Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Come in, sit down.

Welcome new readers and old friends, I often post this: Come in, and Sit Down, which means introduce yourself here on the blog by your name and location, and maybe share a little more about yourself as far as homesteading dreams or goals are? If you don't feel comfortable giving your name online, you could always just leave your location and perhaps a suggestion for the blog. It's a way for me to see who I am writing to and say hello. It makes the place a little more friendly on this side, as you know so much about me, but I know so little about you. A simple introduction makes it feel like I'm talking with a group rather than writing to the sky. If you never comment this post is an exception worth making. You might even make a friend or two...

It's also a way for you guys out there to connect with other folks with like interests. If you're sitting in your Sausalito apartment dreaming of mini angus bloodlines and rototillers you might just see another name from Sausalito a few comments down dreaming about coop plans and explaining his container gardens.... and before you know if you've made a farming friend. The internet is great—you'll never hear me say otherwise—but it keeps us inside a little too much. It should be a tool to network and learn from, not a replacement for three dimensional conversations and relationships. (I am talking for myself right now as much as anyone) and by saying hello here you might just spark book clubs and dinner potlucks, meetups and work parties, farm visits and advice, or just someone to grab coffee with in the Philadelphia Barnes & Noble and pour over the new issue of Hobby Farms together while chatting about why your husbands think chickens are ridiculous.

So come on inside, pull up a chair, and say hello.

532 Comments:

Blogger The Mom said...

Hi! My name is Heather and I live in SE Mass. Currently we're in a half a duplex with about 1/3 of an acre. I have a very large garden and 5 hens. We'll be moving in a year or so to a bigger property. I'm very excited to be able to expand our animals and do more to increase our independence.

January 8, 2011 at 7:59 AM  
Blogger Grand Soft Day said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 8:04 AM  
Blogger Grand Soft Day said...

Hi my name is Ariane. I'm from rural Ireland. I'm training to be a goldsmith, love cooking, and have plans for 2012 to grown more of our own food on our 2 and a half acres. Oh and I have four cats! I love your blog and enjoy reading about all the happenings at Cold Antler. I'm trying to blog about my own work on www.metalatwork.com - it's so hard which makes me appreciate the work you put in all the more!

January 8, 2011 at 8:05 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth Ann said...

Good morning,
My name is Elizabeth and I live in Oklahoma, our home is up for sale and hope to move to Idaho this spring. We would like to have some animals and I would like to have a big garden - hope the dirt is better there than here! I design quilts and have a book coming out in the fall. I love your new sheep, would like to have a few!

January 8, 2011 at 8:07 AM  
Blogger Kate said...

I'll do the straight response in a moment, but I've got to ask: "Salsalido?" They *are* fond of Mexican in the bay area, so maybe this is humor...? If not, it's Sausalito, unless of course there's a town somewhere by the name you mention.

I'm suburban homesteading on a sub-acre residential lot, with fruit trees, a big annual garden, hens and bees, and contemplating what other species I might eventually accommodate here. I suspect I'm pretty close to where you grew up, Jenna. I know I'm not far from where you went to university. Anyway, it's a work in progress and very much an adventure.

January 8, 2011 at 8:08 AM  
Blogger angela jiniel said...

I'm Angie from NW Ohio. I live on a fairly small city lot in a very small town (so small my neighbors, who are outside the "city" have cows and chickens and goats. And we have two stoplights!). Since I'm in town, I can't have livestock, but I do garden as much as I can and love to get food from our farm stand. I long for a farm further in the country, but for now, I'm content. My husband and I are expecting our first child this summer and I've just taken up knitting! Once I get the hang of it, I will be getting some Cold Antler wool :)

January 8, 2011 at 8:11 AM  
Blogger Cindy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 8:11 AM  
Blogger Hollins said...

Hi my name is Holly and I live in Charlottesville, Va. I am a teacher, gardener, knitter, cook, mother, and aspiring tender of livestock. I love hearing about the trials and successes of a small farm.

January 8, 2011 at 8:12 AM  
Blogger Jeremy said...

My name is Jeremy (33). My wife and I live on 1/2 acre in Middlebury, Vermont. We use that, along with a low spot that my neighboring farmer does not use, to grow a produce garden, raise laying hens, meat chickens and ducks, and process all our own firewood for heating every winter. I grew up on a dairy farm, and have turned my little rural 1/2 acre into a small farm of its own.

Our next projects are fabricating a solar hot water heater so I can stop using oil completely, building a small hoop house, and erecting a small barn out back for meat pigs.

But the biggest project of all is our first child, due on March 15th!

My advice is one or two projects a year. Its easy to get overwhelmed. :)

January 8, 2011 at 8:12 AM  
Blogger Jenna said...

Kate, HA! I spell checked it, and it was okay! How daft... fixed.

And hello to the rest of you! Ireland and OK in a few minutes, grand!

January 8, 2011 at 8:13 AM  
Blogger Marlies said...

Hi there,my name is Marlies and I currently live in WV. Married with a 90 pound malamute puppy who is just learning how much strength he has!! We have about a half acre with a garden; my husband blessed me with a compost pile and a rain barrel on 2 separate anniversaries. I am a bead artist who tries to make the most of my heritage.

January 8, 2011 at 8:22 AM  
Blogger pedro said...

Peter Janelle
Minneapolis, MN
I would like to raise sheep and other animals on a farm in the upper Midwest or a ranch closer to where I grew up in Colorado. My goal for this year is to start canning.

January 8, 2011 at 8:24 AM  
Blogger Sylvia said...

I am Sylvia from Atlanta, GA. I live on an urban homestead where we raise chickens for meat and eggs, lots of our vegetables and lots of our fruit.
I am hoping to go much further on the veggies and fruit and only buy others from local farmers rather than grocery store.
I love your writing and I love the pictures.

January 8, 2011 at 8:25 AM  
Blogger Lee Ann said...

Hi! My name is Lee Ann, and I am from Fletcher, Vermont (small, small town in Franklin County). We currently have a 1 acre lot, where we have a large veggie garden, flower gardens, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries. We also raise chickens, 21 hens and one crazy mini rooster. And we have 2 cats... and I am currently dreaming of angora bunnies, and/or pygora goats... Needless to say, we need more land! I am excited to increase our independence and teach our children about homesteading skills.

January 8, 2011 at 8:30 AM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

Hi! I'm Stephanie from Beavercreek Ohio. My husband of 18 years and I have four children, three dogs, three cats, and a ferret. We live in the 'burbs, on a big lot. I've always had a self sufficient streak, which is why I like your blog so much. I garden a lot, homeschool two of my kids, enjoy whatever music anyone wants to play for me, and read anything that crosses my hands. I publish an occasional article when I feel I have something that needs to be said, but mostly, we live quietly and happily, watching our kids grow.

January 8, 2011 at 8:33 AM  
Blogger Elsie said...

I am from Charlottesville, Va as well (Hi Holly!). I live on a big lot in the city and we have bees and ducks and a big garden. The city just approved a new ordinance to allow goats so we are planning for two Nigerian Dwarfs to join the Urban Farm sometime this spring. Currently our time is spent planning the goat barn and the garden. We have been trying for years to establish an orchard with very little luck. I acquire yarn WAY faster than I knit and also do a little sewing and a lot of cooking. I started to practice making cheese in preparation for having milking goats.

www.cville-elsie.blogspot.com

January 8, 2011 at 8:36 AM  
Blogger Jill said...

Hello All!

My name is Jill, and I am a 26 year-old public librarian living in Manteno, IL. As an apartment dweller, all I really want for now is to have a real live vegtable garden, but I am limited to container gardening.

I also knit!

January 8, 2011 at 8:37 AM  
Blogger Morning's Minion said...

I'm Sharon, husband and I originally from VT and familiar with your part of Washington County. We farmed for many years, spent 12 years in WY and now retired to KY where it is possible to have a big garden and put up our own healthy food.
Bluegrass music is alive and well here. J. has cousins involved in the southern VT bluegrass scene.

January 8, 2011 at 8:42 AM  
Blogger "Tis the gift to be simple" said...

My name is Denise
I live in Nashville,TN right smack dab in the city..
New to the whole Barnheart but have it bad..
I'm married to a wonderful understanding man.. two grown children and I'm wage slave for now ..

I'm also a Quaker i.e. Society of Friends ( yes we're still around lol and no we don't look like that guy on the oatmeal box lol )
Living by S.P.I.C.E and ES
Simplicity,Peace,Integrity ,Community and Equality .. AND Earth Stewardship

I hand spin .. not good at it yet but getting there..

I quite of few links on my blog some might be interested in ..
Try to post more often there here of late..
http://deniseintn.blogspot.com/

Denise in a very snowy TN

January 8, 2011 at 8:43 AM  
Blogger Kevin and Beth said...

Hi, it's really nice to read about everyone!

I'm Beth, from NE Ohio. (Hi Angela from NW Ohio!) My husband I have five acres with assorted chickens and Narragansett turkeys... a way too big garden with too many weeds last year... fruit trees, grapes, a pond where we raise catfish, and perch, a feedlot for deer, meatbirds in the summer for which we built a Whizbang Chicken Plucker (which I highly recommend for anyone raising meatbirds, google it), we raise Shelties but my most favorite thing is to hatch eggs in my five incubators and then try to figure out what to do with all the extra chickens and turkeys. I also hatch eggs for other people that want to raise babies from their own favorite birds but don't have a broody hen or their own incubator.

I also can and freeze a lot of our food (I have the best Salsa recipe)and I love to bake. We always have kids around, ours as well as their friends and they love the homemade french toast and waffles on the weekends.

Jenna, I would love to see more pictures when you post, always the best! And I'm really interested in your background of traing and showing dogs, would love to hear more about it. Do you have pictures of you in the show ring? So cool.

January 8, 2011 at 8:46 AM  
Blogger Alicea said...

I'm from Hunterdon County, NJ. My husband and I live on .75 acres with our crazy German Shepherd Dog. We have a small but intensive garden and an apple tree. We just got a wood stove installed and look forward to cutting back on oil (and the oil bill!). Our goals for this year are to get a few ducks and start preserving (canning, etc) more of our garden and local produce. I also just took up knitting and am looking forward to producing lots of fun items and in the future maybe selling some at craft shows or on Etsy.

January 8, 2011 at 8:49 AM  
Blogger the canned quilter said...

Hi I am Mickey and better known as the CannedQuilter. I am the mother of 5 and grandmother of 3. I live with my husband on a 72 acre farm in the plains of Central Missouri. I garden extensively and can my own fruits and vegetables. We have chickens for meat and eggs and rabbits for meat. Also turkeys, guineas and 2 dogs, a lab mix and a Scottie. I enjoy quilting and crocheting.

January 8, 2011 at 8:51 AM  
Blogger Tracy said...

Hi! My name is Tracy and I live in Michigan. 29, married stay-home mom to 2 boys (5 and 6). We live on a little over an acre, with chickens and lots of gardens. Might get bees this spring, but a little nervous with the young'uns... thinking about dairy goats because we go through a LOT of dairy products, and I just can't see spending the money when I could make it myself! Love to hunt, read, cook from scratch, knit, spin a little, and read the CAF blog :)

January 8, 2011 at 8:52 AM  
Blogger Zoe Tilley Poster said...

Hi. I'm Zoe, living on a 40x160 lot in Scranton, PA. What isn't house is garden. We've been rehabbing the little Victorian house over the last seven years - created living space upstairs, and a bakery downstairs. My boyfriend is the baker; he makes his living selling at farmers markets. My living is gardening (residential installation and maintenance). I grew up on 10 rural acres, and we hope to move to the country in the next few years. I write and draw and take pictures, too - pearledearth.blogspot.com

Jenna, I just really enjoy your enthusiasm and energy, your animals, and your lovely photos.

January 8, 2011 at 8:55 AM  
Blogger Sarah Rachelle said...

I'm Sarah (30) and I live in Windosr Mill, Maryland. I've been fascinated with homesteading since I was a teenager. I do as much as I can to homestead, even though right now we (my husband and 2 kids) live in a rented townhouse with a tiny yard. I dream of chickens, a walled garden we can eat from, 10 acres, a stone farmhouse and maybe a sheep or two and a pig! My husband shakes his head anytime I mention chickens, but don't worry. He'll come around when I'm cooking all those fresh eggs! :-) I want to live off the land and live more in tune with the seasons.

Right now I cook, can, sew, am a beginning spinner and felter, and love to get my hands in the dirt.
Thanks, Jenna, for sharing your life with us!

January 8, 2011 at 8:57 AM  
Blogger lmel said...

Hi, I'm Lisa, a public librarian living in Maine. We have multiple gardens on our 1/2 acre plot around the home and an off-site parcel big enough to require a tractor. I too, recently returned to the saddle this past spring and love having my first horse at last. Also love bluegrass, a taste I acquire while at college in SW Virginia. Keep on dreaming and following through on those dreams.

January 8, 2011 at 9:05 AM  
Blogger Ann said...

Ann in Michigan. (Hi Tracy!) We live in the burbs on a very small lot. I'd love nothing better than having some land to garden, maybe chickens. Right now its just a dream but I love to read about other folks making their dreams happen. Gives me hope that I can fulfill mine too.

January 8, 2011 at 9:09 AM  
Blogger Crystal said...

I'm Crystal (30, Yikes) mom of five with a little 10 acre farm outside of Gainesville, FL. HeartSong Farms was established in 2009. We currently have 3 Angora rabbits, 18 (soon to be 17...) chickens, 2 milk goats, 2 cats and a Border Collie/Labrador (Borderdor?) puppy Leeloo. Big Plans for 2011 for sure.

January 8, 2011 at 9:10 AM  
Blogger This is our urban farmhouse. said...

Good morning, Jenna --

I'm Kelli and my husband and I live smack dab in the middle of Chicago, IL. We've owned our house for just a year, but have installed raised beds and a large compost bin in our front yard. We're all about transforming our urban farmhouse with the fewest new supplies possible. We hope to get chickens in the spring. I dabble in canning and hope to increase our independence a little each year in the coming years.

January 8, 2011 at 9:11 AM  
Blogger Fresh Eggs Farm said...

Hey! I'm Shelby, from SW Ohio, near Dayton (so hello Stephanie, from Beavercreek).
My husband of nearly 15 years and I have five kids, four cats, a dog and a rat. We currently live in the suburbs but are looking to buy a homestead out in the country (Preble or Darke County?). Our goal is a few goats, chickens, bees, maybe a cow(?). We are working on credit building - and hope to get the dream going within the next 6 months.

