Happy Friday, Lifers! I hope you have had a good week and are gearing up for a great weekend. As you gear up for weekend projects and adventures, Julie and I have pulled some posts, podcasts and Vlogs for you to check out in the News from Around the Bend – The River Rises Edition. I know we have a lot of things and adventures on our Weekend 3 Things list, so we will be checking out more content for next week’s post.

The River Rises

Building Community, News from Around the Bend, Tribe, Blog, Minnesota Flooding, The River Rises
The River Rises – The Minnesota River closed part of TH 169 north of St. Peter, MN, this week. I was driving north and had to snap a picture – March 2019

Our Spring Weather has been glorious here in Minnesota. The large 7-foot tall pile of snow in the backyard has completely melted, and we have little patches of snow here and there where the sun doesn’t shine (so to speak). Of course, this does not include the MASSIVE snow piles along offices and shopping centers. These piles are slowly melting at a glacial pace, but a few more days of 65 degree F weather will reduce those piles to dirty slush in no time.

Unfortunately, the melting snow has created a lot of problems in the Midwest. We continue to see flooding as creeks, streams and rivers rise and pushes the water downstream since our ground is still frozen and cannot absorb the water.

As these bodies of water converge, we are seeing large scale flooding as the river rises. Missouri and Nebraska have been hit hard, and I am blown away by the severe devastation in our Heartland. So much material, blood, sweat and tears are being washed away in this one event!

As the river rises, make sure you keep these folks in your thoughts and prayers. I am continuing to explore ways and charities to help these folks rebuild. If you have any reputable charities or groups that are doing good things for our fellow Americans in need, please provide a comment at the bottom of this post!

And now….on to the News from Around the Bend for this week!

Featured Post of the Week

Living in the Analog, podcast, blogging, simple living, urban farming
Terrance Layhew, a Man of Analog Action!

Living in the Analog with Terrance Layhew
Tom Domres and Terrance Layhew
Small Scale Life

I had a chance to have a great conversation with Terrance Layhew from the Intellectual Agrarian Podcast about his journey from inquisitive teen to Organic Inspector. We discuss trends in the organic farming world and the evolution of the Intellectual Agrarian Podcast.

We really didn’t intend to discuss Terrance’s “Living in the Analog” concept, but I am glad we did. People spend a lot of time reading, watching and consuming content, while creators (podcasters, bloggers and Vloggers) are running at an unsustainable pace to provide content. The “Living in the Analog” concept is where we reduce our screen time and get busy living in the real world getting projects done, engaging with others and living life.

It makes a lot of sense, even for us content creators.

Julie’s News Picks of the Week

Food Preparation, News from Around the Bend, Meal Planning
Julie and I were very busy prepping food last weekend. It helps to have some good content! – February 17, 2019

We are deep into the tax season, and Julie has been extremely focused at the day job. She has not had much of a chance to listen to too many podcasts recently, but she did have a pick of the week!

Kids, Keto & KonMari
Greg and Susan Burns
The Contrary Farmstead Podcast

Greg and Susan Burns are back in the seat and podcasting about their lives on The Contrary Farmstead in Ohio. In this episode, they are talking about the kids, their Keto diet (just wait until Episode 4 to hear how it’s going) and decluttering using the KonMari Method.

Julie says that she loves the interaction between Greg and Susan. In her words, “they giggle at the right times and have great conversations and interactions.” Very true! Plus….baby goat stories.

They are doing a lot of things right, and we will support them as they continue to be the change and the lighthouse for so many in this space.

Tom’s News Picks of the Week

Building Community, News from Around the Bend, Tribe, Blog, Minnesota Flooding, The River Rises
Hard to believe I took this photo a little over a week ago in Moose Lake, MN. The snow is gone, and the old church has weathered another harsh Minnesota winter. It is as strong and resilient as the people who built it so long ago – March 2019

Been on the run for work this week, so I had a chance to listen to some podcasts in the gardening, homesteading and prepping space. I guess, after looking at this completed post, I was listening to a lot of posts this week and not living in the analog. Whoops! Still, these are good posts and podcasts that you might want to check out as you clean up your yard, garden or garage!

Garden Party – Worm Composting
Suburban Prairie Homemaker

Julie and I have known Ann since Ryan and Ann’s son were in Tiger Cubs together. We like to chat and share ideas about homesteading, gardening and canning all the time.

Ann is very active in the Small Scale Life Facebook Group, and we appreciate her comments and the information she adds to the conversation there. She is also a blogger at the Suburban Prairie Homemaker. I asked Ann if she had a few favorite posts she would like to share, and she provided this article from 2012 about Worm Composting!

If you want to start worm composting, this looks like an easy build using a tote, a drill and scraps from the kitchen. I know others such as Harold Thornbro have posted podcasts about this topic as well! Worm composting doesn’t look hard, and I know you get some very rich compost material for your garden beds when you are done. Wonder if we can start some worms in the basement? Would Julie notice?

The Wormcast: All About Vermicomposting
Harold Thornbro
Small Town Homestead

Harold Thornbro posted a great podcast about making worm compost on your homestead. This process is called “Vermicomposting.” In the post ad podcast, Harold provides a recipe to get you started creating worm compost, and it is really easy to do! Keep in mind that our friend Michael Bell swears by worm compost when he starts seeds and transplants plants at Dallas Half Acre Farms, and he has some really good evidence of the difference worm compost makes on his Instagram site. I bet Julie wouldn’t notice if I brought in a 5 gallon tote and started making compost. Maybe it’s time to experiment!

