Category Archives: Home Front

My first goal was to update my goal list each week.  I have to say having a post on goal setting has helped me to stay focused on what goals I want to accomplish this year.

The biggest drawback is to remind myself that I have the whole year to work on accomplishing these goals.goal-setting week2

 

  1. Find a new hosting site for my blog and make the site secure. Done!! Everything seems to be running smoothly. Still waiting for the site to be secure.
  2. Monetize my blog.  Still waiting to get this started. I’ve had several advertisers reach out to me recently and I’ve also had one company that wants to pay me to promote one of their posts. Now to figure out which advertisers are legit and whether or not the post promotion is real! I’ve always said if it sounds to good to be true it probably is!
    goal setting
  3. Create a cookbook! I have been writing my blog for over six year and have accumulated many recipes online. Time to make them available in a cookbook form, either as a downloadable PDF or in a hardcopy or both! This is in the planing stage and really I just have to start!
  4. Be diligent about getting 10 K steps in 5 out of 7 days each week.Still finding this goal to be very challenging. However this past weekend we were in Connecticut visiting my mother-in-law and the roads and sidewalks were clear and we actually were able to get two walks in! Haven’t made the five day goal yet but I’m getting there!goal setting week 2
  5. As we continue to prepare for an eventual house sale continue to de-clutter. Get rid of at least 250 items from the house this year! As I said this is not going to be a hard goal to reach. I pulled three books from the shelves and I now have a box going in the garage for all the things we are getting rid of. 230 items to go!
  6. Read more books this year!  Didn’t finish a book this week but I’m working my way through an interesting novel called Under the Wide and Starry Sky Not a favorite but I’m this far into it so I want to finish it!goal setting week 2
  7. Have a consistent meal plan each week and prepare ahead!  Haven’t done a lot of preparing ahead with out meals but I’ve been right on track with the planning, except that we were away for the weekend and when you stay with someone else you don’t have total control over what you’re eating. We did bring Friday nights dinner with us and planned a very special dinner with good friends. I was celebrating my birthday and nothing beats celebrating with good friends!
  8. Finish 4 3 knitting projects.  First project completed, I made a hat for my daughter. Second project has begun. Over the holidays one of our neighbors was making the cutest little sweater ornaments. I took a look at the tiny sweater and figured I could make these. What a fun gift idea for the holidays! First attempt was a little rough as I wasn’t exactly sure what I was doing nor had I ever knit with #2 needles! I should get the hang of it and be able to make several of these to give away next year at Christmas.goal setting week 2
  9. Clean out our freezer. First step was to take inventory which I did. I have the inventory now on my kitchen desk so I can see what I have and plan how to use the food up.
  10. Take a few road trips and visit family and friends on the east coast that we will not see so often once we make a move to the west coast. We came up with a list of three people that we would like to visit while we’re still living on the east coast. Now to take a hard look at the calendar and plan these trips. Probably won’t happen until April at the earliest.goal setting

 

So we’re now into February and I’m looking at my goals and working on them. Having this post has kept my goals in the forefront of my mind. I just have to remember the key is to keep looking forward!

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Welcome to the Simple Homestead Blog Hop!

 

We’re so glad you’ve stopped by for a visit! Every week we get together here for another hop and I hope you’ll join us. The Hop runs from Thursday morning to Sunday evening. Have fun exploring all the great ideas that have been shared, and add your homesteading, homemaking and homeschooling posts with us if you’re a blogger. I’m sure you’ll be blessed and inspired by all these great ideas!

Meet Our Great Co-hosts


Kathi at Oak Hill HomesteadFacebookPinterestInstagram

Nancy at On the HomefrontFacebookTwitterPinterest

Sandra at Clearwater FarmFacebookPinterestInstagram

Leah at Busy Gals Homestead and Leah’s Lovely LopsFacebook
PinterestTwitter

Kelly at Gently SustainableFacebookPinterest

Dash at Bloom Where You’re PlantedFacebookInstagram

Featured Posts

Each week we’ll feature the most-viewed post from last week’s hop. Each host also features her own picks from the posts linked the previous week. Visit each of our blogs to see if you were featured this week.

