About the Author

Marissa Ames

Editor of Goat Journal and Backyard Poultry magazines, Marissa Ames runs a small homestead in Fallon, Nevada, where she focuses on saving and propagating rare breeds of goats and garden vegetables. She and her husband, Russ, travel to Africa where they serve as agricultural advisors for the nonprofit I Am Zambia. She spends her free time eating lunch.
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Articles by Marissa Ames

Growing Onions from Seeds or Sets
May 2, 2021 · · Growing

Beginners and master gardeners are successfully growing onions. Among the hardiest crops, they are almost foolproof.

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How to Make Shea Butter Soap Three Ways
March 20, 2021 · · Soapmaking

If you’ve already made soap from scratch, you know how to make shea butter soap. Just add shea butter, then alter the other oils for proper saponification, and you have a moisturizing and luxurious bar.

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Why the Ball Canning Book is My #1 Guide to Safe Food Preservation

Add to Favorites What’s the best food preservation guide to buy? The Ball canning book is my most trusted source. And here’s why:  The Ball Brothers started making jars in …

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How to Make Green Soap: An Excursion Through Time
February 19, 2021 · · Soapmaking

Ancient Syrians knew how to make green soap used by Queens Cleopatra of Egypt and Zenobia of Syria. It’s a timeless method that abounds today.

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Sodium Laureth Sulfate and Soap’s Dirty Secrets
January 23, 2021 · · Soapmaking

Sodium laurel sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate. What do those terms mean? And will they harm you or the environment?

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Old-Fashioned Lard Soap Recipes, Then and Now
December 26, 2020 · · Soapmaking

Homesteaders cooked a lard soap recipe in kettles over fires. You can make it in your own kitchen.

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How to Make Bath Bombs: An Easy DIY Gift
December 20, 2020 · · Soapmaking

Often ball-shaped, bath bombs are dry, chalky, conglomerations that fizz and release fragrance when dropped in water. They’re sold as novelties, though additions like witch hazel and skin-friendly oils can add benefits.

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Kids and Soap: Homemade Arts and Crafts for The Holidays
December 11, 2020 · · Holiday, Soapmaking

Winter holidays often involve cold weather, hot drinks, and homemade arts and crafts. It also means the kids are out of school for one to three weeks. What homemade arts and crafts can kids do, without risk of injury, that can also serve as holiday gifts?

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Eliminating Weevils in Flour and Rice
December 5, 2020 · · Canning & Kitchen

Their little legs wriggled on my spoon. How harmful could they be? Casting my eyes to each side, I watched for approaching family members as I dropped the little bugs in the sink and stirred the flour.

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Natural Ways to Get Rid of Mice
November 2, 2020 · · Homesteading

For the safest, most natural ways to get rid of mice, start with the most minimum impact and work up from there. I have a friend who insists on using only the level of protection necessary in a situation.

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How to Make Castile Soap
October 26, 2020 · · Soapmaking

Vegan, sustainable, and often organic, castile soap is highly sought after. Properties are comparable to soaps made with tallow, lard, or coconut oil but the bar made from olive oil ranks higher.

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How to Make Oatmeal Soap: 4 Techniques to Try
October 6, 2020 · · Soapmaking

You can learn how to make oatmeal soap within a few minutes of research. It’s one of the easiest and safest recipe additions.

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Rat-Hunting Dogs: A Historically Organic Option
August 27, 2020 · · Homesteading

Got a rat problem? You can try traps, poisons … or rat-hunting dogs. This organic concept is the reason rat terriers exist today.

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20 Easy Zucchini Recipes For Your Surplus

If you’re new to gardening, you’ve probably researched when to plant squash, how to grow zucchini and which zucchini varieties to choose, only to hear jokes about locking your car doors while at church or you’ll find your vehicle stuffed with produce.

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Growing Potatoes in a Bag or a Bucket
June 21, 2020 · · Growing

Potatoes are almost foolproof. They’ll grow and produce as long as the soil is fertile, water is available, the sun shines, and the plant doesn’t freeze.

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