When public school is the way to go

You believe wholeheartedly in the need for holisitic education. You passionately want it for your children. Yet for one reason or another you may choose to send your child to a mainstream school.

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Choose your own path

If your family is like mine,Β the travel time and the dollars involved both put alternative schooling (like Steiner Education) out of reach. That often leads to family choosing to homeschool which has been our path for the last year. But what if you don’t choose to homeschool?

Maybe you have to work so homeschooling isn’t an option. Maybe your local primary school has some fabulous programs you want to take advantage of for your child. Perhaps you gave homeschooling a go and then your little one asked to go to school like all of her friends who live on your block.

Or you were losing your mummy marbles. Or your child has special needs you find it hard to accommodate at home, on your own,Β  on a fulltime basis. Or you plain didn’t enjoy it. Maybe you just don’t want to fulltime homeschool.

And that’s ok. Really. I promise you, it is. If you have weighed up all of your options, listed your pros and cons, and have still come to the conclusion that public school is the way forward…it will be ok. Don’t let mummy guilt (or really, the internet) get you down. Your choice is valid. It is ok. More than ok.

You don’t even need to give up your dreams of providing an holistic education for your children. Honestly! Because there is this cool concept you may not have come across yet. Afterschooling.

Yep, afterschooling. For some this means sneaking in the academics they are worried their child is missing out on, but in the context of holistic education afterschooling is a conscious striving for balance in your child’s life.

Remember the head, heart and hands concept we talked about? School will take care of the head. It’s actually pretty notorious for it πŸ˜‰ Many people (myself included) feel mainstream schooling focuses too much on the head aspect. So outside the hours of 9-3, Monday through Friday, you can bring the focus to the heart and the hands.

How do you do that? By consciously focusing on the 3Rs of reverence, respect and ryhthm. By consciously choosing to forgo the cult of busy and the standard slew of extra curricular activities. By consciously including stories, handcrafts and the arts in your daily life. By consciously eschewing consumerism and instead focusing on imagination, freeplay and time in nature.

Rather than sign up for Saturday sport, perhaps you could spend the time hiking as a family. Instead of listening to the news on the radio for the drive home,  you could choose to listen to classical music or ‘Sparkle Stories’. Perhaps you could leave off the tv and work together on a sewing project or play a co-operative boardgame.

A candle and a verse when you serve breakfast. A family tradition of rolling beeswax candles and having a bonfire to mark the Winter Solstice. Meals prepared together with food collected from your garden. Baking bread together. Evenings spent listening to mama tell stories. A nature table given pride of place in the living room.

We each have to make the best choices we can for our families given our own unique set of circumstances. The trick is to make these choices work for us, rather than feel like the choices are being done to us.  Learning doesn’t just happen in schools, so holistic education doesn’t just have to happen in an alternative school or homeschool either.

You have the power to offer your child all of the benefits of an holistic education. School gets him for 30 hours a week. You get him for the other 138 hours. Make the time count.

Have you tried mainstream school with a holistic afterschooling twist?

The Holistic Homeschool

This article is Part Two of a series on holisitic homeschooling.

I know, I know. I promised this post moons ago. I’ve been busy writing an article for the next issue of Mulberry Magazine (due out very soon) and writing/procrastinating/agonising over my plan and report for the Home Education Unit. Not to mention the general business of running our micro homestead. But here it is. Finally πŸ˜‰

The holistic homeschool. What is it? What does it look like? What is the point?

In Part One of this series I talked about holisitic education and how it differs from traditional education. The topic is HUGE but at it’s core we can boil holisitic education down to a few points: rhythm, balance, relationships, a transdisciplinary approach. A holisitic homeschool takes these values and ideas and applies them to the home and to home education.

Here’s how it works at our house ☺

Our home hums along to a gentle rhythm. This makes sure our day-to-day life flows gently and with purpose. Children thrive on knowing what comes next and what to expect. And to be perfectly honest, so do I. When your home is also a homestead, daily rhythm becomes imperative. Those animals aren’t going to feed themselves unfortunately. At least the bread rises all on its own πŸ˜‰

Aside from a daily rhythm which includes our everyday chores, our meals, our lesson time, play time, self-directed learning time, etc., we also have a weekly rhythm. This helps us balance our lessons to ensure we are addressing all learning areas across the week, sharing our time between home and community, between lessons and play, between inside and outside.

