Melissa is offering to one randomly chosen commenter an e-version of her book PIONEERING TODAY. The winner will be announced here on Friday, May 31st, between 4-6 PM EST. For convenience, please leave your contact information within your comment. Thanks!
Do You Need to Simplify? by Melissa K. Norris
Driving through towns and cities these days, we see convenience stores on every corner, bakeries, candy shops, coffee shops, and restaurants tucked in between buildings on paved streets. Half of the time we don’t even have to leave our cars to place our order and receive our food.
We’re a society who seems to thrive on getting it our way and getting it faster. But have we lost something by living this way? I believe we have.
Our great-grandparents rarely went out to eat. They didn’t consider grocery shopping purchasing some food in a box where you just add water, oil, and eggs. They either knew the farmer that grew their food, owned the dairy, and raised the chickens, or they did it on their farm.
Were their lives harder? I think we should ask ourselves instead, were their lives more rewarding? Since when did harder become synonymous with bad?
Is it harder to bake your own bread from scratch than purchasing it at the store? It takes a little bit more time, but the flavor, cost savings, and health benefits, far outweigh the time it takes. Of course, if you use my no knead bread in less than 5 minutes a day recipe, it’s probably faster than fighting traffic and running to the store.
A small seed becomes a plant, a blossom becomes a piece of food to eat, and the fruit holds a seed to start the process over again. We don’t appreciate that when we grab it off of a shelf in the grocery store.
In my book, Pioneering Today-Faith and Home the Old Fashioned Way, I explain practical and easy methods to cook from scratch, garden, preserve your own food, and see God’s fingerprint in your everyday busy life. Whether you live in the middle of the asphalt jungle or on the side of a mountain, you can experience the pioneer lifestyle and start your own homesteading journey.
The simple life isn’t lost, it’s waiting for you to come and embrace it.
Because I believe so strongly in learning to grow your own food, even if you live in an apartment, I’ve written a 40 page eBook called, Heirloom Gardening Guide-Plant to Save Money, that’s FREE on my website for newsletter subscribers. Learn what GMO’s are and the benefits of heirloom seeds.
Questions for Melissa:
Although a good cook, my mother enjoyed the “new” conveniences of boxed instant mashed potatoes (not recommended!) and the new hamburger place, aka McDonald’s (today, no-thanks). Did your childhood make you rebel or wizen you up to healthier foods?
I wouldn’t call it a rebellion, but a slip into taking the easy route. It was so easy to grab a box, open a few cans, and heat something up. But I didn’t feel so great when I ate this way, I gained weight, felt really sluggish, and it wasn’t very frugal. When I became pregnant, I really started educating myself on nutrition and quickly became a cook-it-from-scratch kind of woman. It’s amazing what becoming responsible for someone else’s health will do for your own.
As a mom of young children, is it any easier for you to get your kids to try new foods because they know it’s from the garden or prepared fresh in the kitchen? Any tricks to share?
It’s so much easier to get my kids to try new foods when they grow it and help cook it themselves. One thing I like to stress when cooking and gardening with kids is not to worry about getting it perfect. When my kids were toddlers, I gave them their own patch in the garden. If they pulled up a plant when weeding, it wasn’t a big deal. They could do whatever they wanted in that patch. It turned out better than I would have thought. My daughter had an awesome pea and bean plant and she could pick and play to her heart’s content.
Same thing applies to kids in the kitchen. If something gets spilled (and it will), just have them help clean it up. Remember you’re teaching them healthy life tips and bonding, not being Martha Stewart.
Hmm, I think our favorite from scratch substitutes would have to be my healthy homemade crunchy granola bars. They’re super easy and taste better than the stores. When I told my husband I wasn’t going to be buying bread any more, he kind of raised his eyebrows, but it’s been a year and a half and he loves the scent of warm bread in the kitchen, not to mention the taste. I use this recipe for the no knead bread (see link above).
What’s next on the pioneering front?
I’m really excited to begin working on a new book, Pioneering Today-Preserving the Harvest. It will include canning tutorials and recipes, freezing, root cellar techniques, and dehydrating. Tentative release date is October 2013. Also, I now have my own radio show, Pioneering Today, and am waiting for the producer to give me the release date for the shows. They’ll be available as podcasts on my website and I-tunes.
Melissa's Ah-hahs To Tweet:
Meet Melissa K. Norris: Faith and Home the Old Fashioned Way. (Tweet This)
Melissa K. Norris: has society lost value in the craziness of life? (Tweet This)
Melissa K. Norris: raising food, gardening, and cooking from scratch? Who has time? You! (Tweet This)
Melissa K. Norris on Everyone’s Story: God’s fingerprint in everyday busy life. (Tweet This)
is a Christian novelist, newspaper columnist, and non-fiction writer. Her stories inspire people to draw closer to God and their pioneer roots. She’s a skilled artisan crafter, creating new traditions from old-time customs for her readers. She found her own little house in the big woods, where she lives with her husband and two children in the Cascade Mountains. Her book, Pioneering Today-Faith and Home the Old Fashioned Way, explains practical and easy methods to cook from scratch, garden, preserve your own food, and see God’s fingerprint in your everyday busy life. .
You can connect with Melissa at:
Facebook page: www.facebook.com/MelissaKNorris