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Our Spring + Summer Progress: Back to Intentional Living

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Our Spring + Summer Progress: Back to Intentional Living

This is the first blog post round up of some of our family's progress in the last season; a bit of a reflection and look at some projects we've worked on and some honest thoughts. It can be tough to share these things on our social media - on one hand, I think this type of content is what the world needs, and what I want to see from others as I find it really inspiring and the right kind of change-making, but on the other hand, I am always conflicted posting it. I don't want it to be an ego share, or make someone feel badly that they aren't years into whatever this journey is in the same kind of way, and in some ways it feels a little bit "look at me." So, the blog felt like a great place to put this kind of stuff, and I can't wait to look back on it in the future whenever I need a little reminder of where we have been, what we have moved forward on, and hopefully keep me inspired to keep taking little steps during the weird hopeless times the cycle around. I hope it inspires you in some way! If anything resonates with you, or if it's something you have worked on before, please let me know and if you have any advice. This is always my favourite part of sharing the things I'm passionate about; it seems to attract exactly the right people to me and working in community gives all of it so much more meaning and ease.

About a year ago, I took a full day off from work on a Sunday. I think I was made for the entrepreneurship life, but I was not very good at the balance during the start. I was managing my household and parenting pretty well most of the time on top of my young business, but 2022 was the year of childhood illness cycles that never ended. Our young sons were sick so often that I was burned out the majority of the time trying to figure out how to run things remotely and truthfully, after the pandemic and starting the shop, I feel like I've been running on empty a real long time. Life events happened, and I seemed to grow more and more tired. I experienced my first real deep bout of climate anxiety last summer, but it manifested more like drained energy, fear of my sons' future that translated into a depressed state of high functioning, and general uncertainty of why any of this work matters, even though I saw people changing things come to the store every day. I took a day off, lucky that I have amazing staff (who actually really urged me to do this, and now I do every Sunday), and did random garden things. The majority of the work I was doing was sifting and spreading compost. I can vividly remember this as the moments where I found something important. I found some kind of Ange-aligned self care on that day, and reaching towards a more homestead-led lifestyle has helped me manage further climate anxiety, fear of a turbulent future, and helped me find work to do that isn't always connected to the shop and my children, something I think my personality needs as self care. I feel aimless and lost when trying to rest in some traditional ways like baths and meditation. While my partner has always been interested in self sufficiency, I finally figured out a road to help me balance things a bit better. 

Fast forward to this summer, and I have managed quite a lot of projects in moving my self care, self sufficiency, and limited impact homestead lifestyle forward. I have some really great influences that have come into my orbit that keep inspiring me, and those are Danielle from the Natural Tannery, Kelly from Side Road Home, Rachel from Topsy Farms, Jess from Second Seed Wellness and the Sage Restoration family's conversations when I've been there. They probably have no idea, but conversations and inspirations from them have felt like the energy exchanges I needed this year. Hearing someone say things that you think from an authentic place is incredible, especially when you feel increasingly like an alien in your own culture. The tired, worn out feeling I had last year of feeling isolated and alone in trying to swim against the tide of what feels like our larger culture really dissipated when I was shown that that's not quite true. I began looking at areas of life that sucked a lot of energy away from me and removing things that really did not resonate or support a positive evolution. I downsized some of my work projects, limited contact with some relationship sources of chaos and confusion, downsized our home shop footprint to accommodate some of my projects, and got to work. This summer I have extremely limited childcare, and while I'm in it this feels crazy hard, I know it is also providing me the space to bring the boys along with me in everything I'm learning and that's going to be what matters at the end of all this, anyway.

Projects + Relflections

1. The De-Lawning really escalated

So, this planned decrease in our lawn area was pretty life changing. I think I really underestimated how much work this was going to be, how much I personally needed to get over internally, and how getting started is simply jumping right off into an abyss of information that I had really not considered ever before. As embarrassing as it sounds, I used to enjoy walking in nature/the woods but had zero idea what anything was around me, when it bloomed, what it might be useful for, whether it was native or invasive, or anything other than what colour it was and how it looked relaxing to me. I wrote a pretty lengthy blog post on rethinking our lawn, so if you're curious, you can definitely check it out, but I can safely say this was the beginning of feeling actually connected with the land around me, the way it should be. I have a long way to go, knowledge-wise, but I started and that's what matters. I also peeled back more layers of consumer culture within me, because I had this anxiety of what others might think of my personhood because I wasn't maintaining things the same culturally approved way anymore. Lawns are a status symbol, and only the very rich had them because everyone else was using them for food and they were too busy working. I felt like a bum when I first started last year, but luckily it is starting to get going. I realized just how much money I was spending on our outdoor space and the energy required that meant I didn't even really enjoy it. I am now building something that feels good, I can see the bloom in insects and wildlife using it (and interestingly notice when we go places that are void of these things, they don't feel real - like a campground we visited in Cobden) and am beginning to work forward on using it to support our family's life in a low impact way.

