Saturday, June 30, 2012

Preparedness Challenge #36


Welcome to the Preparedness Challenge! Each month USA Emergency Supply hosts a give away to encourage families to set something aside to prepare for a time of emergency or the unexpected. Those who link up or leave a comment of something they did during the month to be prepared will be entered in the drawing (please take a moment to read the rules at the bottom of the post).


How I Met The Challenge!

Here's what I did this month in each category (see category definitions near bottom of the post)...

• Food Storage:  Our cow half arrived and my freezer is nice an full! This used up a lot of our food budget, but we're saving a LOT of money and eating great beef!

• Emergency Preparedness: I purchased three aloe vera plants for emergency medical needs such as burns. I plan to buy a few more so we have plenty on hand. I also signed up for the Family Herbalist Course through Vintage Remedies so I could learn to meet some of our health care needs at home. 

• Sustainable Living: Finally got the raspberries and another fig tree planted! I just put in another couple of raised bed boxes and will be seeding those a.s.a.p. Made another batch of liquid soup and a couple of homemade cleaners from essential oils and vinegars, etc.

The Give-Away & Last Month's Winner!


Last month's give-away from USA Emergency Supply included an emergency response kit and Kurt King's "Herbs to the Rescue", an herbal first aid handbook. I'm pleased to announce the winner today...


Congratulations LINDA G!

This month the give-away item is a Aquamira Water Bottle and Filter, a great item to have with you for those summer hikes, camping trips, bike adventures, water rafting... whatever it is you do in the big outdoors. But it would also be great to keep in the car, at the office, or in a backpack... just in case! And now is a good time to remind everyone that staying hydrated during an emergency or crisis is critical! Your body needs all the resources possible when it's being taxed emotionally and physically. 







Now it's your turn to join the Preparedness Challenge..

Join the Challenge & Enter The Give Away

To be entered in the drawing, leave a comment (with your email info) on something you did this week to be more prepared in terms of food storage, emergencies, or sustainable living (or all three areas!) OR link up your Preparedness Challenge blog post (you only need to comment or postnot both). Posts not related to at least one of the three areas of preparedness will not be counted toward the give-away. Please be sure to clearly state in your comment or post what you did this month to be more prepared (see my example above as one easy way to do this). Again, the three areas we are focusing on include: 


• food storage for life's unexpected events whether related to long term effects from a disaster or a job loss and everything in between

• emergencies for times of power outages, natural disasters, and such

• sustainable living in order to be more independent, both physically and financially, and to live as close to the land as possible given each individual's situation 

Please be respectful of our challenge and only add a post on one of these three preparedness topics ONLY in order to retain the integrity of the link up event. If your post is just a general homesteading post, please save it for the Monday Homestead Barn Hop.

NOTE: This challenge and give-away ends Friday, July 6th at 11:59 p.m. PST.

Be sure to take the Preparedness Challenge picture and add it to your blog so others know you're participating and hopefully they'll join up, too! THANK YOU!!







Friday, June 29, 2012

Coming Soon! Sizzling Summer Round Up

Summer is in full swing and it's heating up across the country! Brew some iced tea, crank up the fan, and turn on the computer... Homestead Revival is going to beat the heat with two weeks of product reviews and give-aways!


You're invited...

When? Daily, July 3-14th
(Sundays, Mondays, and July 4th excluded)

What? Here's a list of just some of the sponsors lined up...

• Mountain Rose Herbs
• Timber Press
• Lila Rose hostess Jill Wright
• Redeeming the Dirt
• Plan To Eat
• MORE!

Where? Right here at Homestead Revival!

Don't forget! Mark your calendar and set your alarm! 
See you on the 3rd!


Thursday, June 28, 2012

How To Leave Your Homestead

Homesteaders are notorious for not leaving the farm for more than a few hours at a time. Things are a bit complicated when it comes to which animal gets what feed and when. Then there's the milking and the manure. Who wants to ask someone else to do these jobs?

We all need to know how to leave our homestead for more than 24 hours at a time. Whether it's a long awaited vacation, a sudden trip to care for aging parents, an opportunity to be with a son or daughter who is having a child, or even an emergency operation for ourselves... we need to be ready and know how to have things in order for someone else to care for the homestead in our absence.

