Homesteading is about living on less so that you can work less, do what you love more, and attain financial security. Homesteading is about doing more yourself because the pride that comes from the work of your own hands is unprecedented and you can control your own environment. What you put on your skin, in your body, how you treat the soil, it all matters.
Homesteading brings with it a peace of mind that we have mostly lost in our fast paced, make money, do everything lifestyles. Our ancestors worked hard but they also did methodical, slow work where one can get their mind right. Slowly stirring curds to make cheese, hanging clothes on the line in the fresh air, planting seeds that will feed the family through winter in jars on root cellar shelves. Doug chops wood when he is upset with me. There was one winter that we had a lot of wood!
Another beautiful aspect of homesteading is homemade gifts and cards. Really, the mass marketed, big box store, kids in China made crap has got to stop. No one wants a skirt that will fray in a month, or appliances they will never use, or heaven forbid, tchotchkes. We have to dust enough!
A bar of goat’s milk soap, a jar of preserves, chokecherry gin, pickles, or chutney. Hand written recipes, a wheel of cheese, a plant for the garden, or saved seeds with a story. Or something really special like a quilt, or something woven. A hand poured candle, or a keep sake box. Jacob, my daughter’s boyfriend, welded together parts to make a snowman for me for Christmas. I love it.
Hand painted cards are a lovely surprise, or have a child draw out the card. Write personal notes. Don’t depend on the card company’s catchy phrases.
Make a phone call. Write a letter. Send a card just because.
I am anxious this fall to get out the sewing machine and the crochet hook and start creating skirts, shawls, and quilts. To set up my paints and be ready to paint a canvas or use watercolors to create cards to send to my pen pals.
These things come from the heart. And heart is the very soul of homesteading,
Would you like to be my pen pal? There is nothing like opening the mailbox to find a letter, neatly addressed and stamped. I love to put it in my apron pocket and then sit with a cup of tea and savor both.
Mrs. Katie Sanders, 1901 Brown Ave, Pueblo, CO 81004
Here are a few more ideas: