This blog has grown significantly in the last few months, and it’s my goal to improve it further to build a more badass community. Here are some things you can expect out of Rocking the Homestead in 2016!

Monthly book club

This year I’d like to try running monthly book club. I read like there’s no tomorrow anyhow, I might as well be discussing it with all of you cool people! I’d like to focus on books with environmental and homesteading themes, since that’s the focus of this blog, and I also want to mix it up with old and new books, because I personally like to utilize the library whenever I can. January’s book is a new one, though, because I’ve been anxiously awaiting it for so long. It will be How To Be Alive: A Guide to the Kind of Happiness that Helps the World, by Colin Beavan. You can preorder it here, or on Amazon or Audible.

At the end of every month I will write a review and some discussion questions on the blog, and we can discuss the book in the comments. It will be fun! If you come to the discussion later down the road, even years later, still feel free to join in! There’s no time limit to reading and discussing books!

More plant profiles

Surprisingly, my favorite classes in my horticulture program have been the plant id classes. Those are the classes where I have to memorize hundreds of plants by both common and Latin names, and learn how to identify and grow them all. That’s info I can pass onto you all, and already have started with profiles on the Boulder Raspberry and Golden Currant. Expect a lot more of those in 2016. Not every plant I’m learning is worth featuring here, but many are, and I’m excited to share them with you all!

More guest posts and homestead profiles

I would like to make running guest posts and homestead profiles a regular thing here at Rocking the Homestead. I can visit homesteads in the Denver Metro area to do interviews and take photos in person fairly easily, but if you live far away from me, there’s no reason why we can’t still feature your homestead! Hit me up by messaging me on our Facebook page, and we’ll arrange an email interview and you can provide your own photos. If you have a blog we can link to it as well.

If you have an idea for a post on homesteading or environmentalism through a feminist/social justice lens, hit me up as well! I’d love to feature the ideas of more writers on this subject. I know I’m not the only progressive minded homesteader out there, though sometimes it can feel that way in homestead blogging communities.

Lots of projects

Now that we’ve decided to stay in this home, we have a lot of projects to do to transform this place into our dream home. We’d like to make you, the readers of this blog, privy to those projects so you can learn from our experience. Definitely on the agenda for 2016 is

  • Revamping our front porch flower bed to include a quince tree and Golden Currant bushes
  • Revamping our front, xeriscape, pollinator friendly, perennial flower bed to include edible herbs
  • Building permanent, raised, hugelkulture beds for veggies on the side of our house
  • Upgrading our irrigation system to make it more efficient and promote deeper root growth in our turf
  • Installing drip irrigation to our new raised beds
  • Adding some biodiversity to our turf
  • Reflooring our dining room, possibly more areas of our house
  • Adding spaces for ornamental annuals and decorative containers in our front yard to dress it up in HOA friendly ways
  • Trying several methods of growing feed for our quail
  • Possibly putting in several fruit producing shrubs on our small side yard
  • Possibly putting in more raspberries and a grape vine
  • Possibly putting in more ornamental and food producing perennials around our mailbox
  • Possibly getting honeybees
  • Possibly experimenting with small, ornamental water gardens in containers
  • Possibly building rain gutter containers for growing lettuce

So if you want to be in the loop for all these projects, go ahead and subscribe so you can see updates as they post!

Premium Content

This is a fancy blogging term that means I’m going to be creating stuff for you to buy. I have two ebooks in the work, and some smaller work books. I don’t plan on charging an arm and a leg for these things, I’m mostly just toying with concepts. As much as I have loved blogging for free these past two years (and six years on other blogs before that), I’m thinking I might want to dabble in making some money off of these ventures. I don’t plan to get rich, but enough to cover the costs of hosting this site would be nice. So stay tuned for some books in the coming year!

More recipes

Since we’ve been working on making our diet more climate friendly and healthy in a body positive way, and since we’ve been keeping our kitchen a lot cleaner with the Socialist Housekeeping Regime, I’ve been doing a lot more experimenting in the kitchen. Hopefully our garden will inspire even more kitchen creativity in the coming year as well. I plan on sharing more of that with you, my lovely readers, who I presume love eating as much as I do. You can expect my recipes to feature a lot of fruits, veggies, and whole grains, feature vegetarian options, and not have any low fat/low sugar/low carb/low fun propaghanda. I’m not here to sell you weight loss or cures for “allergies” or leaky gut or whatever the trendy crunchy illness is these days. While we do work around several true allergies (Elijah has anaphylactic allergies to eggs, shellfish, soy, and peanuts), those will be the only restrictions we work with in our recipes, and there will be instructions for how to include those ingredients if you don’t have the same restrictions.

Growing our Facebook group

Did you know we run a Facebook group? Yeah. It’s pretty awesome. It’s a place where we can get together and discuss homesteading issues and questions, share interesting articles, and just generally hang out with like minded gardeners and homesteaders. What makes it different than other homesteading spaces? Its secular, progressive, pro-science, body positive, and has a bunch of punk rockers in it. Also, its just generally awesome. You should really consider joining! Its called Progressive Homesteaders.

Homestead fashion posts

I’ve been very interested in the idea of homesteading and gardening fashion, because just because I like to play in dirt doesn’t mean I don’t like looking awesome while I do it. I’ve been thinking about how I could discuss the idea of homesteading fashion, so expect to see some of that in future posts. And if you have anything to say about homesteading fashion, hit me up because I think it could be a really fun topic to address here.

Graduation!!

This is really exciting! By the end of 2016 I should actually have a degree! This is huge you guys, I’ve been in school for 10 years, off and on. Most of that was spent bouncing around between different majors that turned out to not be for me, but I finally found my right program and now I’m almost done! Does this mean the end of college for me? Probably not. I will only have my associates degree (and certificates in Landscape Management, Irrigation Management, Urban Farm Management, and possibly Turfgrass Management – I’m still deciding if I’ll go for that one, I only need one more class), so after I graduate here I need to decide between Colorado State University and Oregon State University (both online) to finish up my bachelors. That will probably be a much slower, part time process because I have to get a full time job. I’m also kind of tired of full time school.

#365feministselfie Challenge

This last one is mostly just for me, because it’s supposed to help build positive body image, and it’s a sort of culture jamming. I’m all about that. Anyway, the goal is that I’m going to post a selfie every single day this year. Its not really homesteading related so I won’t be discussing it much on the blog, but if you are interested in following along, you better follow me on instagram and/or facebook to see the latest. That’s also a great way to get frequent garden updates too, because I don’t always get around to typing up formal updates on the garden as often as I am able to snap a quick photo and post.

What plans do you have for your 2016 homestead? Do you have any specific goals? Share them in the comments!

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Interested in joining a community of likeminded homesteaders, striving to be more sustainable and self sufficient for progressive reasons?  Please check out our facebook group, Progressive Homesteaders!

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