Last January, I made a list of 5 Homesteading Goals for 2013. Since the kids will be going back to school tomorrow and I am about to have more time to myself, I decided to revisit those goals, see how it's going, and tackle the ones that I've yet to master.
Here's how it's going:
1. Chickens! - CHECK! The chicken tractor was built, pullets were acquired, one was re-homed when 'she' started crowing, one was nursed back to health after a burst abscess, two more were added to the flock. This goal has been met, and I have loved every minute of it. I seriously cannot imagine ever not having chickens again.
2. Food Preservation: - CHECK! I have been much better this year about preserving foods my family will eat. I made less jam, canned more meat and veggies, dehydrated more fruits. I do want to try my hand at home-canned tuna, so that's in the works. I am continuing to keep records of how much I have put up, as it was such a help to have that information from last year.
3. The Garden: - Work in progress. I was very happy with our spring garden. But the summer garden is another story. My peppers are just now starting to produce. The volunteer tomatoes were so blighted I pulled them up. I am now working on the fall garden, and my green beans, peas, carrots, and kale are coming along nicely. The lettuce hasn't sprouted yet, so I'll have to redo that. I've also decided that instead of the woodchips for mulch, I'm going to try using leaves... but I can't do that until they start to fall. In addition, I want to get the chickens in the garden. I just have to figure out how to make that happen.
4. Meal Planning: - This is what I need to concentrate on. Earlier in the summer, I made a list of all the meals we enjoy that didn't require the oven. That worked well. Now that I can visit the Farmer's Market and grocery stores without kids in tow, I need to start weekly planning.
5. Learn something new. - We learned how to harvest our honey, and I've learned how to crochet scrubbies. I haven't done much with the homemade cheeses like I wanted to, but I did learn how to make penny rugs.
So, it looks like I'll be concentrating on meal planning and the garden in order to reach this year's goals. Overall, not shabby progress.