DIY Dill Mayonnaise

Homemade mayonnaise can be tricky to get right, but by layering the ingredients and using an immersion blender, it’s easy and delicious!  Here’s how you can make Dill Mayonnaise with just a few simple ingredients.

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Considering Home-School: Why We Made The Choice

When I first started mentioning that we were considering homeschooling our kids, I can’t tell you how many scoffed at the idea or tried to talk us out of it.  People have VERY strong opinions on homeschooling… including those who have zero experience with it!  I’ve been warned to make sure my children remain properly socialized, I’ve been asked about our (presumably very conservative) religious leanings, and I’ve had people with kids in public school take offense that we were considering removing ours.  Our personal choice to home school is just that – it’s a personal choice.  Our kids are happy, healthy, and they’re learning a lot, developing crucial skills, and growing as people.  THAT’S WHAT MATTERS.  I do not need to justify our choice to anyone; however I will explain why we made this choice as I feel it will resonate with many other parents.

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Image Credit

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Make Your Own Laundry Detergent

Making your own laundry detergent sounds intimidating, but it’s one of the easiest things you can do!  If you know how to use a cheese grater and a measuring cup, you can make your own detergent.  The best part is, this stuff works BETTER than the stuff you buy in the store, and for fraction of the cost.  There are three simple steps to the process – grate & melt the soap, combine with washing soda and borax, and add water.  That’s it!  This recipe makes 5 gallons of concentrated detergent, which you’ll further dilute to make 10 gallons of ready-to-use laundry detergent.

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Easy-peasy pickled banana peppers

A super easy way to use up some extra banana peppers is to pickle them!  Perfect on sandwiches, hot dogs, and even pizza, this recipe is a cinch to throw together and ready to eat in only two days.  No canning required!

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Planning the First Garden

Proper planning for a garden takes patience, research, and if you’re type A like me, a spreadsheet or two!  The first consideration is to figure out what we would like to grow and we had a list a mile long.  As this was to be our first garden in Georgia, and we would be planting in red clay soils and harvesting in much hotter temperatures, we decided that hardy heirloom vegetable types that were noted for performing better in the southern climate were the best choices.  Another consideration for us was that the garden space was previously home to invasive kudzu.  We did not want to invest a large amount of money and time into planting in a space that might be rendered unusable if we were not able to effectively eradicate the kudzu.  So small, hardy, Southern garden it was!

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We love Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds!

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Adding to Our Flock

A few months after our first group of chickens had settled in, we decided that maybe it was time to expand.  We were averaging several eggs a day throughout the winter and wanted to increase our output.  We found someone locally who was selling Golden Comet chickens, and we thought five would make a lovely addition to our Barred Rock group.  Golden Comets are a cross between a Rhode Island Red and a White Leghorn, and are daily layers just like our Barred Rocks.  The chickens we were bringing home were young and had just started laying – perfect!  We bought our Goldens one evening, brought them home, and plopped them in the chicken run with the rest of the chickens.

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The Golden Comet chickens are a pretty orange color.

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The Parable of the Chipped Mug

I remember reading a short picture book as a child in grade school, and the message of the story remains with me to this day.  I don’t recall the title or the author; many details of the story remain hazy.  My efforts to re-discover the source has been fruitless, so I must paraphrase the story for you here as best as I can.

The story tells of a group of children in primary school.  Every day lunch would be served, and milk would be provided in enamel mugs.  Most of the mugs showed some wear from years of daily use, but one mug in particular was worse than the others.  It was cracked and had recently acquired a sizable chip along the rim, and the child that received the chipped mug for the day would be teased by the others.

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The chipped mug Image Credit

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