Sunday, May 29, 2011

Farm Chicks' Book Club June and July Pick - Made From Scratch

Our Book Club pick for June and July is Made From Scratch by JennaWoginrich

Jenna Woginrich

"Little Steps are the way to get started."

Jenna Woginrich started her independent life in a small city apartment, right after college. Consumerism didnt feel right to her so with characteristic self-determination, she decided to learn homesteading skills. She didnt own land, she worked a desk job, she didnt have much practical experience other than the occasional weekend spent making soap, but she did have a strong desire to be more self-sufficient and less dependent on stuff. Made from Scratch: Discovering the Pleasures of a Handmade Life is the chronicle of her joyful, dramatic, and sometimes sorrowful journey toward self-reliance.

What Jenna didnt realize at the time was that her decision wasnt an isolated thought. Todays young people are taking back the land, to grow crops, raise animals for food and farm work, and sustain themselves with their produce, eggs, and dairy products. More and more generations are leaving corporate America to go back to the old ways of farming; but theyre doing it with the help of todays technology and science, as Jenna does.

Jenna discovered the term back-breaking isnt really an exaggeration when attempting to clear a plot for a vegetable garden; she learned the hard way that if a hive of bees doesnt have a queen (because she didnt know it was packed separately) they die out. And she learned that once an animal is in your care, it is up to you to protect it and keep it from harmand whatever happens, it is up to you to deal with the consequences.

She also discovered the joys of harvesting freshly laid eggs from her own hens, taking in the heady perfume of honey fresh from the comb, playing the sweet music of a mountain dulcimer to her dogs, Annie and Jazz, as well as feeling the pride of being able to teach others how to live this simple, satisfying lifestyle. Made from Scratch is a memoir that instructs with the practical voice of one who states, I made this mistake, so you dont have to. Jenna owns her mistakes but she also shares the exultation of her accomplishments with readers as well as her optimism that we can all learn to live closer to the earth and with fewer footprints on the land.

The smallest steps toward self-sufficiency -- a windowbox vegetable garden, a batch of homemade strawberry jam, or a backyard flock of chickens -- all satisfy the craving to homestead. Made from Scratch isnt about having a farmhouse on acres of land or a barn full of livestock. Its about being more open to learning the simple skills most of us have forgotten, and finding joy in the process.

Your Turn:
Will you join us?
Where is the best place to buy this book?


Wendy said...

I carry this book with me at all times! Can't wait to read it again! I sent this link to Jenna...she'll be so excited to know we're reading her book!!!

Micah Moves said...

This sounds like a great book. I've started a very similar journey and hope to find myself in the same place, one of self-sufficiency and closer to nature. It will be very helpful to read about her experiences and learn from her mistakes. Thank you!

*~* Christina *~* said...

Sounds right up my alley! I'll be purchasing it today. :D

Sheri said...

I'm excited about this one too! :o)

Katia said...

Super easy and fun read. Not a ton of detail in the chapters but written well; very approachable. The resource section is AMAZING. Can't wait to teach myself the bango.

Scott said...

I'm not a "chick" but I enjoyed Jenna's book anyway. =) I appreciated her sharing the good and the bad things she endured as well as the short instructional segments at the end of some of the chapters. I have read it twice now and I am sure I will read it again for inspiration when I hit rough patches in my transition from the faux life I live now to the farm life I am destined to live.

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