Overlaid with this we have our yearly rhythm. This includes family celebrations, festivals, seasonal planting/harvesting/preserving and celebrating the cycle of seasons. We endeavour to live seasonally, with respect for nature and our place within the environment.

Each of these rhythms seeks to bring balance to our lives and our learning, to foster an understanding of and respect for the environment and to help us become productive members our chosen communities.

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One of our old rhythm charts


TIP! Writing out your rhythm on a chart serves as a helpful visual reminder to the whole family.

While we are focusing on bringing our lives into a harmonious balance, we are also seeking to balance our learning. Unlike traditional schooling, book learning isn’t deemed to be more important than learning (both through and about) art, music, handwork, yardwork, or even the learning that comes through being bored and at a loose end. It’s amazing the things you learn when you’ve got nothing but time and imagination!

Aside from the intrinsic value of each of the areas mentioned, we also believe that utilising these as tools is helpful in learning the more traditional subject areas. We discover science through story telling, maths through the art of form drawing, English comprehension through drawing and modelling. And this is just to name a few!

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A story began this science lesson outside with friends. We learn handwork with the help of songs. Drawing helps with comprehension of stories. Story and manipulatives assisted this maths lesson.

A balanced approach to learning has us overlapping between the subject areas. As holisitic homeschoolers we aren’t into learning subjects as separate entities, studied individually. We try to incorporate head, heart and hands learning- to bring story, song and art- to all areas.

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Art, song and story make it into all of our learning

We’re also not very interested in sitting still in one spot for our lessons. We learn in the garden, on our nature walks, at our co-op, and on family outings. We learn in the kitchen, in the playground, on our blackboard and in our books. It happens on our couch and on the floor. Learning happens in all sorts of places with all sorts of people. It happens as part of our daily life. It happens just as often while jumping around as it does sitting still. Actually with my kids it very rarely involves sitting still for long πŸ˜€

On a very practical note, we have tried curriculum and no curriculum, very structured and rather unstructured curriculum. We’ve gone DIY and we’ve gone open and go curriculum. For us, a Waldorf-inspired approach works best and we have found Kristie’s curriculum at BEarth Institute to be the right fit for us (nope, not being paid to say that and that is NOT an affiliate link. I just love the curriculum and wanted to share it with you all).

While we dedicate LOADS of time to pursuing personal interests, to freeplay and to just doing our own thing, we discovered unschooling just wasn’t for us. We prefer the structure, the rhythm, the balance, the parent/teacher-child relationship that comes with a holisitic model of homeschooling. We enjoy the magic, the art and the story of the Waldorf approach (even if the anthroposophy isn’t for us).

I’d love to hear what model of homeschooling you have adopted or are drawn to and why πŸ™‚

Happy Homeschooling xx

101 ways to HOMESTEAD in the SUBURBS

Homesteading in the ‘burbs is all about becoming as self-sufficient as you can on a small parcel of land. We may not have rolling green hills for a herd of cattle, or acres of land for planting, but there is still a lot we can do with what we have.

Bloom where you are planted!

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Bonus idea! Grow sunflowers to supplement your chook feed

Not everyone is going to be able to do all of these. Not everyone is going to want to! And that’s ok.Β  I certainly haven’t managed them all and some that I try…well, I’m just not very good at *blush*

Don’t look at this as a to-do list. Rather, these are just some ideas to get you going. Most importantly,Β  remember homesteading is a mindset and should ultimately be about making your life better.

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Baking muesli bars...not one of my better skills πŸ˜‰

Get grubby and try these ideas in the garden πŸ™‚

1. dig a vegetable garden
2. grow edible vines for shade
3. rotate your crops
4. save your seed
5. swap produce with neighbours
6. plant fruit trees
7. fill pots with herbs and edible flowers
8. make weed tea
9. make homemade garden fertilisers
10. make your own mulch
11. DIY potting mix
12. lettuce, tomatoes and strawberries make fabulous pot plants if you are short on space in the ground
13. forage for edible weeds
14. try companion planting
15. explore permaculture
16. make dyes from the plants you grow and forage
17. discover what your weeds are telling you about your soilΒ 
18. compost your scraps

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Don’t forget the animals!

19. create an insect hotel
20. keep bees
21. keep chickens for eggs
22. consider keeping chickens for meat as well
23. learn to despatch your own chooks
24. keep dairy goats if you have the room
25. pigeons and rabbits are good for meat if you are allowed to keep them in your area. Check your local council regulations and remember rabbits are NOT allowed in Queensland
26. try your hand at aquaponics
27. grow cereal crops and greens in your chook runΒ 
28. feed table scraps to your chickens (not too much, mind you)

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Backyard chickens make productive pets

It’s not just about what food you can produce yourself. What you do with it counts too!

