One vital key to thinking like a homesteader is not so much 'pack-ratting' (although I stand guilty of that with glass jars), but looking at ways to reuse something that might otherwise be thrown away. Today I want to share a pictorial tutorial of just what I'm talking about:
A chewed up hose (thanks to our dog, Chewbacka [nicknamed 'Chewy'], when he was a puppy) has been coiled in our shed for months. I wouldn't throw it away because I just knew there was something I could do with it, eventually:
Low and behold, today, while going to dig up some purple potatoes, I found that someone had left our pitch fork (of 15 years) out under some bushes last fall and wow it's weathered:
But it's still quite sturdy and, well we don't want to buy something if we already can use what we have (homesteading mindset key point #1), so my wheels in my head started turning and I grabbed the exacto-knife, scissors and some electrical tape:
With the scissors, I cut four equal pices of hose, then with the exacto-knifesplit them in the center:
Look at that guilty party in the background....
Opening them up I wrapped them around the weathered, rough handle of the pitch-fork:
Then wrapped it with electrical tape:
And if they meet exactly in the center, you could use less tape (saving more $) and make this nifty design:
But, I like things to 'match' so I wrapped them both the same.
The grips are cushioned and smooth. No splinters and less blisters now - time to get to work!
Now my husband jokes that there's no room for being lazy and just working for 3 hours in the garden, with this 'cush-handle' I should be able to dig and pitch all day long! Oh my! What have I done??
Seriously though, reusing things that others (or at one time I) may have thought were trash or not worth the time is one of the vital keys to developing a homesteading mindset.
By sharing these tips, I hope it inspires you to look outside the ordinary and challenge yourself to make the most of what you already have!
DonnaDonna Miller is an author, teacher and entrepreneur. Her favorite roles are that of wife and mother to three home-school graduates. The Millers own and operate Millers Grain House which offers Organic and Chemical-free Whole Grains, Bosch Mixers, the NutriMill, instructional tutorials, recipes and more.