2. The Reel Mower

When we received our climate action incentive, we sat down and tried to determine how we were going to use it. Truthfully, it should have all gone towards bills and savings because things are scary these days. But we decided on a couple of projects of lower cost that would make an impact. I had been working on decreasing what we needed to mow, and read recently that some of the old mowers out there (which is the category ours falls into) are worse than older model vehicles idling for a period of time that I already forget, but it's not great. Plus, with rising gas costs and trying to move away from fossil fuels fully, this was a pretty low cost switch. I waited on this one, as we wanted a good quality option because we intend to keep it long term, but were hoping for second hand to keep it in our original budget and consumption goals. We were able to snag a 20" (the largest size) Lee Valley reel mower for $80 on Marketplace. This was awesome, considering we were excited about what we considered a good deal of only paying $150 to repair our ride on mower at the start of this season, let alone the fuel we put in there. It was something we didn't think about - the cost - because we were just supposed to have that and do that and it wasn't really thought about intentionally on my end. The best part has been my partner's reaction; he's loving how it works and we've already had others tell us how easy it is to sharpen. This is going to end up being a significant cost savings over time outside of the impact lens, more exercise for us (but not unmanageable as our boys love it and we have decreased our lawn) but we do have to be careful with our boys wanting to help and trying to take it out without asking. They are old enough to start doing things, but they are also not old enough to understand the danger, so it's something we are going to work on over time and we need to keep it in our locked garage for now.

3. The Rain Barrels

We acquired a rain barrel last year from Marketplace, but hadn't actually installed it properly. Our garden was just a couple of raised beds last year and I really didn't get into a good watering routine. This year, I asked for it to be installed as a Mama's Day gift and got into the routine of using it to water our veg garden, and it was realistic with the age of our kids to approach a larger garden. By the end of this summer, our boys have switched to using the rain barrel as well when they are playing outside to wash their feet and hands, make mud, pour water into their dump trucks, or have a bike wash station set up rather than the hose/faucet. So, we planned to snag another one second hand as it came up, thinking long term for our next years of gardening and creating a system that is much less of an impact and can be used if we lose power (which happened for a larger storm for a few days). This way, we are slowly building less reliance on our generator and can use this water in our Berkey if we need to. While we have been able to get another (matching, even!) rain barrel, setting it up will likely be a fall endeavour.

I will say that the rain barrel takes longer than a hose, but any routine for me to get outside in the morning is something I'm on board with. I've also been trying to get outdoors before my morning coffee in a wellness move to regulate my sleep and natural rhythms better, and this helped jump start it. I don't mind the inconvenience, but it was a change in time for sure.  I think this type of water system will be great to incorporate next year for our chicken water requirements on a larger scale and something we can work on over the fall and winter season.

4. The Bidet

In part of clearing space in my home during the summer months of being here more often with my boys, I revamped the shelves in my basement/home shop and downsized some of the larger pieces that I had collected over the years that weren't really that beneficial for shop displays in terms of spacing. I was able to sell some wicker pieces and buy a food dehydrator and a Bidet. I've been thinking about a bidet for a long time - I have been influenced towards family cloth by a few incredible ladies visiting their homes for Harlowe Green stuff, and Leanne in the shop helped break it down for us last year with an Insta post. What seemed icky previously was shown to me over and over and to be completely fine, especially having cloth diapered awhile. However, I knew for sure my kids were not ready to have a water squirting device in the toilet, and I knew my husband was not ready for family cloth if we didn't have a bidet. Now that my boys are 5 and almost 7, and demonstrating a bit more capacity for impulse control (hah, need to knock on wood with that one!) I decided to go ahead and try one. Unfortunately, this was one of my first Amazon purchases in a very, very long time. I was pretty set on the Tushy, as it has some really great information online for understanding if it can fit on an elongated toilet bowl, install, and use. It was of a reasonable cost and I didn't feel I could find enough information on anything else of a similar price range for returns and I was much too worried to buy second hand. Tushy really needs to move ahead on having a Canadian option outside of Amazon, and hopefully by the time you're reading this, there is.

