Top Five Homemaking Projects of 2014 - Mothering Forums

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Old 12-31-2013, 09:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Greetings! On the eve of the new year I thought I would share some of my projects in the works (mentally, if not physically). This was originally posted here: radical homemaker thread?, but I thought others may want to chime in as well!

I wish you all a happy, healthy New Year! :joy

 

My Top Five Homemaking Projects to Kick Off 2014

 

  1. Make a worm compost bin. I have wanted to do this for a while. I do not have a yard for a compost pile, but I can accommodate a worm bin for food scraps.
  2. Make a sourdough starter. My friend had one going for a long time and I just never made one for myself. I guess I have been a little intimidated about making bread, and I go through bouts of being grain free. But now is the time.
  3. Crochet a denim rug. I found great ideas on line. I was wondering what to do about our old jeans.
  4. Sew reusable "paper" towels. I saw this on line and thought it was a good idea.
  5. Make some homemade yogurt. I really want to try this recipe because you don't need to heat it up and keep at a consistent temp. I get raw milk from a local goat guy (cow in the winter), so I think it will be tasty. Plus, once I have the yogurt I can make cream cheese and whey. Then I can do some more lacto-fermentation. I have only fermented ginger before with this method.

 

How 'bout you?


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Old 01-01-2014, 05:15 AM
 
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We use old prefolds in place of paper towels, if that helps.  Sure is simpler, though those are pretty. :)


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Old 01-01-2014, 02:20 PM
 
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My husband has been making his own yogurt, 2 gallons at a time, for about 4 years now. He is SO proud of the fact that he doesn't buy yogurt anymore. Plus he uses whole fat, organic milk, and our kids love it plain, which is awesome. I'm too used to having sweetened, flavored yogurt to eat it plain, but I like it with granola, canned peaches, or honey. I've never heard of countertop yogurt. We use a giant dehydrator, but even with that, it's really easy to make.

 

Good luck!


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Old 01-01-2014, 04:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the feedback!

 

@ appalachiamama: I do use rags in place of paper towels for most things, I just thought the "paper" towels were cool. :)  I plan on using old bath towels of varying colors and maybe putting a simple cut out of one color on to another. For example, a green towel with a blue heart. It is for fun, really. My friend and I will do it together.

 

So, do you all have a project list? I am always curious, and seeking out more ideas!


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Old 01-02-2014, 12:16 PM
 
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Great thread!  I am a maker through and through!  Here is my list so far....

 

1.  finish ALL unfinished projects (which include, my lo's quilt that was pushed aside for making holiday gifts, my lo's 3.5' play teepee, the wet felted bag I am almost done with, and finish felting all the soap I bought to felt for the holidays!)

 

2.  make clothes for me and the family (I used to wear my handmade creations all the time!  I miss that)

 

3.  make a quilted/appliqued wall hanging for the living room

 

4.  quilt a tarot/meditation mat

 

5.  finish the family's seven foot goddess tee pee (that has been started but I'm taking my time with this one)

 

6.  crochet boot cuffs (man I have wanted to do this for a long time!)

 

7.  make fun pennants for the play room

 

8.  use chalk board paint to make an art space on the wall in the play room

 

9.  do a jelly roll race with my batik pack! (here is a link for that one if you are wondering what the heck i'm talking about!)http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=missosur+star+jelly+roll+race&FORM=VIRE2#view=detail&mid=4F0C677E71121B787CEE4F0C677E71121B787CEE

 

10.  put some appliques and prints on plain yoga pants

 

11. paint a chicken (its a weird personal goal!)

 

12.  make the un-paper towels (thanks a lot RebeloveMa!  LOL)

 

13.  last but not least, im pretty obsessed with trying my hand at a Waldorf doll for my lo <3

 

ok,  I better stop before I get totally out of control!  its gonna be a busy year!  Hey, I love this thread so much I'd like to put forth the idea that we post our projects for each other as we finish them!!  Blessings to the makers!!

