Made from Scratch: Discovering the Pleasures of a Handmade Life

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Storey Pub., 2008 - Biography & Autobiography - 184 pages
49 Reviews
Starting off as a young, single woman with a desk job and a city apartment, Jenna Woginrich set out to build a more self-sufficient lifestyle by learning homesteading skills. She didn't own land or have much practical experience beyond a few forays into knitting and soap making, but she did have a strong desire to opt out of what she saw as a consumer-driven culture. After moving across the country to a rented farmhouse in northern Idaho, she learned to raise chickens, keep bees, and grow her own food.

This is the story of her joyful, dramatic, and sometimes sorrowful journey toward self-reliance. Along the way, she learned that an abundance of enthusiasm and a willingness to experiment could make up for a lack of knowledge, and that reaching out to others for mentoring and guidance could help her reconnect with her community.

From the satisfying work of starting a new garden and installing honeybees, to the bliss of gathering fresh eggs to be baked into a quiche served with warm-from-the-oven bread and hand-churned butter, Made from Scratch shares the deep satisfaction that comes with providing for oneself. In an encouraging and entertaining voice, Woginrich weaves into her narrative easy-to-follow instructions for making your own clothes, teaching yourself to play a musical instrument, and much more.

In any setting — urban, suburban, or rural — with any level of experience, it's possible to take small steps toward self-reliance. Windowbox vegetable gardens, a batch of homemade strawberry jam, a handknit sweater, or a small flock of backyard chickens all satisfy the craving to homestead. It's not about having a rustic cabin on five acres, complete with a pickup truck and a barn full of livestock. For Woginrich, it's about being more receptive to learning the simple skills most of us have forgotten, and finding joy in the process.

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User Review  - sriemann - LibraryThing

This read quickly, because there are lots of little sections that string together pretty nicely. Although I understand that now the author is doing a lot of homesteading, one of the reasons the book ... Read full review

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User Review  - inhalelife - LibraryThing

5 out of 5 stars Summary: A young single woman finds the bliss of self-sufficiency and urban farming while working in an office 9 to 5. She quickly gets the bug and moves to the country. It's part ... Read full review

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About the author (2008)

Jenna Woginrich is a 20-something homesteader and the author of Barnheart, Chick Days, and Made from Scratch. She blogs at Cold Antler Farm, as well as Mother Earth News and The Huffington Post. A Pennsylvania native, she has made her home in the mountains of Tennessee, in northern Idaho, in rural Vermont, and most recently in upstate New York, where she lives with a flock of Scottish Blackface sheep, a border collie in training, chickens and geese, a hive of bees, and several amiable rabbits.

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