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Cold Hard Truths

Cold Hard Truths

It’s been a busy time filled with various projects, from setting up a new chicken coop to smoking our first ham and tackling some home improvement tasks. Let’s dive into the details of our week and share some insights and experiences from our homesteading journey.

Setting Up the Chicken Coop

Our week started with getting the chicken coop ready for our feathered friends. We moved the coop inside and set up the chickens temporarily to get them acclimated to their new surroundings. Em has been diligently checking on them to ensure they’re comfortable and adjusting well. It’s always a joy to see them exploring their new home and settling in.

Smoking Our First Ham

One of the highlights of the week was smoking our first ham. Although we didn’t raise the pig entirely on our homestead, we were involved in most of the process, making it a special experience. We used the East Oak smoker, a budget-friendly option we found on Amazon, which worked surprisingly well for our first attempt.

The marinade for the ham was a simple yet delicious combination of brown sugar, molasses from Roy’s place, and some honey mustard dipping sauce. The result was a tasty ham that, while not perfect, was certainly enjoyable. There’s room for improvement, but for a first attempt, we were pretty pleased with the outcome.

Preparing for Spring Planting

With the threat of freezing temperatures seemingly behind us, we’ve moved our produce out of the pole barn. This week, we also invested in some cattle panels to set up a trellis system for our beans, peas, and tomatoes. However, we mistakenly got the more expensive horse panels, which put us over budget. Despite this, we’re excited to see how the trellis system will support our plants as they grow.

Maintenance Work on the Pole Barn

Maintaining our pole barn was another task on our list this week. We’re replacing the roof screws on the main building and the original lean-to. Over time, the sun and weather can degrade the rubber washers on the screws, leading to leaks and deterioration. It’s important to replace these every few years to keep the roof in good condition.

Home Improvement: Spraying Knockdown Texture

We also tackled a home improvement project by spraying knockdown texture on the walls. It’s been a while since we’ve done this, so it was a bit of a learning curve to get the right consistency and technique. The knockdown texture adds a nice finish to the walls, covering up any inconsistencies between drywall pieces. We’re pleased with how it’s turning out and can’t wait to see the finished result.

Spending Time with Friends

One of the joys of homesteading is the community of like-minded individuals we get to interact with. This week, we spent some time with friends on the ridge, helping them build something for their homestead. It’s always great to share stories, enjoy good food, and support each other in our homesteading endeavors.

Looking Ahead

As we wrap up this week, we’re excited about the projects and challenges that lie ahead. Homesteading is a journey filled with learning, growth, and the satisfaction of building something with our own hands. We’re grateful for the support of our community, both online and offline, and look forward to sharing more of our adventures with you.

Thank you to everyone who has liked, shared, and subscribed to our channel. Your support means the world to us. Don’t forget to check out our newsletter on BackroadsHomesteading.com and follow us on Facebook and X for more updates on our homesteading journey. Until next time, happy homesteading!

Protecting the Homestead: A Comprehensive Guide to Safeguarding Your Rural Paradise

Protecting the Homestead: A Comprehensive Guide to Safeguarding Your Rural Paradise

Hey there, fellow homesteaders and nature lovers! It’s Ryan here, from backroadshomesteading, and today, I’m thrilled to share a piece of our journey with you. We’ve recently released a video titled “Protecting The Homestead,” and I believe it’s one of our most vital episodes yet. It’s not just a video; it’s a chapter from our life, showcasing our relentless dedication to safeguarding our beloved homestead.

The Essence of Our Homestead Protection

In this video, I take you through the essence of our daily grind – protecting the land that’s become an integral part of our lives. These fields behind me aren’t just plots of land; they’re the heartbeat of our homestead. This journey isn’t just about planting seeds or fencing land; it’s about cultivating a future, a sustainable way of life that can be passed down through generations.

A Fence, But Not Just Any Fence

I dive deep into the world of fencing, not just as a barrier, but as a strategic investment in our future. It’s fascinating how a simple structure can hold so much significance. From solar fence energizers to electric fence holders, every tool and piece of equipment is a testament to our commitment to this land. But as you’ll see, it’s not just about keeping threats out; it’s about creating a harmonious space where every living thing thrives.

More Than Just Land Management

Our homestead is more than just a piece of land; it’s a complex ecosystem. I walk you through our thoughtful planning and resource management strategies. The way we structure our fences, considering factors like the depth perception of deer, reflects our deep understanding and respect for nature. But our stewardship doesn’t end there. It extends to managing pastures, optimizing the location of our chicken coop, and even the strategic placement and removal of trees.

Building Community and Future Prospects

One aspect of homesteading that’s incredibly close to my heart is the sense of community. In the video, I touch upon the significance of neighborly relations and how they can shape the future of a homestead. Our plans for AGR tourism and educational initiatives are all about sharing our journey and learning together as a community. This journey is not just about individual growth; it’s about growing together, learning from each other, and building a future that’s sustainable and enriching for everyone involved.

Reflecting and Looking Ahead

As the video draws to a close, I share some reflections on our homesteading journey. The history of our land, its past, present, and the potential future paths it might take, are all part of this incredible adventure. It’s a constant balance between respecting the past, nurturing the present, and planning for the future. And throughout this journey, the importance of community and adaptability shines through as the true pillars of a successful homestead.

I’m embedding the video right here for you to watch and hopefully, find inspiration and insights for your own homesteading journey.

Remember, every view, like, and share supports our channel through Affiliate Links at no additional cost to you. This support allows us to continue bringing valuable content your way.