The installation of the bidet went really smoothly; we picked our upstairs bathroom to try this out as guests use the downstairs washroom. Even having "a talk" with the boys about it was easy, and the more impulsive boy has only sprayed it with the lid open and no one sitting on it once (it sprayed the top of the bathroom wall, and of course he did it on full blast, so I thought that was game over with how exciting that was, but luckily we've been fine!). We did have my niece come over for a sleepover and she could not leave it be (she is three) and went to bed with a wet set of pjs from spraying her back one night and we had some floor puddles to clean up from time to time. 

We have some old fluffy towels we will cut up for use for family cloth soon; I am planning to use a basket for these on the back of my toilet. We will use the bidet and then dry off using these cloths. So, the cloths in the discard basket won't have much of anything on them to be washed. Right now we are still using paper as we try to figure out exactly how to spray ourselves to get everything cleaned off, which is not that straight forward at first, hah. My oldest son has been using it a lot and gets grumpy when he can't use our upstairs washroom if someone is already in it. This is a fairly new project, but something that will lead us to a lot less reliance and the impact of purchasing toilet paper. I have also really found paper period products to be somewhat gross and rough after switching to a cup and cloth pads, and this already feels cleaner and nicer even with the paper dry up after. The Tushy founder said something about what you'd use to clean off bird poop if it landed on your arm, and it wouldn't be paper, it would be water. This stuck with me, because that's true. And I'm excited to have something that feels better on a few different levels.

5. Improvements on our Seasonal Shifts

This year was better than ever for getting organized in an intentional way for our seasonal shift. Over here we see the seasons (in terms of "stuff" and clothing) as spring/summer and fall/winter, and to prep for fall and winter, I work in August. I was able to get my son's birthday gift (a pedal tractor and wagon), the majority of our home goods we needed that I've mentioned here, clothing for the boys and myself we wanted to invest in or needed, and even a Super Nintendo system second hand or on sale from a conscious business. We signed my son up for hockey this year and found a new wooden stick at VV, equipment from Marketplace and Play it Again Sports, and a very nice MEC rolling bag for $30 for all of it, second hand. Normally I have to resort to something in a manner that doesn't feel fully aligned, but time and finances play a role in what we can choose. I am pretty happy with this season's prep and what we have been able to find, repurpose, sell, mend and buy new in a way that feels right and I'm celebrating that for sure! If you want to read more about our process, we have a blog post on that, too!

6. Better Food Systems - the Dehydrator + the Freezer

This project has really been going on for a long time. Food feels overwhelming to me to try to tease out all of the issues that are presently happening in terms of health and environmental impact. Sadly, we were part of the group of people that learned just how reliant we are on grocery stores when Covid hit. We had almost nothing in place to take care of ourselves away from buying 'necessities' like toilet paper, facial tissues, personal care products, and food. As waves of things have become unavailable, like children's Tylenol, and massive weather events happen more frequently around the world, I hate the feeling of helplessness we experience thinking about the future. I have a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that my grandparents were so incredibly knowledgeable and self sufficient in this area, and I knew nothing of how to manage without frequently spending my money at places that don't pay a living wage, have any values behind what they are selling, and the cash is going to really rich people that can't be made to do good. Now, with inflation, I feel like things are turning towards what we can think of as depression years, but we are all just going into debt because we don't know how to make do as people of the past did. This sounds all very somber and maybe a bit much, but building skills in this area has been really good for us. We feel better about how we spend our time, feel like the kids are learning, and hope that we can build enough skills to feel more independent and less reliant on the hamster wheel of getting ahead only by perpetuating a system of billionaires and environmental degradation. We work to never seem to get ahead it seems, and that's capitalism for ya.

So, after my long rant about that - hah - here's what we have worked on this year.

