Tis the season to be jolly! Are you ready for Christmas? Do you have all of your shopping done? Do you need some cool holiday gift ideas for those people that “have everything?”
Why stress, right?
We have people in our very own Small Scale Life Community that are creating products and running businesses out of their homes. Here is a wild idea: let’s support those people in our own community and help them grow. As they survive and grow, it makes our community stronger. Plus, you get some cool handcrafted gifts or something unique that one of our Lifers created!
As you know by now, nothing is new under the sun. This idea of supporting our community was not my idea. I am giving Nicole Sauce from Living Free in Tennessee all the credit with this idea. She put together a people from her community on her website, and I thought this was a fantastic idea! Thanks, Nicole. You are awesome, and there is a link to her community’s small business registry, her book and Holler Roast Coffee below.
Of course, this idea has been around for a long time. Last Saturday, we watched a show on Wisconsin PBS about European Christmas Markets in Germany, Switzerland and France. Click this text to see a slideshow of these locations; the video above is a preview of the show. It was fascinating to see these quaint cities with elaborate Christmas Markets, full of tasty treats, mulled wine and handcrafted gifts. Watching this show made me want to visit Germany in December to walk through some of these cities that have been standing since 2 BC in one form or another. Walking around castles, checking out the Christmas Markets and having drinky-drinks? Sounds like a darn good time to me! I’ll just have to add that to my bucket list.
Closer to home, we hit the Indoor Winter Farmers Market and the Agora Local Markers Market in Stevens Point last weekend. It was great talk with vendors (local creators and homesteaders) and buy some of their produce and baked goods. We got some really great stuff including some ghost pepper salsa, spicy tomato chutney, fresh vegetables (carrots, squash), and pastries. We had a lot of fun.
At the same time, it was great to add value to the local businesses and economy. At the Agora Local Makers Market, they had a sign posted that talked about how $68 out of $100 spent on locally sourced, manufactured and distributed goods stays in the local economy. Only about $43 out of $100 spent at non-local businesses stays in the local economy.
The bottom line is that if you spend some money with these homesteaders, beekeepers and content creators in our Small Scale Life Community, you are spending money with friends and supporting their work. That helps us bring more of that content to you while you get something really great in return: a cool handmade item or more content that will help you learn, do, grow and be a little better everyday!
Here are some Holiday Gift Ideas from the Small Scale Life Community!
Small Scale Life Online Store
Small Scale Life
If you have been following our work in the garden or kitchen, you might want to know what kind of gear we are using. Over a year ago, I set up an Online store at kit.co/smallscalelife so you could see what we are using and get some of this gear for your own garden, kitchen or homestead. There are different “kits” listed including gardening tools, gardening/homesteading books, cooking, canning, grilling, etc.
These make GREAT holiday gift ideas for the homesteader or gardener in your life. We are adding new products all the time, so check out the Online Store at kit.co/smalllscalelife.
All items are linked to products sold on Amazon.com. When you click on a product, you will be taken to the product on Amazon. We participate in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. I make affiliate income based on your purchase(s), but you don’t pay extra. You can shop directly with Amazon using our Small Scale Life link by clicking on this text right here.
Food and Beverages
There is nothing like having great tasting handcrafted food and beverages at your holiday feast! The following folks provide excellent products that will teach you how to make it or where to buy the ingredients for great tasting and healthy food and beverages.
Rounding out the trifecta of Nicole Sauce’s holiday gift ideas is one of her passions turned into a business venture: Holler Roast Coffee. Nicole figures out the blends, roasts coffee beans and ships out delicious craft coffee just for you. There are a number of blends to choose from, coffee of the month, sampler packs, gift cards and a coffee club as well!
Your loved one deserves the best. A crappy cup of coffee means your day is going to be rough, and you want your loved one to have the best!
One note to keep in mind: make Holler Roast Coffee Orders by December 18th in order you get your coffee by Christmas!
Chris and Lauren Kiesz
We’ll round out the food and beverages section with some great folks from Braham, Minnesota. Chris and Lauren are raising chicken, pigs and cattle on their farm. I have to tell you: they are doing a great job! We have purchased their chickens and a quarter of beef, and we have been really happy with the quality and taste of their products. We have had some great meals with their products, and I am looking to cooking up this beef!
If you want to buy some chicken, pork or beef, you can order directly from them by clicking on this text. They have an excellent newsletter with lots of great information on it, including a fantastic looking Yellow Hutch Farms Beef Stew. Even if you don’t buy any of their products, get the recipe. There is nothing like a hearty beef stew in these cold winter months.
Books and Online Classes
Here at Small Scale Life, our motto is to learn, do, grow and be a little better everyday. Knowledge is the key, and that is why “learn” is at the beginning of the motto. Giving the gift of knowledge leads people down the path to self-reliance and self-sufficiency. You will have the confidence to try something and experiment once you have the knowledge.
If you want to give the gift of knowledge to someone you love, check out these links and vendors. You will not be disappointed!
I did a lot of canning this year: strawberry jam, cranberry-jalapeno jam, spiced Christmas jam, four berry jam, Dilly Beans, pickles, peppers, lions, tigers and bears, oh my! I am pleased with most of my projects, but some projects didn’t work correctly.
I realize that I have more to learn and improve upon in the future.
That’s why I am such a huge fan and avid student in Sharon Peterson’s Simply Canning School. I have learned so much about canning safely and preserving produce in the Academy, and I am excited to practice what I have learned this winter in the quiet months.