This week’s featured post:
Re-Purpose & Up-Cycle Your Jars and Bottles!

 

Our most-visited post from last week’s hop was:
20 Things I Always Buy in Bulk to Save Money

Please stop by to congratulate the featured bloggers this week.

If you were featured be sure to pick up your Simple Homestead blog hop button below. Just highlight all of the text in the box and paste into your blog sidebar; the button will show up automatically.


Nancy On The Home Front

The Rules

You are invited to share your original homesteading, homemaking, and homeschooling posts. We have a few little rules:

  • Family friendly posts only!
  • No links to blog hops or posts dedicated to advertising products.
  • Share up to 3 posts.
  • Please share posts that you haven’t linked up within the past six months to keep the hop fresh.
  • Please visit other bloggers and let them know you found them here.
  • Please follow us by email! You’ll receive notice when the hop is open for business.
  • Only share content and photos that you have created or have permission to share.
  • Please note: By linking to this hop you are giving us permission to link back to your post and share one photo if you are featured; no additional permission is required.
  • Posts that don’t follow these few little guidelines will be deleted.

Let’s start hopping!


goal-setting week oneMy first goal was to update my goal list each week. However with all the blog issues I’ve been having transferring my blog to a new host I’m a week behind! Oh well, the blog is back up and running and should be a secure site very soon. Having a post on goal setting has helped me to stay focused on what goals I want to accomplish this year.

 

Here is how I’m doing on my goals.

 

  1. Find a new hosting site for my blog and make the site secure. Done!! This has been on my to do list for months but actually making the jump was kind of scary. I am so happy with my new host and am so excited to move forward from this point on.
  2. Monetize my blog.  Right now I have no ads running on my blog. I would like to start earning something on my blog instead of it just being a hobby. As soon as my site is secure I will be looking into advertisers. Who do you use? I have some recommendations but haven’t committed yet.goal setting
  3. Create a cookbook! I have been writing my blog for over six year and have accumulated many recipes online. Time to make them available in a cookbook form, either as a downloadable PDF or in a hardcopy or both! This is in the planing stage and really I just have to start!
  4. Be diligent about getting 10 K steps in 5 out of 7 days each week. Maybe I should try for at least 3 days out of 7! This goal is harder than I thought especially this time of year. I walk on a dirt road so if the weather is icy I really don’t want to venture out. I am very good at getting 5-6 thousand steps a day but right now I am only getting the full 10K steps in once or twice a week. I will get better!goal setting week 1
  5. As we continue to prepare for an eventual house sale continue to de-clutter. Get rid of at least 250 items from the house this year! I’m not going to have trouble with this goal, this past week I cleared out 11 pieces of clothing from our closet and three cookies cutters from my collection. I also went through our everyday china and got rid of three chipped plates. 233 items to go!goal setting week one
  6. Read more books this year!  This goal should not be an issue either, I love to read and have already finished 2 books. I have books by the bed and books on my iPad so I always have something to read! I enjoyed both of these books. My favorite was The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper, just so uplifting and such a charming story. Arthur Pepper’s wife has recently passed away and he finds a charm bracelet that he’s never seen when going through her belongings. He ends up taking an trip to find out more about each charm. It’s a quick and delightful read.goal setting week 1
  7. Have a consistent meal plan each week and prepare ahead!  I did much better with this goal this week. I actually thought about what we would be eating each and every day and made a calendar to follow. It took a little time but it sure is helpful. I stick to the meal plan and no snacking! That way my clothes should still fit come spring!goal setting week 1
  8. Finish 4 3 knitting projects.  First project completed, I made a hat for my daughter. It’s been a project in the works and it is so nice to have it completed. She even sent me a photo! Three more projects to go!goal setting week one
  9. Clean out our freezer. First step was to take inventory which I did. I have the inventory now on my kitchen desk so I can see what I have and plan how to use the food up.
  10. Take a few road trips and visit family and friends on the east coast that we will not see so often once we make a move to the west coast. We came up with a list of three people that we would like to visit while we’re still living on the east coast. Now to take a hard look at the calendar and plan these trips. Probably won’t happen until April at the earliest.goal setting

 

So we’re well into January and I’m looking at my goals and working on them. Having this post has kept my goals in the forefront of my mind. I just have to remember the key is to keep looking forward!

