Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Food Security

On another site, we were discussing food security. One of the reasons I have created TNCH is food security. Everyone talks about how we have to "feed the world" but no one discusses food security for their own country, whatever country they're in. It is my opinion that you can't have food security as long as one country has to depend on another to feed them. Food security comes when a country can feed itself. Food security for individuals comes when they too, have the ability to feed themselves, which doesn't mean necessarially growing all your own foods, but maybe just a few things. And if a neighbor grows something and another grows something else, all of a sudden you find you can really take care of yourselves during an emergency!

And this goes past growing food. When the power went out one year during an ice storm, I cooked for both myself and neighbor. We had 3 hot meals every day for 5 days (when the power came back) thanks to my fireplace. I even surprized the guys with the power company when they came around to do some work, and I offered them a hot meal of sausages, fried potatoes and vegetable with their choice of hot coffee, tea or cocoa. One said I must have a gas stove, but when I said no, it was all coooked in the fireplace, they said that they didn't even think anyone knew how to do that any more.

The biggest thing for food security is, can you cope if there is an interruption?

Friday, February 18, 2011

Compost Check

Well, with the thaw we've had for a few days, I was able to get to the woods and check my compost pile. I have it right at the edge of my woods, out of the way of the yard. The snow pack had melted enough so I could see the pile and it looks pretty good. Then I started a new one.

But, the wind is picking up again and it is supposed to snow.....again. On a good note, the last of the ice is off the roof as of today.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


I picked up some seed packets today. Let's see....Chicory (Italian Dandelion), Cress, Cubanelle Pepper (supposed to be good for frying...I love to stuff peppers with cheese, dip in batter and fry...we'll see how these work), Baby Boo Mini White Pumpkins, Jack Be Little Mini Orange Pumpkins, Giant Bottle Gourd, Mesclun and Lemon Cucumber (for something different).

We're having a bit of a thaw...but still lots of white stuff on the ground!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

As Pooh Says...."Back Sun"

Be back blogging on topic in a day or two. Window is boarded up securely to last until spring, insurance taken care of, satellite guy coming tomorrow to get the dish squared around, and I'm slowly getting the rest of the mess cleaned up and get an estimate on the window replacement. Oh if only "little paws" could help...I'd have lots of it!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day...

Yep! I got mine from Mother Nature early this morning when ice came off my roof and through my kitchen window. Just what I didn't need. So, I didn't get much other work done today.

I did post a few podcasts yesterday for anyone new to gardening.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

New To Gardening?

2 short podcasts just published for "newbies" to gardening. It isn't too early to start think....even if you have snow on the ground!

Podcasts link is in the left column.

Mini Course for Newbies

If you're thinking about raising some of your own foods for the very first time, but are overwhelmed by all the information available, check out our FREE mini course "General Considerations". It will help to sort out the options available so you can go ahead and do more in depth research a bit easier.

Very basic.....for beginners.

The course is online and FREE, but we have a limited number of spaces per month. Email to get on the list.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Join us on LinkedIn

Along with Twitter and Facebook, you can now join the conversation on LinkedIn!

Find us under The New Century Homesteader

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Hints for Keeping Rosemary Indoors

I have had problems keeping rosemay alive in the house during the winter for years. However, after some trial and many, many errors, I think I may have finally found a way to keep it going.

I bought a rosemary tree back in December. Instead of putting it in a southern exposure window, I put it in an eastern one that, while it gets plenty of sun, doesn't get the heat. I then spritz the greenery every other day and don't water until the soil starts to dry. I also remove the plant from the window at night. Seems to be working as I've always had a problem with the plant itself just drying out, no matter what I've tried. Now, I'm on my second "trimming" to help keep the topiary in shape.

If you're having similar problems, you mght want to give this a try.

Saturday, February 5, 2011


I didn't get the podcasts in today. A bit of a problem with software that should be fixed tonight or tomorrow.


Another "Weather Warning"

Just heard about yet another weather warning starting at 1pm this afternoon until 4am tomorrow. Hey....Phil didn't see his shadow, so our early spring can come at any time now.......

I'll be posting a couple podcasts today for those who haven't put in a garden before, but are doing so this year.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Missed Us.....

Well, not quite. But we didn't get the large amount of snow during the night that was predicted. Problem is, it is heavy and wet so even 3 or 4 inches can be a pain to shovel. Especially with a screwed up leg! But 'm getting it done a little at a time.

Glad to hear that Phil didn't see his shadow. I'm thinking he's sick and tired of all of this crappy weather as well.

Going to be working on a course today. So hopefully I can get the first one up in a few weeks...or less.

So, it's back to work I guess. If you're stuck in the storm or the end results, be careful and don't go out on the roads if you don't need to. Of course if you have critters, we all know they still need to be done no matter what the weather.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Courses and Classes and Workshops...Oh My!

I will soon be posting classes, workshops and courses form The New Century Homesteader. Most will be available to take at anytime, so they will be flexible to the trainee's schedule.

I will be posting classes on the blog, Facebook, Twitter and the newsletter (which you can sign up for, free, at the left). Some will be free, while some will have a minimal fee. They will all be informative and fun.

Handy Dandy Hint #1

I had some fresh chicken breasts that I was deboning today, as well as removing the "tenders" for quick lunches. As I wanted to fry one up, and wanted the thickness of the breast uniform, I decided to take some of my "snow aggressions" out and pound it.

As my tenderizing mallet is an old wooden one from my grandmother's kitchen, I don't like to use it directly on meats, usually opting to cover the meat with plastic wrap which in turn, ends up getting punched full of holes, defeating the purpose of not wanting the mallet directly on the meat. However....I think we now have that problem solved!

Instead of a piece of plastic wrap that has been doubled over, I decided to try a sandwich bag. I made sure the bag wasn't zipped closed so I wasn't contending with air in the bag, laid the bag over the top of  the chicken (I did not put the chicken in the bag) and started pounding away. It worked great and there wasn't one hole or tear in the bag by the time I was done (and it had stood up to a good pounding too) !