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Homegrown and Handmade: A Practical Guide to More Self-Reliant Living
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Homegrown and Handmade: A Practical Guide to More Self-Reliant Living

3.65 of 5 stars 3.65  ·  rating details  ·  153 ratings  ·  18 reviews

Our food system is dominated by industrial agriculture and has become economically and environmentally unsustainable. The incidence of diet-related diseases, including obesity, diabetes, hypertension, cancer, and heart disease, has skyrocketed to unprecedented levels. Whether you have forty acres and a mule or a condo with a balcony, you can do more than you think to safeg
ebook, 288 pages
Published October 25th 2011 by New Society Publishers (first published October 4th 2011)
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I learned about this book from the Cold Antler Farm blog a week or so ago, and was interested enough to pick it up for my Kindle. I found this book to be a very good "primer" on how to add more self-reliance into your life, whether that is growing vegetables, making cheese from your own goat milk, or raising rabbits for fiber. The author is not trying to write an exhaustive or definitive work on any one subject, but instead writes clearly and approachably about various topics that she has person ...more
This is a great book if you are looking at raising goats or chickens. I was expecting a bit more handmade info and less homegrown, but it is clearly written so most beginners who were interested in livestock would be able to understand it. The introduction is about all of the reasons why you should raise your own food. I found much of this info was wasted pages. Anyone who was interested enough to read the book would also have a good idea why they were interested in raising their own food and wo ...more
Look for the crazy tomato lady, coming soon to a parking lot near you.

Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, slice tomatoes thinly and put the tray on the dashboard of a car sitting in the sun. Check them daily and remove them when they are thoroughly dried out and hard. They can be stored in a jar or plastic bag and used when recipes call for dried tomatoes.
The best of these types of books I've browsed. While the author admits that any of these things you wish to do -- garden, raise poultry, raise fiber animals -- would need at least one book (and a local expert to mentor you), actually this one book could get you started pretty well.

Cons: a little too much explanation of why you'd want to grow your own food, and some of it utter speculation rather than based on footnotable science, and not enough of a bibliography or "for further reading" section
Homegrown & Handmade
A practical Guide to More Self-Reliant living
Deborah Niemann
Published by New Society Publishers

This book starts with a 25 page introduction, valuable information on the whys of eating homegrown. From the Health stance, nutrition differences, the quality of the food, and its sustainability. In addition, she touches on the frugalness of eating home grown and finding pride in ones work. Very good information on chemicals and how much of the food we eat today is extremely unh
Jessica Buike
If you've ever considered participating in modern homesteading, this is the book for you! It would also be good for those who want to know more about: food gardening (urban or rural), raising chickens (some cities now allow them), and working with livestock (which has to be rural for the most part).
I wanted to read it because my husband and I have always wished we could live in a cohousing community, which is similar to a homestead except it is multiple families and generations living in a sust
This book is good for some serious details on a few things, but not great for those of us who are half in already. Having a .19 acre lot with chickens and a garden already, the vast amount of detail on larger animals (goats, sheep etc.) was a bit much and a bit frustrating for those of us who can't just up and buy a ton of land. Good information, but a few different levels of homesteading would have been nice and MUCH more on homemade things would have been great.
I was very happy to recieve this book in exchange for an honest review. The subjects of gardening, raising animals, and soapmaking have always been of interest to me. This book provides a complete how-to for just about anybody in any situation. It was very inspiring to live the way the book suggests. I will definately try to develop my lifestyle around the ideas in this book and put them to good use. I had no idea the complexity of soap making, and I'm glad this was included in this book. An awe ...more
not really what I was looking for
Clear but not too in-depth information. I like the prepare, raise, use format of the chapters. Not so much the romantic stories of changing my life from city to country-type book so that you feel you could and should do it all, but I was still inspired to add to what we have already.
While I disagreed with her philosophically on many things, I loved this book as a set of instructions. It seems relevant for anyone who doesn't really know what they're doing, whether they just want a garden in their apartment or a homestead to live on. An enjoyable read.
Good as an intro for those starting to think about homesteading, but once you've decided to tackle one of the skill sets in more depth, the book lacks any direction for further resources.
I skimmed through a lot of the animal sections. The gardening section had stuff I already knew about. I did learn quite a bit about chickens.
I did enjoy the parts that I read.
Annette McIntyre
A well written guide to things to think about when you head for the homesteading route. The author gives examples of her own failures, which makes the book very readable.
Lisa Zink
Nice layout of books and chapters but info really didn't bring me anything new.
eh. nothing new. Better homesteading books out there for sure.
Non-Fiction; Cooking/Preserving
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Deborah Niemann is a homesteader, writer, and self-sufficiency expert. In 2002, she relocated her family from the suburbs of Chicago to a 32 acre parcel on a creek "in the middle of nowhere". Together, they built their own home and began growing the majority of their own food. Sheep, pigs, cattle, goats, chickens, and turkeys supply meat, eggs and dairy products, while an organic garden and orchar ...more
More about Deborah Niemann...
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