January 8, 2011 at 9:12 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Roy said...

I'm in south Georgia enjoying my daily peeks over Jenna's shoulder. Raised on a farm in Tennessee with the last name of Gibson and born on March 16. I'm one of the CSA members and loving my first skein on ColdAntler yarn. I'm going to be checking out Canned Quilter - we seem to have a lot in common.

January 8, 2011 at 9:13 AM  
Blogger Sarah Rachele said...

Hi all! I am 28 year old married mother of three, and I am originally from San Diego, so I am just getting my feet wet with homesteading. There are several Charlottesville folk on here-- which makes me happy! We have a 21 acre farm about an hour south of Charlottesville, and have just gotten guineas and chickens and we have fiber rabbits as well. My husband will begin working on the fencing for goats and hogs any day now(fingers crossed!) I also blog, and love to cook, paint, and crochet, and am working on my Masters in Human Services,but am thinking that I want to be a full time farmer now. I LOVE your blog Jenna, thank you for sharing your life with us. You're an inspiration.:)

teufelhundenfarm.com

January 8, 2011 at 9:15 AM  
Blogger Odie Langley said...

Hi Jenna, I am Odie Langley and live in Halifax, NC which is near the VA border on I95. I am 63 and am a service manager with an office machine dealership that sells and services Canon & Panasonic copiers and fax machine. I have 5 technicians that cover all of eastern NC. I love to cook, travel and blog. I just started back in June of 10 and am blessed to have 55 followers as of this morning. I also love the mountains and your blog is one of the most interesting that I follow and that is the absolute truth.
odie

January 8, 2011 at 9:22 AM  
Blogger Peter said...

Hi, I'm Peter a retired NY city librarian returned to my roots (and the house I grew up in) in NW MA. Live with three dogs (two collies and a small mutt), two cats and two parrots. Not much of a homesteader (do belong to a CSI for veggies and chickens) but love living in the country again.

January 8, 2011 at 9:24 AM  
Blogger Nina said...

Hi, I'm Nina from the South Coast of MA (between RI & Cape Cod along Buzzard's Bay - Hi Heather!!) I live here with John, my long time companion and my two nearly grown children (16 & 19). I have been unemployed since September. Too young to retire and too old to find meaningful work. We rent a falling down house with about 1/2 acre of land. The land appears to have been the dumping ground for glacier boulders from the ice age. I do have 150 sq. ft. garden here and another 400+ sq. ft. at the community garden one house lot away from me. Just started the community plot last year. All I have left from well over 200 pounds of food is garlic and some frozen peppers and green beans. Plan to do a lot more canning & freezing next year. Got three chickens in Nov. Turns out I have two roosters and one hen! By spring I hope to change that to about 4 or 5 hens and no roosters! I've tried my hand at many different fiber crafts but never stick with it. The latest is braided rugs. Once my youngest is out of HS in June 2012 we will hopefully move to a larger place (more land - not more house). I would like to expand the homestead to include bees and maybe Angora rabbits, sheep, and/or goats and lots more chickens!
Love your blog and FB, Jenna. Sometimes this old mamma wants to scold you for taking on more then I think you can handle but you always manage to pull it off (or come to your senses)!

January 8, 2011 at 9:25 AM  
Blogger treehuggers kitchen said...

This is so cool!

I'm Angela, I'm 30 and 4/4 (no! I'm not 31!!!) and I live in Southern Maine with my husband, two young boys (9 and 6), two dogs (one is a red Siberian), two cats and ten laying hens. We live in a rented house on 60+ acres, most of which is forest. Our landlord is fabulous, and allows us to do pretty much what we like on 'our' land. I have been an avid organic gardener for years, but am having a hard time here because the area that the house is built on, has mostly rocky fill for "soil". I had a nice little garden last year, and am hoping to improve the soil quality for this summer. This is our first year with chickens, and for now, have them only for laying purposes. I'm hoping to secure some meat birds in the future. I like to sew, am learning to knit, and pride myself on cooking from scratch. I run a very small baking business from my home (The Treehugger's Kitchen).

Jenna, I love hearing about your day to day life on the farm, your trials and tribulations with the sheep, and really enjoy your beautiful photography. I would love to hear more about cooking and recipes.

January 8, 2011 at 9:26 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Hi, I'm Laura, living in Lubbock, Texas. We are avid gardeners, recyclers (love making things like furniture from old wood) and aspire to have our own chickens come spring. Right in the middle of our subdivision.

January 8, 2011 at 9:34 AM  
Blogger CallieK said...

Hi I'm Heather and I live in an apartment in Toronto, Canada with my partner, the Russian dancer, and our three cats. I garden everywhere there's space- in my tiny backyard plot, on the neighbour's roof and in friends' backyards. I can anything that can go in a hot water bath canner, as well as teaching others how to can. I hope to start pressure canning this year. The Russian and I are also hoping to acquire some land of our own soon but but we're not sure whether that will be in the city (high prices for very little house and less land but accessible to everything) or more rural where we'd get more bang for our buck but would be forced to buy a car. For now food animals are on hold until we decide what's next, although I'm looking at quail as a possibility for city raising until chickens become legal.

I blog here
http://backyardfarmsto.blogspot.com/

January 8, 2011 at 9:37 AM  
Blogger Hound Doggy said...

HI. I'm Lesley (40) and live in Missouri. I'm in town but have some strawberries, blueberries, one wiley blackberry and a peach tree. Most of these are just a year old...so maybe this year I'll have a better crop. I usually put in some tomatos and green beans. This year I'll try some cotton just for fun.
Cats and dogs are also part of it. And the abundant wildlife. Just saw a bobcat for the first time the other day.

January 8, 2011 at 9:42 AM  
OpenID breezehillfarm.net said...

Good Morning! I am MaLinda and I love in Powhatan, VA. My husband Moe and I own Breeze Hill Farm where we have raised a spinners flock of sheep since 1994..we also have dairy goats, a Llama and 7 working Border Collies. When I'm not farming, I am a Co-op Chef..taking all local meats, veggies, grains..value adding by preparing complete meals for members to purchase. Also, I teach spinning and knitting classes here at the farm.

January 8, 2011 at 9:43 AM  
Blogger el said...

H, I'm El. I live in semi-rural Wales (UK) and have grow veg, fruit and herbs in a small back garden - am still learning but am already hooked. Have a Welsh collie who gets to see lots and lots of sheep but not herd them! Would like to have chickens and bees in the future. Really enjoy hearing about your adventures. Would like to hear more about your garden and love hearing about the dog.

January 8, 2011 at 9:45 AM  
Blogger PenelopeRose said...

Hi, I'm Tracy from Northern Utah. My husband and I have a couple of llamas, alpacas, goats and a few angora bunnies. Oh and I can't forget the chickens. Love the chickens. Our dream is to add some Leicester sheep to our harry family. Right now I'm all things fiber. Hoping to move soon so we can get settled and have a garden. Love your blog, you are such an inspiration!

January 8, 2011 at 9:45 AM  
Blogger Flartus said...

My name is Alison, and I live on 1/4 acre in Suburbia, NC (otherwise known as Charlotte). We have a small garden, plus berry bushes, herbs and a new fig tree. We volunteer at the truly local farmers' market across town.

I grew up in the country raising chickens and rabbits, and would like to raise chickens again...but between HOA rules and both of us working 2 jobs, I'm going to have to be very patient about that.

January 8, 2011 at 9:45 AM  
Blogger Liz said...

I'm Liz, I live in a rented house with two roommates in Des Moines, IA. Our landlord allows us to garden, and I've gotten into canning (thanks grandma!) I'd love to have sheep and chickens someday, but somehow I doubt that even if the city allows chickens (currently they don't) that my landlord would be too crazy about it. So for now a lot of dreaming on what to do when I have more money saved up, or a husband to make have a crazy farm adventure..

January 8, 2011 at 9:49 AM  
Blogger Tobi said...

I'm Tobi and I live in rural CT. I knit, quilt, ski, play the cello, and have a boring corporate job that allows me to do all of the above. I used to quilt professionally. You can see my work at my quilt site: www.quilteddimensions.com, and other projects on my woefully out-of-date blog: quilteddimensions.blogspot.com. I always have some sort of creative project in progress. Right now, it's mittens and a scarf knitted from my Cold Antler Farm wool. (thanks, Maude!)

My husband and I will likely retire to Vermont, where he has had family since before the Revolutionary war. We have one, large Maine Coon cat named Jack Sparrow.

January 8, 2011 at 9:53 AM  
Blogger Mimi's Tapawingo said...

Hello: My name is Bernadette and my husband and I live in South Central PA (beautiful place to live by the way). Wouldn't be a happy girl without the change of seasons. We have lived here on an acre of land for the last 43 years). Raised our 4 children here and have given them roots. We are up in age now and have done it all. Raised the children, chickens, rabbits, and other animals of all sizes. We still have large gardens and I have a stocked larder. We could exist and feed our family for about a year. Love to can, dehydrate and freeze everything from our summer gardens. I love to read about how our youth (all of you) are handling yourselves and am enjoying all the tidbits from your lives. If we don't have our dreams, we have nothing.

January 8, 2011 at 9:54 AM  
Blogger Tracey said...

I'm Tracey. I'm 28 and I live in Rochester, NY with my husband, Joe and lazy hound dog, Charlie.

Jenna, your book was one of my early inspirations for becoming more self-sufficient and living more simply. In the past couple of years I have learned to compost, knit (which I don't do enough of), bake bread, and garden. It is all still a work in progress. Last year the tomatoes took over the whole garden and nothing else grew.

My most recent project is learning to play the acoustic guitar. My aspirations are to one day have chickens and to actually have a legitimate garden that grows enough food for me to do some canning. In the mean time, I keep tinkering and learning, and we buy as much of our food as possible from local farmers.

January 8, 2011 at 9:56 AM  
Blogger Michaele said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 10:01 AM  
Blogger Justin and Lori said...

Hi my name is Lori, I live in central Kentucky and am 28 years old. I am new at homesteading, but I am trying to learn as much as possible. We have a small house with an even smaller backyard but we are going to do as much as we can with the space we have. I am wanting to learn how to sew and cook more things from scratch.

January 8, 2011 at 10:02 AM  
Blogger Geraldine McIntosh said...

Hello! My name is Geraldine. I'm 29 years old, originally from Juneau, Alaska, and currently living in Lexington, KY. I'm attending the University of Kentucky where I'm working on a degree in Sustainable Agriculture. I'm also trying my hand at some urban homesteading, starting a bigger vegetable garden this year, learning to knit and sew. I'd love to have a couple of chickens as well, but am not sure they'd get along with the dog. My dream is to be an organic farmer and to live as self-sufficiently as possible.

I enjoy reading your blog and will look forward to hearing about your spring adventures!

January 8, 2011 at 10:08 AM  
Blogger Gelfling said...

Good Morning! I'm Gelfling, from right outside Philadelphia, PA. I'm a registered nurse and fire performer currently living in a small urban apartment with my fiance, our three cats, our pet skunk, and 11 chickens. We have a small vegetable and herb garden dug in the backyard, and a prolific fig tree! Our dream is to have a place of our own where we can raise a couple of sheep and goats, grow most of our own food and find true independence and freedom. Today we are driving out in the snow a bit further west to check out an old log cabin turned farmhouse with a barn and greenhouse on five acres... hoping that by the Spring we'll be digging in our very own orchard! I blog about our exploits at http://thewolfsdenblog.blogspot.com, and I love reading about all the different personalities on your farm, human and animal alike.

January 8, 2011 at 10:11 AM  
Blogger Nancy said...

Hi everyone! My name is Nancy and I'm a NYC teacher. My partner and I bought a small farm in Lewis, NY (not far from Essex Farm, actually) a few years back and last year we moved up there while I was on sabbatical. Things just took off! We now have 36 chickens, a heifer, steer, and 3 alpine dairy goats who will be freshening in March! It was a hard decision to begin the farming venture when I was going to have to come back to the city to pay back my debt of time for the sabbatical (2 school years), but it was worth it. My partner lives up there full time and I commute on weekends and vacations. So I guess I'm now city AND country folk! Next on the agenda are sheep and a bigger vegetable garden.
Thanks for asking ....

January 8, 2011 at 10:13 AM  
OpenID galiyah said...

Hi! I'm Cassandra. I live in NE OK with my husband and 2 sons. We have a big back yard where we grow veggies, apples, nectarines and blackberries. Someday we'd like to move somewhere we can have some livestock. I also work as an archaeologist and homeschool my boys. Makes for a busy life!

January 8, 2011 at 10:13 AM  
Blogger Miss Darla said...

Hi, I'm Darlene and I'm from just outside of Boston, Mass. I probably found this blog because I knit, crochet and spin, and am always looking at knitting blogs. I keep visiting because I am interested in seeing how you do with your little farm, and you seem like a nice, genuine person and someone who I could be friends with.

January 8, 2011 at 10:13 AM  
Blogger Building A Better Life said...

Hello I'm Beth. I live in Fort Wayne, IN, with my 11yo son and lovable, hole-digging 2yo black lab/rottie mix. Unfortunately, the city doesn't allow livestock, and I live on less than 1/4 acre and believe children should have room to explore so...

I'm looking to relocate to a nice parcel in the midwest/north midwest in the next couple of years. I have relatives in MO, WI and MN, and will consider anything within a few hundred miles of either state. (Or northern IN.) I would love to have chickens, bees, rabbits, goats for milk and am not quite sure about sheep yet. Also a pig or two eventually for meat. My parents lived a pretty self-sufficient life, and I'm hoping to do the same but also be completely independent of the utility companies.

Oh, and I'm single. Not sure if I ever want to be attached again. It sure is handy to have a guy around sometimes though lol.

Jenna, I love your blog. I would love to hear more about specifics - how much you feed your livestock, what you stock in case of emergencies, etc. AND - where do you get your energy??!? If you could bottle and sell it, I would buy some. :)

January 8, 2011 at 10:13 AM  
Blogger Kuhns Acres said...

Hello, my name is Shelly and I live in Southeast Colorado. We have an acre of land with a medium sized garden,12 fruit trees, grapes and hopes of talking my husband into some chickens soon. We share our lives with one 14 year old miniture schznauser and two 9 month old Saint Bernards.

January 8, 2011 at 10:15 AM  
Blogger ELS said...

Hi Jenna! My name is Erika and I live in Steuben county NY. I have a horse, 5 laying hens/pets, a bunch of cats, a husband and a 6 year old daughter. We live out in the country on 6 acres and I am always looking for ways to get us eating healthier and closer to home.