You can learn HOW to can, and you will be in a great position to fill your pantry with healthy and great tasting food. Click this link to go to the Simply Canning Academy and start your journey today!
As one of your Holiday Gift Ideas that would really benefit your homestead, the Simply Canning School would be great!
FREE Pressure Canning Workshop
Have you ever used a pressure canner before? Does the thought of using one make you shake and shiver with fear? I mean, if you do it right, you will have excellent canned goods. You do it wrong, and someone could get sick or you could have other explosive consequences.
You can do it! It can be done! Sharon Peterson is the expert you need and the expert you wanted.
Give it a try today!
Making Gluten Free Easy: Tips, Tricks, Treats & More to Make Your Gluten Free Journey Easy & Effortless
While we are on the subject of food, Ann LeClercq from the Suburban Prairie Homemaker LLC wrote a book about living a gluten free lifestyle. As Julie and I have been learning a lot about the food we eat and our health, it is amazing how grains have been processed and pushed into the market. Gluten can cause a number of health problems.
Eliminating gluten from your diet can be difficult, and Ann has pulled together family recipes that will help you with your diet. In addition, Ann has weaved stories into the recipes as well.
if you want to change your diet and live a healthy gluten-free life, consider getting a copy of this book! It would make a great gift for those health-conscious folks in your life as well.
My friend and fellow Homestead writer and podcaster Amy Dingmann has a great blog and podcast titled “A Farmish Kind of Life.” I really enjoy talking with Amy about blogging, podcasting, homesteading and life. Julie and I had a chance to meet with her, and we had a GREAT time chatting.
Did you know that she also writes books?
Amy has three books listed on A Farmish Kind of Life. She has the following titles listed on her website:
- Choosing the Best Meat Chicken for Your Homestead
- The Homeschool Highway: How to Navigate Your Way without getting Carsick
- It’s not about Money – Except when it is
We have the third book: It’s not about Money. In fact, we have a signed copy of the book from the author herself! We highly recommend getting one or more copies of her book; she hits the nail right on the head with her great writing style and humor!
Cook with What You Have
Nicole Sauce and Mama Sauce
How many times have you stood in the kitchen and wondered what to make with a hodge podge of ingredients on hand? Nicole Sauce is here to help! This year, she published her long awaited recipe book titled “Cook with What You Have.”
Nicole provides great recipes and tips for adapting recipes for what you have on hand. There are lots of nice photos in the book, and her writing is very down to earth and in a laid-back Holler Homestead style. Check this one out and buy two: one for you and one to give away!
To start projects, you need the right tools and gear. The folks listed below are practicing what they preach and are offering items that work. Whether it is gardening, beekeeping or “sugaring” gear, these folks have assembled tools, gear and items that you could use in your bee yard, garden, kitchen or homestead.
Greg and Susan Burns
Our friends Greg and Susan Burns have a bustling homestead in Ohio and have set up an online store where they sell great looking coffee mugs and beekeeping supplies that will get you up and running.
If you are thinking about getting into beekeeping or just want to support some great folks by buying a mug, check out Nature’s Image Farm.
We have one of those mugs; why don’t you?
Alyssa Olsen is another Minnesota Homestead blogger that is part of our Lifer Community. The Olsen family has a nice little homestead north of the Twin Cities where the do all kinds of homesteading shenanigans such as raising sheep, raising chickens, tapping trees, making maple syrup, making kombucha and gardening! They are folks after my own heart, and I am thrilled I inspired her to get blogging again after my Giving Thanks podcast episode!
As part of her website, Alyssa has a nice Amazon Affiliate store that connects you with products she uses in the garden, the kitchen, for the herd, for the chickens, for her family and for tapping trees and making delicious syrup. Click this text to get to her online store.
Check out her online store and support her efforts at The Sheep Shed!
The Michigan Bee Mom Jeannette Davis has her productive apiary in Southern Central Michigan. She has honey and other products for sale, so reach out to Jeanette on the Michigan Bee Mom Facebook Page, and give her a “Like” while you are at it!
There are other groups and communities that are putting these kind of posts together. I had to end with Nicole Sauce because she IS the one who inspired this post. Thanks for building the Living Free in Tennessee Community, and we are happy to connect with it and promote others with a similiar mindset.
If you need some MORE ideas, check out Nicole Sauce’s Living Free in Tennessee Gift Listing and do some shopping in a great homesteading community! Nicole Sauce from Living Free in Tennessee gathered together folks from the LFTH Community and posted links to their businesses. There are several kinds of gifts and services available including: Bath and Body; Health and Wellness; Handcrafted Items; Food and Beverage; Books Services and the always fun “Other Ideas.”
Support our folks with similar objectives and mindets, no matter where they are!
Anyone can buy plastic goods from China. Where is the fun in that?
I really encourage you to spend your hard-earned money on holiday gift ideas from members of our own community. You are signaling your support with each dollar you spend. At the same time, you will get some unique, handcrafted gifts that will help your loved ones be a little better each day.
Just keep in mind: time IS running out, especially if you consider shipping and weather delays. If you look at the calendar days you are running out of time. Even with priority shipping, you are entering the danger zone for bringing your holiday gift ideas to life.
One more thought: two years ago I thought about putting a Small Business Directory on Small Scale Life. Based on feedback from some of these business owners, I might go ahead and do that. Blog rolls are so 2009, but part of my overall mission here at Small Scale Life is building a community online and in real life. This might be the first step on that process!
All right, Lifers, have at it. Good luck shopping!