I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts, insights, and experiences. Drop a comment below, and let’s keep the conversation going. Until next time, keep nurturing your dreams and your land!

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Moving Forward: Exciting Updates and Plans on the Homestead!

Moving Forward: Exciting Updates and Plans on the Homestead!

Welcome back, fellow homesteaders and friends of the Backroads!

Ryan here again, and I’m thrilled to bring you the latest updates from our beloved homestead. Just this morning, I wrapped up an oil change on our trusty car, and it got me thinking about all the progress we’ve made and the exciting plans we have in store. So, I figured it’s the perfect time for a hearty update!

2024 Thoughts And Ideas

A Glimpse into Our World

Our homestead has been a hive of activity lately. We’ve reclaimed our tractor, been busy laying water lines, and let me tell you, we’ve got a lineup of videos that we can’t wait to share with you! Our schedule is getting packed, with live streams aimed for every Friday or Saturday and fresh videos every Tuesday and Thursday. We’re all about hands-on work here, and whether it’s changing oil or exploring alternative energy sources like waste oil heaters, we’re diving deep into the world of sustainable living.

A Direct Line to Our Community

We’re beyond excited to announce that our website is now live, complete with an active email list! This platform is our way of connecting directly with you, our community. Given the nature of our content, not everything is YouTube-friendly, so we’ve taken to platforms like Rumble X and our very own newsletter to ensure you don’t miss a beat. For those who choose to support our channel, we’re rolling out membership perks – from exclusive content and stickers to a heartfelt thank you letter.

Homesteading, Community, and Beyond

Our vision extends far beyond just maintaining a homestead. We’re talking about a vibrant, thriving community. We’ve got plans for primitive camping sites for those adventurous spirits and a dive into agritourism. But it’s not just about us. We’re laying down water lines, setting up fences, and planting a variety of berries and fruit trees – it’s about creating a space where self-sufficiency meets community spirit.

We’re active across social media, and we cherish the direct, uncensored line of communication that our email list and potential print newsletters offer. These platforms are our way of ensuring that our journey, our learnings, and our community’s stories are shared far and wide.

The Journey Ahead

As we gear up for the future, we’re reminded daily that homesteading is not just about the land; it’s about the people, the community, and the shared journey towards a more sustainable, fulfilling way of life. Our mission is to support local agriculture, promote self-sufficiency, and foster a space where life is lived in harmony with nature.

We’re here to share, to grow, and to support each other every step of the way. Whether it’s through our videos, our membership program, or our social media channels, we’re building more than just a homestead – we’re nurturing a community.

Thank you for being a part of this journey. Your support fuels our passion and drives us to keep moving forward, one backroad at a time.

Keep homesteading, stay connected, and remember – Affiliate Links support our channel at no cost to you.

Yours in homesteading,

Ryan

Bracing for Winter: Preparing Home and Garden for Arkansas’ First Polar Vortex

Bracing for Winter: Preparing Home and Garden for Arkansas’ First Polar Vortex

As you know, we’re always up for a challenge, and this time it’s Arkansas’ first-ever polar vortex. That’s right, our homestead is bracing for some icy temps, and I’m here to share our frosty adventures and how we’re keeping things snug and secure.

First off, this whole crawl space situation is new to us. We’re used to basements back in Wisconsin, so dealing with exposed plumbing is a bit of a curveball. We’re mitigating risks by turning off water where we can and letting faucets drip to prevent freezing. Homesteading tip: always stay one step ahead of the weather!

Now, let’s talk about our new colossal buddy – a 20-foot ladder, courtesy of Warner. This giant isn’t just any ladder; it’s a double-sided, 600 lb capacity beast that’s making our high-altitude tasks a breeze. And, as our homesteading pals wisely say, safety first! This ladder’s wide base is a game-changer for stability.

Despite the prep, we faced a deluge of rain and wind recently, really putting our homestead to the test. We found a few leaks around window seals and screws needing adjustments. But hey, it’s all part of the homesteading journey, right?

On a brighter note, I’ve been juggling indoor tasks like video editing and web design. Still, I’m sneaking in time to enjoy the outdoors and tend to our garden. Speaking of which, our wild chives are thriving, and I’m hustling to harvest them before the frost. Fun fact: the grass here in Arkansas doesn’t demand as much mowing as back in Wisconsin – talk about a gas saver!

Our Decora bamboo is facing its own chilly challenge. It’s cold-tolerant, but these upcoming zero temps are a real concern. We’re doing our best to insulate it with extra mulch and care. And about our hydroponic cacti experiment… well, let’s just say they prefer warmer weather.

We’re also reinforcing our orchard against the strong winds and cold. The good news is our berries and fruit trees are holding up well. Homesteading is all about adapting, and we’re learning to roll with nature’s punches.

As the vortex approaches, we’re sealing up the homestead, layering extra protection on our plants, and ensuring our bamboo’s root system is safeguarded from the freeze. It’s all hands on deck here, and we’re determined to protect our little slice of Arkansas heaven.

In our workshop, we’re prepping with plenty of wood for the furnace and strategizing to keep the warmth circulating. Homesteading isn’t just a lifestyle; it’s about resilience, innovation, and a whole lot of heart.

So, as we wrap up and brace for the cold, remember, this is just another chapter in our homesteading story. Stay tuned for more updates, and don’t forget to hit that subscribe button. Thanks for joining our frosty journey, and remember, Affiliate Links support our channel at no cost to you. Stay warm and see you in the next video!