I love your writing, yours is the first blog I check in my reader. Thanks so much for sharing your adventure with us.

January 8, 2011 at 10:15 AM  
Blogger miss lady*cakes said...

I'm Kendra, I'm a 27 yr old single gal in San Francisco. I'm currently in art school for my Masters in Sculpture(after receiving my BA in Music Marketing & signing over my flagship band to bigger management), living and crafting out of a tiny beach-side studio (really a converted garage).
I recently had a homesteading revelatoion, and it left my Barnheart bleeding. I am so new to all of it, but so in LOVE with it (even if I can't seem to keep rosemary alive). I could use some words of wisdom about even the most basic things (how often am I supposed to water that darned rosemary anyhow?), which is one of the many reasons I follow Jenna.

Pleased to make your acquaintance.

January 8, 2011 at 10:20 AM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Hello! I'm Jennifer (29) in Canada. My husband and I currently rent in the city, so I'm dreaming of the day we can have goats (meat/fibre) and chickens/quail. Right now we have a community garden plot and a container garden. We can and preserve everything possible, and my husband hunts. I've been interested in homesteading since I was little, but have only been serious about it in the last few years. Kudos to you for jumping in!

January 8, 2011 at 10:21 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

I'm Liz, 25, from mid-Missouri. The Husband and I live in an apartment with our cat, and all the outdoor growing space we have is 36 sq. feet that gets a lot of shade. My passion is for food and needle arts. I have been knitting and sewing for about twenty years, and have been playing with gardening for about fifteen, and baking seriously for about five. We only buy baked goods when I have no time whatsoever and are in desperate need of bread. Other than that, all the bread, muffins, cookies, and cakes in this house come out of my oven. I also just started playing with canning (from pick-it-yourself operations) this past summer.

In the next year and a half, we are planning a cross-country move up to the Pacific Northwest so that The Husband can advance in his career and I can go to baking school. The closest school is about 150 miles from here anyway, so we figured if we have to move we might as well move to exactly where we want to be. I hope to be able to grow more of our food there as well, since community gardens are more popular out there than they are here.

Your writing style is so passionate and your stories are heartfelt - that is why I read the blog. It is an inspiration to do more of what I can with what I have everyday.

January 8, 2011 at 10:22 AM  
Blogger hippychick said...

Hi, I'm Cathy and live in central PA. My husband and I have a house on a third acre and right now HOA rules prevent us from having any farm animals. I have a modest garden and freeze and can, but dream of having chickens (just for laying), bees, and goats (for cheese and soap). I love your blog and read your first book, and love seeing how far you have come in just a little time!

January 8, 2011 at 10:24 AM  
OpenID littlerockyridgebarn said...

I'm Autumn (15) and I live in Centre County, Pennsylvania. I take care of 1 goat and 2 rabbits, knit, crochet, bake, cook (just a little), and experiment in sewing and embroidery. (I make m&p soap as well) I write a blog called Barn Talk (littlerockyridgebarn.wordpress.com)in which I talk about raising my animals and my hopes and dreams to one day have a farmstead. When I grow up I want to be a teacher of Home Economics and have that farmstead on the side.

I really enjoy reading the CAF Blog. I am particularly interested in the chickens, but alas, I cannot go to the Chicken workshop or even a little knitty group!

-Autumn

January 8, 2011 at 10:25 AM  
Blogger buckandsteph said...

Hi I'm Stephanie from Toledo, Ohio. I'm a city girl, married with 2 kids(14 and 11) a dog and a cat that adopted us. Backyard gardening, canning, and cooking are my favorites. Have read your blog since the beginning and read Made From Scratch when it first came out. Keep up the great work!

January 8, 2011 at 10:25 AM  
Blogger ddu said...

Greetings all. I'm Donna from Piedmont NC (Hi, Alison!). I have big sustainability dreams but absolutely no support from my family, who believe I have fallen off the edge of lunatic canyon. I'm always looking for the "teachable moment" with them. Jenna, I enjoy reading your reflections on life at Cold Antler (your recent post on gratitude, for example), and I like photos of Gibson, who reminds me that even the most adorable among us has a lot to learn every single day. Best wishes!

January 8, 2011 at 10:26 AM  
Blogger LMC said...

Hiya, I'm Laura, 23, from just south of the twin cities, MN (Hi, Peter!). Living in an apartment that gets no direct sunlight, hence my very sad container herbs. Spending time teaching preschool, starting school to be a librarian, and dreaming of my someday farm. Love your blog, Jenna!

January 8, 2011 at 10:28 AM  
Blogger CJ said...

CJ (47) Stamford, Vt live on the same 10 acre homestead I grew up. Over the years we've had just about every traditional farm animal. Currently have horses (1 Belgian Draft, 1 QH), pigs, chickens. I sell organic vegetable seedlings (starting the move to heirlooms this year), eggs, raise pigs for others, make maple syrup, have 1000's of sq feet in various type gardens, and have a large (for our size farm) composting operation. I've built two greenhouse (1 at a time) out of nothing but recycled materials from our recycling center. I use heat from the compost pile to heat it when necessary. Computer programmer in my other life.

January 8, 2011 at 10:28 AM  
Blogger Janessa said...

Hi, I'm Jan and I live in the suburbs of Kansas City, MO. Just bought a five bedroom, three bath foreclosure that we are getting ready to totally remodel on a big lot with plenty of space for a large garden and I'm hoping for some blueberries, blackberries and maybe a fruit tree or two. I also have a large farm in north Missouri that we rent the land on and go for vacations and fishing and such but the hubby isn't ready to move and leave the city just yet. :) Last year I did some small raised garden beds with the kids and they loved it. I also love sewing, knitting, scrapbooking and photography.

January 8, 2011 at 10:29 AM  
Blogger Dani said...

Hi Jenna

I'm Dani. I'm 57 and live in Cape Town, South Africa.

My husband and I bought a completely empty (and at the time, completely over grazed) 5 acre plot in 2008 2 1/2 hours from where we live and we are currently errecting an eco-friendly house on it as well as starting a "fruit tree" farm.

I'm very into growing my own vegetables (and look forward to plenty space on our plot to do MUCH more of that) and hope to have a couple of chickens too. My husband wants ducks - but our new dam won't hold water yet :-)

I sleep / breathe / live to learn more and more eco-friendly ways of treating and walking on this beautiful planet of ours.

I am also into solar cooking - free energy from the sun - why waste it???

I have charted our course firstly on: http://www.ecofootprint.co.za and then the progress on http://ecofootprintsa.blogspot.com

Love reading about all the goings-on on Cold Antler Farm :-)

January 8, 2011 at 10:30 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Hi, I'm Elizabeth (26) and I live on 17 acres at my parents house in central Louisiana. I've recently realized just how afflicted I am with Barnheart. Last summer found me frantically building raised beds and a chicken coop. It was happy day when my chickens moved in. :)

I'm enlarging all of my gardening this year, taking advantage of all local produce opportunities, canning lots and beginning clearing land for my future dairy goats. Need some Nubians in a really bad way.

January 8, 2011 at 10:34 AM  
Blogger sahmeam said...

Hello! My name is Elizabeth (34) and I live in Parkersburg, WV with my sweetheart, two home-schooled girlies, and a crazy dog and cat. We live outside of the box in a smallish city that's still a bit too urban for our tastes, but we have hopes of moving outside of town, where can we see more trees than cars, and continue working towards a more self-sustaining lifestyle. I've been lurking around this blog since I first read Made from Scratch a couple of years ago, and have been smitten with Cold Antler (and Jenna!) ever since. Currently we cook and bake from scratch, purchase vintage and thrifted as much as we can, raise a small garden and participate in local CSA, knit and diy. I'm looking forward to the day we can legally put Chick Days to use, too!

January 8, 2011 at 10:41 AM  
Blogger Duck said...

Howdy! I'm a young adult that lives in Northern NY (not Upstate, it's higher up than that!) on about four or so acres. The dirt is sandy and sadly lacking in nutrients, but the garden does better with the addition of compost and manure. I started this whole farming adventure when I got nine ducks and a goose. From there I went to having chickens, turkeys (none now though), English Spot rabbits, and finally, my ultimate dream, GOATS!! I got two percentage Boers June 2010 and then got a Nubian mix doe, and another Nubian/Boer mix doe.
Currently working towards getting meat rabbits, meat chickens & turkeys, a calf, maybe a pig or two, and getting a bigger barn up so the meat production aspects can increase. There's a lot of people around here that are looking for locally grown meat (and goat tastes good!). Recently I helped butcher my Boer buck on-site, and got some meat off him. Poor guy, I miss him. :(
But with nowhere to keep a buck, it had to be done. Sooner or later (preferably sooner, lol) there will be a buck pen.

I have two dogs and two cats, along with a ten gallon fish tank that's cycling. Hoping to have my first planted aquarium soon.
I knit, bake bread, have a sewing machine (I can't sew very well though!), try to can and preserve foods (jerky and pickled beets... mmm), and also read Mother Earth News.
I hope to move to more acreage, have a tiny house (maybe off-grid, wood-heated?), hay fields, gardens that will actually grow, an orchard, maybe a pond... Grass-based of course. :)
Needless to say I'm a big dreamer.

January 8, 2011 at 10:50 AM  
Blogger Aranea said...

Hi, my name is Kim (almsot 28) and I live Kitchener, Ontario. We live in a small apartment, but the future holds more home grown food and possibly animals ( I have always had the urge for alpaca for some reason....). I work with books all day and when I'm not working I am either working on finishing my Anthropology/archaeology degrees or crocheting. I plan to learn to knit this winter.

I'd love to see more recipes, I love to make (bake especially) things from scratch. More music would be awesome as well (I'm originally from the south) and always happy to find more good music that reminds me of everything bright sunny and warm and leads to more plans for what I can do now and what I can do later.

January 8, 2011 at 10:50 AM  
OpenID Melina said...

Melina I live in the Hudson Valley. I studied design in college and teach college level design. I love to cook, plant, write, photograph, and make mittens. I'm married to Robert who is a landscaper.Together we are young farmers looking to start a CSA this year. It will be veggies, herbs and flowers. We hope to expand with chickens, a pig, bees....I'd love to learn more about beekeeping and chickens. Our neighbor gave us our first beehive. I had been keeping a blog of my experiences but it had to be put on hold. I was very sad that this happened. I plan to start it again very soon. I love Cold Antler Farm and that you blog about this place. I read it everyday and tell my husband all about it. I know that our future is in mini farming and designing a sustainable community.

January 8, 2011 at 10:50 AM  
Blogger ward said...

ward
42
Hurdle Mills, NC

We have a veg garden, 6 laying hens, a guinea named Lonely, a dog named Gertie, and two kittens, Miney and Mo.

We plan to start selling a little veg at the farmer's market this year and slowly (slower than you Jenna) build a small farm growing veg, raising and processing pasture chicken and get some more laying hens for to sell the eggs. We have yet to reveal the name of our farm to be so stay tuned.

Jenna, I have read the book you suggested, Joel Salatin's, "You Can Farm." Very positive and inspiring. I am now taking an 8 week workshop on starting our operation. Thanks for the advise and encouragement.

Here is the blog for our house reno and garden, www.ncwards.blogspot.com. Evelyn is a potter (www.evelynwardpottery.com) and produces functional soda fired pottery for your kitchen & hearth (yeah, shameless plug.)

I also play a little folk-punk to "pound the problem" and get things off my chest. Since "pounding the problem" doesn't solve anything, we are trying to "live the solution."

Peace y'all.,
ward

January 8, 2011 at 10:52 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Hi, I'm Lisa and I'm in Frankfort, Indiana (Hi Beth!). We live on 4 acres and have sheep, alpacas, chickens, turkeys, ducks and an ornery mini donkey along with the usual dogs and cats. I also work full time, go to school, and sleep when I can fit it in. We're working on our orchard, and looking forward to milk goats in the spring. I'm currently trying to talk my husband into a cow for the front pasture....

January 8, 2011 at 10:52 AM  
Blogger Elaine said...

Hi, I am Elaine and I am from the southern tier of NY. We(my partner of 30 years) have 40 acres, but a lot of it is wooded. We have been growing, canning and developing "Back Achres" for a little over 30 years. We have raised ducks, but have cut back as we have gotten older. I read Jenna's posts out loud each morning so we can both enjoy them together. It is great to see the next generation discovering the joys of this life. Keep up the good work.

January 8, 2011 at 10:53 AM  
Blogger USMCmom said...

Hi, I'm Pam. Raised in Colorado, met my hubby in Alaska, living in So. Maine for past 15 years. Mother of 3 young adults, one of whom served in USMC in Iraq and Afghanistan. Your blog, Jenna, was a source of peace during some worrisome times. We live on 1/2 acre in a small town but too many trees for much gardening and hate to cut them down. Will be getting some chicks this spring and trying to figure out if neighbors would accept two Southdown Babydoll minis. I have always practiced the frugal arts and enjoy living a "rich" a life on as little as possible. I love reading about your day-to-day happenings Jenna. Also enjoy ideas you pass along (mason-aides, etc.). Have a soft spot for Maude and feel Joseph gets left out of the limelight a lot. Thanks for your blog which brightens my days.

January 8, 2011 at 11:01 AM  
Blogger Axeboy said...

I’m Brett, (30) living in the northern Adirondacks of New York. I live on a dozen acres in an 800 sq. ft. cabin that I built over the last six years. Given that winters are fairly harsh here, the winter livestock is limited to a couple dozen chickens and a handsome black lab (he’s quite a musher). Speaking of spring, I have a 100 tap sugaring operation which is the highlight of mud season for me. This morning I began clearing the back pasture for the hopeful arrival of a couple Scottish Highlanders this summer. My day job is as a forestry professor at Paul Smith’s College. In summer I also run the Adirondack Woodsmen’s School which teaches traditional woods skills- from canoe building to horse logging.

January 8, 2011 at 11:01 AM  
Blogger Kalee said...

I'm Kalee from Idaho. I help take care of the chickens/organic garden on my college campus. I've been container gardening in dorms and rentals and I have big plans for my first piece of land. I'm taking a couple years off to serve a Church mission in Peru, then I'm going to come back and order some seeds and some chickens of my own.

Your blog brightens my day. Thanks, Jenna.

January 8, 2011 at 11:07 AM  
Blogger Nicole said...

