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Better Homes & Gardens Farmhouse at Heart

Better Homes & Gardens Farmhouse at Heart

Better Homes & Gardens Farmhouse at Heart

Farmhouse at Heart magazine beautifully captures the joy and simplicity of back-to-basics home-keeping. No matter where you live, you’ll learn ways to embrace the nostalgia of hands-on pursuits, such as from-scratch piecrusts, veggies fresh from your backyard, and making your own soap. Gorgeous photography and thoughtful editorial help readers create meaning in their homes and find joy in simple moments.

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United States
Meredith Corporation

in this issue

2 min.
from the editor

LIFE’S GREATEST JOYS COME NOT FROM SPEEDING UP, BUT RATHER FROM SLOWING DOWN. Sometimes it’s hard to recall life before Instagram and Pinterest and wireless phones that tuck into your pocket. Technology has propelled us forward in so many ways, but when we take a moment to look back—way back—to a time when conversations were always face-to-face, favorite keepsakes were made by hand, and family meals took root in a veggie garden out back, we come to realize that life’s greatest joys come not from speeding up, but rather from slowing down. Our inaugural issue of Farmhouse at Heart is all about just that—stepping away from the hustle and bustle and embracing a simpler way of life, steeped in centuries-old traditions. We share tips for crafting a good-as-Grandma’s piecrust from scratch (page…

5 min.
real life rural

Peace and quiet were part of the idea behind the 5-acre plot of Georgia farmland that Annette and Jared Thurmon bought and built on in 2015. So the irony isn’t lost on the couple when today, knee-deep in country life, they occasionally find themselves engulfed by hee-hawing donkeys, crowing roosters, mewing cats, and spitting alpacas. “A donkey’s screech might be one of the loudest noises around,” Jared says. These are a different kind of noise, of course—worlds different from the mental noise of their old life just outside Atlanta. “When we first got married, we lived by a school,” Jared says. “Every morning at dawn, we’d hear the sound of brakes and the rev of diesel engines from the big buses.” The farm noises you can get lost in, laugh at—even meditate…

3 min.
this art starts with an

I discovered cross-stitch in the summer between fifth and sixth grades. I don’t remember how I got my hands on the kit that included cloth, a hoop, thread, and a pattern. But I do remember my mom teaching me how to read the pattern, count stitches, and undo my mistakes. It was a craft that I—an introverted creative type who wasn’t good at drawing—could lose myself in, and afterward I had something to show for all those hours of concentrated silenc e. Over that summer and the following year or two, I made some small pieces I was proud to share—my grandmother still has one of them hanging on her wall. And in learning the skill, I joined a line of young girls from centuries before me. Cross-stitch is the oldest…

2 min.
the promise of new beginnings

seed-starting basics Starting plants from seed is a balance of art and science—and a little bit of patience. 1. Decide your approach: You can either sow many seeds within one container and then remove the weaker sprouts as they form, or sow just one seed per container and see if it germinates and becomes a viable plant. 2. Choose a container. Be sure it is deep enough for a mature seedling to develop and allows water to pass through permeable material or a hole in the bottom. A shallow container may require you to transplant seedlings more than once, causing stress for your new growth. 3. Use good soil or a soilless seed-starting mix. You don’t need compost or fancy fertilizer to start seeds, but be sure to use quality seedstarting mix that allows…

3 min.
change of plan

MORNING LIGHT BARELY SPLINTERS THE SKY AS THE GOATS AT LITTLE SEED FARM eagerly trek a dirt path to the milking barn. A family of pileated woodpeckers pierce the quiet with shrill piping calls, rabbits spring for cover in bush clover, and three deer slip into a sweet woodsy-scented stand of Eastern red cedar trees. It’s a scenario far removed from James and Eileen Ray’s lives 10 years ago in New York City, where Eileen worked in fashion design and James in finance. “We were dating and working in our childhood dream jobs,” Eileen says, noting that on the surface it seemed they had it all. But one night, James asked Eileen what she wanted for the future. “It was kind of an awakening,” she says. “My work had broadened to…

1 min.
lather up

fresh start All soaps begin with a base of olive and coconut oils in a vat. Essential oils and other ingredients (such as charcoal powder) are slowly blended in. hot and cold In a separate container, frozen goat’s-milk cubes are blended with lye, a caustic ingredient that melts the cubes and dissolves into the liquid. “This is like a 90-degree milk solution,” James Ray says. all together Mixing the milk solution and oil base at high speed causes the lye and oil to react. The mixture transforms into a thick paste called trace. “It’s called trace because you can trace your name wi th it,” James says. it's a wrap Trace is poured into a 16-inchtall mold then swaddled with packing blankets for two days to raise the temperature to about 120°F. This process turns the paste…