FAST Blog: Family Homestead

Permaculture, Preparedness, Homesteading & Survival

Friday, 22 September 2017

Five on Friday - A Busy Week!

Happy Friday Folks!

Many thanks to those that are still taking part in Five on Friday, summer is always a busy time of year and I know a lot of people struggle to keep up with blogging due to commitments outdoors at this time of year so well done those of you that are still managing to find the time to get involved :)

Wild Blackberries
When we go on our hikes we try to keep our eyes peeled for edibles as we go, knowing where things are and keeping tabs on them for when they are ready is a great thing to teach to the children and they love learning about plants, particularly Aurora who has the appetite of a herd of cattle so is very fast to learn anything food related!  Recently we picked probably the last of the blackberries from along the trail as the birds will no doubt take the rest before we get a chance to hike up there again. The blackberries in the mountains are very small due to the harsh conditions and scarcity of water but the flavour is immense and far better than the bloated flavourless rubbish overpriced in the shops.

Fresh Almonds
The almonds are all ripe and ready on the trees so we have been spending countless hours cracking almonds. The kids love to eat them raw from the shells but we've also been trying to use them up in our baking as well, and of course making Almond Butter is a real bonus of having access to abundant fresh almonds. It's incredibly easy to do and without any ingredients other than roast almonds you end up with a delicious creamy Almond Butter, way better than Peanut Butter and without any nasty additives at all.

Pallet Wood Gate
As you may know we recently adopted two rescue puppies and they have just learnt how to climb stairs. The main problem with this is that they haven't learnt how to come back down! To stop them from constantly getting themselves stranded in the upstairs bedroom we needed a gate at the bottom of the stairs, but we left our old baby gates behind in the UK, so rather than fork out for a new one we decided to come up with a homemade DIY pallet gate. It works like a charm and only cost us a couple of euros for the latch and hinges! It will certainly come in handy when we start building at Wyrdwood Acres to be able to make picket fences and gates out of pallets. Our next pallet project is to try our hand at building some pallet furniture :)

Hand Tooled, Hand Painted Leather Belt
Another one of the things we've made recently is this custom leather belt. It was the anniversary of our friends in the Rebels MC Hispania so we made this belt as a gift and took it down to their clubhouse for them. I think it has come out beautifully and have decided to start selling this type of thing in my shop Thor's Threads soon. We already do small leather patches but I think these belts will go down a storm with other bike clubs and people in general!

Berries and Herbal Tea
So after a very busy week all that was left to do was sit with my feet up eating delicious natural snacks and drinking Hierba Luisa Tea, I feel as chilled out as my Little Tea Strainer Man looks!

I hope you all have a blessed weekend, thanks for stopping by for Five on Friday!


Five on Friday Weekly Linkup

Welcome to Five on Friday, a weekly opportunity for the community to link up and share 5 things with us or take 5 minutes to talk about one topic. We’d love for you to join us and add a link to your own Five on Friday blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to keep your blog updated. Every Friday we'll be sharing a Fast Five and look forward to seeing yours.

How To Join In

Your 5 things can be all on a related topic or 5 totally separate things of your choosing, it's totally flexible and up to you. You might choose 5 photos, 5 quotes or use it to recap 5 things you've done this week, you have the freedom to exercise your creativity!

All that we ask is that you link back to Five on Friday using the button below (just copy and paste the HTML code in to your blog) and try to share the love by visiting & commenting on the other participants blogs. Each week the post will go live at 6.00am GMT on Friday and will close for new link entries at 10.00PM on Sunday

Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML



  1. Great idea to keep the puppies inside ! I would love to eat the berries they look so yummy ! Haven't seen very much of them this year ! The belt look beautiful ! I just came back from London yesterday evening for me it is so easy to go there it takes me 2 h from Brussels to London and only half an hour for the check in ! It's quicker then to go from one end to the other of Brussels.

  2. The berries look so good. The blackberries in my garden are rotten because of the rain and cold.
    have a nice weekend

  3. I was walking the kids to school this morning thinking must put bag in pocket tonight for the last of the blackberries , ive a freezer full of raspberries and theyre still going strong , im still finding apples and ive one little tree not quite ready yet , hazlenuts bush has produced its first decent crop , a whole bucket full ,that subject to experiments will be going into xmas baking . Shame theres not a lot of things you can do with slugs , ive got a fine crop...ho hum

  4. Those almonds and the wild blackberries must be very tasty. I miss the fruit and nuts which we gathered from our land when we were in Italy. As always an interesting post. Thank you for hosting Five on Friday.

  5. Here's a question, how do you know when your almonds are ripe? We are getting our first harvest (several years after planting the trees) and I have "check on them" a couple of times. They have not been ready, and I am not sure how to tell when they are. We love our small, wild blackberries here too. Such intense flavor!

  6. Blackberries is one of my favorite summer pleasures! Would love to have some vines myself. Getting them from the wild is always the BEST! They always bring back such memories! Loved seeing the yummy almonds, too. Tell us what to do after they are baked, to make the almond butter. What a great environment for your children....I know I have said that before, but they are living in an amazing place with you and your wife, being surrounded by such natural joys! Love the belt...hope the shop grows and you have lots of customers. The "puppy gate" was a great idea! It looks wonderful!

  7. Interesting post as usual, thanks for hosting Five on Friday, it's a great idea btw. Yes please, (one day) do show the almond butter etc once the almonds are baked. Puppy gate looks great too. Have a good week. Cathy

  8. Your all natural snacks look wonderful!! And how fun to have new puppies -though a bit of a chore at times. They're worth it though, right? ;)
    Thanks for hosting and have a blessed weekend!

  9. Oh, for the love of fresh hand-picked wild blackberries. There is nothing quite like them. When I was a kid, our family used to go out every season and spend the day picking wild blackberries to make blackberry jam. it is something I'm attempting to pass onto the kids, but blackberries are a weed here and finding a source is not easy anymore. It is also an activity we do in February, so staring at your haul, I have to wait another six months before they ripen here sometime in February :D

    And your almonds remind me of my grandparents tree (both tree and grandparents now long gone). Every year my grandfather would pick all the almonds, and argue with the cockatoos and parrots that would try to steal them. Roast almonds are definitely a fav.

    This post reminds me of so much!

    Your leatherwork is excellent and congrats on tackling the woodwork. Looks fabulous.

    Thanks for hosting the blog hop. I'm new here - wandered over from Paint Party Friday and it looks to be great fun. Thanks for sharing your stories :D

    Best wishes,

  10. I liked that belt a lot. I expect you can sell a lot of those. The almonds sure looked good. When I was a kid , there were almond orchards near our house. I love those things.

    Sure does seem like you made the right decision to move the family to Spain, you all seem to be very happy there.


We are always glad to hear your comments, thoughts and opinions :)


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