Just got home from a short trip to the mountains with my Ladies Homestead Gathering gals!!! Look at the view from the kitchen table – WOW!

Kelly's family home in the mountains
Kelly’s family home in the mountains

Our little group has grown over the past two years and now we are a National Organization, how cool is that? My good friend, Cyndi Ball, of Lazy B Farm, started this group a little over two years ago to get like-minded women together to share ideas and learn from each other everything homesteading! A bunch of us met to discuss by-laws, rules, memberships, fundraising, well basically everything that goes into forming an organization. If you want to learn more about our group or start your own LHG chapter, visit Cyndi’s website until they have the “official” LHG site up.


In the past month, with the group, we had a farm work day(helping another homesteader build raised beds and start another catapillar tunnel), had a speaker on animal husbandry regarding parasite control and injection procedures and another wonderful Food Swap! You know how crazy I am about doing these swaps!!!! In a swap, people sign up for the event and then they make, buy(from a farm or bulk grain store) or grow, etc. and item for each person that signed up. So if we have 12 ladies sign up, you make 12 like items for the swap. At the swap, which because I was late to the meeting 🙁 it became a bit hectic but I had helpers jump right in to assist me in filling all of the boxes, yay! Each person then goes home with a box of 12 different items, how cool is that? Here is what we got this month:

swap feb

Chai Loose Tea Mix

Collards and Turnips

Jerusalem artichokes

Sweet Potato Bread

Salted Caramel Dip***Recipe follows***

Plum Jelly

Goat Cheese

Dry Rub Seasoning Mix

Dry Soup Mix

Broth Powder

Vanilla Sugar



Coffee/Tea packs

Sprouting Kit


Tzaziki Sauce

I picked all these turnips!
I picked all these turnips!

I LOVE this group! Diona shared her recipe for the Salted Caramel Dip so here it is and guess what???? There is NO sugar in it, enjoy!


Raw Salted Caramel Apple Dip

Makes 2 cups

Ingredients: 2 cups pitted Medjool dates

¼ cup raw nut or seed butter (almond, cashew, sesame tahini, sunflower)

4 tsp. fresh lemon juice

½ tsp. sea salt (or more to taste)

1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

soaking water as needed

Directions: 1. Soak dates for at least 4 hours in water. 2. Drain dates, reserving the soak water. 3. Add dates to a food processor along with all other ingredients, except for soaking water. Blend on high until dates are smooth. Add soaking water, 1 tablespoon at a time until the desired consistency is reached (for a sauce to pour or drizzle, add more water). 4. Store in an airtight glass container in the fridge for up to a week.


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Your swap sounds fantastic…now if I could only find some “like-minded women” in my community. Thanks for sharing – It’s got me thinking.


Natalie I am sure if you put the word out they will come. We have our group in GA and another in PA with more to come!


I’d like to see one in upstate SC…we have a great group of farmers that are connected here on FB…this would be a shootoff of that.


That looks like a ton of fun! And the recipe sounds awesome 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing this on Wildcrafting Wedensday!


LOVE the idea of a swap! Congratulations on being this week’s Featured Blogger on Wildcrafting Wednesday! 🙂


Thank you! The swaps are incredible and we do about 8 per year, so many creative ladies in our group.


I love this idea! It would be great to give this a try.


Just get a few friends together to start the swap. I usually put down a few guidelines to follow, basically making, buying or growing an item that would retail for say $3-4 each. This way it keeps things even. Of course it does not cost that much just what it would sell for at a farmers market. 🙂


How would one go about starting a group in upstate SC? I think this a wonderful idea for women and I think networking like this is what is needed in this area. Kathy


Kathy that would be wonderful!!! The president of our group, cyndi Ball would be happy to talk with you about opening a chapter in SC, she just helped someone in TN yesterday! If you could, email me your contact info – [email protected] and I will have her call you. 🙂

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