Photo Credit


Preparing To Leave the Homestead

 Find a Homestead-sitter. There are so many people wanting to learn to homestead, but they're afraid to take the plunge. These same people would actually be thrilled for an opportunity to mentor underneath someone in trade for help on the homestead when you're gone (within reason, of course). Your investment in another person benefits both parties! If you can't find an apprentice to work with, neighborhood teenagers, college students on break, or unemployed adults may be interested as well as FFA or 4H students needing to earn a bit of money. Finally, there is the option of setting up a trade situation with another homesteader who lives nearby, but be sure you both are clear on the agreement and responsibilities since this kind of arrangement could be a bit lopsided. 

• Leave contact numbers.  Some way for your homestead-sitter to know how to reach you as well as anyone else they may need: fire department, vets, utilities, etc.  Be sure to post it in more than one place... just in case!



• Have a back up for your back up. This is where your local homesteading group is a God-send! Ask a couple of friends to be on-call in case your homestead-sitter needs some help or has a question. If someone has an area of expertise, such as beekeeping or goats, note that beside their name. Talk to your back ups and make sure they know how to contact you and what your preferences are in terms of calling vets, medications, etc.

• Label everything. Feed looks all the same to someone unacquainted with your particular selections. And since chicks often get different feed than layers (and other animals as well), be sure items are clearly marked. I used badge holders with inserts printed up and in some cases, I included a reminder on the tag as well.



• Post detailed lists. And I do mean details! Most of this stuff seems like common sense but it's only common if you're familiar with it. Even with as much experience as I have gained to date, when I go to care for someone else's animals, I often have questions because there are lots of ways to practice animal husbandry or gardening and I want to do my best for my friend - the way he or she would want it. If they haven't specified, I find I must rely on my own experience, but I'm always wondering if I did the right thing. Homestead-sitters will feel more confident if everything is crystal clear.


• Walk them through your routine. More than once if possible! Morning routines are often different than evening routines on a homestead, so be sure to walk them through both. If they're not sure, ask if they'd like to give something a try with you watching.

• Have extra supplies on hand. This is especially important if you mix feeds or if you order them through a co-op that delivers. And don't forget to tell them where to find the extra!



• Consider what is truly necessary in your absence. Do you really want to pay for someone to hand water all your plants? Can the stalls wait til you get home to be cleaned? Is the weeding really going to get out of hand while you're gone? You decide, but if possible, make sure these things are done right before you leave and plan on doing them when you return (block off the day after your return on your calendar so you have time to do these things).

• Pay Reasonably.  In the past I've always been unsure what to pay a homestead-sitter (and I'm sure I've been guilty of underpaying at times). This will vary from community to community as the going rate may be different, but minimum wage is certainly appropriate. You can always add a bonus on at the end for a job well done or if they've had to handle some emergencies. Another option is to ask around and find out what local farm laborers are receiving as a general rule.  Either way, you're most likely going to pay by the hour so be sure to walk through your daily routine and make note of about how long it should take to do what's required of your homestead-sitter. Finally, there is the option of contracting with an individual for a set amount. I do this periodically but I try to keep it within the same ball park as the minimum wage. 


• Give them the fruit of their labors! One of the reasons we all homestead is for the perks of milk, eggs, and produce. A nice bonus is to allow your homestead-sitter to take home what he or she gleans in your absence. This is always a welcome addition and will help off-set gasoline costs if they must drive a ways to your homestead. (I typically request that they just leave me a jar of milk and a few eggs the day before my arrival so we have food when we get home). 





May all your travels be stress free and refresh your spirit!


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Debt Crisis & Homesteading

If you don't already have a homesteading mindset with plans to raise some of your own food, it's not too late to reconsider. This post may sound negative, but hang in there... read to the end.

I really do try NOT to be an alarmist or overly political, but it's just not possible to entirely separate one's self from facts which effects us so significantly. 

Recently I read an article about just the interest rate portion of our national debt. According to it's author, our current debt is 16 trillion dollars and we will pay at least 4.2 trillion JUST IN INTEREST on this amount in the years to come (with some fluctuation due to the actual interest rate over time, but on average, this is what we're looking at). 


Photo Credit



Let me give you a realistic measure of what 4.2 trillion actually looks like. According to Bill Eggers, a man who lead the study on this bit of trivia, he stated that "If you look at the interest payments going to foreign countries, soon we're going to be spending enough to essentially finance the Chinese military." That's because they hold a lot of our debt. He went on to say that the "debt could quickly spiral out of control if investors become less willing to lend more money."

You mean it's not out of control ALREADY? Hmmm.... if my family budget looked like this, we'd be in serious trouble. And if this were any other time in history, we'd be indentured servants by now or in debtor's prison. If I'm not mistaken, filing Chapter 13 for bankruptcy is a fairly new concept (and just dumps the debt onto someone else - like passing the buck).