Our garden has really gotten going this year. I dug out some sod on our front lawn for a few new patches of potatoes and root veg (our front lawn has the best soil, had no use, and the best balance of shade and sun) and we built one larger raised bed and created some other raised beds with tires and wood that we had. We are patiently looking around for some more unused wood or pallets to build a few more next year or this fall. We live on the Canadian Shield and have very sandy and poor soil here; it's interesting coming from the Great Lakes Lowlands area of agriculture to a rocky conifer forest land where a raised bed really makes a huge difference. We are going to begin working on some cover crops this fall (this feels overwhelming to choose and nail down) and have a few sources we can ask for manure varieties to start building our soils. One big win this year for me was harvesting our potatoes for storage - it wasn't a big crop, but will last us this fall. I remember my Grandpa's potato patch on his front yard area, and so this felt like steps forward for me. We are still waiting on the majority of our tomatoes and carrots and parsnips crops.

As I mentioned, we got a very nice dehydrator. We borrowed one from a friend to see how to use it and determine if it was something we would realistically get into before purchasing. It was pretty neat finding one after that from a long time HG refill gal, too, on Marketplace (do you sense a theme in how we shop now hah?!). Since bringing it home, we've made blueberry and honey fruit leather from local berries, dried a round of the herbs we grew this year, and will shortly do some more tea drying. I've been drying some batches of herbs just on a peg rack since last year, but this opens us up to being able to forage some mushrooms (they are really plentiful here), the fruit leather idea, meats, and faster processing for some things.

Changing our lawn use has meant we've been able to start learning about foraging and finding things to eat that are right here, and I've been loving Hannah's stories (@hannahandandyoffgrid) to learn more about this as she's quite local to me. We foraged some greens this year (self heal and wild lettuce) that came up on its own, collected St. John's wort to make our own oil for skin ailments, and a lot of berries.

We also were able to slowly begin freezing some other vegetables and fruits. Last year was the first time I tried freezing chunked strawberries in July to avoid buying fresh berries through the winter. It seems so simple now, but it went so well. This year we did a local organic blue berry pick-your-own and froze masons of blueberries to add to the usual strawberry stash. I upgraded to freezing in mason jars this year so that these fruits will never meet plastic in their lifetimes, and food has been shown this year to be our key source of microplastics that end up in our bodies, so I was quite motivated to move away from freezer bags. This means we are building a significant stash of jars, and we had to figure out where to store them (so downsized a corner of our home shop for this). We were lucky to get a stand up freezer from our parents a few years ago (they had an insurance claim for a flood but luckily this guy still works just as well with the damage) and have put away the strawberries, blueberries and some blanched sweet corn. Last year we had success with freezing kale, blanched sliced carrots (which we found very easy to roast with honey and garlic), and frozen diced peppers, which all came from the farmer's market. This year we are hoping to build most of the freezer up with our own items in this manner, and fill in with ordering directly from the same farmer we buy our pork from. Blanching and freezing has meant we get to enjoy the really great taste of summer produce, while decreasing our packaging and carbon footprint of the food we are eating. We are also supporting a farmer locally and this builds food security and local wealth. But, it is not easy or perfect.

I have to say that this takes a lot of time. This is not something I could do with young babies/children and not something I can do unless I have time at home, which I do at the moment. We had a freezer in place, and I met our pork farmer at the market just down from the shop in Kingston. Finding a local farmer and learning about what they are doing takes time. She's actually closer to our home shop so we can pick our orders up at her farm, but we are fortunate that we can manage to save and spend bulk cash on larger orders of berries, produce, or meat in orders rather than spreading it out every week. I also wish that I could can things like corn and carrots instead of blanching and freezing them, but that's just not an option right now for me. I would love to do salsas and spaghetti sauce, but last year I ended up just halving tomatoes, roasting them, freezing them, and calling that tomato sauce. Even figuring out mass processing, growing, or cooking with one food item at a time is a time drain. I also am feeling at times overwhelmed with how little I know and how much I have to learn for each type of produce in order to process it properly, and I grew up on a farm even with a large vegetable garden. I know each time I do a task it will become a skill that I have, but building mass amounts at a time is also a real mental drain when I also look at the mental drain of mothering and I am looking forward to having these skills and the nuanced knowledge of different fruit and veg and basic tasks where I can find these things locally in the best manner someday, but I know that will take time. I can definitely see how capitalism has just run through this knowledge the whole way: living with your own self sufficiency takes a lot of time and energy. If we work, we trade that time and energy for money to get the things we need, but a capitalistic system is one where eventually we can't work enough hours to get increasingly worsened goods; there's a tradeoff somewhere for that top dog to keep getting ahead. I will keep going though, it's just something I have really begun to see.