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For many people who know how to play a musical instrument, they probably took lessons as a kid, when their parents would sit them down everyday and make them practice. Pretty soon, this probably manifested itself into a passion that they continue to have to this day.Pursue Music

 

However, this isn’t the only path for people who want to get into music. There’s a tendency among adults to think that, if you don’t already know how to play an instrument, you missed the train on doing so. This isn’t the case, though. There are plenty reasons why you should work towards learning a musical instrument, today, if that’s what you are passionate about doing…

 

It’s easier to train your ears, as an adult

 

One of the most difficult aspects of teaching music isn’t trying to get a kid to play an instrument, but to help them train their ears to recognize different auditory traits. Over time, young people eventually pick up on ear training, but it’s a long and arduous process.

 

However, this is actually something that is much easier and quicker to learn, as an adult. Learning to recognize things like audio dynamics and dimension is a simpler task for more developed ears. So, while kids who learned to play an instrument have an advantage in some ways, there are other ways where it is easier for adults to learn, quickly.

 

Your brain can change, even after it’s developed

 

One concern that people have is that they think their brains won’t develop to incorporate musical flow when they are adults. After all, there’s a reason that children are able to pick up on foreign languages much quicker than adults, because their mind is more malleable at that age.Pursue Music

 

However, while it can be more difficult, neuroscientists at UC Irvine have shown that a fully developed brain still has the capacity to change and develop habits that are necessary to learn an instrument. It does, however, require a bit more dedication and brainpower at the start to develop the mindset to learn a musical instrument.

 

Continuous practice is key

 

When you start learning a musical instrument, your brain needs to work incredibly hard to recognize and play each note, not to mention stay in rhythm. This is why it is so difficult to start learning an instrument when you are older. However, this trend can reverse after a tremendous amount of practice. Continually using your brain power to play each note will eventually build pathways that make it easier for your brain to tell your body what to do.

 

What’s so tricky is that your brain has probably never had to build these specific pathways before, if you’ve never learned to play an instrument. However, it’s just like typing words on a keyboard, eventually your mind will build habits that make it a second nature.

 

There are benefits to practicing music, casually

 

Typically, most people have their own reasons for wanting to learn to play an instrument at a later age. Maybe they’ve heard a piece of music that inspired them to take it up, or maybe it’s something they’ve always wanted to learn and are just getting around to it. Aside from those reasons, though, there are major mental benefits to learning an instrument.Pursue Music

 

Playing music stretches your brain like a muscle, and forces it to adapt to new and strange situations. This can help develop better memory and alertness, and can even have mental health benefits. So, in addition to learning something you already wanted to learn, playing music is like eating vegetables for your brain.

 

Music structure is easier for adults to understand

 

While you may not have realized it, there’s an extremely passive step you’ve been doing to learn how to play music for your entire life: listening to it. Listening to a wide variety of music has instilled an inherent understanding of how music structure works, even if you aren’t able to intellectualize it, quite yet. For this reason, while learning to play the notes naturally may take time, you already have a head start to playing songs and understanding how they fit together.


Welcome to the Simple Homestead Blog Hop!

 

We’re so glad you’ve stopped by for a visit! Every week we get together here for another hop and I hope you’ll join us. The Hop runs from Thursday morning to Sunday evening. Have fun exploring all the great ideas that have been shared, and add your homesteading, homemaking and homeschooling posts with us if you’re a blogger. I’m sure you’ll be blessed and inspired by all these great ideas!

