Check your Farmer's Markets for local produce!

I strongly believe that we should try to eat as local as we can. Does this mean all the food I consume is raised locally? No, I love bananas and oranges and they just don’t grow here in Vermont! I do try to keep on top of news stories regarding food and I am getting better about reading the labels. Are you aware that there are 10 major food companies that are supplying our processed food? Here are a few more facts: In 2008, direct sales of food from farmers to consumers hit a high of $4.8 billion Total sales in grocery stores was approximately $1.23 trillion that same year Local sales represents less than 0.5% of the the money spent on food in the U.S. So, what about this “battle”?  It seems like it is already lost!  BIG FOOD won…. A few more facts: Americans spend 90% of our food budget on processed food We eat half of our meals and snacks away from home One of every three dollars spent on groceries in the U.S. goes to Walmart For every $19 bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken sold, the farmer makes 25 cents Did you know that Smithfield Farms, the Read More […]

Spice Crusted Steak

In anticipation of an eventual move we have been trying to make meals that use up items we have on hand. Each year we usually purchase some local, grass fed beef and as a result we have an abundance of delicious beef in our freezer. This seemed like an excellent way to use up one of the steaks! The spice mixture is different from what I usually marinate steak in but it was equally delicious! Spice-Crusted Steak with Mushrooms 1 pound boneless sirloin steak ½ tsp salt ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper ¼ tsp ground coriander ¼ tsp ground cumin 2 tsp olive oil 1 small onion, thinly sliced 1 pound of mushrooms, sliced 2 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped ¼ cup dry white wine Sprinkle the steak with ¼ tsp salt, ¼ tsp pepper, coriander, and cumin. Heat 1 tsp oil in a large heavy skillet over medium high heat. for even better results cook the steak on your grill! Cook about four minutes on a side or until the internal temperature is 145 for medium. Meanwhile, heat remaining 1 tsp of oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the oions and cook until softened, about Read More […]

chicken, beer can chciken

    Welcome to Our Simple Homestead Blog Hop #49  We’ve had some glorious spring days around here but the nights are still quite chilly. Perfect weather for garden clean up! Just when I was getting used to the beautiful spring weather we had a brief snowstorm! There is something wrong abut snow on forsythia! Please join us this week for Our Simple Homestead Blog Hop! Thank you for sharing your homesteading, homemaking, and homeschooling posts with us each week! It’s so much fun to read your hints, tips, and happenings! Have fun exploring all the great ideas everyone has shared with us! Here are the co-hosts of Our Simple Homestead Blog Hop. Tracy at Our Simple Homestead Facebook – Twitter Pinterest – Google+ – LinkedIn Sandra at Clearwater FarmFacebook – Pinterest Instagram – Google+ Nancy at On The Home Front Facebook – Twitter – Pinterest Instagram – Google+ Kathi at Oak Hill Homestead Facebook – Pinterest BlogLovin LeeAnn & Alex at One Ash Homestead Facebook – Twitter Pinterest – Instagram (Remember – If you would like to be featured, be sure to link back to the hop otherwise you will not be featured!) Most Clicked On Post From Last Week: Eating From The Pantry (featuring Read More […]

flower seeds, vegetable seeds, gardening, prudent living

I use a large container to store my seeds in. It keeps them dry and I store them in a dark, cool place. Each year I usually purchase a few new packets of seeds (I just can’t resist), but I also have seeds left over from the year before. Usually I start seeds indoors, but this is the first year in many years that I am not starting my tomatoes, eggplants or peppers indoors. Our house is on the market and my grow table adds too much clutter to the kitchen when in use. Instead I will purchase heirloom plants from a local source. I am however, planning a garden and although we are still having nights with temperatures in the 20s it is time to plant my peas and spinach! How do I know when to plant my seeds? The back of the seed packet will give you this information. All seed packets indicate the optimum sowing time based on the average last spring frost date. You can also check the new Plant Hardiness Zone Map from the USDA, which will give you an idea, of what plants will thrive in your area.How do you find out the last Read More […]

Konmari

Yesterday I shared a guest post talking about the 12 spring-cleaning chores you shouldn’t miss. Today I am continuing the discussion about spring-cleaning. Spring is always a busy time for me, it’s time to get out in the garden and start cleaning up after the long winter. It’s time to sort through my seeds and figure out what needs to be planted now! However, with our home on the market I am finding it a challenge to keep the house in order because one of these days we’re going to get a showing! Perhaps you’ve heard of the KonMari Method? Marie Kondo is a Japanese organizing consultant and author. She’s written four books on organizing and has sold millions of copies! I was given one of her books and have only skimmed through it. She does have a lot of good ideas! She often asks you if a certain item gives you joy and if not toss it out. This has prompted several memes on the Internet! One key point I have taken to heart is getting rid of the clutter! I’m amazed at the clutter that has accumulated over the years. Until something major happens we don’t even realize Read More […]

Cleaning supplies and equipment

It’s that time of year again: spring cleaning. Spring cleaning offers us a wonderful opportunity for us to clean out our homes and hit those spots that we normally overlook in our everyday house cleaning. And while it can sound like a daunting task, the truth is that spring cleaning gets a whole lot easier when you have a checklist to help keep you going. In addition to typical house cleaning chores and creating that donations box, here is a list of 20 big items that you’ll want to hit to get your home sparkling as the weather warms up. So open up your windows to let in some fresh air, and let’s get started! Baseboards Use a mini handheld broom or a clean paintbrush to wipe dust away from your baseboards, following up with a damp cloth and a mild detergent or specialized wood cleaner. Use a cotton swab to get into corners as needed. Carpet You probably mop your wood or tile floors on a regular basis, but what about your carpet? This is a good time to shampoo your carpet. Since this is probably the biggest task on this list, so it’s best to set aside a Read More […]

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