Introductions and New Beginnings for OFF

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To some people, "Old Fashioned" means antiquated or even backwards ways of doing things. The dictionary defines it as "adhering to customs of a past era" with synonyms like "outdated." However, I would argue that the old-fashioned way is often the best. In this high-stress, fast-food world I think that we could all use a little bit more old-fashioned, which, conveniently enough, is exactly what this blog is about, and I mean to keep it that way as much as possible. Due to personal reasons, ... [ Read More ]

Saying Goodbye to More Than Just a Blog

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For the past 16 years I have been online in one form or another, either owning websites, writing for them, or spending time on them. Last week I sold the last of my blogs, and have called my internet life quits. This includes OFF, and while I will miss the people here that have followed me, as well as those on the forums, I am excited to be moving on to another life, something that has been missing in my world for years. Starting in January I am going back to college. My main focus of study ... [ Read More ]

Green Thumb Series Part 3- How Planting Zone and Weather Affects your Garden

How Planting Zone and Weather Affects your Garden

This is an ongoing series, Part 1 is here, Part 2 is here. As a green thumb you need to know what you can plant, when you can plant it, and how to give certain plants special care if the growing zone is not quite right for it. Each plant has its own specific requirements some are pickier than others, and some very hardy and can tolerate just about anything. Learning what you can plant is only one part of the equation, you must also learn when to plant it. Planting Zones There are several ... [ Read More ]

Green Thumb Series – Part 2 Finding the Right Location

Green Thumb Series - Part 2 Finding the Right Location

As we discussed in part 1 of the green thumb series soil can almost always be amended to make it viable for growing a garden. What is more difficult is finding the right location for your garden. While gardening of some type can be done almost anywhere, there are plenty of variables that can affect where and what you grow. Plants need 3 things in order to grow, light, water, and good dirt. The location you choose for your garden can be watered, the soil can be amended but you must consider ... [ Read More ]

40 Free or Cheap Kindle Books for Your Home and Homestead

40 Free and Cheap Home and Homesteading Books

  I know not all of you homesteaders will agree with me, but I LOVE kindle. Don't get me wrong…. There is nothing like the feel of a real book in my hands and I am not an advocate of paper books going away. That said, even if you are a firm opponent of kindle books, hear me out. There are a ton of good reasons why you should learn to enjoy kindle books. First of all, kindle books are almost always cheaper than the paper versions. Even better you can get a lot of kindle books for free ... [ Read More ]

50 Ways to Have a More Old Fashioned Family Christmas

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        Most of us would agree that Christmas has become the opposite of what it is supposed to be, a time of joy, celebration and family turned into a stressful few weeks that at least some of use wish would never come at all. Most of us just wish we could go back to celebrating Christmas the way it used to be celebrated, and that we could bring back the time when Christmas was all about simple celebrations, family and honoring the real reasons for the ... [ Read More ]

Should I Can or Freeze my Garden Harvest?

Should I can or freeze my garden harvest?

One of the most common questions asked at harvest time is whether to put produce in the freezer or to can it. The answer to this question will vary depending on who you ask, preppers like to can most of their produce because it keeps without the need for electricity, while those who are more concerned about nutrition often say it is better to freeze it since it goes through much less heat and cook time, and preserves nutrients better. In addition to freezing and canning you can also dry your ... [ Read More ]

How to Make Chicken Sausage

Chicken Sausage

    A couple of weeks ago we had our first adventure in sausage making, this process was not nearly as hard as I would have thought it would be, however I do have a small disclaimer with this tutorial. I am not a sausage making expert, although I have canned, dried, preserved and cooked for many years, sausage making is one of the things I had never tried until this year. Still I thought a good step by step of what we did would be in order. The desire to make our own sausage ... [ Read More ]

5 Medicinal Herbs You Might Not Even Know You have In Your Yard

Medicinal Herbs

One of my latest interests that is rapidly turning into a passion is herbal medicines, I know from personal experience that they can be used for a lot of different things with good results, and because I can grow the ingredients myself and process them I know there is nothing in them that is bad for my family. The other problem with herbal remedies in the health food stores is that they are often quite expensive and frequently are old so have lost their potency. One of the best things about ... [ Read More ]