Hi Everone! I'm Nicole (29) and I live just outside of Guelph, Ontario, Canada (Hi Kim, in Kitchener!) My partner and I recently bought a home that sits on 11 acres. We have five beehives and hope to get some laying hens in the spring, in addition to getting our vegetable gardens established. I am also an avid knitter, spinner, and weaver. Down the road, we hope to acquire some fiber animals (likely some sheep and alpaca). We are both so excited to have more room to grow, having come from a townhouse in the city for the past five years.

January 8, 2011 at 11:07 AM  
Blogger Chestnut Farm said...

Hi, I'm Julie and live in Douglassville, PA. Working toward a sustainable life. Very grateful for my 4 acre world, an incredible husband, 15 laying hens, racing pigeons, Layla the yellow lab, cottage perennial garden and (2) 50 x 20 vegetable and berry bush plots. Love cooking, baking, gardening, canning, freezing and working on my family fact/cookbook. Teaching myself to knit too. I enjoy selling our eggs and meeting the people it brings to our home. Goal is to have a produce/bakery stand on our property and make that perfect loaf of bread. (And just maybe goats or an angus or two). Happy Homesteading all!

January 8, 2011 at 11:11 AM  
Blogger Affi'enia said...

Hey There. I'm Affienia from Yorksire, UK. I work a standard 9-5 job but volunteer at a farm on Saturdays. I knit, sew, am learning to spin, bake bread, grow fruit and vegetables and preserve as much food as I can. I'm hoping to move to Frace, where is is much easier to buy land and build on it, to set up a homestead with my DB. We have 4 chickens which just started laying today!

January 8, 2011 at 11:11 AM  
Blogger Anna said...

I'm Anna. I recently moved to St Paul MN with my husband. We rent and have no land, but I try to make most of our food from scratch, do lots of canning and preserving and have a small business sewing useful things like aprons and bags. I hope to eventually have a small place to grow our food and have a few animals. In the meantime I'm trying to do as much apartment homesteading as I can.

I write about a lot of my homemade activities on my blog and aspire to do more. Its always interesting to read about the activities at Cold Antler Farm, thanks Jenna!

January 8, 2011 at 11:13 AM  
Blogger Heather said...

Hello there!~
I'm Heather and I'm from Oklahoma :) I live in a 'little house on the prairie' where I have various little animals including a dog, cat, two rabbits who just had a little of kits and of course my 3 year old daughter and a husband ;) I work out of my home studio as a folk artist. I dream of one day having a farm with some small animals like goats and sheep. I'd love to raise my own wool and yarn :)

January 8, 2011 at 11:14 AM  
Blogger Amy McPherson Sirk said...

Hi Jenna. Hi everyone, nice to meet you all. I'm Amy. I'm 47 and I have a Not-So-Urban Farm in Southeast Missouri. I grow most of what we eat and I supply 8 families through a CSA. I'm also a full time agriculture major (I'm that OLD lady in the classroom). I have two kids, one away at college, 18 laying hens and a roo, way too many rescued cats and a couple of rabbits. We're considering adding bees this year but the goats will have to wait for better fences.

January 8, 2011 at 11:25 AM  
Blogger Amanda Hanley said...

Hi everyone! I'm Amanda, I'm 27, and this spring my husband and I are moving our market garden from Rutland, VT to the Berkshire Hills in Western MA. I grew up in the Berkshires, so I'm excited to be taking my small farm dream home with me.

Jenna, your blog is one of the few that I read every day. I like that I find my own experienced mirrored there, but I also like that I don't always agree with you. You write honestly, and that gives me the opportunity to wonder what I would do in your shoes, which is a big part of what memoir ought to do. That and tell a good story, and you've clearly got that part down!

Also, I grew up with Sibes, and now my parents foster and screen applications for rescued Sibes and Mals, so I love reading about Jazz and Annie. Thanks for writing!

January 8, 2011 at 11:32 AM  
Blogger Slice of life said...

Hello, I am Sol and I am 30. I live in Wiltshire, England not far from Stonehenge.

We sold our house and are currently in rented accomodation whilst looking for a small house with about 4 acres, (that is in our price range).

I have suffered with 'Barnheart', for 10 years. It leads to much time spent day dreaming. I refer to it as planning, that way it cant be classed as a waste of time.

I would love to see more of the workings of your house and farm, pictures. Maybe a quickly scribbled map so we can imagine where you are in conjunction to your house etc.

Will you be painting anymore pictures to sell? I would love a chicken water colour

January 8, 2011 at 11:37 AM  
Blogger Renee said...

Hi! I am Renee and we live right smack dab in the middle of the Michigan mitt. Hubby and I have 5 homeschooled kids. We raise chickens, heritage breed turkeys, and a small herd of angora rabbits. At the end of the month my dream of having goats will be coming a reality as we add 3 pygora goats to our farm!! I have a small fiber/yarn business and love spinning, crocheting and knitting. We have a large garden and I try to can everything we get our hands on. We have fruit trees also. I love to bake and cook most of our food from scratch. I hope that I will be able to increase my fiber business in 2011. The name of my blog is www.tailspinfarm.blogspot.com

January 8, 2011 at 11:38 AM  
Blogger Sage said...

Hi everyone!
I'm Sage (31) and I live in Western Mass. on a half acre. I have been working to change the laws in my town to allow chickens in certain zoning districts (long process!), and this spring I will be getting with 3 hens. My husband and I also signed up for beekeeping classes, and plan to get a hive up and running this spring as well. I now have flower, fruit and vegetable gardens and dreams of pastures dotted with sheep and goats.

January 8, 2011 at 11:41 AM  
Blogger Ducky said...

I'm Renee from Lynnwood, WA. Working toward buying my own little place, rather than the condo I'm in currently. The housing market here isn't helping that along.

This year, I'm planning on learning to make homemade cheese and soap, continuing to build sustainable skills one at a time.

I wish I was closer so I could attend your knitting circle, I've been looking for one near me.

January 8, 2011 at 11:43 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Hello Everyone. Just came to this blog spot via Hitbyafarm bolg. My spouse loves the farm life and bought a place in NE PA (Susquehanna County). Since the youngest is leaving for college, we will be relocating up there. Looking forward to the adventure and enjoy reading about farm /homesteading so I can learn and prepare myself for this new life. Currently live in the suburbs of Philly (with a really big garden), three cats and a lab/shepard lug of a dog. The farm currently has a tenant with cows and chickens. Thank you Jenna for introducing everyone.

January 8, 2011 at 11:46 AM  
Blogger Gail said...

Hey Jenna, Gail (60), Independence, MO (Hi Jan). I love reading you blog! I've wanted to do what you are doing for so long, I tell people I must have been extraordinarily happy as the wife of a subsistence farmer in a former life! I do some gardening and canning and would love to have chickens (my town doesn't allow them.) I also knit, sew, quilt and read. I consider myself a historian as well. Hoping to move out of here to a more rural area in the next two years, haven't decided just where! Don't stop writing.

January 8, 2011 at 11:47 AM  
Blogger Miss Music said...

My name is Barb, and I live in a western suburb of Chicago on a lovely 1/3 acre lot. I have a few fruit trees and an ever-growing garden. I love growing things, cooking, knitting, sewing, reading, and playing many musical instruments, including the banjo. My day job is teaching music in a public school. Some day, I would like to retire to someplace warmer and have a little bigger piece of land to play in the dirt on.

January 8, 2011 at 11:52 AM  
Blogger Kitchen Mama said...

Hi Jenna. My name is Arienne and I live in southeast Washington State. I homeschool my two kids, take care of our cats, dog, and 5 chickens, knit, bake, obsess about food equality in the US and world, and love reading about your life. My whole family now knows who I'm talking about when I say, "Guess what Jenna did?"

January 8, 2011 at 11:54 AM  
Blogger damnyankee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 11:55 AM  
Blogger damnyankee said...

Hi! I’m Cathy (54). I live in rural East Texas. I moved here from Queens, NY twenty years ago. I followed my parents here when they retired. It was quite a culture shock but eventually I succumbed to country life. I love to garden, can/freeze and play in the dirt. This past year I was into jellies and jams. It all started with a large bag of wild plums my friend gave me. I also love, love, love to grow flowers, any kind, especially roses. I planted 8 to 10 rose bushes last year. I also love sunflowers and herbs and always incorporate them throughout in my garden. I give away a lot of my produce to my friends at our local YMCA which I’m an avid member. We did raise registered quarter horses, but sold the last of our mares to very good homes a few months ago. We still have our stud, Geronimo, a line back dun, who is 16 years old. He’s a great horse. Never mind what you may hear about stud horses, he’s a gentle giant. My husband of soon to be 17 years raises cattle now. We have Brahmanas and Angus and a mix of both. The calves produced are F1's/Tiger Stripes and Black Baldies. I also love to cook, bake, and take photos of our life. We have three dogs, poodle/bichon cross, a Chihuahua, and a Rottweiler cross who was rescued from the roadside of I-35 in July, three cats, one who turned 18 in October! I would love to have some chickens, geese, and guinea foul. I’m working on the husband, he says they bring too many other critters. I say, the more the merrier. We are lucky enough to still have both of our mothers and they live on our place of 10 acres and we have another 50 acres down the road a piece. We also lease 160 acres of beautiful land for cattle about 15 miles away from our home. My husband cuts and bales his own hay for our stock and sells hay to help supplement his costs. Occasionally we do sell a steer here and there at auction, but for the most part we are still building up our own herd. We recently sold two bulls one which I bottle fed from birth. Talk about a large pet. Rambo has no fear of humans and tries to climb in your back pocket. Not fun. I love hearing about your life and trials at Coldantler. I discovered you through a piece you had written for Paste Magazine. I find it absolutely amazing that there are so many 20somethings that are interested in this way of life. I drag my mom away from what ever she’s doing into my office to the computer and bring up your blog for her to read. She’s a big fan also. She was born and raised on a working farm and work they did. I feel fortunate to have such an aficionado of farm life at my disposal. She’s my personal encyclopedia of farm knowledge. I blog about our life through the eyes of my two spoiled dogs: http://theillies.blogspot.com/

January 8, 2011 at 11:55 AM  
Blogger damnyankee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 11:55 AM  
Blogger Pearl said...

Hi Jenna, My name is Pearl and I live in Arizona. You are living the life I always wanted to, but never did. I love the openess with which you write about your life as you are building your farm.

January 8, 2011 at 11:59 AM  
Blogger rjswaney said...

Hi, Jenna,
This is Ronda in Raleigh, NC. I'm a writer and I read your blog because I flat out love your writing. I also admire your tenacity and way of life. I know full well that it's not a lifestyle I'll ever fall in love with, but I definitely admire it from afar.

And I think it's awesome what a wonderfully diverse community you've gathered here.

January 8, 2011 at 11:59 AM  
Blogger Cindy said...

Love your blog! I enjoy art, knitting and crochet, gardening, raising backyard chickens for eggs, and blogging.

I'm a wife, mother, homemaker, and a cancer survivor. I'm living with lupus and fibromyalgia and have learned to live each day as it comes and make the best of it.

Cindy
Bellingham, WA
http://www.sidetrackedartist.blogspot.com
http://www.wheatlessfoodie.blogspot.com

January 8, 2011 at 11:59 AM  
Blogger robyn79 said...

Hi! I'm Robyn (31) from central MA. I live on .5 acres with my husband, 2 cats and a large vegetable garden. We enjoy learning new skills such as canning and drying foods, making wine, and lots of cooking! Working toward our hobby farm where we'll be able to have chickens, sheep, goats, and maybe a horse or two.

January 8, 2011 at 12:01 PM  
Blogger Lindsay said...

Hi Jenna, My name is Lindsay, aged 66, living in North Wiltshire, UK. I simply love your blog - well done. Now retired but used to own two horses, dogs, chickens, ducks etc.

January 8, 2011 at 12:02 PM  
Blogger Shelby said...

Shelby (41) from Seattle. I have a small urban house on an even smaller lot, but have turned most of the landscape into edibles. Strawberry and a native berry (for the birds) called kinickinik for most of the ground cover, blueberry hedges, two plum trees (1combo) in the sidewalk strip, a combo dwarf pear off the back porch, a dwarf lemon tree that I move in and out of the house for the winter, and a small raised veggie bed. I have a day job in the disaster management business, working on my first book, and shopping for my first acreage. That search is taking my across four counties in western Washington and one on the east side. Next weekend I attending a four hour natural beekeeping class and I'm on the lst for the next Lamb 100 class through our State extension. I've also got a very busy Aussie mix pup and want to learn to knit, so, all in, the days go by fast.

Over the next couple of years I will have that homestead, some Bourbon Reds, a flock of laying hens, some black welsh mountain sheep and a greenhouse full of citrus and plant starts. And someday if I'm really lucky, a pony in the yard. That's the dream anyway.

I read your blog for the authentic voice, the simple fact you keep it going, and the honesty of it all.

January 8, 2011 at 12:02 PM  
Blogger Katey and Dave said...

Dave and Katey. We live in South Central South Dakota in a rented 90 year old farmhouse on about 5000 acres of pasture and cornfields. Inspired by this blog, we raised 50 meat chickens this fall. Between the chickens, our garden, and bird and deer hunting, we manage to provide about 70% of our own food.

Sadly, we were informed that our little slice of South Dakota was purchased by a large, industrial harvesting operation, and they'll be tearing down our house, barns, chicken coop, shelter belt and orchard to put in an irrigated crop circle.

Much like you a year ago, we're frantically working to repair our credit and find a suitable place to continue our push towards self-sustainability. Reviewing your older posts will likely prove to be an invaluable resource for us.

January 8, 2011 at 12:08 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

Hi! My name is Denise and I live in Northern Alabama in a small subdivision with 8 chickens in the backyard and 4 cats and a hubby indoors. We have a large garden, just started using a greenhouse this year, and have been learning about dehydrating this year. I can, sew, knit, crochet, cross stitch, etc. We want to get a farm in the future so we can have some goats and a cow and some more chickens. Love everything you do Jenna and I always learn something from your blog. Thanks for keeping us informed!

January 8, 2011 at 12:11 PM  
Blogger ~ Janis said...

Hi All!!

I have referred lots of people to this blog becaue it is SO inspiring!

I raise free range, grass fed, very friendly beef cattle in the Newbury Vermont area.
I am a "landless" farmer and must rent/lease land to raise my small herd on.

A barn fire recently destroyed all the equipment and the only tractor we had. Things that use to be simple to do, have become difficult because of that fire and the loss of shelter, equipment and water pumps.

However we are forging ahead with plans for spring calving, a garden and more chickens.

Read about the animals here at the farm:

www.tailgait.blogspot.com

I teach a "Cows 101" class here in the spring.

Come visit the herd!

