I had an inspiration, a breakthrough, an epiphany if you will. It was really just a simple thought, but that doesnt sound as cool as a breakthrough. And it came to me at the oddest time. It came at a time when all was quiet, I wasn’t thinking about grey water, or canning, or growing Holler Roast Coffee, or the paper or anything else. It came to me in a moment of silence, when I was kicking back observing the world around me, just walking along the road with my dogs. And it got me to thinking. What do we need to have in place to have breakthroughs? What can we do to help ourselves grow and change? We will talk about that later in the show.

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Two Year anniversary: Membership sale for one week!


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Five Elements of Homemade Salad Dressing

What Mother Nature is providing
Elderflowers are still going strong
Raspberries for about another week
Green Garlic: Cream of garlic soup
Green tomatoes
First Jalapeno pepper from the Aquaponics system

Tales from the Prepper Pantry
Drying last year’s garlic – yes is stored that long with no problems
Honey Harvest: 8 mediums (!!!) Borrowing a centrifuge from our friend Ricky

Learning Aquaponics
Trellising in 15 minutes – a story
Rooting things in the ebb and flow bed

Operation Independence
Hit the paper hard and it yielded two big clients!

Breakthroughs Come when you least expect them…..some thoughts.

Make it a great week!

Song: The Flood by Sauce

I love pickles. I love squash. That’s a great combination.

Refrigerator Summer Squash Pickles

Make in batches of one or more pints.

Ingredients per pint
  • 4 stems of cilantro
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp peppercorns
  • 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 small hot red pepper or 1 tsp crushed hot pepper
  • onion, thinly sliced. Red is beautiful but bleeds.
  • enough summer squash to fill a pint, in 1/4″ thick rounds. Mix colors!
  • 1/3 cup apple cider or your favorite pickling vinegar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3/4 tsp pickling salt
  • 1 TBSP honey

Combine ingredients through squash in a large bowl.

Bring rest of ingredients to a boil and pour over vegetables and herbs.

When the mixture is cool enough, pack into jar. Be sure brine completely covers the pickles.

Refrigerate at least a couple of hours. Gets better after two days. Keeps up to a month in the refrigerator.

This recipe isn’t a good canning candidate because the cooked squash would disintegrate.



Ah, summer squash. Which variety is your favorite? Capitalize on the ease and speed of this side dish that’s good for most restricted diets. I won’t specify ingredient amounts, but a rule of thumb is one 6″ squash per adult eater.

Simply Scrumptious Summer Squash

Preheat oven to 400° F and butter or oil a baking sheet.

  • summer squash in 3/8 – 1/2 inch “coins.” Mix varieties for color or limit yourself to a single variety.
  • cherry tomatoes, halved, or chunks of slicing tomatoes
  • olive oil: easiest in an oil sprayer
  • garlic, minced
  • oregano, basil, and thyme; garam masala and curry or smoked paprika; dill; epazote; or any other fun combination of herbs and spices. Fresh herbs are great.
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • hard cheese like Romano, grated
  • (garnishes like chopped scallions or cilantro, lime wedges for squeezing, chopped hot pepper, or crumbled leftover bacon)

Spread squash coins in a single layer on baking sheet.

Spray or drizzle with oil.

Mix garlic, herbs, salt, pepper, and cheese and sprinkle evenly over squash.

Roast on middle rack 25 – 30 minutes. Garnish.

This recipe probably would be wonderful grilled. Since we don’t have a barbecue, I’ll wait to hear others’ comments on grilling.



Today we will talk to Vin Armani about declaring independence. What struck me about his talk at Liberty Forum was that it was not a tired lecture on the the historical relevance of our Declaration of Independence here, it was an evaluation of what sparks people to choose to be free, and what character elements one needs to have to do it. We also have a crypto tip from our friend Kurt.

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Today we talk about animals on the homestead, and more particularly training animals on the homestead. This is not the all-successful animal trainer’s view of getting your animals in line telling you how to achieve impossible results with just one week of practice when they have spent a lifetime learning. This will be a discussion of the benefits of training your livestock and some ideas on how to do that, as well as stories and examples of things I have done well here at the Holler Homestead === and not so well.

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Today, we walk through all the endeavors here at the Holler Homestead and assess if we are in track, where to focus and how to move forward. Assessing your progress along the year is important to developing the lifestyle you want, building independence and stability and staying focused.

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Today, I want to circle back on community, self-reliance, and side hustles. You see, we had a great Spring Workshop here in late April, and some pretty cool relationships came from that. And not just the – oh hey I met you at a workshop kind, but some real relationships. My next door neighbor has worked two days at another participant’s farm, there is another gathering coming up this weekend that has coordinated itself, and so much more. This morning, I was on the horn with my friends and someone started talking about Prepping.

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Today, we explore why adding creative pursuits into your life helps you succeed in other areas, even if you are not the best in show in whatever creative thing you choose to learn. You may be wondering what this has to do with designing a successful and happy life, homesteading, freedom, or side hustles. Here’s the thing. It’s hard to justify it in a pithy soundbite. But creative pursuits result in physical, mental and emotional benefits. So hang with me on this and I hope you will find ways to reprogram yourself through creative pursuits as you design the life you love.

This episode is dedicated to Puff — our kitty that was with us for too short a time.

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Today, I want to share with you a beginner’s perspective on Aquaponics. At the LFTN Spring Workshop, two awesome guys installed an Aquaponics system here, so I got to witness first hand how to install something right the first time, AND we have been using it for a week now. One of the things that has kept me from doing aquaponics here has been how hard it sounds to set something up, so having this in place is a big deal. So for those of you out there thinking about aquaponics, or even those who are not sure it is a good idea, I want to let you know what it is like as a beginner to launch and learn about Aquaponics.

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Today, we review the good, the bad, the ugly from the Living Free in Tennessee Spring Workshop with The Tactical Redneck, one of our participants. All in all, things went well, folks got to learn from each other about homesteading things, a surprise session on how to capture bee swarms happened, and we even got to be intimately involved with a real aquaponics installation. It was a good time, and we hope that the relationships forged at this event will serve all those who were here well for years to come.

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