Why do my interests in canning, couponing, and homesteading overlap so often with blogs with titles like ‘The Obedient Housewife’?
Like, I’m like, “I want to learn to make soap and farm,” and suddenly I see 500 “traditional family” motherfuckers like no you are mistaken. I am just a simple lesbian anticapitalist looking to limit my consumerism as much as possible.
‘these fun crafts will keep your kids occupied until your husband gets home!’ no i want a clothespin crown for me
As a nerd who homesteads, let me share the data I have gathered!
First is my megalist of homesteading-related links I’ve gathered over the years. I’m a mod over at r/homesteading and this is where I’ve put a lot of good sources (not all, admittedly some are still sitting in my bookmark folder waiting to be added). The search function at reddit is wretched, but there’s also been lots of good things I’ve shared there too. Please note that many of these sources are not actual webpages, but PDFs. That’s not an accident, PDFs are where you find the really good in-depth stuff.
Many of my sources are from the Extension Service. They won’t try to relate to you based on your lifestyle or sexual identity or religion or whatever, but due to that, they also won’t be alienating you either.
The Cooperative Extension Service (US only) exists in all 50 states and in most counties. It is taxpayer funded. The Extension Service exists to help people become more self sufficient, for farmers to be more successful, for people to be healthier, for kids to be well adjusted, to figure out how to grow the best plants in your area, etc. Some county offices even offer cheap classes in things like gardening, canning, soap making, and they’re taught by people with training in these areas (I once heard a great talk on composting from a soil scientist that way). Do you want to know what type of plant something is? Do you need help figuring out a plant disease or pest issue? You can now contact them online and get great info.
I HIGHLY recommend checking out your state’s extension service website, because they do offer different types of information, depending on what is grown/raised where you are (and how well funded they are). My county extension puts out a monthly gardening newsletter, which includes a helpful ‘this is the time of the year to do —-’ part.
Here’s an example from North Carolina - check out that left sidebar
Here’s an example from California - this website is HUGE so dig around
Here’s an example from New York - they have a calendar at the bottom, showing how they have things like hydroponic and urban agriculture workshops coming up.
Interested in raising animals? Penn State Extension is really really good. They have tons of free materials and courses available online, some I pulled for my megalist at the top of this.
National Center for Home Food Preservation - they cover the important aspects of food safety, and also have some recipes. Many state Extension Service websites will have lots more recipes.
If you have kids, check out 4-H programs for them. It’s part of the local public school system here. If you’re homeschooling, you can also purchase their science-filled educational and self sufficiency materials (materials are divided by age ranges - Cloverbud Member: ages 5-8, Junior Member: ages 9-13, Senior Member: ages 14-19). One of my coworkers is in 4-H, she’s still in high school, and last year she raised an award-winning heifer.
Congress grants the money for funding these programs, and they’re connected with various universities. There’s a level of cutting edge scientific knowledge and academic rigor you don’t find in blogs or even most books. There’s LOTS of homesteading books filled with outdated information like ‘till the earth every year’ hell I still have older coworkers who do it and I’m trying to figure out how to gently tell them that they’re destroying their soil that way, and that there’s better methods now, methods grounded in science.
Knitting - try this youtube series
DIY Crown - here’s a youtube video on how to make a mermaid crown
Hope this is helpful to someone out there.