Cool Stuff – Pioneer Skills
“Homemade Bug Spray”

As with many household items, natural bug spray can be made inexpensively and naturally at home. Why would you want to make your own bug spray? Because it won’t contain the chemical DEET, which although approved by the EPA, is known to cause a whole host of problems, from allergic rashes to neurological damage. Yuck. This recipe for bug spray can be put together quickly, and best of all it […]

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“Meet the Modern Pioneers: Dower”

A chef friend of mine recently showed me a photograph of a leather bag and I gasped it was so beautiful. And when he told me they were being made by hand in Little Rock I said I needed to meet this person and get to the bottom of it all. The company is Dower and the maker is Jack Lloyd. We recently visited him in his studio to watch him at work […]

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“Modern Pioneering Video: Homemade Seed Bombs”

Here is the latest installment of our Modern Pioneering series. From The Garden, The Kitchen, The Wild, and The Rest, you’ll be learning recipes, projects and skills for a self-sufficient life. In this one, we teach you how to be a ‘guerrilla gardener’ and prove that you don’t need to own a big yard to get your hands in the dirt. I’d love to hear if you enjoy this one, and […]

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“Meet the Modern Pioneers: Blacksmith Lin Rhea”

A few months ago I was doing a photoshoot for a magazine, and the location was in an historic pioneer museum. The most delightful thing about the entire experience? I met a blacksmith named Lin Rhea. Not just any blacksmith, an ARTIST of a blacksmith.  He runs the Blacksmith Shop in the Historic Arkansas Museum as well as his own website where he sells his handmade knives.  I knew that after […]

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“Meet the Modern Pioneers: Electric Ghost”

I believe that the Creative Class is what brings every city to the next level. That is why I’m excited to kick off our series featuring Modern Pioneers across America–those who are on the next frontier, making their creative spirit work in a very modern age. There is no better couple to kick it off with than these two. Shannon and Brooks are the definition of couple goals. They work […]

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“Modern Pioneering Video: Eggshell Seedling Planters”

Here is the latest in our Modern Pioneering video series with Cranford Co.​ From The Garden, The Kitchen, The Wild, and The Rest, you’ll be learning recipes, projects and skills for a self-sufficient life. This one teaches you how to upcycle your eggshells and turn them into seedling containers, which you can then transplant right into the ground–the shells serve as fertilizer! I’d love to hear if you enjoy this […]

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“Modern Pioneering Video: 7-Herb Frittata + Upcycled Flower Styling”

I had so much fun teaming up with the crew from Cranford Co.​ to host a Modern Pioneering web series. From The Garden, The Kitchen, The Wild, and The Rest, you’ll be learning recipes, projects and skills for a self-sufficient life. This first one you can use for an easy brunch idea and an upcycled table centerpiece. This is a longer-format video than what we’ve done in the past, so […]

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“Video: Christmas Tree Napkin Fold”

An elegant table setting makes any dinner special, but especially around the holidays. In this video you’ll learn a festive Christmas tree napkin fold that is very quick and easy to put together, and will surely delight your family and guests. Supplies ●  Square fabric napkin ●  Optional: candy cane, berries, or ribbon for the top, and a pin Instructions Start with a square fabric napkin and fold it twice […]

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“DIY Gift Wrapping Ideas”

With just days to go now until Christmas, there is still time to get creative with holiday gift wrapping, using materials we already have on hand or have right outside our doorstep. So often, we buy gift wrapping and boxes only to see them torn apart and thrown away quickly. This season, try some new ideas instead. For example, turn your cereal and other dry-goods boxes inside out, re-tape them and […]

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“How to Make a Wreath from Nature”

A wreath is an easy thing to make for any season and a great activity in which you can incorporate your kids. To gather the key ingredient for this project, you’ll need to go in search for  the types of vines that are thinner and therefore good for wreath making—wisteria, honeysuckle, and grape are some of the most common. A walk in the woods, a local park, or even a […]

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