Hello. I’m Carrie.
I teach folks how to keep bees and homestead on tiny plots of land.
I never set out to become a blogger. Although, in the early days of the internet and Live Journal, I did think it would be pretty cool to be one. It always seemed unattainable to find that immense popularity on the internet.
Little did I know that I would graduate college, the 2008 recession would happen and I would become a wedding photographer. I know. You’re wondering if you’re in the wrong place because this is a blog about plants, honey, and farm fresh eggs. Don’t worry, you’re in the right place. I never set out to become a business owner either, but it happened and on that path I became a very successful blogger, building an educational blog for photographers that reached over 9.5 million readers in its lifetime.
The world changes though and as our family moved to a very remote area of the mountains and I fell back in love with teaching, I came to realize that photography wouldn’t be the life-long path for me that it might be for other photographers. My real passion was my garden. When we moved, it meant we finally bought a house with actual land. After years of living in apartments and townhomes I would finally have an actual space to build the garden that I always wanted to.
I grew up in a home where my mother gardened a lot. Summer visits to my grandma in Minnesota where she had a massive garden were also a big inspiration to me. My grandma knows all about the homestead life in the urban city and every time I could see her working in her garden, or work along side her I would learn some new trick of the trade that I hadn’t known before. Growing up I couldn’t wait to have my own space to use that knowledge. In 2016 it finally happened and I started building and cleaning out space in my new yard right away.
The tiny house we bought on a tenth of an acre has been the home to my ever-growing garden for the last four years. It is also the home base of our beekeeping business. We have six hives in our backyard, and numerous others out on other folks’ properties around the area. This summer of quarantine we finally set out on the dream of adding chickens to the mix.
We live in a very remote tiny town where we do not have amenities like grocery stores, but we are also right in the center of the town and squished in between our neighbors’ much larger yards.
What started as a simple drive to have my own flowers and vegetables quickly became a necessity for us. Without a grocery store, we rely on what I can grow in the garden every year. In a rural high desert area of the mountains, we don’t see as many pollinators as we needed to make the garden as successful as I’d like, so that’s when we added bees to the mix. Now we added chickens as extra composting and garden management. The fresh eggs are a wonderful bonus though.
Our tiny homestead looks like 1 husband, 1 toddler, 3 dogs, 10 beehives, and 12 chickens. It also looks like a high-end washer and dryer, and not baking bread from scratch (I’m gluten free anyway). While homesteading for many is a way to slow down and create a more natural lifestyle, for me it has largely been about mental health.
While pregnant in 2018 I suffered from severe pre-partum depression. The garden and bees are two tools that helped me get through that period of time. It gave me something to focus on, and something to look forward to. When I was nauseous from intense morning sickness (through the majority of my pregnancy), I could always fill up a water bottle and sit in the yard with my legs crossed and find something to weed.
It’s my goal to help others looking to boost their mental health and homestead knowledge with simple gardening tips and tricks and online chicken and beekeeping classes. If you found this place looking for information on making jam, growing food, growing flowers, beekeeping, or keeping chickens; you are in the right place!
In the past 12 years as a self-employed person who has done the majority of my entrepreneurial work as a blogger with an online presence I’ve created hundreds of blog posts, done many partnerships with other businesses and built resources for many people just like you who were scouring the internet in need of advice or seeking to build a higher quality life and improve their mental health through gardening. I can’t wait to bring that history of blogging knowledge here to something I am so passionate about!
- I still photograph weddings!
- I am an elementary school teacher full-time.
- I was diagnosed as an adult with autism. That means when I’m passionate about something, I tend to take it to the next level.
- I am especially passionate about the inclusive representation of folks gardening and homesteading. You are welcome here regardless of race, orientation, gender, ability, age, body type, or national origin.
- Lord of the Rings is my favorite book of all time. If I had to be anyone from Middle-earth I’d be a hobbit because of their love of gardens, being at home, ale and….pipeweed?!