Janis

January 8, 2011 at 12:11 PM  
Blogger jodi said...

My name is Jodi and I live west of Charlottesville, VA on 2 acres. (Hello Holly and Elsie!) My husband and I are empty nesters with 2 dogs and 2 cats. I will be trying my hand at raising bees again this year and will try to improve on last years garden. Problems are keeping everything watered in the summer without high water bills and the deer. I teach, sew and play the violin.

January 8, 2011 at 12:12 PM  
Blogger Jo Griffith said...

I'm Jo and I live in PA. My husband and I run a video production business and we raise alpacas (13) on a small farm of 4 acres with our two sons. We just got finished planning the garden for this year. My 20 year old son is the main gardener, managing things remotely from college in his second year as a music major and during the time he is at home on break. He and DH are headed out to work on cold frames today. We're on the fence about raising chickens (not sure I want something else to clean up after). I always check in on ColdAntler to see how things are going. You can find us at Take2Alpacas.com.

January 8, 2011 at 12:22 PM  
Blogger Angela said...

Jenna! I'm Angela, the former designer turned Appalachian Trail thru-hiker who emailed you many moons ago... I just wanted to tell you that I did indeed hike... I wish I had reached out to you when I was in New England but the trail does strange things to a person's head sometimes. I hope to hike again (I think perhaps instead of Barnheart I have Wanderlove) and if I do I will let you know. I'd love to hang out in your garden and talk design and sheepwatch... and I do so vicariously now by reading your blog! Keep living the good life.

January 8, 2011 at 12:23 PM  
Blogger Melanie said...

Hi! My name is Melanie and I live on about 100 acres in central Texas. I live here with my husband, three dogs, two cats, two pigs, and horse! We are in the process of fixing up our land so that we can start raising organic grass fed cattle. We also have big dreams of raising chickens so we can grub on some yummy farm fresh eggs! Oh and we also have a large garden and have been planning our fruit and veggie menu for the spring. I also love to sew and create, actually have an etsy shop called farm to market design. I make reusable shopping bags, cute ones of course:) Lastly, I am an expecting mama...this is going to be an eventful year!!

January 8, 2011 at 12:24 PM  
Blogger Carol G said...

I'm Carol. My family of six moved to the Kenai peninsula in Alaska last April. We are homesteaders at heart. We formerly lived in the mountains on the western slope of Colorado. We hope to start a garden this year on the 1.24 acres we bought in September and maybe do chickens, sheep or goats for meat and a horse or two. I dream of expanding our property to the acre or two next door as well and maybe put in a root cellar. My blog is new www.upnorthfollowingadream.blogspot.com. I work full-time as a physician assistant in a local community clinic. My husband is an artist and builds djembes and cigar box guitars. I am not very artsy or musical - though I love to do both anyway. I like your blog - I've been following it since your article in Mother Earth News. I like do it yourself articles and just hearing your everyday thoughts.

January 8, 2011 at 12:27 PM  
Blogger fastturtle said...

Hi!! I'm Kim and I live in San Leandro, CA (next to Oakland). My husband and I bought our first house this summer and I'm looking forward to starting my own little garden.
Thanks for sharing your experiences through your blog!!
Kim

January 8, 2011 at 12:27 PM  
Blogger Joy said...

Hello, I'm Joy(26) and I live in Texas, with my parents in a very suburban area of the DFW metroplex. My parents think i'm insane when they find me reading books about raising chickens and i've only just gotten them to agree to let me put out a couple small containers of herbs. My dream is to live in a small house on a lot of land in the middle of nowhere and have goats, pigs, and chickens and a rediculous garden. Unfortunately finding a man who doesn't think i'm crazy (which is apparently twice as hard where i live) is proving difficult. Hopefully 2011 will prove to be a bit more successful on that front :)

January 8, 2011 at 12:28 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 12:30 PM  
Blogger Rcstampyd said...

Hello! My name is Camille(28) and I live in Illinois. About an hour from Saint Louis, MO. Me and my man, moved to the country 8 years ago. I live on 10 acres, with two ponds. I love all things homemade, self sufficient, permaculture... that type of thing.

We have 15 Angora Goats, 3 English Angora rabbits, 5 Easter Eggs chickens, 3 Pit bull dogs , and 25 beehives. This spring I plan on getting some sheep, and more birds. I also have about 2 acres in gardens, and an orchard/food forest. I love grow my own food, cooking, canning food, knitting, and spinning yarn...and well you get the picture I could go on forever!

This blog is great inspiration to get out there and get my chores done. Your farm rocks, and its good to know there are like mined people out there!! Keep up the good work!

January 8, 2011 at 12:33 PM  
OpenID suzqueue said...

Susan here, from Whidbey Island in Washington State. I just moved to the island in August, after 13 years in Seattle. I've got 4 chickens and too many dogs and hope to have a successful garden in the new yard this spring. I also intend to increase the chicken count. I don't really need any more eggs, but I love keeping the chickens and I gift my co-workers with the eggs whenever I have a surplus.

January 8, 2011 at 12:34 PM  
Blogger Chenga said...

Hi, I'm Jennifer. I'm 30, and live in a 100-year old house that we recently inherited with my husband (of two months) and our two rat terriers (Toby and George). We are in southwestern PA, so hello to all of our neighbors!

I'm striving for self-sustainability, am going to plant an epic garden in our new yard, looking to seek out local produce, etc. in the area. Working on my basement stockpile.

Jenna, I love reading your site. It's like a behind-the-scenes look at a fairytale. More pics of the house, please. Also, would love a little map of CAF, to see where everything is in relation to everything else.

Keep on keeping on, girl. We send our love to Maude, who we are sure is misunderstood.

January 8, 2011 at 12:37 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

hello, Jenna. My name is Ann and I live in Gastonia, NC(right outside of Charlotte). I have 3 daughters, 2 sons-in-law, 5 grandchildren. Two daughters in Charlottesville, Va and one in Raleigh,NC. I can't even remember how I happened upon your blog but I've been reading about 6 mo. I can't wait everyday for your entries. I guess I live vicariously thru you. I always check the links and find them also interesting. I am 63, divorced and live with my 3 rescue dogs(2 labs and a mix). If I were 30 yrs old I would be out looking for land and sheep. Keep up the good work and I hope you never give up your blog. I also have my daughters reading. You are an inspiring young lady and I'm glad you got some decent boots.

January 8, 2011 at 12:40 PM  
OpenID sissyjane said...

My name is Michelle, and I live in the Sierra Nevada mountains in California. We have an acre, and a large vegetable garden. I have Golden Retrievers,and love to quilt and knit.

January 8, 2011 at 12:41 PM  
Blogger Sarah Lenz said...

Hi, my name is Sarah, and I live in NW Ohio (Bowling Green). I have 4 backyard chickens and a 300 square foot garden in the front yard of my rented "homestead," which is in the city limits. I'm incredibly lucky to have a very easy going landlord.

I blog about food and gardening at www.proseandpotatoes.blogspot.com

January 8, 2011 at 12:43 PM  
Blogger Shari said...

Hi! I'm Shari. I'm 34 years old living in Mid Michigan with my husband. We moved into our home on 3 acres a year ago and I am working on converting it into the "homesteading paradise" I dream about. I work in customer service but yearn to find something that suits me better or venture off with my own business someday.
So far, I have started a garden and some compost bins on our property. This year we have plans of clearing some scrub trees to start an orchard/fruit patch. I am also getting chickens this spring (my first ever!). Other interests include canning, baking/cooking, cheese making, wine making, tie dye, crafts, foraging, and the list goes on and on.
Jenna, I'd like to learn more about spinning, and fiber rabbits. I also love hearing about the wonderful homemade meals you come up with. Oh, and I find it interesting that you brew beer -- would love to know more about the process.

January 8, 2011 at 12:43 PM  
Blogger k said...

Hi! I'm Kristy (also just "K"), and I live on Vancouver Island, way over the west coast of BC. I don't get to do a lot of homesteading - and my current heavily shaded rental property even negates most of the gardening i've done before - but have dreams of getting a bigger property where I can have a large garden and a few small animals (or when I'm really dreaming, a sheep farm where I can grow animals for wool). In the meantime I help with other's gardens and the presents of wool from my parent's few sheep and alpacas.

January 8, 2011 at 12:44 PM  
Blogger kringsrud said...

Hi! My name is Kris,(48) from Chelan county in Washington state. (Hello to Renee from Lynnwood and Shelby from Seattle.) I live in a little tiny town called Cashmere, home of the candy Aplets and Cotlets.

My husband and I are second-generation orchardists: we've been growing apples and pears on 20 acres in Cashmere and 20 acres in nearby East Wenatchee for the past 25 years. While the life can't be beat, farming isn't exactly the most profitable or stable income source, so I also have a day job providing computer support for a non-profit organization.

My great grandparents were homesteaders who helped colonize the state of Alaska, and my grandparents had a chicken ranch in Olympia. I've always enjoyed the rural life. We don't have what I would call a full-blown farm, but we have all the tree fruit we could want, a big vegetable garden and a few chickens.

I like to garden, can, sew and quilt. I'm looking forward to joining a meat CSA this year. As growers, we've always tried to support other farmers and I was excited to hear about local ranchers who are beginning to follow the CSA model.

I love your blog, and look forward to reading it every day.

January 8, 2011 at 12:46 PM  
Blogger Kris said...

I'm Kris (26). I live across the continent from you, in Northern British Columbia. Fort St. James to be exact. My husband and I rent a small apartment, but we are hoping to buy a home in the Spring. We can't afford a farm or sheep yet, but I am hoping that we'll have chickens in the near future! And definitely a large vegetable garden!
I first started reading your blog, after I found an article that you had written in a magazine and then i read your book and from there I found your blog!

January 8, 2011 at 12:48 PM  
Blogger NancyDe said...

Hi, Jenna, I am Nancy from Hawaii. I am a teacher and my family and I live on 7.5 acres and are trying to learn (quickly) to be be more self-sustainable. We hope to open a CSA this year so my husband can stop commuting to Oahu. I am a public school teacher.

We have 6 Blackbelly Barbados sheep (with our first two lambs born Dec 31), 2 horses, 3 dogs, a cat and a parakeet, and a flock of Araucanas and Buff Orpingtons.

Our biggest challenge is rain and the high cost of EVERYTHING. We get approximately 180"-200" a year. We also have to deal with volcanic gas a lot of the time, which kills plants if it is in high enough concentration.

January 8, 2011 at 12:52 PM  
Blogger Erin Leigh said...

Hi! I'm Erin and I live in Rhode Island. I'm 38, married with a 2year old boy and an 11 month old girl. We are in an apt. with no yard, but we utilize my parent's property to grow a 4,000 sq. ft. organic veggie garden every year. We dream of our own bit of land and having chickens.
I'm also a knitter and spinner and would love to have sheep one day, but I'm not sure hubby would be into that.
Our current struggle is trying to figure out how to get that property on one salary - nearly all of which is eaten up by bills. I'm a stay-at-home mom currently, but used to be a pottery instructor at art museums up until birth of 2nd child. I'm also a jewelry designer with an online shop: www.purpleblossomstudio.etsy.com
It is my hopeful way of contributing financially while raising my children.
Jenna, I love this blog! I love especially anything fiber related, and would like more recipes. I wish I lived closer so I could join that knitting group!!

January 8, 2011 at 12:54 PM  
Blogger Aranea said...

Hey Nicole! Any tips for the best place to learning spinning around here?

January 8, 2011 at 1:04 PM  
Blogger Chicky said...

Hi! Christina here, from a little town in Wyoming. I live on a large corner lot with my husband, three dogs, & four hens. We hope to upgrade to a piece of property with acreage, but right now it's not a seller's market & we'll stay put until the time is right...we also want to get out of Wyoming so don't want to invest until we know it's where we want to stay. In the meantime, we're suburban "farmers."

January 8, 2011 at 1:14 PM  
Blogger CorinneLouise said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 1:16 PM  
Blogger Casie said...

Hello, I'm Casie. My husband and I live on 2.5 acres in rural central Wis. We have three children and will be adding a dog to the mix soon.

Currently we also raise 13 laying hens and a rooster along with 2 breeding pairs of American rabbits. We tried meat chickens last summer and will be doing more again this year. Our small square foot garden will be expanded into a much larger 1/4 acre on in spring. We have started composting last year as well. I learned how to make our own hot-process soap last year and want to keep learning and making more.

I would love to add more animals to the mix here someday. I'ts just a matter of convincing my husband! LOL

January 8, 2011 at 1:19 PM  
OpenID urbanadaptation said...

Hi - I'm Jenn, 30 years old, and I'm a grad student and teacher living in southwestern Ontario with my husband. I have long-standing interests in food security and sustainable living, and am trying to make these things work in the city until such a time as I can manage to get a place that's more my own here, or that's out of the city. I pine for gardens and goats, sheep and wool, chickens and woodstoves, and all manner of other such things.

January 8, 2011 at 1:28 PM  
OpenID peihome said...

Hi,
Kim (48) here from Prince Edward Island, Canada.
One husband, three cats, one dog, two cows, seven sheep (and increasing), two goats (and surely to increase, lol), hordes of chickens (standard Rhode Island Reds, bantam Old English Game), turkeys, guineas, pigeons, rabbit, and a partridge in a pear tree, lol.
25 acres of land, but so much to do yet! Gardens are next on the list ...

January 8, 2011 at 1:28 PM  
OpenID cheryldoran-girard said...

Hi--I'm Cheryl. I'm 66, live north of San Francisco in a mobile home community for older people. Until three years ago, I lived in rural Sonoma County on the coast and loved it.
Since I can no longer live in "the country," I solve my yearnings by living vicariously through reading your blog. Thanks for your open sharing.

January 8, 2011 at 1:33 PM  
Blogger CorinneLouise said...

Hello, I am Corinne (53). My husband is French Canadian and we live in France at the moment (I am French), in a small rural village in Provence with 2 cats. Sustainability is my large goal.
Since we are in a rental apartment and would like to retire in Canada, hens and goats are not an option.
We tend a large garden and can as much as possible of the bounty we get. We belong to a small organic CSA.
My passions are saving seeds (heirlooms) and helping teach bio dynamic gardening, baking bread on a very regular basis, with home made wild yeasts. I teach quilting and organize local charity events.
This year I would like to concentrate on distributing more heirloom seeds thus plan to have a seed exchange on Earth day.
Wishing you all success in your goals for the new year.
Thanks Jenna for giving me such pleasure reading your blog and coming along your successes.

