Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Film Review: National Geographic: Human Footprint

Ever wonder how many daipers babies will use in their life time or how much milk you will drink? Then this is the documentary for you. This film is about the footprint humans leave on the earth, mostly about garbage, and it's effects on the environment. It follows two youngsters throughout their lives and shows with numbers and visual how much of a footprint you leave. Nevermind about your carbon footprint or how long things would take to break down. Not even a synopsis of how to solve this problem about garbage.
In the first segement they show you how many diapers babies use and say how many gallons of water you would use washing reuasables. But which is better? Who knows they don't tell you.
To me, this film was only a start of a better film on the human footprint all we need to know is how to reduce it.
2 of 5 stars for get statistics and examples but it feels incomplete and sort of demonicizes humans.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Learning to Knit

I know how to crochet, sew, bake, speak German, and even play the clarinet. Something was missing and after reading Jenna's book it was something more then just chickens and a nice garden. It was knitting.
I've tried it before without much success. Yes, I was even in a knitting club in middle school where I didn't learn much and if I did, I don't remember any of it. Inspired by Jenna's books I decided it was time to take it on with the promise of nice fuzy warm socks in the winter. So, on a misson to Joanns for flannel for burp clothes for my sister I journeyed into the yarn and needle aisle. Needless to say I got out with size 9 needles a two skeins of wool/acrylic blend to practice with and to knit a classic scarf.
Having a vague idea of how to cast on I started but knew something was wrong, I couldn't start a new row. After a little research, I found a video with a british woman showing you how to cast on with two needles. It may take longer to do but it works for me!
So kniting I went! I praticed that for awhile and pulled it out. Why? Something else was missing, having it smooth. To my luck I found a video teaching how to do it. Apparently, the stitch that I was doing was called the "knit stitch" and the one that I needed to make a smooth piece was called the "pearl stitch", which is the knit stitch backwards.
I'm going to continue pacticing and hopefully I'll have some cozy pairs of socks by winter and maybe some cotton ones for summer.
Resource Videos:

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Book Review: Made From Scratch by Jenna Woginrich

Where you ever curious about how to make clothes but only thought that I master seamstress could make them? Did you ever wonder where that delicious golden honey came from? What about how to churn butter but always thought that you needed one of those big hand churns? Well think again! Jenna not only tells you how you can achieve a simpler lifestyle but also of her triumphs and failures. As you learn through her captivating chapters you learn that it doesn't take much to make you happy. Maybe a home cooked meal with eggs fresh from the chicken or veggies fresh from your garden. One quickly learns that the smallest things can make on happy.
Join Jenna as she takes you on her journey to a more self-sufficient life as she acquires chicken, bees, and rabbits, and learns how to sew and knit.
After the book, she doesn't leave you in the dark as to where to go next. She includes a helpful list of books and websites that will help.
So what are you waiting for? Order your copy now, son!

Order now!

Jenna's Blog: Cold Antler Farm

References from back of book

General Interest
The Contrary Farmer by Gene Logsdon
Better Off by Eric Brende
Encyclopedia of Country Living by Carla Emery
MaryJane's Idea Book by MaryJane Butters
Hit By a Farm by Catherine Friend
Storey's Basic Country Skills by John and Martha Storey

The Good Life by Scott Nearing
Countryside magazine
Urban Homesteading
How to Homestead
Homegrown Evolution
Hobby Farms magazine
Barnyard in Your Backyard edited by Gail Damerow
The Have-More Plan by Ed and Carolyn Robinson

Green Living and Renewable Energy
Green People
Home Power magazine
Carbon Fund

Seeds of Change
Pinetree Seeds
You Grow Girl
Food Not Lawns by H. C. Flores
The Vegetable Gardener's Bible by Edward C. Smith
The Gardener's A-Z Guide to Orangic Food by Tanya L.K. Denckla
The Veggie Gardener's Answer Book by Barbara Ellis

Kitchen Aid
Take Two & Butter 'Em While They're Hot by Barbara Swell
Ball Canning
Lodge Manufacturing
Blue Ribbon Recipes by the Farmer's Almanac
Eat Well Guide
The Big Book of Preserving the Harvest by Carol W. Costenbader
Serving Up the Harvest by Andrea Chesman

Working Dogs
Black Ice Kennels
Wolf Packs
Ruff Wear
Wilczek Woodworks
Sled Dog Central

Backyard Chickens
My Pet Chicken
Murray McMurray Hatchery
Living with Chickens by Jay Rossier
Keep Chickens! by Barbara Kilarski
Storey's Illustrates Guide to Poultry Breeds by Carol Ekarius

Storey's Guide to Rising Chickens by Gail Damerow
Chicken Coops by Judy Pangman


Storey's Guide to Raising Rabbits by Bob Bennett

Better Bee
My Beehives
Dadant and Sons
Western Bee Supplies

Sewing and Knitting
Built by Wendy
Stephanie Pear-McPhee
Knit Picks
Sew What! Skirts by Framcesca DenHartog and Carole Ann Camp
Sew What! Fleece by Carol Jessop and Chaila Sekora

Music and Jams
Native Ground
Parick Costello
Wood 'n' Strings
Acoustic Friends
Banjo Hut
Mandolin Hut
MvNally Strumsticks
Morgan Monroe
Jay Buckey
Blue Grass Music Jams

Sierra Club
Organic Consumers Association
Rural Roots

Farm Finding and Social Networking
Local Harvest
Farmers Only
Sustainable Communities