29. bake bread
30. cook meals from scratch LIKE A GRANDMA!
31. preserve the harvest
32. make your own condiments
33. learn to properly store food
34. meal plan
35. eat in season
36. bulk buy pantry staples
37. churn your own butter
38. if you buy a snack in a packet, learn to bake it yourself
39. dry your own herbs to use in cooking
40. use leftovers to create a new meal

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Nothing beats the taste and smell of freshly baked bread

Remember homesteading is not all about food…

41. carve your own wooden spoons
42. take up knitting
43. then take up crocheting
44. make your own household cleaners
45. make your own air freshener
46. grow flowers to brighten the home. This is your sanctuary!
47. learn to make home remedies from the herb garden
48. learn to sew your own clothes
49. knit a dishcloth
50. sew a tablecloth
51. mend clothes
52. darn socks
53. repair broken shoes
54. learn to sew a button on

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Knitting dishcloths is an easy beginner project

What about pets?

55. make your own pet food
56. compost pet poo
57. if you have a big block on the edge of town, why not keep sheep to provide your own wool (they can also provide meat, milk and mow the grass for you!)
58. learn to spin
59. learn to felt wool for making your own toys, clothes and bags

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We feed her and she catches mice trying to steal chook food. Win win. Plus she is adorable and weird

And don’t forget the kids πŸ™‚

60. homeschool
61. make toys for your munchkins instead of buying them
62. have your children make gifts for family and friends
63. knit your own baby blankets and booties
64. involve your kids in caring for the home and garden

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Happy homeschool days

But take care of yourself…

65. make your own deoderant
66. make your own soap
67. go one better and make your own cosmetics
68. sew your own menstrual pads

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Reading and crafting make me happy

Homesteading involves the whole home and everyone in it

69. create a chore routine
70. DIY renovations
71. create your own artwork to decorate your home
72. weave a rug for the living room
73. sew curtains
74. make yourown beeswax polish for furniture
75. use solar power
76. make your own laundry powder or detergent
77. ditch the dryer and line dry
78. make your own soy or beeswax
candles
79. sew a quilt to keep you warmΒ  instead of turning on heaters
80. collect and store rainwater
81. utilise your greywater
82. composting toilets and ‘humanure’ are allowed by some councils
83. learn to take care of your own basic car maintenance
84. take up woodworking
85. learn to use handtools
86. sharpen your own gardening tools
87. learn the basics of plumbing
88. do odd jobs yourself instead of calling a handyman

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Learning to renovate is fun and saves money!

Self-sufficiency also means relying less on banks and bosses!

89. make a plan and work towards getting out of debt. It may take a long time, but keep going in the right direction
90. learn to budget
91. save for a rainy day
92. start a home-based business, maybe taking advantage of some of your developing craft skills!
93. stockpile basic food in case of job loss or natural disaster

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Free fun helps the budget

Remember becoming more self-sufficient doesn’t mean doing everything yourself. Learn to rely on your community instead of on corporations.

94. shop at farmers markets
95. buy from the farm door
96. meet your neighbours and help them out when you can. They’ll hopefully return the favour
97. join community organisations
98. share what you know with others then share your mistakes with them too! We can learn from each other πŸ™‚
99. organise a seed swap
100. barter
101. exchange

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I dried a bootload of rosemary a friend was giving away

There you have it! 101 ideas for homesteading in the suburbs. I’ll bet you can think of a few more and I’d love to hear them so please share your ideas below.

Happy homesteading xx

Shared on:
Our Simple Homestead Bloghop

Homesteading- what is it?

You’ve heard me talk about it. Suburban homesteading. But what is it?

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If you get up in the morning and put on gumboots instead of slippers, you might just be a homesteader.

If you ready your kids for school and find yourselves sitting around the kitchen table ready to start your lessons, you might just be a homesteader.

If it’s time to put dinner on and you send the kids outside to collect what you need from the garden, you might just be a homesteader.

If the change in seasons means something to you beyond a change in wardrobe…
If a hole in a sweater means work not shopping…
If you keep animals but not just pets…
YOU MIGHT JUST BE A HOMESTEADER.

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Homesteading- it’s a bit of a buzzword. You’ve probably heard it more than once, even sussed out that it refers to living a more self-sufficient lifestyle. I’d wager you could even list off a half dozen or so activities you think it includes. And you wouldn’t be alone if you’re still a little…vague about the idea.

