Monday, September 26, 2011

Dirty Women

Did a rare and unusual thing this past weekend, we left home. Packed up our bags (except for the one with all our toiletries which was packed but left ever so inconveniently right there in front of the toaster) and the Gk's, bribed number two son to do chores for 24 hrs and went north...then west...then north.

We landed in the bustling berg of Geneseo, Illinois, home of the painted pig on every corner,  where I met famous woman of a dirty nature. Namely Miss Effie and Miss Amanda and Miss Tammy as well as Miss Tamara and my editor Miss Zan of The Renegade Farmer. Lots of very busy woman who once had corporate jobs or factory jobs or ordinary jobs and now had jobs that were much harder as they were all either cooking and gardening and teaching and bee keeping and soaping and blogging and bow making and doll crafting and spinning and weaving and owning construction businesses and homemaking and child caring and oh my...they were doing it all while being their own bosses at the same time and hopefully making ends meet with self generated income.

And before I go one step farther. Do you know how to tell a really busy self sufficient woman ? Well by her uniform of course. It looks something like this:

Miss Amanda (middle) discussing the pros and cons of Leghorn chicks with Miss Tammy
 and Miss Effie whose real name is Cathy
a beautiful heavy duty grape themed apron and a fabulous pair of equally sturdy chore boots. Anyone can look good in heels, it takes a special gal to look good in rubber Wellies. What a day it was. Keith sat in on Miss Zan's beekeeping class while I toured our host's (Amanda) property and chatted it up with the other dirty gals (this is a definition related to our outdoor work, not our moral status.)

The highlight of the tour was this extraordinary building. I fantasized about it being a writers hideout  complete with padlocked doors but apparently it is meant instead to smoke meats on the top level

                              and store roots attached to veggies, on the bottom level.

Testosterone man Jason and husband to Amanda, HAND DUG the entire root cellar portion of the building, WHY ? Because he could that's why. Its the same reason my own husband carries new born, 100 pound  calves through the fields and up to the barn when he could drive the truck or tractor out to rescue them in bad weather. Because he can.

And they say women are illogical.

After our dirty women gab fest, and sharing of marketing ideas, product production, business plans etc ...etc...we promised to get together more often . Even if, in the case of Zan Asha, it would mean a trip to New York city where this ultra creative woman cares for 7 bee hives on her roof top. Not only is she the Queen Bee of her urban neighborhood she also creates special fairy dolls and kittenfish. Yes, kitten fish. I love her website for the music as much as for the creativity. Listen for yourselves   Oh yeah, she also edits the Renegade Farmer E-Zine.

Zan is the tall, youthful one on the left. I'm the un-tall, been around the block
backwards more than once on a two wheeled tricycle, one on the right.
I think  my next road trip (as a warm up to NY) will be to Miss Effies U-Pick Flower Farm owned and run by Cathy Lafrenze, and featured in Midwest Living not so long ago.This hardy chick and I hit it off right away. We're both on the edgy side, the edgy MATURE side. And we both admitted neither of us care about our hair anymore or housework. We do however care about how our barns appear to the general public. Check out her entrepreneur style right here right now

Cool huh ? What was that ? You have tiny ones at home and can't possibly start your own business ? Don't be throwing those words around Miss Amanda,  an accomplished soaper and the founder of   My GK Allana went nuts when she saw what was available to dress up little girls hair and could not be torn away from the turtle bow she brought home with her that day. She wore it up until bath time last night and put it right back in her hair for school this am. The best thing about that bow ? Yes its real cute, but best of all...IT STAYS IN THE KIDS HAIR !!

In addition, her prices are a real steal for the quality of hair bow you are getting. Order now before she too gets discovered by Parent magazine or someone else who will buy her company for the 1/2 million it is worth.

So there it was, my "restful" weekend with hard working woman. I left to go on a mini-vacation and came back with great ideas for making an even better living with homemade, home raised, home loved,  products.

Lucky me.



  1. Wow, that sounds like FUN! I wish I could get off my duff and do a trip to visit other homesteaders. What a neat blog post that would make. Thanks for sharing!

  2. That's a serious looking smoke-house. What do they use it for? Bacon, fish, hams?

  3. Carolyn, just added your blog to my follow list. We self sufficient goof balls must stick together.

    Cro, they have started with rabbit hides, then they will move to goat meat and soon they plan to raise hogs and will shove a few hams in there. It is one cool, rock solid building!

  4. Wow! We had a fruit cellar when I was a kid. Dad and my uncle dug it out under our front porch. Mom would say "Go bring me (fill in the blank) from the fruit cellar for dinner." Down the basement, pull the chain on a couple of lights on the way to the fruit cellar door, then that wonderful smell of earth. Thanks for the memory.

  5. Wow! Sounds like a great lil get away!

    I nominated you for the Liebster Blog Award..

    Details here:

    Love your blog!!

  6. Doh! Got all excited then!lol

    Whate ARE the pro's of leghorns?

  7. WHOA!! I am just now getting back into the swing of things!! You were amazing!! And you ARE AMAZING, and...uhh, I'm getting the new website up and I'll give you a CALL (yes. On. The. PHONE!) on Tuesday because things are getting hot and heavy and I love all my writers!!

    Thanks for coming down to see me...I actually had a student who was sad she missed you because she left Bee 101 early and she loves your writing! Rock on Miss Donna! And thanks to Keith, too :)