January 8, 2011 at 1:34 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

Hello! My name is Beth. From Milwaukee, WI. 19 years old. Soon to proudly be a yoga instructor! Grow veggies (some fruits) on 40x60ft garden at my moms house. Just learned how to knit! Starting canning this fall and am hooked!
I read jenna's blog literally every day right after I check my emails. What she is doing is amazing and I want to do something very similar after I graduate college. :]

January 8, 2011 at 1:36 PM  
Blogger Infinite Possibilities said...

Hi all,

My name is Shana and I'm from western Sonoma County in California. I'm 39. I live with my long time fiance, in a rental and have high hopes of moving to Portland, Oregon one day. I started doing the chicken thing this last year and I LOVE it. I have attempted gardening, but our hilly land doesn't get much sun. Hence, the gardening didn't really go as well as I'd hoped. I'll try again this spring.

I LOVE this blog. I read it ALL of the time. And Jenna, if you and I lived closer...I'd be your best friend. I just think you're pretty fantastic and get a lot of joy reading about your life. You are so "real" and down to earth...I just love that.

Anyhow, my honey isn't really into all the homesteading stuff like me. "I" would really like to learn about permaculture and move to an intentional community someday. I don't think "he" would be down with that. We'll see where the adventure takes us.

I look forward to a continued internet friendship. :)

Be well,
Shana

January 8, 2011 at 1:39 PM  
Blogger Andi and Kurt said...

Hi! My name is Andi (37) and my husband and I farm/ranch just outside of Protection, KS. We direct market beef, pork, poultry and eggs.

I'm a "retired" teacher and now stay home with our 3 girls. About 3 years ago, we started raising our own chicken and it's grown from there. My goal is to raise more of our own food from our garden and acreage while our daughters become more aware of where their food comes from.

January 8, 2011 at 1:42 PM  
Blogger jen said...

Hi all!
I'm Jennifer, 43, was born and raised in Olympia, WA, and now own a home on a little less than 2 acres about an hour from where I was born.
I've been married for 20 years, and have 2 sons, 16 and 19. I have a garden, some fruit trees, and a raspberry patch. I don
't have much of a green thumb, and have trouble figuring out how to keep everything watered during the summer and keep the deer and coyotes away. I have 6 chickens and LOVE having the fresh eggs. When they're not laying, we're not eating eggs! I hope to add meat birds this spring. We just bought half a grass-fed Angus this fall, and we are loving the idea of not eating mass-produced food. I'd like to also raise our own pork, get some beehives, and possibly a dairy goat. An Alpaca for security would be nice, too!
I don't know if I strive to be off the grid, but I would like to be as self-supportive as possible when it comes to food.
My hobbies include reading, photography, camping, boating, fishing, golf, or pretty much anything you can do outside.
"Hello" to all the other WA readers - I was surprised there were so many!

January 8, 2011 at 1:47 PM  
Blogger Gloria said...

I'm Gloria from Wilmington, NC. I live simply in a cute 80 year old house with my rescued beagle, Suzie. I love to garden - food to eat and food for the soul. My winter garden of greens is prolific; my summer garden less so but I still enjoy the process.

I also enjoy gleaning wild produce such as smilax, pecans and persimmons, music (I'm the church pianist and sing in a community chorus), crafts (currently learning how to knit), reading good novels, Scrabble, my small group of treasured friends, and the ongoing journey to living an ever simpler but richer life.

I really enjoy your blog, Jenna, and thank you for sharing snapshots of your life. You write beautifully of your dreams and goals while never forgetting to see and appreciate all that is already around you. I'd like to read more about your music, the house as you slowly make it yours, homemade anything, your country life. While I do respect your philosophy on harvesting animals, being a vegetarian I will never understand it so there are some posts I will gloss over. But there is so much in the rest of your sharing to be inspired by that I'll always be a faithful reader.

I look forward to seeing what next comes down the road in your amazing life.

January 8, 2011 at 1:52 PM  
Blogger Kira said...

Hi, I'm Kira in the central Willamette Valley in Oregon. I live on the edge of town with farms in sight of my big though still city-sized lot where I tend a fairly large veggie garden, keep 4 hens, and care for a fabulous shepherd mix dog and 3 cats. More hens and bees are coming this spring! My goal is to have 3-5 acres in the next 3-5 years where I'll have a small dairy goat (Nubians) farm for very small scale goat cheese production.

January 8, 2011 at 1:55 PM  
Blogger Meredith said...

My name is Meredith (26) and I'm from Gray Court, South Carolina. I've been working to develop my family's 100-acre farm into an actual business over the last three years, but it's slow going since I still work full-time as a graphic designer during the week. I long for the day when I can quit my job and farm full time! The land is all red clay and pretty poor since it was all cotton production in the early 1900s, but we've been working on it for 15 years now and we're starting to make a dent. We raise grass-fed Tunis lamb (my dad's operation) and I focus on vegetables, herbs, etc. with my mom, who's a Master Gardener. It's lonely being a young farmer in Upstate South Carolina, so I love reading your blog. Here's to farming success in 2011!

January 8, 2011 at 2:01 PM  
Blogger katiegirl said...

I'm Katie. I'm 29 and I live with my husband and 2 stepkids on the Eastern Shore of MD. We live on an acre (one day maybe we'll be able to afford more) and have 3 sheep (for wool and meat), 2 dairy goats), 40ish chickens, 3 dogs, and 3 cats. We also raise broilers every summer, and have a pretty decent sized vegetable garden that gets neglected more than it should. I grew up raising sheep in 4-H, then went to college (Go Terps!) for agriculture. Worked on several dairy farms and a beef farm. The animals aren't really hubby's thing, so it's mainly me doing it. My goals for this year are to get meat rabbits and possibly raise a couple pigs.

I'd also like to see more pictures in the blog. :-)

January 8, 2011 at 2:06 PM  
Blogger Sprite said...

Hi, my name is Britt, from Minneapolis MN. I have a computer-based job that I adore, and I'm hoping in a couple years I can begin to telecommute this career from my very own fiber farm/CSA in either MN or WI. I do community gardening right now in the cities. I also knit, spin, sew, and enjoy cooking and baking. I would love to have 6 acres, chickens, sheep, rabbits, and a dairy goat eventually, but right now, I'll settle for the wonders of my apartment and cat.

January 8, 2011 at 2:06 PM  
Blogger Willew said...

Hello. My name is Lisa. I currently am living on a tiny urban lot in the midwest and long for my farm. It try to do what I can where I am at and I am currently very proud of my crops (sprouts & microcrops). I blog about living a simplified, more natural life at http://bemyleaves.blogspot.com. Your blog helps me to keep my eye on the goal. I've been reading for a long time and enjoy all that you share with us.

January 8, 2011 at 2:10 PM  
Blogger The Food Hippie said...

Hi, I'm Morgan (28) and I am currently living in Chicago. All I can say is I'm extremely jealous of CAF. I hope to be raising chickens and goats, gardening, and living off the land one day. Right now, I live vicariously through your blog and support my local CSA and meat buying clubs. Thank you for your wonderful blog and books, they are inspirational in so many ways.

January 8, 2011 at 2:15 PM  
Blogger melissa said...

Hello ! I'm Melissa (34), and I live with my husband and 2 Maine Coon cats outside of Rochester, NY (Hi Tracey!). We live in an 1870's farmhouse on an acre of land. I had such high hopes for gardening, but our lot is predominantly shady, and I haven't been successful in growing anything but lettuce !! I do frequent farm markets and stands to make up for it, though ! I'm also addicted to knitting, and love cooking, reading, and anything crafty !

And while I don't necessarily have hopes of homesteading, I've always been drawn to the country & country living . . . so I read Jenna's blog to get my dose of farm life and live vicariously through her ! Love this blog !

Just a side note . . . so glad to see the John C. Campbell Folk School as a CAF sponsor ! I was a first-time student there last year, and had such a tremendous experience ! When I saw copies of "Made From Scratch" for sale in their store, I felt like a little piece of home was down there with me !

Thanks for sharing your world with us !!

www.melsnest.blogspot.com

January 8, 2011 at 2:22 PM  
Blogger PKW said...

Actually I happened to come across your blog just a few hours ago (through a comment on one of your books at Amazon), and have read a little here and there, starting in 2007 and with some jumps back and forth. All nice and inspiring for me, a Norwegian with a fondness for simple and basic living either at my island cottage or aboard a sailboat - so not a farmer at all. But I will come back for more here. Have a nice weekend.

January 8, 2011 at 2:25 PM  
Blogger Jenn4him said...

Hello Jenna. I am Jennifer and I live in an Indianapolis suburb in a rented house. My goal is to have a raised bed garden this year. My long term goal is to find a nice little house and have a bigger garden, maybe some chickens for eggs. We just spent the last 4 years getting debt free. Our dream house is probably another 5 years away. Until then, reading about others who attain their goals keeps me going. Thank you for being so faithful to your blog. If your publisher agrees, I think it would make another great book.

January 8, 2011 at 2:26 PM  
Blogger Cristhiano said...

Jenna: May God bless you and your property a thousand-fold for all the sharing you do regularly. Initially, I though I was crazy for wanting to homestead, but your blog showed me that I am simply a case of “barnheart infection.” At least now I am diagnosed!!! My name is Cristhiano and I am 36.

I have not read all the comments yet but I have a feeling that I will be the one with the most inhospitable environment to homestead: Las Vegas, Nevada !!

I lived in the NY/NJ area for 13 years before relocating here in 2004. I had a lot of failures gardening in my minuscule backyard and some successes. This year is very promising because I found the Tomato Lady !!! She has been gardening in Las Vegas for 20 years and is always to share the techniques for success under the 115F desert heat with 9% humidity. (Those on hot climates, see http://www.flickr.com/photos/8773704@N06/). I can’t have chickens here because I live within a homeowners association. My goal for the next 3 years is to switch to a property where I can homestead like YOU. At least 5 acres for a garden and chickens…But looking to fatten my own hogs as well !!

January 8, 2011 at 2:30 PM  
Blogger beccaWA said...

Hi all! Wow, so many from midwest/back east!

I'm Becca from WA state. I live on an acre in the Spokane Valley area about a 5 minute drive to the North Idaho border. I am single mom in my 50's with grown-up daughter that's in AK, and 14 yr. old son at home. We live with our 2cats and GSD.

"Hi" to all those in WA. Oh, ages ago I went to college at Wenatchee Valley (near Cashmere). I also lived in San Francisco for nearly 20 years, and do miss it (Hi, Kendra). I moved back here about 12years ago so my kids could be around their grandparents.

We are lucky to have this much land, but have not done a lot with it -- the best-laid plans! I'd like to put in a larger garden and will try again this spring. There's a large old upright freezer in my utility room. I buy bulk & freeze things, as well use it for the little that I now grow in summer.

In addition to the garden, there is a nice shed that is set up for fowl and we'd love to acquire some free-range guinea fowl. Sheep would not be out of the question, either. We are technically in a suburb, but small livestock is OK -just have to follow the regs & NO PIGS!

This area is good ag land -- a lot of it is now suburban but there are still a lot of orchards and gardens/truck farms that still sell those goods for a living. There are also large cattle ranches all throughout eastern Washington. I live next to the richest soil on earth in the Palouse wheat country. Matter of fact, I grew up on a 1,200 acre wheat farm just south of here.

I like to cook, draw, sew & crochet. We are readers around here, and love to curl up in front of the woodstove with our books & the dog.

Your energy inspires me, Jenna, to do more with my land. I'm lucky to have as much as I do and should make better use of it! Maybe this spring.... :-)

January 8, 2011 at 2:32 PM  
Blogger Theresa said...

Hi, I'm Theresa, a teacher from just outside Boston, MA (Hi Darlene). I live in an apartment, but dream of a self-sufficient homestead with pigs and sheep and chickens and a huge garden. I've taken classes on beekeeping (but have no place to keep them), and I read a lot about keeping animals. I knit and bake my own bread.
I would love to hear more about taking the leap to living the dream. Maybe I need to read backposts, I just found your blog like 3 days ago, but i love it.

January 8, 2011 at 2:33 PM  
Blogger karental said...

Hello. I'm Karen,48, from Tampa, Florida. I have been a beekeeper, but currently have no colonies due to wax moths. We are forbidden from having chickens in our area, so I will just say I have a stealth coop and in the spring we will obtain some pet birds of unknown origin... Hubby and I keep a container garden every spring/summer. We rescue great danes and currently share our home with 1 elderly Great Dane, and one and two cats. Someday we will ditch the Sunshine State to live in So. Missouri or No. Arkansas where I will have a pair of working mules and lots of bees and chickens.

January 8, 2011 at 2:34 PM  
Blogger Firefly Mom said...

Hubby and I and our 15 y/o live on a 1/4 lot in the 'burbs just outside Portland, Oregon. Hello to Kira and Shana (the wanna-be Portlandian. ;) Neither of us were raised in families that cooked from scratch, gardened, canned, etc. so EVERYTHING has been a learning experience! We have 6 raised beds, several fruit trees and laying hens. We're in the process of adding many more edibles to the landscape and we're getting more chickens next month. I also knit, needle felt, can, and cook from scratch (much of it GF). And I *really* enjoy reading your blog!

January 8, 2011 at 2:35 PM  
Blogger Debbie said...

I'm Debbie and I live in WV with Corgis and Border Collies. I'm learning herding and have sheep but not at my house. I've got farm fever badly although I grew up on a farm and never thought I'd go back. One of these days I will, though. Thanks for writing your blog.

January 8, 2011 at 3:01 PM  
Blogger Caitlin-Cats Critters said...

Hi, my name is Caitlin I live in NW PA. I garden (I'm adding a new bed this year if possible), raise chickens (does anyone need a rooster?), I love to read, and I also have a beagle, 7 cats, guppies, and 3 turtles. I would love to have goats (Nigerien Dwarfs)and Alpacas, but that most likely won't be happening for at least a few years. My blog is about all of that and anything else I'm thinking about.

I love your blog and love to hear about your poultry, sheep, and cat ,who we haven't heard about for a couple months. (hint, hint)

January 8, 2011 at 3:03 PM  
Blogger ktclarke said...

Hey Jenna. I'm Katy. I live in Atlanta with my boyfriend of three years and we just moved in to a house we bought in May 2010. Our house exploits (really, renovations...see me trying to clean up plaster dust and adding shoe-moulding) keep me pretty busy, but I have dubbed 2011 to be the year of the exterior. With that in mind, I just want to start small with an herb garden and some leafy greens (KALE!) so I would love to hear more about gardening.

