Do you know my friend Ashley English? She of the Small Measure blog, author of five (soon to be seven!) books, forest dweller, beekeeper, chicken mama, and hippie homemaker after my own heart. If there ever was a face for the homemade movement, Ashley English should be it. After all, she churned out a stack of some of the best beginner books on the subject: “Canning & Preserving,” “Home Dairy,” “Keeping Chickens,” and “Keeping Bees,” all of which are part of the “Homemade Living” series by Lark Books.
I finally had a chance to thumb through her books a couple weeks ago and found them full of useful info for anyone aspiring to a more self-sufficient life, indoors or out. If that “anyone” might be you, here’s your chance to win the whole series!
Ashley’s books serve as great getting-started guides, interspersing how-to sections with simple recipes and profiles of local homesteaders. She shares a lot of her own personal experiences in each of these subjects, and writes in a tone that’s personable and easy to read.
Even if you don’t know the first thing about honey-harvesting (or cheese-making or chicken-feeding), you’ll be led through the process painlessly with plenty of pictures and instructions to reference. I don’t keep bees or make dairy at home (yet), but reading about them makes me want to add to my own homesteading skills. Who knows, maybe next year?!
A few of my favorite things from her books: seasonal checklist for maintaining your beehive, complete plans for building a chicken tractor, step-by-step instructions for both beginner cheeses and advanced cheeses (homemade gorgonzola aged for four months? … one can only dream!), and all the luscious photographs of vegetables and fruits, jellies and pickles (home-canned goods are eye candy to me).
Just in time for Christmas, I have all four books boxed up and ready for shipment to one lucky reader! And, they are all signed by Ashley herself! Whether you want to give them as gifts or keep them for yourself, they’re a thoughtful addition to any bookshelf. One winner will receive the complete “Homemade Living” series, with each book signed by the author (a $70 total value).
How to enter: Leave a comment below and tell me which of the homemade crafts (chicken-keeping, beekeeping, canning, or dairy-making) you’re most interested in learning or improving in the new year. To receive an additional entry, follow @theGardenBetty on Twitter, and leave a second comment below indicating your Twitter username. You have two chances to win!
The giveaway will end at 11:59 PM Pacific Standard Time on Friday, December 13, 2013. Winner will be drawn at random and announced the following week. Good luck!
- Sweepstakes begins December 9, 2013 and ends December 13, 2013.
- No purchase is necessary. To enter, leave a comment on this blog post.
- Only US residents ages 18 and older are eligible to enter.
- Two entries allowed per person.
- Odds of winning are based on number of entries received.
- Winner will be drawn at random.
- If winner does not respond within 48 hours after time of contact, that entry will be forfeited and a new winner will be drawn.
Disclosure: Lark Books is providing the prize mentioned in this sweepstakes. All opinions expressed are my own and were not influenced by any form of compensation.
Update: A big thanks to everyone who entered!
This giveaway is now closed. The winner was Laurie from Texas.