Now obviously not everyone agrees with Mr. Eggers interpretation of the FACT that our debt's interest rate is 4.2 trillion. But let's think about that... 

• we're talking TRILLION, not million or even billion
• it's just the INTEREST RATE on the debt... it doesn't even touch the principle of what we owe
• fat chance the principle amount will remain where it is - more likely it will continue to increase since American just doesn't "get it" quite yet
• even if it were half of what he said - say 2.1 trillion, or even a fourth (1.05 trillion), that's a lot of dough

Okay... let's move on to my point.

I can NOT see how our American way of life is going to last much longer. Consumerism, entertainment, activities, travel, expensive food, etc... Please, leave me a kind comment explaining to me how I'm wrong if you know a reasonable way out for all of us. I'd be crazy not to get behind it!

Let's assume there is no other way... what then?

Please hear me when I say... I don't know how this will all pan out. It could be a sudden economic collapse, or it could be a slow decline in our standard of living. I want to tell you to "pray for the latter and be prepared for the former", but as our standard of living goes down, what we're able to do financially will become more and more limited. I'm already seeing it in our family budget. Are you?

It might shock you to know that I really don't feel this is a BAD thing. Perhaps uncomfortable at times. Maybe even down right painful.

I see it as... character refining, a challenge, and a refocusing on priorities. Times like this help us to take stock and do a bit of "house cleaning" or "putting things in order". It allows us to re-evaluate those things that are of real value and importance. And it forces us to live much more realistically and humbly. 


This could actually be a GOOD thing!


How Your Family Can Make the Most of the Debt Crisis

• Seek and pray. For wisdom, direction, peace, provisions. What is it that the LORD would have you do? Everything I listed below is what I believe wisdom dictates and scripture supports. But YOU need to know what God's Word says about these things. If you're not fully convinced, you won't make it through the tough times. Read the Word. Pray. Obey.

Put the family on a diet. A financial diet! Ween yourself off of a few luxuries. You pick which ones... every family is different. And it doesn't have to be ALL luxuries, but enough so that you're not hurting as much when things do get tighter.

Go long! In other words, think 10, 20, even 50 years down the road. We're notorious for thinking only about the moment and what satisfies our flesh right now! But we need to be thinking about how we want to finish this life and how (not what) we want to leave the next generation. 

Build up. If you still have the ability to do so, build structures such as barns and chicken coops, fences... long term items that will contribute to a family's well being for years to come. And do it DEBT FREE! Even if you don't think you will ever raise chickens, consider a gardening shed that could be converted if necessary. I'm amazed at how few homes have a small structure on them that could service a family's food needs! 

Establish relationships. When things get rough, we will need to barter more and more. And if civil unrest ever becomes an issue, knowing your neighbors really well goes a long way to preventing unruly behavior. It's much harder to harm someone you know well and have a relationship with. And if they know you're there to help, even better. Another really important idea - establish a homesteading group. I can't tell you how valuable this has been in my own life! Expect a post on this soon so I can update you on how our group has progressed.

Think in terms of basic needs. Food, clothing, shelter. In my humble opinion, gold (which some are trying to sell you on) won't really be of much value. Even if you have it, will anyone trade you a bushel of vegetables for it? Not if they're really hungry! Learn to grow food. Learn to live with used clothing on occasion and how to mend it. Pay off your house as quickly as possible. If you have a 30 year loan, see if you can go to a 15 and pay a bit more each month - while you have the cash. You might need to cut off the TV to do it (to pay extra on the mortgage), but it really is possible to live without the box.

Be daring. Try something totally out of your comfort zone and do it for an entire day. For example, turn off all the electricity for 24 hours and see how your family does. Or how about going an entire week without lights! Oh, yeah. That would be a HUGE challenge. Make it a fun game for the younger ones (pretend you're living in another century!) or maybe a team challenge with your teenagers. Divide the family into two groups and see which team folds first!

Don't panic. Do NOT go out and do a bunch of stuff all at once and get in over your head - either financially, physically, or psychologically. If you bite off too much at once, you'll become overwhelmed and give up entirely. Then you'll be worse off than before! Pace yourself.

Honestly, I think we're in for a slow slide to a more humble existence rather than a sudden collapse. Just my personal thoughts on that, but believe me, I am fully aware that I could be wrong! 