Finally, we just bought a little chest freezer from - you guessed it! - a guy in Kingston off of Marketplace. We are buying pork this week and we are going to be harvesting our first round of chickens soon and our vegetable and fruit demands have really increased in our present freezer. While running these two older freezers has an impact, I know the impact of our food is really decreasing in a much more substantial way, and I will hopefully be able to do more canning of things in the future and upgrade this aspect of the process.

 6. My Partner's Projects: Bees + the Chickens

I do want to mention the things he's working on, and while we support each other in learning about and helping with each other's work, I have really enjoyed having tasks we each do. This is helping keep the knowledge building manageable and the task load sensical for our schedules. 

Andrew is working on his bees for the second summer; we had two hives last year and both made it through the winter until the late spring, when we lost a hive. The lesson there was that during a freeze and thaw, a straw bale we had for a wind break was touching the side of the hive and created a too-moist environment with the freeze-thaws and some black mould. Because we weren't opening the hives during the cold months, we didn't realize until too late. But this is how it goes; we have to learn the hard way and won't do that again. We were able to increase to another hive this year again with a friend who loves to make swarm traps. He had one of his hives split and it was retrieved from the swarm trap. We harvested the first round of honey this year and have 8L to begin cooking more with and to add to our homestead shelves with our potatoes, jam and tools. I'm excited to work with the bit of wax we harvested, too.

We are on our second summer of laying hens, and have hatched some new friends to join the pack. We started last year with 6, lost two to a racoon, and had two simple coops and a fenced pen we got locally second hand (I honestly can't bring myself to write Marketplace again, hah!). We needed to build a more substantial coop for last winter, and then renovated it to add nesting boxes this year. We were able to do this with some milled wood from one of my dad's farms he was discarding and we learned about pine tar from Sage Restoration and protected it with a 50/50 blend with linseed oil. The new pullets we hatched this spring (a fun learning experience - I swear my husband was more involved with those broody hens than me during my pregnancies, haha) will partially go towards the September harvest and some we are keeping for laying hens in our larger coop long term. This year we changed our feed to something that looks more like real food (the chick starter and feed we were buying before looked very strange to us), and sold our Lomi we were using for food scrap waste (I was able to buy myself a Babaa on Poshmark, very exciting) as the chickens were taking all of it on happily. The plastic waterers and feeders of course have broken that my partner bought initially of course, so we have bought galvanized steel now and have a solid coop and run for this winter.

His new project this year was some meat chickens. While many reading this may disapprove of eating meat, my family eats meat (I am vegetarian, but consume honey, dairy, eggs and fish), and I think for us we believe in eating meat, but in the right way. My husband is a hunter and while I grew up thinking that was horrifying, I realized taking the hunting course as a new bride that it's actually being very connected to sustainability. The processed meats I bought in a shop were very disconnected from the nature lives of those animals, and if I couldn't bring myself to actually see or kill an animal, I might best not be eating it. When done on small scales, animal husbandry can be the missing link in soil regeneration and the full picture of an ecosystem, and that is the type of meat we are supporting, but that is not true of a lot of animal processing systems and that is what needs to end. And so I will not say that I support all animal harvesting, because there are some that have incredible impacts, but that's how cheap meat is made. And so, while that is our journey, we are working on harvesting meat chickens this September. The chick stage was fun, and we didn't lose any of those little guys. We were able to make a space for the chicks and a chicken tractor with all materials we had or were acquired second hand, and that's pretty important for us in feeling we are doing this right. Andrew is doing a course at a local ranch before harvesting next month, and trying his best to get a second hand plucker to ease the job and get it set up well for long term. This piece is the biggest learning curve of the project, and then next we will shift to eating in a different way, as we didn't often start with whole chickens.

Things that went poorly

Something that went poorly that I had high hopes for this summer was our berry garden area. We have an area of our lawn I wanted to repurpose as a berry garden, and started with elderberry, raspberries and blueberries. I bought bushes and tried to keep them healthy. I did not get anything from them and when berries started, they were plucked quickly by birds and the soil in that area was so sandy. A silly thing that ended this project was walking less than 100m away and finding low bush blueberries that had been in our bush area all along, swaths of blackberry brambles, and finding raspberry patches nearby growing that it would have taken me a decade to build. We have lived here for ten years and didn't see these things clearly at all. I was so disconnected (but the baby stage and business stage was a big chunk of this, so trying to be compassionate with myself). The blueberries were mostly covered over with a brush pile, and had passed their season when we found them, but this will be something for next year. I am slowly picking enough blackberries to make some jam, hopefully, and will be better on top of the raspberry season next year.