And that’s because homesteading is more than a location. More than a set of actions. It’s a lifestyle, but more importantly it’s a mindset. And that’s why homesteading can happen on a farm or in your suburban home. And it’s why anyone can do it!

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To be a homesteader all you need is the drive to become a more self-sufficient. That’s it! If you want to live more naturally, be less reliant on shops, save yourself some money, and become a maker not a buyer, then you’re set to be a homesteader!

And because this is a mindset change,Β  these pearls of wisdom may come in handy πŸ˜‰

“Use it up, wear it out. Make do or do without”

And

“It’s not about where your home is, it’s about where your head is”  ~Rhonda Hetzel

So- are you a homesteader?

Shared on
Our Simple Homestead Bloghop

An Holistic Approach to Education

This is Part One of a series of posts discussing holistic homeschooling.

Let me start by saying that this post feels a good deal heavier than what I normally write. I promise to return to my regular back to basics style next post. But quite a few people have expressed an interest in the approach to education we take in our home, especially as we have moved on from unschooling– at my son’s own instigation I should add. I felt that I couldn’t adequately explain our approach without a little background knowledge so please bear with me. (I promise not to hold it against you if you skip this post and come back next week ;-))

So here goes…

Traditional education- at least in the sense that it exists in the modern Western world- is focused on academics. What can we learn? How can we test it?Β  Someone, somewhere sat down and decided that one particular body of information was so vitally important that it was to be institutionally imparted to each person. Occasionally another someone shakes it up a little but the gist remains the same. This is regardless of the individual’s unique personality, interests, goals, background,Β  community and values.

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We each have our own unique view of the world and our place within it

And a lot of this information really is important and useful. I don’t know about you,Β  but I do find a use for reading, writing, algebra, geometry and so on in most days. If not most days, at least most weeks. So a focus on the 3Rs is important.

But it is not the only learning of value. What about the 3Hs – head, heart and hands? This is where holistic education differs from traditional education. As Satish Kumar points out in this video, we are not just a vessel for our minds. We are also our emotions, our actions and perhaps most importantly,Β  we are our relationships.

We are the relationship between our mind, our emotions, our body, and our spirit. That fundamental ‘thing’ that makes us ourselves, whether we attach a religious meaning to it or not. We are the relationship between ourselves and our families, our homes and our communities. We exist as the relationship between ourselves and our food, our clothes, our pets, our world.

Holistic education seeks to develop each aspect of the child, as well as their relationships with the world around them. It isn’t enough to teach them the biology of how a plant grows. They need to experience it and learn with their hands and their hearts as well.

Along with recognising the relationship between people and the environment, we also need to recognise the relationships between subjects. Maths doesn’t exist in a vacuum. It is intrinsically linked to science for example. It is a part of our everyday lives. The same holds true for the other subjects, so it doesn’t make sense to treat them as stand alone entities. Bringing learning to our children should take a transdisciplinary approach. Forget half an hour of English followed by an hour of maths drill and problems. This reductionist approach removes meaning from learning and learning becomes a chore rather than a joy.

This isn’t some wishy-washy hippy approach to education, although given what I just wrote you could be forgiven for at first thinking that πŸ˜‰ Instead , holistic education is a realisation that we aren’t just educating our children to pass a test.

We are educating our children to be their best selves. We want them to enter adulthood with an understanding of themselves and their relationship to the world around them. We want them to be confident in their interactions, mindful of their impact, passionate for their future. We want children who are well-rounded individuals capable of great compassion and thoughtful influence. We want them to be not only capable of making a living, but of really living. We want our children to be able to take care of themselves and of others. We want more for them than just proficiency in the 3Rs.

Holistic education, with its focus on the WHOLE CHILD, provides such an education. This education may take the form of Montessori Education, Waldorf Method or Reggio Emilia Approach. Perhaps it’s enquiry-based learning or project-based learningΒ  It may be a combination of approaches, or look entirely different. Especially in the homeschool there is a lot of room for individuality in this approach.

Regardless of the method it is implemented by, holistic education is always β€œa philosophy of education based on the premise that each person find identity, meaning, and purpose in life through connections to the community, to the natural world, and to humanitarian values such as compassion and peace.Β  Holistic education aims to call forth from people an intrinsic reverence for life and a passionate love of learning.”  (Ron Miller). In a nutshell,Β  we are talking about a whole child, systems approach compared to the reductionist, compartmentalist vision of the world we are usually exposed to.