Either way, let's say you just slowly prepare... everything you do puts you that much further ahead. And because God tells us that if we're faithful in the small things, He will put us in charge of many things, we know that we just need to look at what He's providing each moment and be content with these things!  However, don't squander it either! 

Use your resources wisely... invest in homesteading.

Walk humbly.
Trust God.
Give thanks.

He really does own the cattle on a thousand hills (Psalm 50:10)!

How has the debt crisis actually changed your family's lifestyle for the better
How are you living differently than you ever thought was possible?


Monday, June 25, 2012

Barn Hop #67


Welcome to the Monday Homestead Barn Hop where you're invited to link up your blog with your very best post of the week; something happening at your homestead or something of interest that will help benefit fellow homesteaders. Plus, each of the 3 Homestead Barn Hop hostess selects her favorite post of the week to highlight the following week. So be sure to visit all three blogs because the "Featured Homestead" could be YOURS!


For the Featured Homestead this week, I picked The Parsimonious Princess! She's had some great posts recently, but I really liked her post this past week on using chicken nipples to keep the waterer clean (a.k.a. poop-free)!


She went from this...


to this...


and had happy hens drinking clean water, like this...



Check out her blog if you'd like a tutorial on how to install these chicken nipples. I've used them and really think they work great! Mine are on a bucket hanging on the coop wall. The water lasts so much LONGER this way (by staying cleaner).


If you've been featured in the past...


If you've been a featured blogger on the Barn Hop, either today or in the past, we now have a special button for you should you wish to add it to your sidebar stating that you've been a featured blogger! You can find it on my button page by clicking the hen with the blue barn on my sidebar that says "HR Buttons". It's a good idea to link it back to the page where you were featured so your readers can see where you're actually mentioned. (These buttons do not have a code since it needs to be linked to the page you're featured in and it will change from week to week. Just copy the button or drag it to your desktop).




Join The Barn Hop!
and Amy @ Homestead Revival...

...invite you to link up and share your homesteading adventures!


Did you share any cool new homesteading tips on your blog this week? If so, we’d love to have you link up below! Even if you don’t have a blog, we always welcome your comments!

Please remember that the Homestead Barn Hop is meant to be a place to share homesteading related encouragement and inspiring ideas specfically related to homesteading. In an effort to keep our weekly round-up clutter free, links which are not specifically homestead related, and any promotions such as giveaways, contests, carnivals, etc, will be deleted in order to maintain the integrity of the Barn Hop. Please remember this is a family friendly link up. Any pictures or posts linked to the hop which aren’t appropriate for our children to view or read will also be deleted immediately. We’re pretty conservative, so we ask that you use good judgment and err on the side of caution. 

Make sure that you link to your Barn Hop post, not your blog’s main page, so your guests won’t have any trouble finding your great tips!

We would also appreciate it if you would link back to the Homestead Barn Hop in the post that you share! Feel free to grab the banner at the top of this post to link back to us with.

Want a chance to be a “Featured Homestead” next week?

Be sure you've included an actual link to the Barn Hop, preferably the button, on your post or sidebar, with a link back to us. Thank you for sharing the message about the Homestead Barn Hop!

Occasionally there is a problem posting due to glitches in the internet or the Linky Tools. If you have difficulties posting and it does not show up immediately, please wait a little while and try re-posting (this helps avoid double posting). We're sorry for any inconvenience this may cause, be we do not have absolute control over the internet. Thank you for your patience and understanding!








Friday, June 22, 2012

Udderly Natural Care

There are a lot of options on the market when it comes to udder care for livestock. Many even claim to be "natural". For my goats, I wanted the most basic thing I could find that would actually work. Thankfully, I didn't have to look far.



For months, I've been using a couple of recipes I found on a really great blog, Freedom Acres Farm. And thankfully, I can report that we've not had one bit of problem with any udders around here! I really do think the wisdom of using the natural ingredients, along with thoroughly milking the goats out each time, has allowed our goats to be mastitis free. And Lord willing, they're remain that way!

The second recipe incorporates essential oils. After attending the Vintage Remedies on-line conference this month, I learned just how powerful these oils really are! I knew they had a few properties that were good for us, but I just didn't realize their full potential! Since then, I've decided to take the Family Herbalist course and learn even more (I like to know the why and how of things, I guess)!

Prior to milking, I wipe down the udder and teats with a baby wipe. I know that isn't particularly natural, is it? It's driving me nuts... using paper towels and/or baby wipes. None of it really has made me say "Ureka! That's it!". So I've succumbed to convenience until I find the right solution. (I think I better just get over it.)