I've said it before, but I'll say it again. I read because you write. And you write so beautifully that even though most of the topics are unfamiliar to me, I keep coming back for more. And even though I am lover of your text, I would also love to see more pictures!

January 8, 2011 at 3:21 PM  
Blogger Kris said...

I saw this this morning and didn't have time to comment then. I thought I'd come back with a cuppa tea and read some comments. But dang! This could take a week. I would love to meet some N.Ga. farmers.

My name is Kris. I am 52. I am a "part time" wife. My hubby drives a truck and is only home when they let him come home. About every other weekend. We live on a 3 acre farm. And every inch has something on it. Right now I have 2 heifers. Mazie is about ready to become a cow the end of March. I am so excited. I don't know about her. I also have an almost 1 1/2 half year old heifer that will be going in the freezer the end of Feb. Then I have two milk goats, Abby and Sandy. Abby is Lamancha and Sandy is Nubian. Milking OAD right now. They will be having kids the end of March also. Then I have lots of Buff and game hens and way too many roos. And 7 Bourbon Red turkeys. 3 toms and 4 hens. 2 more toms will go in the freezer soon. And the other will be kept to breed the 4 hens. Today I got 2 little red pigs. They are about 20 pounds right now but hopefully by the end of March they will be big enough to join the others in the freezer too. But I may have to get the date changed.

I live in N. Ga. at the foot of Lookout mt. and Pigeon Mt. The most beautiful place on earth. Anyone out there near me? I am just about 30 miles South of Chattanooga, my 2nd home. Nice to meet y'all. Stop by if you're ever out here. My farm is called Outback farm because that's about what it feels like out here.

January 8, 2011 at 3:31 PM  
Blogger Andy said...

Hello everyone. My name is Andy.I am 33 years old. I live in a small house with a very small yard in Harrisburg, PA. I always had an interest in homesteading, and sustainable farming since I was young. I like to garden, attend my bee hive and vermicompost. Plus I like to cook with my vegetables and herbs. I am also volunteering at a local CSA farm.

Someday, I plan to have a 5-6 acre fruit and herb farm. Mostly raising hops. Also plan to raise some heritage breed livestock. Such as free range chickens, sheep and a few pigs.

I plan to start small towards my goal. So this spring I plan to start a market herb garden at my parents property.I can't wait until the spring time. Hopefully in the meantime achieving my goal, I can find the right girl. So, I am glad I found this blog a year ago.

January 8, 2011 at 3:33 PM  
Blogger Alisa said...

Hi! I'm Alisa and I live in suburban Connecticut near Hartford. I grew up in VT and would love to have some chickens; but my hubby thinks I am crazy! This year I would like to use a little more of my yard for vegetable gardening. I need to be creative because our yard has so many trees. I love your blog and the way you write. I get some of my farm fix by reading it! The other day I referred to you as my friend Jenna-(I'm sorry, I really am not a creeper) when I was telling my husband about your plans for Pig. I love the concept of butchering at home and knowing where your meet comes from.
I love to knit, garden and read. Glad to meet all of you!

January 8, 2011 at 3:43 PM  
Blogger Luann said...

Hi! My name is Luann (49) and seems to be starting my life again in Roane County, WV. I am originally from NJ. Recently graduated college with a nursing (BSN) degree and bought and am moving to a 60 acre mountain side farm(?)...I have 6 rhode island reds for eggs a dog and a cat, to this point. My home is being built slowly and I am moving into it uncompleted within the next couple of weeks. My 30 year dream of homesteading is coming to fruition and I am grateful. I will be gardening, canning, candle making, soap making and an animal rasing mountain momma! :0)My goal is to become as self sufficient as "humanly" possible.

January 8, 2011 at 3:44 PM  
Blogger Zoë said...

Hi! I'm Zoë, 26, currently living in Boston (hi Darlene & Theresa!) I am a South Carolinian originally, so I am constantly encouraging my parents to take advantage of their mild winters and keep growing!

I live on the third floor, but I am glad to have a huge, south-facing balcony at my disposal. Last year my garden grew from a hopeful few pots of herbs to a substantial, productive, soul-healing project. This year, inspired by my successes and armed with new knowledge from my failures, I intend to expand!

I also canned my first sweet preserves this summer, a major milestone for me! I have the canning bug now.

Currently I'm trying to decide if my balcony is big enough to support a beehive as well as a garden (it really is huge, but I don't know how close one can work to a beehive).

I have been quietly following this blog for months, after stumbling across it and devouring all the archives in two days. Love it, and I think you're totally inspiring, Jenna.

January 8, 2011 at 3:50 PM  
Blogger HomesteadDreams said...

Hi everyone! I'm Susan (30) from western Washington (hello fellow Washingtonians- so glad to see you here!!) Though I'm currently renting a house in a neighborhood that does not allow chickens, farm animals or bees, I have Barnheart big-time, and am intensively planning for my future farm.

My background is in animal care, and I find great satisfaction in the give and take, the work and rewards that caring for animals entails.

I am currently studying, researching, reading voraciously, and working on a business plan that will allow me to develop my love of animals, rewarding hard work and rural living into a sustainable and profitable business. I'm considering a small-scale pastured dairy, maybe some fiber or meat animals as well. I will certainly have chickens and a few beehives.

Right now, I have a raised bed garden which provides fresh veggies with surplus for canning, and a modest yard filled with mountains of blackberries (the blessing and bane of western WA existence). This year I had the satisfaction of giving out my homemade wild blackberry jam for Christmas gifts! :)

Next year, I will try winter gardening (where I live winters are mild), and expand the garden to experiment with growing corn and potatoes. I hope to own a 10 acre plus productive farm in 5 years, so I'm saving my pennies! Being able to enjoy fresh organic veggies and fruit from my yard definitely helps to make a dent in the grocery budget!

Jenna I just love your blog. Keep it up!

January 8, 2011 at 3:51 PM  
Blogger Hayley said...

Hello. I am Hayley. I currently reside in Alaska but am from Alabama. Right this sec. I am missing Alabama terribly. I grew up on 40 acres with free roaming chickens. Since that time, I've always dreamed of having land again to raise up animals. Sheep would be my choice, though I know very little on the subject.

January 8, 2011 at 3:54 PM  
Blogger Helena said...

I'm Helena (30), living just east of Tampa, FL (Hi Karen!) with my husband, daughter, and cat. Planning on growing more of our own food this year, as well as finding more local sources for the things we can't grow. Alas, we're not allowed to have chickens in our neighborhood, so I'm dreaming of the day we can move out of deed restrictions so I can have a little egg-laying flock of my own.

I also love to knit and am trying to learn how to sew and embroider, but those are on hold for the moment as I've got a freelance project (I'm a copyeditor/proofreader) coming up that's going to be taking some time.

Side note: Crystal of HeartSong Farms, I lived in Gainesville for five years (couldn't quite bear to leave after graduating UF), that area is so beautiful...my parents keep talking about moving there when they retire, and I secretly hope they do just so I have an excuse to visit. I bet your farm is lovely!

January 8, 2011 at 3:55 PM  
Blogger Single Serving Jack said...

Hi! I am Jack. I live in Minnesota. I camp, hike, kayak, travel, fish, surf the internet, and shoot lots of photos. My winter projects include remodeling my place one room at a time.
I grew up on a farm and miss the quiet and critters on occasion so I live that vicariously through blogs.
I enjoy your entire blog, but I am most drawn to photos of the critters, recipes, and stories.
Great job, Jenna!

January 8, 2011 at 3:59 PM  
Blogger Perry's Farm said...

Hi My name is Nancy I live in the southern tier of New york with my husband and 2 daughters 10 and 12. I currently have layers, this past summer I raised my first batch of meat chickens. My dream is to raise dairy goats and have a few sheep - we'll see what the future holds:-)

January 8, 2011 at 4:05 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

Hi! This is so great! I'm Emily and I live in the DC Metro area and DREAM of my own little homestead. I'm about to move out of my apartment and am hoping to find somewhere with a yard (not as easy as it sounds around here) so I can plant my first garden. I have a "working" poodle who would love to chase chickens at the first opportunity.

I very much love reading this blog and any practical advice you can offer is ALWAYS welcome!

January 8, 2011 at 4:07 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 4:07 PM  
Blogger Nanette said...

Hi Jenna, I'm Nanette from a little town called Murwillumbah, it means 'place of possums' in eastern Australia. I have a tiny urban homestead, with free range chickens..chooks to us..and grow as much vegetables and fruit trees as I can on my tiny space. I'm going to a beekeeper's course in a couple of weeks, so hope to add bees to my homestead.

Since I moved here a couple of years ago, about half the street now have chickens, so I feel I've been a good influence.

I knit,sew and quilt, make my own bread and jams, but don't do any canning, there's no need here in this sublime sub-tropical climate with fresh food available all year round.

Although some of that food's washed away right now, with all the flooding we're having.

Jenna, I read your blog because I love the way you write about life on your farm, and although there's no comparison to the size of our homesteads...and no barn here... I can relate to your feelings about your place and the care you take of your life, and you often put into words for me what I can't.

Over a 100 comments here, are you going to read them all?

January 8, 2011 at 4:20 PM  
Blogger chris said...

Hi, my name is Christine and I'm 44. I live in central CT on 1/2 acre. Hi to Tobi (grew up nearby in New Milford) and Alisa.

Last year I tapped my 5 sugar maple trees for the first time (quite the adventure and learning experience) and in the spring I started 2 beehives (illegal in my zone but hoping to fly under the radar). been gardening since I was a child -- my parents were into organic gardening with compost piles and cow manure. Even had a roadside stand as a child selling tomatoes and greens. Last summer I expanded my raised beds and hoping to add low hoops to extend the season.

This year I hope to expand my hives (hoping they survive the winter) and set up the new hives on some property that's legal. just in case I have to move mine. I'm gearing up for maple sugar season -- expanding into my neighbors' trees, up to 32 taps this year.

I long for chickens again (my family had a stealth coop), angora rabbits, goats for fiber and milk, and sheep. Would love a donkey, too. Lost my cat to kidney failure in Aug -- hope to adopt another one soon.

I'm not much of a canner but hope to do more. I sew and cross-stitch but find that I am knitting- and crochet-challenged. Perhaps I just need another lefthander to teach me! or maybe I should try weaving instead.

So interesting to read everyone's entries. Jenna, your blog is so inspiring. Keep it going!

January 8, 2011 at 4:35 PM  
Blogger Nerissa said...

Hello,
My name is Nerissa. I am a student in Seattle, Wa and live on a medium sized lot in the city. Last fall I planted fruit trees and this spring I am looking into a few vegatable boxes and some ducks for both eggs and meat. I am very excited for the ducks (am allergic to chickens and their eggs). I know you are hosting a workshop on the farm for chicken meat production but I am unable to go with my school work. I would love any advise book-wise or how to get hands on experience in the realm of humane slaughter.

I have also been thinking about bees for honey and meat rabbits but those are both farther down the line.

I also enjoy crochet and some day eventually maybe I will have ewes for wool and lambs for meat.

January 8, 2011 at 4:36 PM  
Blogger Margaret said...

Hi Everyone. My name is Margaret and I live in Omaha, NE. I am 47, married with two teenagers. I have a big garden, but my animals are limited to two big kittys and a spoiled dog. I spin, weave, knit, dye, cook from scratch, and many of the other things so many of you all do.

I love reading this blog, and have been a reader since your article was in Mother Earth News.

January 8, 2011 at 4:39 PM  
Blogger maddy said...

hi, my name is madeline and i live in cold blowing calgary,ab,canada. i live right near downtown in an old house, with my five year old son, a permaculture gardens in the front and back yard, four illegal chickens that are hold up in their coop today. I have read your book and it inspired me to get chickens two years ago. The gardens have been in action for five years now and i get new ideas every year to improve their production so we can eat local organic food from our garden and sell some to a local resturant. I have caught the knitting bug and i would like to order some of your wool. can you send some info to me at maddyduffin@hotmail.com. thanks for your courage to go it alone and do it anyway.

January 8, 2011 at 4:42 PM  
Blogger VTGrown said...

Hi! My name is Holly and I'm currently living in Sunland, CA, which is an unincorporated part (or suburb) of Los Angeles. We (hubby & 3 teens) rent a small house on a very small property where we have lemon, avacado and orange trees and I grow some of my own food in containers as I'm hoping to move from here in the next few months. I work as a patent and trademark paralegal, i.e. wage and insurance slave, but I'm sick with barnheart. I make my own bread and cook as much as I can from scratch. I try to cook alot of vegetarian food but only my daughters are strict vegetarians right now.

Feb. 1st we are starting a family challenge of going until the end of the year without shopping at the grocery store - instead buying from the farmers markets, in bulk, etc., which I'm really excited to do - of course it is easier to do that in sunny CA with year round farmers markets.

I love your blog Jenna as I live at the moment vicariously through you. I have an employment contract that ties me to CA until April 1st so at the moment I am already looking, trying to find a farm to "lease-to-own" in New Hampshire, where I will have to commute into Boston to work and farm, but I'm desparate to get out of the city and go home, even if I have to do that. My husband who is from CA wants to stay here but we agreed that if I can find some kind of a "lease-to-buy" arrangement he'd move with me.

I feel like I've finally (at 41) found what I am passionate about - and that is how I found your blog Jenna, from your article on barnheart.

January 8, 2011 at 4:44 PM  
Blogger Kenzie said...

Hi! I'm Mackenzie. I'm 21 and a Textiles student at Rhode Island School of Design. I'm originally from Upstate NY, a very small town near Syracuse. We have tons of farms in the area so I'm definitely a country girl and love it. For a couple years now I've been dreaming of a farm with sheep and other animals (have wanted a horse since I was 10, reaaally bad and the wanting has never let up) and being a textiles student, it now seems more possible as I can work it into my profession. For Christmas this year, my mom bought me your book and I could not stop reading. Through that, I found your blog and here I am! New reader, but loving everything :)

January 8, 2011 at 4:49 PM  
Blogger Jenna & Thomas said...

Hi! My name's also Jenna. My husband and I run an organic market garden on 160 acres in northern Alberta, Canada. We read your blog every morning and love to hear all the latest stories from Cold Antler Farm!

January 8, 2011 at 4:51 PM  
Blogger Norma from Misty Haven Alpacas said...