The air quality was also a really terrible moment for our summer. On one hand, I thought it might actually be the "big thing" that precipitated mass societal change, but seeing that zero Conseratives in the presidential debate believed that climate change is man made, and the Albertan premier's shutdown of renewable energy projects (with full intentions of not supporting an energy shift for their economy to not burn out), and a lot of comments on social media about how the fires are started by man, not climate change (yes, but I'll defer to what independent collectives of scientists have said for years, that we would have intense and widespread fire creating the extent and severity of the fires), and everyone's quick willingness to move on and forget so that they could enjoy their summer free of fear, I don't think so. For us, it meant we strengthened our emergency preparedness and spent a lot of money on air purifiers that we didn't plan on because we don't see this issue going away. We also ended up buying a game system for our boys because it was impossible to keep them inside. We haven't bought anything like that for our boys yet and they still don't know about using phones and iPads. Luckily I waited on that purchase (as I always try to do, it helps me find better solutions or completely move away from buying something) and realized a Super Nes from Chumleighs (a second hand shop in Kingston) was perfect. I was happy we could buy at least something second hand and it's been a great thing for my partner and I to chill out about the fires as well for short chunks of time.

We also ended up with a puppy! While this is actually very good news, it was unexpected and I don't feel we've managed to do this in a way that feels very good waste-wise. While we reached out to our Buy Nothing group and family and friends for donations of a cage, leash, and a few other items like bowls and a ground stake for a lead, I haven't been able to do much research yet into how to do this low waste. Pets have a big carbon footprint. While we bought a stash of chewy things immediately, we have found we can keep filling the pig ear bags at Bulk Barn or package free, but I don't know much about whether that chew option is sustainable. I also haven't been able to buy food in a bag that isn't a thick mixed plastic as we did growing up (we just dumped it in a bin when we got home). I also haven't been able to look into dog food and see if there's something else I could be doing there. I'm going to make her a bed with a vintage blanket I like and stuff it was rags, but haven't gotten there yet. So, this will be a fall project in figuring that out.

Looking Ahead: Short Term Goals + Projects 

I am also working on a fall season sustainable action blog post, but to mention a few things here that I popped in our recent newsletter, this is what's next for us:

  • sourcing and creating some Halloween costumes without buying new cheap plastics - so far the boys are loving Super Mario World with the Super Nes, so we are looking for overalls and long sleeve shirts and red/green hats for Mario + Luigi
  • I'm sourcing Christmas presents already - this might seem nuts to post in August, but second hand and more conscious takes some time (and in some of my fall Poshmark/second hand purchases, sellers have nice goods I can acquire with my clothing purchase)
  • figuring out how to DIY some gifts this year - jams, maple syrup, honey, dried herbs and teas
  • looking at how to prepare our garden for next year to improve our soil - manure, compost application, cover crops and perhaps building some new beds
  • planning a medicinal herb and tea herb garden as I am enjoying learning about that
  • we have a friend lending us a rototiller for creating garden beds in additional spots on our lawn. Digging the sod out by hand would be best for preserving the organic layers of the soil and present organisms, but I have to be realistic with what I can manage. We are hoping to make a bigger potato patch at the front and a garlic bed in a sandy spot
  • baking bread has been something I have wanted to do for a long time, and would really decrease our plastic waste. This feels overwhelming, but I have a great recipe from my sister in law to try this fall!
  • mending items - we have a ton of nicer children's clothing with puppy teeth holes from the initial days of my sons trying to run while she tried to catch them. I am likely going to go for a visible mending technique with embroidery thread (still sourcing this, seems hard to find transparent stuff!) so that I don't have to be perfect with it. 
  • winter storage of local produce 

Well, that was a long one, but I hope you enjoyed it! I am excited to continue being inspired by the community that is evolving around me and love to chat about these types of projects. Again, if you have any advice or ideas for me, please share, and we can all continue to evolve and live a little more intentionally.

And, my favourite Marketplace (oh man!) find this season, this old cabinet:



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