Next, I milk and then follow with these much more natural solutions...

Udderly Natural Teat Spray

15-20 drops Grapefruit Seed Extract (GSE)
12 oz. water

Add water to a spray bottle and then add GSE. Shake gently before each use.

Notes: At Freedom Acre Farms, they use this recipe for cows and do it as a dip by putting it in a small dixie cup (4 oz. water with 5-7 drops GSE). For my very small goats (and only two at that), I felt I was wasting too much, so I purchased this excellent spray bottle from Hoegger Goat Supply that sprays upward rather than straight out. I just hold it under the udder along with the wipe I used prior to milking so as to catch the drips, and I spray.




Udderly Natural Daily Teat Balm

1 cup coconut oil
30 drops peppermint essential oil
30 drops tea tree essential oil

Incorporate essential oils into the coconut oil and place in a small mason jar (shallow with wide mouth is best). Apply after teat spray daily or as needed to prevent chaffing.

Note: I use this almost daily during the dry winter months, but if it isn't necessary, I won't use it. I also cut this recipe in half because it goes a long way and I'd rather make a fresh batch periodically.




For those concerned... I've never noticed that either of these formulas (or the cheap baby wipes) cause the milk to have an off taste. It makes me feel good knowing what's in it... every single ingredient.

I encourage you to visit Freedom Acre Farms and read more about their natural udder care for livestock, including a natural wipe prior to milking. These two recipes have certainly worked well... I'm sure their natural wipes do, too!

Thank you Freedom Acre Farm!

I'd love to hear about your natural udder care solutions!





Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Purslane

This guest post was written by my daughter, Kate who blogs at To Live, Not Exist. She is currently completing her college on line through College Plus and working at an organic farm (along with some house cleaning and volunteer work). 


One of the weeds they've been combating on the farm is Purlsane. When Kate traveled to a third world country last year to work on an organic farm, they ate Purslane and found it very tasty, a bit like watercress. She brought some home this past week and we had a really great meal (much to my surprise)! Even our youngest like it. 


I love that we're learning about native wild edibles and actually making REAL food we can eat and ENJOY! How many wonderful food adventures await us that we never knew about?
Thanks, Kate!


Photo Credit: World Crops



Purslane Facts

• Rich in fiber, minerals, and vitamins
• five times more omega-3 fatty acids than spinach
• high in vitamins A, B, and C
• rich in anti-depressant and anxiety combative substances
• high in iron and calcium
• also a source of protein

For additional nutrition information, visit Mother Earth News Power-Packed Purslane.

Photo Credit: Plant Photos Wiki
Did You Know?

• Indian and Greek herbalists celebrate its healing qualities
• Medieval herbal sources describe Purslane as "cold", meaning that it was considered a cure for a "burning" (malfunctioning) heart and liver
• Greeks call it a "blood-cleansing" herb
• In Mexico, Purslane is considered good for diabetics and it is often cooked with pork and tomatillos
• The Chinese us it in Oriental medicine
• The French eat it with fish






Sauteed Purslane with Mushrooms and Tomatoes
Serves 4; gluten-free


4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can of diced tomatoes
2 C. mushrooms, diced
1/2 C. olive oil
1 large bag/bunch of Purslane
2 T. fresh oregano, chopped 
1 lemon, juiced
2 T. fresh basil, chopped 
1 yellow onion, chopped
salt & pepper to taste
tempe, optional
feta cheese, optional

Saute the garlic, onion, and mushrooms in olive oil until translucent. In a large bowl, mix tomatoes, Purslane, lemon juice, basil, and oregano. Add the Purslane mix to the saute pan and salt and pepper to taste.

If desired, saute slices of tempe and then crumble on top along with feta cheese (or just add feta cheese) and serve.

Please be sure you learn to correctly identify Purslane or any wild plant before eating! Spurge (wiry and milky inside if you break open a stem) grows alongside Purslane, looks very similar, and is toxic! 

Bon Appetite!


Sunday, June 17, 2012

Barn Hop #66


Welcome to the Monday Homestead Barn Hop where you're invited to link up your blog with your very best post of the week; something happening at your homestead or something of interest that will help benefit fellow homesteaders. Plus, each of the 3 Homestead Barn Hop hostess selects her favorite post of the week to highlight the following week. So be sure to visit all three blogs because the "Featured Homestead" could be YOURS!