This is a big topic and I’ve only scratched the surface here. For more info, I suggest reading these pages and definitely check out the video I linked to above.
An intro to the theory
What is holistic education
Methods for implementing holistic education

In Part Two of this series, I will give you a look into the practical side of holistic education, and show you how it is evolving in our home.

See you soon x

Recipe: tomato sauce (it’s like ketchup but better!)

Here it is!

After promisingΒ  (and forgetting) then promising again, here is my current favourite recipe for tomato sauce. Or ketchup if you are American. I will not be swayed on terminology, especially with Matt Preston declaring our take on catsup more sophisticated due to it being more vinegary and less sugary than its American counterpart πŸ˜‰ And who is going to argue with Matt Preston?!

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Homemade tomato sauce

You will need:
1L vinegar
1kg sugar
150g salt
6 cloves garlic (crushed)
6 cloves (ground)
1 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp sweet paprika

5kg tomatoes (peeled and rough chopped)
1kg brown onions (peeled and rough chopped)
1kg green apples (peeled, cored and rough chopped)

Allspice (to taste)

Glass bottles and lids

Step 1
Place vinegar, sugar, salt and spices (except allspice) into a large stockpot and bring to the boil. Prepare the tomatoes, apples and onions (see here for how to peel tomatoes quickly) then add to vinegar mixture once it is boiling. If your pot isn’t ridiculously huge you may want to halve the recipe.

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Tip: if you have a food mill for step 3, you can skip peeling your tomatoes. I don’t have one so I peel- easier now than later. I also don’t bother to remove the seeds. They cook down soft and add good flavour.

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Step 2
Bring to boil and then reduce to a simmer for 2 hours. While the sauce bubbles away, wash your bottles in hot, soapy water. Rinse clean and leave to dry.

Step 3
After two hours, pass the sauce through a food processor or mill in batches. Return to the pot and bring back up to the boil. Add ground allspice to taste (I like plenty and feel it adds body to the sauce). Keep at a simmer until you reach desired consistency-no more than a half hour or so. The sauce will thicken a little more when it cools, so keep this in mind. Or, you know, forget and accidentally make chutney. I may or may not have done that once or twice πŸ˜‰

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After passing through the food processor

Step 4
Place bottles in a hot oven to sterilise for 10 minutes. The lids can go into a bowl of boiling water. Rummage around in the drawer to find a ladle and funnel. They are probably at the back πŸ˜‰ Fill your bottles. It should be hot sauce into hot bottles to avoid glass cracking. Fasten the lids tight.

Step 5
I am going to go ahead and tell you to waterbath your sauce so that it will be shelf stable for 12 months. This is the current recommendation for safety reasons. I don’t want anyone blaming me for contracting botulism! Personally, I am old-fashioned and happy to use the overflow method for bottling sauce. But I told you to waterbath for safety. Remember that :-p

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You can reuse old bottles so long as they don't have plastic lids and no cracks

So long as you keep your ratios of tomatoes, salt and vinegar the same, it is safe to half or double the recipe. Hell, you can quadruple it if you have a massive tomato glut. Do NOT mess with the vinegar and sugar ratios though! You can also play around with the spices, or use different varieties of tomatoes, apples and onions. Make the sauce your own πŸ™‚

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We picked these on a family trip to Stanthorpe

The batch I bottled yesterday has tomatoes from a local farm as well apples and tomatoes from our recent trip down to Stanthorpe. I love buying the local produce wherever we visit.

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My little Apple Picker

Apologies to those I promised this recipe to months ago.

Happy bottling xx

How to peel tomatoes when you have MILLIONS of them!

I’m having another sauce bottling day. Bottling days are some of my favourite days and for me they are an integral part of suburban homesteading. I may not be able to keep a cow, fish in my own dam or spin fleece from my own sheep, but EVERYONE with a stove can bottle their own sauce. Seriously,  my home smells amazing today!

And while bottling sauce is easy, it is rather time consuming, so it helps to know a few tricks. This includes how to easily peel bucketloads of tomatoes πŸ˜‰

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Step One
Put a large pot of water on the stove to bring to the boil. Rinse your tomatoes. Discard any that are rotten. If you wouldn’t eat it fresh, your definitely do not want to preserve it!

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Step Two
Score the base of your tomatoes using a sharp knife  (a paring knife is easiest to work with if you have one).

