Category Archives: homesteading

keep manhattan


So, remember when I was all, “Boo hoo!  Some bastard stole my house!”?

Well, it turns out that there’s more than one place I can hang my hat.

That’s right.  After four years of searching (and driving our wonderful real estate agent crazy) Husband and I have FINALLY found the home in which we’ll raise our family.

I’ll admit to still being bummed about The One That Got Away, as it was all that AND a bag of chips, but this place (property name TBA) is a really good fit.

The house is modest but well laid out.  The land is only a 3 acre parcel, but is big enough to do everything we want (gardens, small orchard, chickens/goats and bees).  The location is remote, but still do-able for Husband, work-wise.

And the price!

Y’all know how *cough*frugal*cough* I am.

I get excited when I save $10.

Imagine, for a second, my ecstacy at spending $140k less than our budget.



Now, we get the keys on May 17th, so that means things are going to be INSANE around here as we pack up our entire lives in less than THREE WEEKS.

That and raise a 3.5 year old and a set of 6 month twins.

You know, the usual.

No biggie.



baby’s got (garlic on her) back


So, we’ve been struck down by The Plague here at Chez Somethingfrench.

While we rarely get sick in our house, it generally takes a particular course:

Sore throat –>
Stuffy/drippy head-cold –>
Cough –>
Lung Infection/Asthma

Now, I’m generally able to cut the whole ordeal down just a sore throat with some liberally applied Cold-FX, but since I’m breastfeeding and I couldn’t find any actual information about combining the two, I was hesitant.

Not that it mattered this time, anyhow.

A cough one day turned into a lung infection the next.

A lung infection invited head-cold along and in the space of 48 hours, our entire household was a coughing/hacking/sneezing/dripping/crying/miserable mess.

Especially sucky for Behbez as How The Heck Do You Get Them To Blow Their Tiny Little Noses?

Pinterest to the rescue!  (Again.)

It’s called GOOT and it’s saved us.

Garlic Olive and coconut Oil Treatment

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp coconut oil
6+ cloves garlic, minced

*  Gently heat all ingredients in a small pan until coconut oil is melted.
*  Add all ingredients to a blender (or Magic Bullet) and eviscerate.
*  Pour into small, wide-mouthed container and chill 1 hour before using.
*  Keep refrigerated.

To use:

*  Spread liberally on back, feet, chest, (whatever part of your body that’s ailin’ you) and cover with clothing you don’t care about.

reality check


We’ve got a dream here at Chez Roberge.

It’s not as lofty or altruistic as MLKJr.’s, but it’s ours.

See, for the past three years, Husband and I have been looking for our little piece of heaven.

Since being pregnant with Gabe, we’ve been scouring MLS (and PropertyGuys and ComFree and and and) for a few acres, in the Middle of Nowhere, where our family can stretch and breath and grow.

Somewhere we could have a garden.  A big one.

Somewhere we could have a dog.  A big one.

And maybe a chicken or two.

A goat?


Husband and I both spent a good deal of our formative years on farms (cows and pigs and  hay – oh my!) and we’re both itching to get back to it in some small way.

We thought we’d found it in this property.  10 acres.  Good commuter location.  Dumpy on the inside, but good bones.

We went so far as to put in an offer.  More than the house was worth, according to our estate agent, but we made allowances for the fact that, given time and money, this house could be our Dream Home.

I spent several days envisioning our lives in this house.   Cooking in its kitchen.  Gardening in its backyard.   Taking my kids for walks in its fields.  I even had my mother move into her own apartment in its basement.

We didn’t count on there being multiple offers.

Our best price wasn’t enough.

I saw my dreams go up in a puff of drywall dust and I fell into the funkiest of funks.

Nothing anyone said could make me feel better.

I bathed daily in a ditch of my own selfpity.

Aaaaand then I snapped out of it.

I have FB and an aquaintance (forgive me Laura) to thank.

“Someone dinged my Beamer.  My baby needs body work!  Boo hoo!”

I am, I have realized, the whitest of White Girls with the firstest of First World Problems.

I’m crying that I don’t have 10 acres?  An open concept kitchen?  A chicken coop?



I have a husband and children in total mutual dotage.

I have a roof over my head and a mortgage that will be paid off in 9 years.

I have a great set of friends and hair that looks pretty decent right out of the shower.

I have a good mother.

What the heck do I have to complain about?


…besides the fact that some rich bastard stole my house!?




Okay, so I still have a ways to go.