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Old 01-03-2014, 09:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow! I like your top 13! I am particularly smitten with your teepee plans, both the kiddy and the Goddess! How super cool! I also plan on making a little teepee for my lo. So I will add that to my list; that's six. And I want to make some boot cuffs too. I saw some great ideas for upcycling sweaters into boot cuffs. So that is seven. I had to look up "felting soap". Very cool. And now I know what a jelly roll race is! :thumb Good luck! Oh, and when you say "paint a chicken" are we talking real? wooden? on paper? Just curious!

 

I love the idea of posting finished products. Hope to have a pic of something soon!


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Old 01-07-2014, 08:15 PM
 
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LOL re/ the chicken!  It will be painted on canvas, the chickens in the backyard will be spared!  BTW, I finished the little tee-pee, and it turned out great!  I'll post a pic asap :)

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Old 01-15-2014, 09:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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That clears it up! Can't wait to see the pic! I, of course, have started a couple of projects that were not on the list. Like a plant hanger made with branches. I'll post a pic! Today I will be starting the non-paper towel paper towel roll. Yay!


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Old 01-15-2014, 12:31 PM
 
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HI!  SO I totally have pics to share but I cant figure out how to get them up!!  Just spent the past 20 minutes trying!! headscratch.gif When I click the photo icon and select the upload photos button nothing happens!  Let me know if you have problems too, I cant wait to see the branch plant hanger!  I am so intrigued!! :bgbounce

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Old 01-15-2014, 01:44 PM
 
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Lets see

 

-a few more raised beds 

-finding (freecycle, Craiglist etc) planting containers for the deck (where I'm keeping all the herbs this year..) 

-Chickens. 

-Fiber goats.

-Ditching all plastic/paper. 


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Old 01-15-2014, 09:12 PM
 
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mommariffic, fun list!!! what do you mean by fiber goats?  as in raising goats for their hair?  im a fiber artist and would love to know what this is about!!!  also love your idea about finding planting containers! 

btw, if you want any chicken tips im yer gal!   chicken3.gif 

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Old 01-15-2014, 09:27 PM
 
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OK, so it took me forever to find a way to get these pics up, but here they are!

IMG_4647.JPG

Here is the finished teepee!

IMG_4653.JPG

here is a close up of the pennants I made to go around the top,

IMG_4650.JPG

and the wooden button closure, because im obsessed with wooden buttons!

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Old 01-15-2014, 09:30 PM
 
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IMG_4584.JPG


here is the bag I made.  it was my first attempt at wet felting, its ALOT of work!! (and of course more wooden buttons!)

IMG_4673.JPG


this one wasn't on my list but I bought this coat for dd and it had a boys sports theme patch so I covered it up with this flower I crocheted and sewed on, now im making a hat to match so im already off track from my original list!!!

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Old 01-17-2014, 07:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Your teepee is awesome! Really, it is much more fine tuned than what I was going to go for. The details are truly beautiful. And I like your other projects too, so pretty! I too have strayed from my list. Instead of starting my non-paper towel roll, my friend and I made worm bins (still need the worms) and I finished a simple plant hanger for in front of my south-facing window. It will be able to hold six potted plants and there is still room on the window sill for a few others. I want to keep some of my herbs here. I will post a few pics today!


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Old 01-18-2014, 03:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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OK, here is the plant hanger. It is really a prototype... I may have to add some more supports once all the pots are in. I also might have to lower it a bit for the change in the sun's angle during summer. And, I think I want to use a different hanging mechanism. I don't really like the look of the paracord, but it is strong. SOOooo, just ignore the messy string hanging down.

 

AppleMark

It doesn't look like much, but imagine 4 - 6 more pots with flowers and herbs! I'll post another pic eventually, with all the plants.

 

AppleMark

 

So that is it. Like I said, I want to fine tune it. But the great thing about this project is that it was basically free. I used branches that had fallen from a tree in the front of my apartment building. All I had to buy were the hooks to hang it from (under $4) and the paracord ($2).