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And YES, I do mean score every single tomato. This is the most time consuming part of the process but I promise,  it makes step four so much easier!

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Step Three
In batches, add your tomatoes to the rapidly boiling water (and it will be at a rapid boil by the time you have scored them all πŸ˜‰ ). When the skins start to pull back from the score marks, use a slotted spoon to remove the tomatoes from the pot and put them into a bowl of iced water.

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Step Four
Wait a minute for the tomatoes to cool enough that you can handle them without scalding your fingers. In the meantime add your next batch to the pot to boil. Once the tomatoes are cooled a little you can peel them. Thanks to the scoring, the skins peel away easily. Really, they pretty much wipe off with a rub of your thumb. Told you the scoring was worth the hassle πŸ˜‰

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Step Five
Keep repeating the process for each batch until you have peeled the MILLIONS of tomatoes. Keep all of the discarded skins in a bowl to go into the compost. Done!

Now all that’s left to do is tidy your work area before you start on the sauce itself 😊 Or any other fabulous recipe you want to use your tomatoes in.

Tomorrow I will share my current favourite recipe for tomato sauce x

Mini-Series: Holistic Homeschooling

A while ago I wrote this post on how we accidentally found ourselves unschooling. A few months later I updated to say we had moved to a more holistic model of homeschooling, promising to tell you more about the change…and then I left you hanging :-p

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But I finally sat my butt down behind my screen and shared my thoughts on holistic education in a series of blog posts. You can find them all here πŸ™‚

What is holistic education in general?

And more specifically,

What is holistic homeschooling? 

As well as,

Holistic Homeschooling as an aspect of Homesteading. (coming soon)

And for those of you who have made the decision to send your children to a public school, this post talks about how to ensure your children still get the holistic education you want for them 😊

I hope you enjoy this mini-series on educating THE WHOLE CHILD. Make sure you have subscribed to the blog so you don’t miss out on future posts. You can find the subscribe option in the sidebar 😊 And please share your ideas and feelings on the subject. We have so much to learn from each other!

See you soon x

Seasonal Craft: quick knit an Easter Bunny

Easter is almost here but there is still enough time to quickly whip up one of these cute knitted bunnies!

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These are quite possibly the EASIEST  toy you can make. Even a novice knitter can manage these as it’s simply a square of garter stitch.

I’ve done the sewing part in purple so you can see easily,  but you would generally want to use the same colour as your knitting so that the stitches are invisible when you are finished.

Step 1
Knit a square of garter stitch. That’s just rows of knit stitch (no purling). You can knit any sized square you like. The bigger the square, the bigger the finished bunny. I cast on 30 stitches and then kept going until I had a square. No counting rows required. Doesn’t get any easier than that! When you have your square, cast off and weave in your ends.

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Step 2
Run a thread through the knitting in the triangle you see below. The thread runs across the middle of the square, up to the midline,  then back down to the start to complete the triangle.

Quick tip! Easiest way to find the middle is to simply fold your square in half. No need to measure or count rows πŸ˜‰

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Step 3
Pull on the ends of the thread and magically a head shape will start to form!

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The two little corner triangles become the ears, the large triangle in the middle is the head. Stuff the head as you go. Wool batting would be perfect, but I’m using siliconised soft fill as it is all that was available at my local fabric store.

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Step 4
Secure the stitching around the head and then begin to stitch along the back, filling the body with stuffing as you go.

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Step 5
Attach a pompom for a tail. Cuteness!
Tie a knot in the end of a thread and position the knot in place of an eye. Stitch straight through to the opposite side of the face and knot the other end for the second eye. Cut off the thread.

Alternatively,  you could use stick on eyes or stitch on buttons, but I think knotted eyes are safer if you are giving this to a small child who is likely to put toys in their mouth (I’m looking at you, darling daughter!)

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And voila! Easter bunny done 😊

I’ve made one each for my children to find during their egg hunt on Easter morning. I would love to see what you’ve made and hear about your Easter morning traditions.

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Happy crafting x

Quick tip: starting a herb garden

Want to start a herb garden but not sure where to start?

When you have a recipe that calls for fresh herbs to be added, instead of paying $5 a bunch for some limp leaves, spend the $5 on a small plant to stick in a pot by the door or plant straight into your garden. $10 will get you a more established plant like this thyme I’ve planted today. I can snip of the handful of leaves I need and it will keep growing ready for next time.

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On today’s menu? Soup made with this fresh thyme, carrots from the garden and leftovers from yesterday’s rooster.