Category Archives: Blog Posts

Fall-Back Friday: Environmental Awareness On The Homestead

by Tammy Taylor~

RancherMan & I are tackling our summertime chores during these dog-days of summer.  One of those summertime chores is to mow pastures after the cattle eaten it down & have rotated to a fresh pasture. WHEW!  It’s hot out there, y’all!  We’re very careful about our sun exposure since much of our tasks are done outside (You can read my Sun Protection Post Here).

But y’all know my heart has an environmental bend. And fueling our tractors has always hurt my crunchy-green heart. You see, since the fuel openings on our tractors are at the top of the hood, filling them with fuel always involved spilling fuel.  Always.  I don’t blame RancherMan for this of course.  He had to first hoist a heavy 5-gallon fuel can to the top of our tractor’s hood.  Then he had to tip the can trying to get the spout into the opening before fuel began to pour.  He did all he could to make sure it all went into the tractor’s fuel tank but…

Then we stumbled upon a No-Spill Fuel Can!  That fuel can is probably hands-down my favorite environmentally-friendly item on our ranch.  I’ve heard others say they use it for their riding lawn mowers too.  So if you too hate to try to fill equipment with fuel without spilling, check out today’s Fall-Back Friday post, y’all!

Environmental Awareness On The Homestead - No-Spill Fuel Can. No more spilling fuel when trying to refuel our equipment! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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How We Save Seeds To Save Money On The Homestead

by Tammy Taylor~

I have to have a garden every year.  It’s just in my blood.  My hands must be in the dirt, coaxing that young tender plant. The payoff is of course that home-grown produce to nourish our bodies.  Healthy produce picked right before supper.  Produce that I’m able to preserve for colder months, and share with others around me with my weekly #BlessingBasket.

I try to only grow heirloom plants in my garden.  One of the main reasons behind this is so that I can save the seed to plant each and every year.  You see, saving hybrid seed might not be productive.  That’s because hybrid seed may not come back true to the mother plant the next year.  But heirloom seed will!  You know exactly what you’re gonna get with heirloom seeds. Come see how I carefully put back that precious seed in anticipation of next year’s bounty.

Heirloom Seed-Saving for Next Year's Garden. I save garden veggie seed to plant each year. Come see how I put back that precious seed in anticipation of next year's bounty. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Breakfast Biscuits Are A Company-Worthy Breakfast In A FLASH

by Tammy Taylor~

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I don’t know about you, but when I’m hosting guests I always stress about what to feed them.  Will I be able to make sure they can eat according to the schedule they’re accustomed to?  How will I know when they’re hungry?  Will I be able to whip up something delicious while not being shackled to the kitchen?  And what will I serve?  What, what, WHAT??!!

If you stress about feeding guests too, I’m about to share one of my favorite breakfast-in-a-flash shortcuts.  I like to have ham & cheese egg biscuits.  My guests call them BOBs (Breakfast-on-a-Biscuit)  The beautiful thing is I can make everything in advance & just assemble & enjoy.

BOB, or Breakfast on a Biscuit - is a quick company-worthy breakfast of scrambled eggs, thinly-sliced ham & cheese on a biscuit. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Public Safety: Restaurant Repeatedly Blocking Fire Exits??

by Tammy Taylor~

While traveling out of town to visit my aunt & uncle back in March of this year, RancherMan & I stopped into a very popular tourist restaurant, The Big Texan Steak Ranch.    It’s a fun place with lots of energy and the food is delicious.  Oh and they’ll fill your growler with some of their specialty beers.  You know RancherMan is all over that! And their claim to fame is that if you can eat a whopping 72-oz steak with all the fixin’s in an hour you get your meal for free. (YIKES!)  That challenge has been tried (and failed) many times.  A few times someone’s actually been successful!  (again, YIKES!) LOL

But as we were sitting at the table enjoying our meal I looked around the room.  The dining room is semi-dimly lighted and tables are placed end-to-end in long rows.  But right there by our table was the fire exit.  I was shocked to see it was blocked by all manner of table-bussing trash and castaways.  There were chunky high chairs stacked so high in front of the fire extinguisher you’d have to don your Superman cape, fly over and somehow move them all just to get to it.  And the door itself was blocked with chairs, folding trays & menu trash.  Wow. With the layout of this large dining room, this could be a disaster waiting to happen!

