Sorry, no pictures this time. We made it to the Mother Earth News Fair and had a great time. The weather was perfect on Saturday, it was hotter on Sunday but still bearable. There were lots of gadgets to look at and lots of classes on a wide variety of gardening, farming, homesteading, and cooking topics.
This Fair and our Buy Nothing Challenge did NOT work well together because we didn't resist the urge to spend lots of money. We found too many useful and helpful items to buy, including:
- SOLAR OVEN: On sunny days we can cook without electricity. Theresa points out that it also dehydrates, sanitizing jars, and pasteurizes water. I know it's well-built- I used it on a windy day and it fell off our table but didn't break. (Oops... we fixed that problem.) Hoping to have a lot of good stories about sun powered cooking.
- WOOD SPLITTER: I call it a drop maul or maul on a stick. Instead of swinging an ax, I lift a seven pound weight and let it drop on the cutter that splits the wood. It has already saved me a lot of time and pain, and I'm much less likely to injure myself.
- A HAND CRANK FLOUR MILL: We can buy whole grains, dried corn, chickpeas, etc., and make our own flour from them for better tasting and more nutritious breads. Theresa is hoping to use it to make flour from some of the edible weed seeds we let grow in the yard. (When we got home she let me know we paid more for the mill than we paid for our computer. I asked "Does that make you happy or unhappy ?" She said she would let me know, later... ???)
- 6 BOOKS: We did well restraining ourselves. (LOTS of interesting books... MANY interesting subjects... MUST RUN AWAY BEFORE WE GO BROKE!)
My favorite class was how to make cheese in less than an hour. I kinda knew the secret of good cheese was good ingredients. What I didn't know was you can make at least 3 different styles of cheese by adjusting temperatures. I bought the presenter's book and am going to experiment as soon as I can:
We may have failed our Buy Nothing Challenge at the Fair, but what we bought should definitely contribute to our homestead and being more self-sufficient, so we're trying not to feel too guilty about it.
Type at ya later...