 

The compost bin isn't much to see, so I'll probably skip posting a picture of that! :wink


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Old 01-18-2014, 07:48 PM
 
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RebeloveMa, thanks for the compliments!  That teepee was more work than I pictured in my head!  I LOVE the branch plant holder idea!!!  I want to try it but I'm not sure the cats will leave it alone!  I may attempt a smaller version for the tiny window in the mudroom... Anyway, Id love to hear about how your worm bin comes out, I tried one a few years ago and my worms went kamikaze on me!  I finally freed all the worms because I was so sad they weren't happy!  Id love to hear how you made yours and an update on how its going, I may try another one!  This thread is so fun, thanks for keeping up with it!  :bouncy

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Old 02-18-2014, 04:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi! Just wanted to check into the thread. I am certainly pursuing my homemaking goals, but I am also a community college teacher and the semester started a couple of weeks ago. I am a busy bee!

 

Nevertheless, I have been taking steps towards my container garden. I will be making SWC for the first time. I ordered all of my seeds. Yikes! I am ambitious for having no actual yard! I am also busy in the kitchen. I will be making my first batch of raw milk yogurt this week as well as my first sourdough starter.

 

I hope you all are finding all the time you want to make your home!! :love


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Old 02-21-2014, 06:50 AM
 
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I always forget to come back and check out these threads! Wee. 

 

Fiber goats are totally new to me too! I am actually now (after talking with a friend) debating sheep vs an angora goat 

http://www.ansi.okstate.edu/breeds/goats/angora/

 

I do 99% of the homesteading. It's my goal to live like this, and my husband has no interest. So balancing all the animals + my own needs + the kids can get overwhelming. This year I also decided we are going to get ducks (yum duck eggs!) and so I've been researching breeds + what we need to get started (I have most of the materials) 

 

And beautiful projects everyone! 


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Old 02-22-2014, 11:26 AM
 
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I have totally strayed from my list, but my newest thing is making felt covered barrettes to keep the hair out of lo's eyes!!  I also decided to make over my sewing area (aka dining room, LOL!) so it's more functional, organized, and attractive.   Its slow going, but its getting there! :)

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Old 03-22-2014, 10:33 AM
 
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@ RebeloveMa - I love your plant hanger! That's rad! Looks so lovely and natural :)

 

...

Quote:
Originally Posted by mommariffic View Post

 

Fiber goats are totally new to me too! I am actually now (after talking with a friend) debating sheep vs an angora goat 

http://www.ansi.okstate.edu/breeds/goats/angora/

 

I do 99% of the homesteading. It's my goal to live like this, and my husband has no interest. So balancing all the animals + my own needs + the kids can get overwhelming. This year I also decided we are going to get ducks (yum duck eggs!) and so I've been researching breeds + what we need to get started (I have most of the materials) 

 

Wow, I would like to say you're awesome for working so hard yourself to keep up the family homestead! It's our dream to have our own small homestead.. we have been researching different animals (livestock), trying to decide what we NEED, and what would be nice to have but still relatively simple to keep up with. I've gone back and forth in my mind about goats... it seems like you have to decide whether you want goats for milk, hair, or meat, instead of a combination of the three? Same with cattle, you have to choose whether you want the animal for milk or for meat? I'm still behind on my research on those two animals, which is why I'm asking.. I've mainly researched keeping chickens, since that's what we will be able to keep here, and I'd like to keep a few for practice. Ooooh ducks! That's another animal I'm very interested in keeping for eggs.. are there dual-purpose ducks as there are chickens? Oh man so many questions. I have a few more books to buy haha

 

My Top Five Homemaking Projects of 2014:

1. Grow a small vegetable and herb garden (we need to prepare the soil, it'll be time to start planting soon!)

2. Build a compost bin at our new home (we had one back in Texas, I miss it! I feel bad wasting bits of food...)

3. Raise a few chickens, for eggs (I'd like to get Wyandottes or Australorps)

4. Sew curtains, hem cleaning rags, repair/patch worn clothing.. a few other simple sewing projects, and I'd like to start trying to quilt. I have a million books about it I've been reading...

5. Make my own non-toxic candles from beeswax and coconut oil :)


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Old 04-10-2014, 02:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello homemakers! Its been a day or two (or a hundred). I have a minute, so I wanted to check in and say HEELLLLOOOOO! How are everyone's projects going?