The Big Texan Restaurant is repeatedly blocking the fire exit. In any restaurant if you SEE something SAY SOMETHING! The Life You Save Could Be Yours! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Going Green Is Easy. Tales of a Single Day of Greenery!

by Tammy Taylor~

It’s no secret I have an environmental bend. But many people think that ‘going green’ is complicated or requires special equipment.   But you don’t need special equipment or to do anything complicated to be Eco-friendly.  I thought it would be fun to rattle off things I did that are a typical day that just flow with my regular chores.  No extra effort needed, no special equipment. On this day we have a few errands to run and I need to make yogurt for breakfasts & a supply of boiled eggs for RancherMan’s snacking.

Now I’m not casting stones here, back in ‘the day’ I’d buy those highly-marketed convenience items with nary a thought. But I’ve come a long way in my environmental-awareness maturity over the years. And maybe there’s someone else out there that had never thought about how easy it really is in their regular ole day-to-day.  Let’s see how smoothly this environmental thing can be done without much thought at all!

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Garden Update: August

by Tammy Taylor~

Whelp, it’s August y’all.  In TEXAS!  August typically means hot and dry weather.  Late July and early August are usually when I quit fighting the garden altogether and let it go dormant.  I mean, when it’s this hot nothing wants to set fruit anyway.  And during our typical summer when the taps of rain turn completely off in June, it’s impossible to keep the garden watered too.  Oh you can mulch and you can water and of course it helps.  But the water you drop on the garden will probably be wicked away quickly without really soaking into the ground next to the plant’s roots.

But this year our July was different.  Oh it was stiflingly hot and humid, but we got rain.  NINE different days of rain!  And not just a paltry 1/8″ but good, healthy 1-inch rains!  So although the garden is still bound to go dormant this month I’ve been lucky to have some harvest remaining.

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How To Make Your Own Homemade Minty Mouthwash

by Tammy Taylor~

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It was a great night’s sleep.  You wake up feeling refreshed and rested as you stretch and yawn – streak of golden sunlight peeping through the blinds.  But morning breath?  UGH…  C’mon, we all have to deal with it, don’t we?

Now I’ve found many ‘recipes’ for making your own mouthwash.  But often they’re overly complicated or use ingredients I don’t want to have to buy.  What’s my battle cry?  Yep, y’all remember it well:  Use Whatcha Got!

 

Reusable, repurposed flip-top bottle. Making my own Homemade Minty Mouthwash helps me toward the zero-waste lifestyle I strive for. And using only simple ingredients! #TaylorMadeHomestead

 

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Solar Cooking: Cheesy Chile-Chicken Casserole

by Tammy Taylor~

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I bought my solar oven several years ago and I’m learning more & more how to use it.  Living in NE Texas, the summers are hot, humid and sticky.  I hate to fire up the oven in my kitchen.  So it’s the solar oven to the rescue!  I’m able to keep that cooking heat outside where it belongs!

But today the temps outside are spiking and humidity is on the rise.  It’s absolutely miserable outside!  So I’ll be utilizing my solar oven to make my casserole.

Cooking using the power of the SUN? YES! Cheesy Green Chile Chicken Casserole - I used my solar oven to make the casserole, but you could bake it in a regular oven too. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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How To Protect Your Skin WITHOUT Using Sunblock

by Tammy Taylor~

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Sun protection is important, y’all! Our ranch is located in Northeast Texas where heat & humidity are the daily forecast almost every day during summer months.  But our work days are filled with outside chores such as working cattle or repairing fences, gardening or mowing pastures. Even though we spend many hours in the sun, I shy away from using sunblock whenever possible. Why?

Although sunblock is marketed as safe and effective, I just don’t know how I feel about slathering chemicals on my skin several times each and every day. Now don’t get me wrong, there are times when it makes sense to use sunblock.  But today I’m sharing seven easy ways I’m able to protect my skin from the sun’s harmful rays without resorting to sunblock.

Sun Protection is important but for me sunblock is used only as a last resort. Come see 7 easy way I protect my skin without sunblock #TaylorMadeHomestead

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