Hi, I'm Norma from Ontario, Canada.
I live on a 90 acre farm with 19 alpacas, 2 llamas, 43 chickens (yes, 43!), husband, daughter, pet cats, dog and pet dwarf bunny.
I don't know how I got here! Fifteen years ago, I was wearing a suit and working IT in the city. I grew up in the burbs and all my 24 cousins lived in the country. Now, I'm the only cousin who farms! We built our house and all the buildings on our farm.
I now work part-time as a library worker and the other time working towards my growing yarn business. I am a spinner, knitter and weaver in that order.
I am working to learn more useful skills like canning and the like.

I also blog at www.mistyhavenalpacas.blogspot.com

Jenna, I love the way you write and your photos are beautiful. It's a pleasure to read your blog.

January 8, 2011 at 4:53 PM  
Blogger Honeysuckle Rose said...

Hi!! My name is Kristin, 26, and I just bought an acre with my fiance in Jackson, NJ (another Jackson, Jenna!). When we were house-hunting, I held out for land (hard to come by in NJ), because I dream of a self-supplementing veggie garden with fruit trees, meat/egg birds, and honeybees. I sing professionally and am a new nurse. I've also always wanted a huskie to do snowsports with. My convenience-obsessed fiance is terrified of all of my ideas, but more or less open to them. I crochet, am learning to knit, and am inheriting a Husqvarna. If I can hack it, I would love to have other livestock. I am a member of my town CSA. I found out about this blog when my old neighbors passed on a pile of old Mother Earth News to me. I would love to meet like-minded people in Central NJ! Love your blog Jenna!

January 8, 2011 at 4:56 PM  
Blogger Becky said...

I'm Becky and I currently live in a neighborhood on a half an acre. I have a garden. I dream of a farm with a few acres and raising my own food... animals and produce. I'd like my kids to have space to roam and explore. My husband and I will hopefully make our dream to move to a farm a reality in a few years when our credit cards have been paid off. :)

January 8, 2011 at 5:20 PM  
Blogger doglady said...

My name is Jennifer and I live on Mount Desert Island Maine in the small rural village of Town Hill which is really part of Bar Harbor. I grew up 12 miles from where Jenna lives now. I have 12.5 mostly wooded acres but I have enough cleared for a large garden. I have egg chickens and Silver Fox meat rabbits. I also raised meat chickens and turkeys this year. I own Acadia Woods Kennel, a full service facility. At 65 yrs.,I am working towards more self sufficiency because I want to know where my food is coming from and how it has been raised. You younger folks have a life time to make a difference.

January 8, 2011 at 5:24 PM  
Blogger Victoria said...

My name is Victoria. I'm 37 and a newlywed. I live in Coastal NC with my husband, our two girls, 8 cats and 1 dog. We are renting but we are looking at buying a house where we can set up a bigger garden and get more chickens (the dog killed our 3 hens). There are no immediate plans to get livestock, but I enjoy the small bit that we've done to live more independently. Our current project is about growing our family, so hopefully we'll have more people in it this time next year. I look forward to having some Free Range kids to go along with our Free Range chickens!

I love reading about the sheep and seeing their pictures...actually, ALL the animals. I also love it when you describe what's going on around the house, especially when you're snowed in and cozied up with a book, etc(probably more romantic as a reader than actually living it!) I loved the bit you did a few weeks back about happiness. Keep up the excellent work!!

January 8, 2011 at 5:28 PM  
Blogger Jason...etc said...

Hello! My name is Jason and I live with my wife and dog Presta in Lakewood, CO. We’ve got the typical 1950’s suburban home, but have a large garden and big plans in mind for the future. In the meantime, we help run a local community garden project in Denver where we help teach half-way house residents how to garden. Last year was our second year and we actually made it to one of the farmer’s markets to show off our wares. Depending on the weather, I can generally be found in the garden, on my bike or pickin’ the 5 string banjo.

January 8, 2011 at 5:35 PM  
Blogger annet said...

Hi, I'm Anne from southeast Ontario (hello, fellow Canadians). I'm retired at 60 (soon to be 63) basically so I could garden more: lots of annual veg, black raspberries, grapes, elderberries, rhubarb. I have access to a fantastic farmer's market here in Peterborough, so I'm happy to support a lot of small farmers around me for things like meat, apples, and eggs. I grew up on a couple of dairy farms in the Adirondacks (hi to Axeboy!), had 90 acres plus in Nova Scotia that got sold when my first marriage busted up -- went to a smaller chunk of land that was surrounded by blackberries, raspberries, and apples and had a big garden. I lost the house on it due to measuring error and a nasty neighbor, but I still have the land. I became a Quaker (hi to Denise in Tennesee) while there and simplicity informs my living style now. Your enthusiasm and steadfastness, Jenna, give me hope that we can survive the mess our North American consumer culture has gotten us into. Keep on doing and writing!

January 8, 2011 at 5:41 PM  
Blogger kaeley said...

Hi friends..!
I'm Kaeley from Whitehorse, Yukon (that's beside Alaska). I grow food in the plentiful summer sun anywhere I can with whatever our local gold mine of a dump provides, raise chickens on all the expired produce from our organic grocer, feed my cat raw chicken that aren't quite fit for slaughter, manager the local farmer's market, am writing a preparing and keeping the harvest cookbook for the north, and do various other things that an environmental planner does. winter gives lots of time to get down to the serious - knitting socks and meow hats and sweaters for the boyfriend, with beautacious wool from our local alpaca farm. Broadening my ex-veganism with amazing local salmon, char, moose, bison, elk, and sheep and preparing for another halibut expedition in Valdez. If you can dream it, we can grow it in the North!
Keep up the inspiration and connectivity Jenna!

January 8, 2011 at 5:45 PM  
Blogger Christy said...

hey there...christy in pasadena,california. 40ish living in a condo. on our modest patio we grow meyer lemons, hot peppers, sorghum, salad greens and herbs. our neighborhood is setting up a garden co-op and we have secured a spot beginning this spring. we have a second home in the local mountains with 1/3 of an acre. there we have a large herb garden, loads of fruit trees (apple, pear, cherry, plum, peach, nectarine), a strawberry patch and 3 large raised beds for veggies. we also keep bees and are adding a second hive this year. our dream is to have chickens and goats (and hubs wants a mule) but unless we are full-time in the mountains...it remains a dream. i am a trained pastry chef and do loads of canning and preserving. i share my passion on my food blog http://www.fudgeripple.blogspot.com

my husband is a graphic designer, an avid bow-hunter,and a bluegrass junkie...he plays the five string, mandolin and guitar (sorry jenna, he plays a vintage martin). we love living in the city, but we love independence more. thinking of a move out of california, but haven't found the right spot just yet.
been following cold antler for about a year--enjoying every minute of it!

January 8, 2011 at 5:51 PM  
Blogger And This Little Pig said...

G'day Libbie Australia, while I mainly blog about my cross stitch, my family does have a farm, and when ever I go home, I photograph and blog. My mum has been breeding dairy goats for nearly 33 years. And there are plenty of chooks (chickens), ducks, pheasants new this last year, cows, calves and dairy goats. I would say the occasional pig, but Ham and Bacon go into the coolroom today, along with two buck kids. The LSG dog, a maremma and the vegie garden, I like most live the dream that one day I can 'go back to the land'.

Really enjoy Cold Antler and all that you strive to do. Love to drop in and see what you are doing.

January 8, 2011 at 6:06 PM  
OpenID elizabethselena said...

HI Jenna! First off, you inspire me so much- I am 28 as well and I live in the Northwest- very conducive to homesteading and living the simple life. Last year, I felt like I would never be able to attain my dreams of living alongside my land, but your blog has given me a lot of hope that another 9-5 young woman can have this dream. :) Thanks for your faithfulness to this blog and thanks for wanting to meet your readers. Finally, after 28 yrs, I've met one who wants to share this dream with me and we are planning our return to simpler things like my authentically homesteading parents who live completely off the grid. We are planning our plot for spring in our community garden since we are still renting, we learned how to slaughter our chickens humanely, and looking for a plot of land to call our own in the spring when we get married. Life is good and you were a big part of this change of seasons and you never knew, haha! Happy Winter, friend! Learn a new tune and wait for the branches to green up!!!

January 8, 2011 at 6:08 PM  
Blogger Carrie said...

Hi I'm Carrie. I live in a southwest suburb of Chicago. I have cats, worms, frogs, fish, chickens, and a big garden. I play guitar and recently took the fiddle challenge. Unfortunately, In the suburb where I live "Everything I want to do is illegal". I would love to live on a small farm. Anyone out there from my neck of the woods?

January 8, 2011 at 6:09 PM  
Blogger Knit Picky Knitter said...

Hi my name is Josephine and I live in the Chicago area with my husband, four children, one unruly dog and three cats. I have always wanted to live in the country but my husband being an architect keeps us well rooted in urban areas. I have been gardening for a few years but this past summer the new unruly dog trampled my garden, but I'm determined to make it work this year. I would love to have some chickens but our town doesn't allow it. I'm an avid knitter, crocheter and I love to bake. I work fulltime as a librarian and my kids and pets keep me pretty busy but I would like to make more time for music. I read your first book (Made from Scratch) and loved it - it inspired me to buy a strumstick and mountain dulcimer. I need to find some other musicians so I will stay motivated and learn some songs. I so admire what you are doing Jenna. You are such a strong and determined woman! Thank you for sharing your experiences with all of us and know that a midwestern suburban mom is cheering for you and your wonderful farm. Happy New Year!

January 8, 2011 at 6:11 PM  
Blogger nese said...

Hi Jenna! My name is Denise and I live in a small town in Ohio. Last year we turned an abandoned tennis court into an organic garden. It was beautiful in June, devastated by bugs by August. So I have a lot to learn about organic gardening. Would love to have a little more land and chickens someday. Till then I support local farmers. Love your blog and your book!

January 8, 2011 at 6:18 PM  
Blogger Ohiofarmgirl said...

Hi! I'm ohiofarmgirl. In my previous life I was a fussy, type-a, high-tech gal. And now here I am in the flyover zone on a farm. I gave the finger to my Big (corporate) Life and made my way here to The Good Land. I became a tiller of the soil, a keeper of the flocks, and a hater of pigs.

Here is where all our foolishness happens:
http://adventuresinthegoodland.blogspot.com/

January 8, 2011 at 6:21 PM  
Blogger Holly said...

Hi Everyone!
My name is Holly, I am 37(I think) and live on 27 acres in North Bennington, VT with my husband, 2 daughters (4 and 2), 30 something chickens, 4 cats, 2 border collies, 2 horses(appaloosa's) and a partridge in a pear tree! We bought the house about 2 years ago, the house is a 300 year old nightmare! We have managed to do a pretty successful garden, we also rented the property for 7 years. I am planning/hoping to be able to bring home goats, sheep and perhaps a cow or two this summer. We have raised turkeys in the past. I went from sitting behind a desk doing graphic design to being a stay at home mom and hobby farming and I love it! I just need to figure out some ways to utilize the land properly!
I currently have americauna's, black cochins, sl wynadotte, salmon favorelle's and blue laced red wynadotte's. I am hatching the sf and blr wynadotte's in the spring if anyone local is interested.
Jenna I love your blog, you give me inspiration to move forward and tackle my goals. You are a farming warrior! Keep writing!

January 8, 2011 at 6:27 PM  
Blogger SWEETHEARTS MOM said...

I can not wait to read all of these; Hi I am Tracy. I have country in my blood. I rented my home for 3 years and lived in a camper just to save up a down payment for my farm. I live in N TX on 3 acres and have a dog, cats, meat rabbits, chickens a turkey and guineas. I also try to grow a garden. I have a day job 45 minutes away so a long commute and I am 49 and single with 2 great kids, and 4 grand kids who love to come to my farm.

January 8, 2011 at 6:30 PM  
Blogger Rurality said...

Hello all!
Cathy here.
Raising 3 boys, a rabbit, veggies and a beef steer (some of you may remember Tasty) on 5 acres in VerYork.
We have been homeschooling and raising our own food in varying degrees for 12 years now.
New endeavors include beekeeping this spring and cheesemaking!
Doing more canning all the time. (Beth in NE OH - I could REALLY use a good salsa recipe. I am addicted to growing heirloom tomatoes and and MUST find a way to use them all!)
Thank you Jenna for being such a "do-er". Reading your blog renews my zeal for the simple life and all of its pleasures.

January 8, 2011 at 6:40 PM  
Blogger ADK Massage Girl said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 6:45 PM  
Blogger ADK Massage Girl said...

Merry meet! My name is Lauren(30). I am from central NY, currently living in southern NH. I am a massage therapist and looking forward to getting out of my apartment and onto some of my own land. I look forward to having chickens, possibly sheep, and maybe even a cow. I love growing my own food and making all natural bath salts and lip balms. Thank you for letting me dream and live vicariously through you!

January 8, 2011 at 6:48 PM  
Blogger Ivy Mae said...

Hi y'all! I'm Monica (I'll be 31 next month, argh) and last year I wrote that I was looking forward to moving to some rural property. I'm so happy to say that it happened! My husband, 17-month-old son and I live on in North Florida on 10 acres in a tiny cottage with a great back deck. I have two large raised beds that are growing cauliflower and chard, plus a bunch of herbs squeezed in wherever they fit. I am pretty committed to cooking from scratch "staples," so I make all our bread and try not to buy any processed food. We're looking forward to getting chickens in the spring, and I'm proud to say that my son learned to rake last week! He'll be a great helper for mama soon!
PS--big hi to Crystal from Heartsong farms--we're practically neighbors.

January 8, 2011 at 6:50 PM  
OpenID brightwaterpc said...

Hi, Jenna! Pauline from Ithaca here. I started reading CAF after my husband & I were in Manchester for a conference two years ago, and I found your book in that awesome bookstore. I really enjoy reading your adventures. In the past we've raised sheep and chickens, and now we're down to just the garden, but I buy free-range eggs from a neighbor! Lambing season is exhausting, but lovely. I remember those 3 AM trips to the barn to check on the ewes that were due soon, even a couple of nights that I slept on a cot there with them, and the voice that a new mother uses only with her newborn lamb. It can have its sad and tough moments, too, but it's worth it. CAF is REAL!

January 8, 2011 at 6:52 PM  
Blogger Harmony said...

Hello! My name is Harmony (24) and I live in Wenatchee, WA. I'm currently attending college pursuing a degree in Ecology but my ultimate goal is to live self-sustainably on my own farm most likely somewhere in Eastern WA where I have lived my whole life. I love hearing about your animals, garden and music! I have had all three in my life since I was a child. Can't wait until spring when I can read more about the garden and all the new additions to your farm!

January 8, 2011 at 6:56 PM  
Blogger farmgirljen said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 8, 2011 at 7:07 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home