Meet Our Great Co-hosts


Kathi at Oak Hill HomesteadFacebookPinterestInstagram

Nancy at On the HomefrontFacebookTwitterPinterest

Sandra at Clearwater FarmFacebookPinterestInstagram

Leah at Busy Gals Homestead and Leah’s Lovely LopsFacebook
PinterestTwitter

Kelly at Gently SustainableFacebookPinterest

Dash at Bloom Where You’re PlantedFacebookInstagram

Featured Posts

Each week we’ll feature the most-viewed post from last week’s hop. Each host also features her own picks from the posts linked the previous week. Visit each of our blogs to see if you were featured this week.

This week’s featured post:
Creative Garage DIYs to Increase Storage Space

 

Our most-visited post from last week’s hop was:
17 Things to Buy at the Dollar Store by the Case

Please stop by to congratulate the featured bloggers this week.

If you were featured be sure to pick up your Simple Homestead blog hop button below. Just highlight all of the text in the box and paste into your blog sidebar; the button will show up automatically.


Nancy On The Home Front

The Rules

You are invited to share your original homesteading, homemaking, and homeschooling posts. We have a few little rules:

  • Family friendly posts only!
  • No links to blog hops or posts dedicated to advertising products.
  • Share up to 3 posts.
  • Please share posts that you haven’t linked up within the past six months to keep the hop fresh.
  • Please visit other bloggers and let them know you found them here.
  • Please follow us by email! You’ll receive notice when the hop is open for business.
  • Only share content and photos that you have created or have permission to share.
  • Please note: By linking to this hop you are giving us permission to link back to your post and share one photo if you are featured; no additional permission is required.
  • Posts that don’t follow these few little guidelines will be deleted.

Let’s start hopping!


Usually when we think of taking a road trip it is during the summer month when children are out of school and we take our vacation time. However traveling in the winter can be fun and it is just important to spend a little time planning a winter road trip.winter road trip

 

In the winter the weather can be much more of an issue. You have to keep an eye out for storms that might affect your travel. The last thing you want is to be stuck in a blizzard on the highway! When I was a child we spent many winter weekends driving from Connecticut to Vermont. My parents liked to ski and they wanted to introduce me and my brother and sister to the joys of skiing. We would take off every Friday and drive north no matter what the weather was. As a result we have many memories of slow drives in the snow and even one trip where we had to stay in a hotel for the night because the driving was so bad!winter road trip

 

When my husband and I drive in the winter we spend a little more time planning a winter road trip.

 

Before you leave on your trip make sure your car is prepared to make a trip. This is good advice whenever you are traveling. Ask your mechanic to check your car’s brakes, lights, oil, tired, exhaust system, heater and defroster. Have them check your car’s belts and hoses and replace any that look worn.

 

Have your battery tested, especially if your battery is over three years old. You can do this yourself is you have a battery tester. Clean any corrosion from posts and connections. Make sure you travel with a set of jumper cables as well.

 

Have the oil changed and ask your mechanic for the best type of oil to use for a winter road trip. Cold temperatures can cause oil to thicken.winter road trip

 

Check the antifreeze level in your radiator. The last thing you want is to have your radiator freeze!

 

Make sure your wiper blades are in good condition. If you end up driving in rain or snow you want to have good visibility. Check your windshield washer fluid as well. Make sure it is rated for cold weather. Keep an extra container of fluid in the car. You’d be amazed at how much fluid you go through when driving in bad weather.winter road trip

 

When you are driving always keep your gas tank at least half full. This will keep your car’s gas lines from freezing due to condensation building up in the lines.

 

Check your tires often. If you will be driving in snow, use winter tires, which will provide better traction on bad roads.

 

Pack a winter survival kit in the car, which includes an ice scraper, small shovel, sand or kitty litter, road flares, first aid kit, fire extinguisher, small tool kit, candle, matches, tin can, jumper cables. Towrope, flashlight with extra batteries, extra shoes and socks, extra gloves, a change of warm clothing, paper towels, blanket and at least one jug of water and extra food such as granola bars.

 

Keep your phone charged and carry a car charger for your phone.

 

By taking some time and planning a winter road trip you can be prepared for any situation you might come across. Plan your trip in advance and you’re your friends and family know what your plans are. Have you travels in the winter before? What advice do you have?winter road trip

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