The Only Way a Garden Saves Money – Episode 9
Amy Dingmann
A Farmish Kind of Life

Fellow Minnesotan Amy Dingmann from A Farmish Kind of Life has a great podcast about how a garden can save money. Amy has five points about what and how you should plant your garden this year. I totally agree with her points especially after dumping a lot of rotting produce over the years because folks didn’t want to eat X, Y or Z.

As the snow disappears from the landscape and green thumbs like me get REALLY excited to plant, it always comes back to something I talked about in my second podcast (oh remember those days!) titled “Grow What You Eat.” Makes sense right?

I’ll have to go back and listen to my Episode 2 to see what I had to say about this subject, and maybe I’ll have to circle around record something on this subject. Yeah….after 10 seconds of listening to my Episode 2, even I am cringing. Time to do something about that!

Episode-2404- Container Gardens for Food Production
Jack Spirko
The Survival Podcast

While I know some of the Lifer community is rolling their eyes at this pick, I have to say that it is a darn good podcast about container gardening! Jack walks through the benefits of container gardens, several ways to maximize production in containers and discusses a variety of plants and herbs that could be grown in container gardens. For those of you who want to garden but live in an apartment, condo, townhouse or home with a small lot, you can grow a lot of food in a can start small scale garden!

I did smile because this is the 5th time Jack has covered this topic on his show! I suppose you are almost bound to repeat yourself a few times after doing a podcast for more than 10 years.

The OverAmbitious Farmstead
Greg and Susan Burns
The Contrary Farmstead Podcast

Lifers who have been paying attention to my shenanigans over the years know that I take on a lot and sometimes don’t give myself enough time to get it all done (check the time of this post, for instance). Greg and Susan sit down and walk us through the Workshop Clean-Up Project. Of course, things go a little sideways with different expectations and personalities, helping hands during projects and friendly farmstead goats! I had to laugh a bit and shake my head during this podcast: Susan gets to rib Captain Lumbersquatch Greg a bit about the Shenanigan Shack. I have been in Greg’s hot seat before, especially with my “squirrel” tendencies.

Thumbs up to Greg and Susan on another fun podcast, and Julie and I will have to have a podcast round-up with them soon!

The Journey from Prepping 1.0 to 2.0 (and more) with Caz
Glen Tate and Shelby Ghallager
Prepping 2.0

Glen Tate and Shelby Ghallager interview Vlogger Caz from the 4th Dimension YouTube Channel. They discuss Caz’s journey to becoming a Prepper, some of Caz’s experiences and running a YouTube channel in an increasingly censure-happy environment. The three also discuss the challenges of prepping with spouses that are not on-board with their activities. I have a feeling Glen and Shelby will be doing an episode or two on this topic in the future!

If you want to check out Caz on his 4th Dimension YouTube Channel, this might be a good place to start:

Building Your Dreams with Jessica Mills
Nicole Sauce
Living Free in Tennessee

Nicole Sauce always has great podcasts! This podcast was from last Friday (3/22/19), but it is really a great discussion! Jessica Mills, aka “Dixie,” went from working in the oil fields to completing the Triple Crown of Backpacking: the Appalachian Trail (2,184 miles), the Pacific Crest Trail (2,654 miles) and the Continental Divide Trail (3,100 miles). Before her first hike, she started a YouTube channel called “Homemade Wanderlust” and went from zero subscribers to over 177,000 subscribers!

Nicole and Dixie have a great conversation about her journey, starting the YouTube channel and building a business that you love. One of the keys to growing your business is consistency, and it is something I need to work on with Small Scale Life (ahem). I really enjoyed this podcast, and I have subscribed to Dixie’s YouTube Channel as well. If the intro video is any indication about the quality of the videos, man…this is going to be an interesting channel.

Product of the Month

Gardening, Homesteading, oya, self-watering
GrowOya propducts can be used in container gardens as well. This picture from Growoya and mikes_homegarden on Instagram is exactly what I was thinking for green beans this year!

In April, I am going to start talking about a Product of the Month. This is something that we will be offering in our kit.com/smallscalelife store site, so stay tuned!

Join the Lifer Community!

As I mentioned in this week’s podcast with Terrance Layhew, Julie and I are going to be starting a newsletter e-mail. We have seen how social media platforms have limited the reach of posts to our followers and friends, and we want to keep you in the loop about what is happening at Small Scale Life. We will be sending out regular e-mails to subscribers about news, posts, and of course links to important content like this popular News From Around the Bend article. You’ll want to sign up here and not miss an e-mail!

At the same time, Julie and I are planning some other events and content for 2019. We are pretty excited about what is coming this year, and if you subscribe, you will get the news first, be in the loop and won’t miss a beat. To subscribe, head to the Resources page and sign up!

Putting It All Together

Building Community, News from Around the Bend, Tribe, Blog, Minnesota Flooding, The River Rises

As always, if you have a great post or podcast that you would like to include in these weekly news updates, send me a note at realsmallscalelife [at] gmail [dot] com or hit the Small Scale Life Contact Page.

Have a great weekend! Go get em, Lifers!