 

@mommariffic - Fiber goats sound very cool! I would love to hear the ins and outs as you do it. Also, my dh isn't totally uninterested in homesteading, but almost. It is inspiring to hear that you head up so many projects by yourself. It gives me the courage to do it too!

 

@KatelynRose - Welcome to the thread. Your list is awesome!

 

@gardendweller - How are you?? Got any pics of your barrettes?  What else is going on?

 

I started my seeds today. I am a bit late, but better so than never, right? My super-helper did most of the work, of course.

 

AppleMark  AppleMark

 

Also, I am just about finished with my SWCs (Self Watering Containers). I am pretty excited about them. It is hot and dry where I live, so this is the perfect set up for water-hungry veggie plants. It was a fairly manageable process: obtain food-grade buckets (I found reclaimed ones for half the price of regulars), drill various sized holes in some of them, wash them, paint them, and plant them!

 

AppleMark AppleMark

 

Anyhow, I am excited about this growing season! I got some fun heirloom varieties that I can't wait to see (and more importantly, taste), especially the mini white cukes!

 

I can't wait to hear how things are going with the rest of you. :heartbeat

 

Happy Spring!


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Old 04-15-2014, 09:35 PM
 
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hi rebelovema!  been great, busy, and surviving a sleepless child! (now getting in molars, uhg!)  lets see, latest projects:

1.  still making barrettes as she seems to lose them as fast as I can make them!

2.  planted an indoor organic herb garden in large mason jars

3.  made a fabric coiled spring basket for lo's spring goodies

 

I intend to make a few sleep sacks in the next few days (I am staring down the fabric with blood shot eyes as I type! lol!) and I need to get my seeds going as well!  dh already did our tomatoes (which are always his thing) but im behind on the rest!  I will try to get pics up, but I cant use the upload feature for some reason, so I have to load pics on to my mothering account then transfer them over here which is a project in its self!

 

hope you are well, blessings!  great pics!

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Old 04-16-2014, 09:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I can totally relate to the sleeplessness! DD is getting her last moler right now. On top of that, we all caught a killer cold. Just came out of the haze a week ago, well, I'm still a bit in it. Can't seem to recharge fully before having to spend it!

 

I am very interested in pics! I love the idea of an indoor herb garden in big jars.


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Old 04-17-2014, 06:52 PM
 
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Im totally lacking on the motivation department! I have a ton to do as well so maybe a list will help.

 

1) declutter prior to moving (move is October-ish time frame), I haven't opened the boxes in the garage since we moved. I know whats in them but then again I really don't. I don't know what is still useable (a lot of it is camping gear and yard care items, neither of which has been used in a while)

2) re-purpose drawers to make it a school cupboard.. I want to paint it primary colors then make the sides into chalk boards for the kids to draw on. Just need to get my husband to do the work (pregnant so no painting for this lady).

3) plant spring flowers.. we normally don't but my girls want to so Im relenting this time.

4) order school supplies for next year and plan June/July (I plan 5 weeks at a time and reevaluate/rearrange subjects as needed)

5) make curtains for all windows. Blinds+multiple young children+hyper puppy+equally hyper kitten=no blinds left surviving

6) figure out what else needs to be done around here and make a list.. this house has been seriously neglected in the last few months so it needs some major TLC.


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Old 04-17-2014, 08:51 PM
 
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This is a great thread. I guess my top five are - 

 

- Get back into home brewing and do at least a few batches of beer. 

- Learn how do proper upholstery. 

- Consistently make my own home made cleaning products (just started with all purpose spray and laundry soap). 

- Make over my ugly 1990s living room lamp with spray paint and burlap. 

- Buy some small dressers to use as bedside tables, and paint them blue and kit them out with milk glass knobs. 

 

If I can get through that stuff by the end of the year, I'll be pretty satisfied. 


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Old 04-21-2014, 03:28 PM
 
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Quote:
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5) make curtains for all windows. Blinds+multiple young children+hyper puppy+equally hyper kitten=no blinds left surviving

 

LOL! been there!  :rotflmao

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