

When planting, make the most of companion planting and keep the spacing between plants as close as possible. The green tint and shade from the leaves tell weeds seeds, “don’t germinate, this space is taken.”

Utilize cover crops.

This technique has many benefits as well, including weed suppression.

Water properly.

Know when to water and if possible, don’t water the weeds. This can be accomplished by using a drip tape or soaker hose.

MULCH!

And finally, mulch until mulch can’t be mulched another inch! Read more below.

That all seems fairly easy, right? It will be such a relief when the weeds are under control and it’s not a battle for all vegetables to survive.

Here are 5 best steps to take for weed control when the garden is full of weeds:

Despair.

Just a little bit. I understand. It’s overwhelming. Sit down, lay your head on your knees and take a deep breath. You can do this.

Gather mulch, find a pair of scissors and put on the garden gloves.

The mulch is the key ingredient to all weed problems! There are a handful of different choices to choose from, so do the research and stock up on the available mulch in the area or what suits the soil best. Read more about mulching choices here. And don’t put on the gloves if a dirt manicure under the fingernails isn’t a big deal. 😉

Carefully weed around the vegetables.

Finding and locating the rows and individual vegetables will make it easier when the mulch is laid down. And it is always easier to pull weeds when they are at their smallest, so hopefully, that’s the case, but if not…

Use the scissors.

The scissors or pruning loppers can be used for the weeds that have really taken off and are quite large. The weeds can be pulled but leaving the roots in the ground adds organic material to the soil and will help break up compacted soil. But also, it’s best to cut off the tops before they go to seed and spread even more. When deciding to pull or cut off a weed, make the decision for what’s best in the current situation.

Mulch.

And truly, don’t be stingy. The ground we stand on is modest and deeply desires for its top soil to be covered. This will be the key to a weed free gardening year. Watch a detailed mulching video here.

weed control

The benefits of mulching are something that really shouldn’t be missed. It keeps the soil cool in the heat of summer. Underneath, the ground will stay moist from the protection of the hot sun and dry wind. And for the sake of the concerns right now, it will keep those pesky weeds under control.

And it’s never too late to take back control.

Read more about this subject here:

Effective Control

Lawn Weeds

 

 

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Cover Crops for the Smaller Vegetable Gardens

Inside: Cover crops are underutilized and misunderstood in the smaller vegetable garden. Understand what they are, which to choose and how to use them. Find more gardening articles in our Gardening Tips resource page.

I had a cover crop alright. A cover crop of charlie horse, that awful stinkweed, and a sticky, scratchy viney…weed thing…of some sort.

Oh, and grass. Grass, who’s roots weaved in and out and under every last bean, corn, and pea I had planted. That grass just knew that if I pulled them, it would pull up my plants too.

It was as if it were saying, “I dare you.”… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Garden Watering: The “Finger Test”

Inside: Garden watering is the most important aspect of your productive year of produce. Learn how to know when to water your garden, the signs of overwatering and 6 tips for successful watering. Find more gardening tips here!

I yawned and twisted the spicket to turn off the water that had been spraying on the garden all night. I smiled as a robin danced in the sparkles and I heard my feet squish on the soil as I walked over to look at my growing jungle.

I watered once a week through the night with the idea that it was a deep watering that the plants needed, but I never checked to see if they actually NEEDED the water.

Seems like a pretty elementary thought though: water if the ground needs it and not on a schedule.

I’ve learned so much since then and now only water my garden after checking to see if there is a need for water.… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.

Survival Tools: A Better Way to Prepare Than Bugging-Out when SHTF

“Come on! Let’s go! We have five minutes to get everything loaded!”

The inevitable catastrophe has happened. You saw it coming and prepared. Ready with your survival tools, you moved to a secure location with everything you needed.

Now what?

You live happily ever after and raise your family and never see another living soul again.

Or, you live in fear for the remainder of your life, always looking over your shoulder, waiting and wondering when the first and last looters will come and take away all you’ve so carefully put together.… [Read More]

Delci Plouffe is passionate about teaching others how to be more self-sufficient and ultimately God-sufficient. Read Delci's inspiring comeback story, "From Bad Blood to Crazy Goat Lady." Feel free to send Delci a message here.