I am SO excited to share this week's Featured Homestead with you! (Do I say that a lot? What can I say... y'all really inspire me!) Quinn of Reformation Acres is one of my favorite bloggers (On Just A Couple of Acres). Her photos are incredible. She's serious about parenting, homesteading, and God. And she's humble. What an awesome combination!

I'm convinced she's a kindred spirit for many reasons. She's always posting something relevant to what I'm currently learning or passionate about. And this week's post is no exception! You'll find her Grain Garden video very interesting and informative since most of us as homesteaders aren't large scale farmers growing huge fields of wheat and other grains. And most of us are new to this kind of thing altogether. Quinn has really inspired me that this might actually be possible on my own land. (Be sure to click HERE to read other posts about her journey to grow grains as well as the link her her Grain Garden post.)











If you've been featured in the past...


If you've been a featured blogger on the Barn Hop, either today or in the past, we now have a special button for you should you wish to add it to your sidebar stating that you've been a featured blogger! You can find it on my button page by clicking the hen with the blue barn on my sidebar that says "HR Buttons". It's a good idea to link it back to the page where you were featured so your readers can see where you're actually mentioned. (These buttons do not have a code since it needs to be linked to the page you're featured in and it will change from week to week. Just copy the button or drag it to your desktop).




Join The Barn Hop!
and Amy @ Homestead Revival...

...invite you to link up and share your homesteading adventures!


Did you share any cool new homesteading tips on your blog this week? If so, we’d love to have you link up below! Even if you don’t have a blog, we always welcome your comments!

Please remember that the Homestead Barn Hop is meant to be a place to share homesteading related encouragement and inspiring ideas specfically related to homesteading. In an effort to keep our weekly round-up clutter free, links which are not specifically homestead related, and any promotions such as giveaways, contests, carnivals, etc, will be deleted in order to maintain the integrity of the Barn Hop. Please remember this is a family friendly link up. Any pictures or posts linked to the hop which aren’t appropriate for our children to view or read will also be deleted immediately. We’re pretty conservative, so we ask that you use good judgment and err on the side of caution. 

Make sure that you link to your Barn Hop post, not your blog’s main page, so your guests won’t have any trouble finding your great tips!

We would also appreciate it if you would link back to the Homestead Barn Hop in the post that you share! Feel free to grab the banner at the top of this post to link back to us with.

Want a chance to be a “Featured Homestead” next week?

Be sure you've included the actual Barn Hop button on your post or sidebar, with a link back to us. Thank you for sharing the message about the Homestead Barn Hop!

Occasionally there is a problem posting due to glitches in the internet or the Linky Tools. If you have difficulties posting and it does not show up immediately, please wait a little while and try re-posting (this helps avoid double posting). We're sorry for any inconvenience this may cause, be we do not have absolute control over the internet. Thank you for your patience and understanding!







Friday, June 15, 2012

Inspiration Friday: Glam For Cans!

There's absolutely no end to the ways you can dress up a canning jar! Truly, the sky is the limit. Here are a few of my favorites that inspire me to put food in jars...

The traditional red gingham cloth with twine and a plain handwritten label never grows old.

Pinterest via Poppy Talk

If you live in the U.K., you could just buy gingham lids at the Preserve Shop.

Preserve Shop






Another traditional variation is the brown kraft paper cover with red and white baker's twine. And check out these DARLING tags from the Cottage Industrialist (love that name!). If you're wanting to host a canning party, they have a link to Paper Crave who is offering this free download for your event!

Cottage Industrialist
Paper Crave
Even muslin will work (or burlap or any other fabric for that matter). Here's a tutorial for getting just the right cut on that fabric...

Domestifluff
If crafting isn't your thing but you want "the look", Mud and Twig's etsy shop has just the tag for you in a variety of designs.

mudandtwig

Something a bit more professional in mind? You can have that, too, with a number of various options.

Flex Doolittle

Thanks to advances in home printing, you can create custom looking labels right in your own kitchen. And without a lot of fuss. Templates are all over the internet! Here's a couple of options that will make you ohhh and ahhh.... no charge.

Elephant Shoe
World Label
And for that VERY special jar, an embossed spoon (you could just put the entire spoon through a ribbon on the side for serving)...

Cute Pink Stuff and More

Too bad I don't live in England... I'd have a new favorite shop! Burgon & Ball labels their jars permanently, but oh so chic! Gets the brain going for ideas, does it not? I wonder if vinyl lettering would wash off or go through the water bath canner?

Burgon & Ball via Garden Center TV


You have to laugh at this one... and appreciate it at the same time. The label really does say it all!

Canning Crafts

How will you dress your jars?



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