What No One Tells You About Growing

No one tells you it sucks. No one tells you that it is more work physically and mentally anything else in this world. They don’t tell you how time intensive it is to grow.

Grow what you ask? Anything, plants, animals, tiny humans, and most of all they don’t tell you about growing yourself. Or maybe regrowing yourself. I am not going to claim to be an expert on anything but I might have everything down pat except myself.

I am working or rather reworking myself. The last three years have been total hell from the word go. Watching my dad’s health decline and his final days. Adjusting to life without him. Helping my children do the same. Trying to get my daughter help for mental health issues, her story to tell if she wants to share details. Job changes and health issues. Some really life altering health issues. Life has just given me a lot to consider.

I have been told that I am strong and how most people would have given up already. I really do appreciate the sentiments. Most have not seen the dark parts of this journey. There are still some dark days ahead but they are getting fewer. What it has lead me to is the belief that I am strong enough to be weak and ask for help. It has shown me how precious life can be and how fragile.

The goals for now are to explore the world from a different perspective. Not new really but a better understanding of permaculture as not only a function of healing the earth but of healing myself.

One of the reasons I think that my gardens have struggled is that I have been struggling. As if they have been a mirror image of my inner turmoil. That and clay soil just simply sucks.

The three ethics of permaculture are what I am choosing to live my life by.

1. Earth Care

2. People Care

3. Future Care

Out of those three principles will come the self care that I need. That is the tough part. I am regenerating myself, mentally, spiritua6l, and physically.

Today is a brand new day and it is ok to struggle and to misstep. Just pick yourself up, learn, and forge ahead.

Let’s forge ahead together and make a new beginning today.

Light, Love, and Peace
Tammy~SSM~

5 Tips for Garden Planning

 

 

Battle Cat says that he is ready for spring too! He has cat business to attend to and you just can’t do that when it is cold and wet out. If I haven’t introduced him yet to you all he is 1/3 of the Salt & Pepper Gang. The other two members are Koda and Blizzard.  I know such a mean looking gang aren’t they? The hole was the dogs’ contribution today to working around the house. They dug up freshly turned soil and layed down in it. But I digress, I did say 5 tips for garden planning didn’t I? Of course I did. Gardens are best planned out to offer the most success. Dream big when thinking about what you want to grow. You can narrow it down and then plan on expanding as time goes on.

Tip #1

Find the perfect spot. You want some where that gets 8 to 10 hours of sun per day. You will also it to have good natural drainage so that water doesn’t pool in any one area.

Tip #2

Test your soil! I cannot stress this one enough. You will need to take samples from the whole spot. It is a good idea to go through your local co-op extension office. They will test the sample for free and give you a good break down of what is needed in your soil. Often they have what you need to collect the samples. You can also purchases all kinds of soil testers in garden centers and on amazon.com.

Tip #3

Check your growing zone. The USDA Plant Hardiness Zone will help you get a general idea of what your growing season looks like. There is even a function now that let’s you put in your zip code so you can get very specific.

Tip #4

Write a list of every vegetable you want to ever grow. Then narrow it down to what you think you can handle for the season. This may mean the basics such as tomatoes, cucumbers, beans, squash, etc. But don’t toss that list, you will get to it eventually.

Tip #5

Start amending your soil before you even think about doing anything. Based upon the

results of your soil testing of course. Some basic things to use that will help all gardens are compost, manure, lime, and potash (not grill left overs unless you are using wood, charcoal is a no go for the garden).

 

 

 

Light, Love, and Peace
~Tammy~SSM

By Popular Demand

biz-logo2What makes my stuff different?

Probably not much. I know you can scour the web for various worksheets and information. Usually going through tons of different places to look. My goal is to build a comprehensive collection of sheets for my fans to download for FREE! Yep, everyone loves freebies. These worksheets are coming at you in easy to download and print PDF format. I believe in being able to make my own family planner. Definitely a discussion for another time.

Where can you find these little nuggets?

Well that would be on the new resources page. There are currently two sections of reference there. One is going to be all link resources. I will list reference books and other items as time goes on. But for now these worksheets will have to do. They should all be simple and easy to understand but if you have any questions please feel free to ask them here or on Facebook or Twitter.

Why am I doing this?elegant type

Well because I have always found resources helpful in getting my shit together and keeping it together. It at least gives me the appearance of being organized and on top of my game. It works most of the time, there is no perfect system but I think I am getting pretty close. I will have to work on getting more organized if I am going to work full time at the hospital and run a small farm. Luckily I have help with all of that.

Busy Mom Menu Planning Tips

mom cooking

Pre-planning your menu will do several things for you. It will force you to double check your calendar. It will force you to go through your pantry, fridge and freezer (helps keep things fresh). It will also force you to make a grocery list (which will help you stay in budget). Quick note about budgets, I know they are hard but we will discuss those another day. 

This is where I start. I get paid every two weeks so typically that means 42 meals (3 meals per day for 14 days) need to be planned out. You guessed it, breakfast, lunch and dinner all need to be planned. So now that we have figured that out I check out what I have on hand. If I am lucky I have some things left from my last grocery shopping. I try to add one or two extra meals to my budget each week and/or bulk items. 

Next I get out my calendar to see what is going on during those two weeks. What is my work schedule, what is on tap for the kids, what is on tap for Daddy aka Papa. That will also determine what gets made on what days. 

By now I am using what limited “extra” brain power to see what I have on hand to make and write down those meal ideas. I have a habit of starting with dinner ideas. Now I take a piece of paper and divide it in thirds. One column I put the day of the week with the appropriate date on it. List what I know I have for dinner, list what would work on each particular night depending on our schedules. Now in the third column I start writing my shopping list. 

The next thing I do during the school year is pull out the lunch calendar. Lunches are frequently left overs when school is out but in honor of going back to school I am going to add this tidbit. I ask the kids which days they are buying and which they are taking. From there we get down to the nitty gritty and figure out what they want for those days they are taking. I write these down on the calendar so that I know what they have planned (yes they some times change their minds, too bad it gets carved into stone). I make sure to add any extra items to the grocery list. 

Next we look at breakfast, ours is usually pretty basic. I need to have pancakes on hand (make them and then freeze them for future use). Eggs, bread and/or biscuits, cereal and the like. Though honestly if there are “favorite” left overs they will get eaten for breakfast as well. Mac and cheese anyone? If I am running low on any necessaries they get added to the grocery list as well.

Ok, so dinners are on the calendar, lunches are on the calendar and breakfast is fly by the seat of our pants. It really all comes down to schedules. Are these plans written in stone no, except for planned school lunches, those are written in stone. Now you have not only planned out your menu for two weeks, you have a realistic working grocery list and perhaps a budget!

Light, Love and Peace!