You know how it's easy to read about gardening/homekeeping projects endlessly but never actually DO them? Yeah. I do that all the time. I bought most of the supplies necessary for installing a laundry to landscape graywater system six months ago, but never installed it. There are three big blocks of mushroom spawn mouldering in my fridge, waiting for logs and an afternoon of work. The beermaking supplies I bought for Michael for Christmas 2(!) years ago are sitting in our pantry, untouched. (Now, I know this sounds negative, if I think honestly we have accomplished some things like build a chicken coop, get a woodstove and cargo bike, create new garden beds, etc... but there are so many more things I want to do!)
In an effort to start checking off some of the things on my urban homestead to-do list, I picked up a new book from our local bookstore this weeked. Making It is written by Kelly Coyne and Eric Knutzen, who are the writers behind one of my favorite blogs, Root Simple. I already have their first book and both of them have specific projects for things to do around any urban homestead. Chickens, honeybees, fermenting, natural cleaning supplies, herbal medicine, alternative energy- they touch on all these topics and many more between the two books. I appreciate that the books are true to their sometimes skeptical, but always forthright and frequently funny voice.
I am planning to do some of the books' projects with my 10 year-old as a part of our homeschool curriculum. What a gift it will be (I think) for him to already know some practical skills when he sets out on his own. So far, we made and used toothbrush twigs and we planted micro greens.
And I made some rich lotion with ingredients I already had in my pantry.
We are anxious to make olive oil lamps next and Julian is excited to try the homemade peppermints; both these projects are in the new book. It's a small start but it feels good to be working to make our home more cozy and resilient just as winter is slipping in.