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Tools Make The Homestead

you need all of these and then some

two branches homestead

When we think about homesteading we always think of images of chickens and fall harvests.  We rarely see pictures of the tools that make homesteading possible.  No two homesteads are alike, and neither are their tools.  What makes homesteading great is that you get to do it your own way.  You can choose your own land and what crops you will grow,  but most importantly you get to choose or make your own tools.  This blog is a tribute and an introduction to the tools we use on our homestead.  Hopefully it will give you a few new ideas about what to use around your homestead.

The Chainsaw

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This is one of the tools that we can’t live without.  It brings us warmth and Christmas trees.  Its uses are endless, especially in places where power cords can’t reach or in an emergency.

When we first started our homestead and decided…

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bee keeping, bees, homestead fail, homesteading

Homestead failure is not always what it seems

There is one unavoidable fact on the homestead.  You are going to fail.  Failure is not something we think about much or even plan for, but it still happens.  Three years ago we started beekeeping.  We knew that winters were hard here so we built our hives out of 2x4 pine in an effort to… Continue reading Homestead failure is not always what it seems

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From Rooster to Baby Chicks, New Life on the Homestead

spring is coming!!!!!

two branches homestead

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Although it is still cold, spring has been in the air on the homestead.  We have been starting seeds, making maple syrup, and our rooster has been active making baby chickens.  We keep a small flock of chickens for egg production.  Usually we have enough eggs to avoid buying any from the store.  Last year one of our hens went broody (sitting on eggs to hatch them)  so we bartered for a few fertile eggs from our good friend and put some under her.  Only one of the eggs hatched and as luck would have it, the little chick was a rooster.

We really didn’t want a rooster, but we kept him anyway.  He grew into a beautiful bird and we decided that this year we would hatch some of our own eggs.  We try to keep our hens about three years or so and then rotate them out.  Three…

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firewood, Home Brewing, home made beer, homemade wine, homesteading, vineyard, winemaking

Homesteading Fuel

When we think of homesteading, we often think of  hard work and the simple pleasures.  Two essential ingredients in our homestead  are coffee and beer.  One gets the day going and the other pushes you to get to the finish line.  The thought of an ice cold beer as a reward will get you through… Continue reading Homesteading Fuel

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Homestead upgrade, “un-tapped” potential

its coming be prepared

two branches homestead

IMG_5136On warm winter days, our thoughts often turn to making maple syrup.  This is the first food that we will produce for the coming year.  A major component of making maple syrup is the evaporator.  This is what we use to take the sap from 2% sugar to 66.7% sugar.  The entire process is about getting rid of water through evaporation.  When we first started making maple syrup, we would boil it in a small pan over a fire. As you wait for the water to boil off, you have a lot of time to think about how you could speed up the process. A maple syrup pan can boil off one gallon of sap an hour for each square foot of surface area.  So a pan that is 2’x4′ can boil off 8 gallons an hour.  This is the most time consuming part of the process.  As you sit…

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