right now... i am.

right now, i am...

- brainstorming & dreaming up big plans for our future.

- harvesting (still) baskets full of goodies from our garden. this will never grow old.

- cutting, sewing & packaging happy flags. this is what my hands were made to do.

- drinking iced maple toddy in mason jars. a shot of toddy, a splash of raw milk & a teaspoon of maple syrup, please.

- savoring summer & celebrating hints of autumn.

- listening to npr every morning with a cup of coffee in hand.

- enjoying having a little nook at 410 for selling my vintage finds. 

- canning tomato sauce, salsa & tomato jam into the wee hours of morning.

- not buying groceries for two weeks. on purpose!

- focusing on gratitude & contentment instead of my old friends, wants & jealousy.

- baking cinnamon butternut squash. recipe coming soon...

- excited for three days of folk music at roots festival.

- giddy about working with marisa of food in jars this weekend.

- wearing big necklaces & big glasses because #yolo.

- finally (!!!) eating corn from our garden


what are you doing right now?

being a life-long learner // podcast with ELISE GETS CRAFTY

our story is one that surprises even me when i share it out loud. 

this past year & some odd months of owning our farm has been nothing short of absolutely beautiful & exhaustingly hard. 

i think that's probably how all things feel that are worth our time, worth investing in, worth fighting for, worth living within. 

so when elise asked if i would like to come share our story of what it looks like to be a life-long learner & farmer, i 1. squealed & nearly fainted 2. said yes. 

because that's what the farm is for us. it's a classroom for making messy mistakes & if we're lucky enough, sharing a plate of food we've grown with loved ones.  

so, my people, grab a cup of coffee & click right here (i'm episode #24!). share the next thirty minutes with elise & me as we chat about what it looks like to learn on the farm. 

& yes, i've got a southern drawl.

natalie creates shop is now open!

my handmade shop is now open! join me over at the natalie creates shop & snatch up some happy flags while you're there!

p.s. enter "NATALIECREATESHAPPY" at checkout for free shipping within the usa. xo.

whole wheat, refined sugar-free waffle recipe

i feel like there are two kinds of people in the world. waffle people & pancake people.

we are obviously waffle people.

this morning i want to share our whole wheat, refined sugar-free waffle recipe. it's perfect for those birthday morning traditions, snow days & even breakfast for dinner evenings. this recipe is easy-peasy & soon you'll be makin' waffles every saturday morning.

whole wheat waffle recipe
makes about 5 - 6 waffles

2 eggs
1 3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup canola oil
1 1/2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup white flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch of salt

1. turn on your waffle maker & preheat. i purchased our waffle maker from the thrift shop for less than $2.
2. in a mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, canola oil, honey, cinnamon & baking soda until well combined. 
3. add the dry ingredients - flours, baking powder & salt - & mix until large lumps disappear.
4. once your waffle iron is hot, lather it in butter or oil (we use spray canola oil) & add an appropriate amount of waffle batter to your iron.
5. once all of your waffles are made, add your favorite toppings!

some of our favorite toppings include:
- fresh berries
- bananas
- peanut butter
- almond butter
- maple syrup
- honey
- coconut oil
- shredded & dried coconut

now go make some delicious waffles!

waffle people unite!

simple birthday celebration ideas on a budget

this week we celebrated luke's birthday (happy 25th birthday, hubby!). we have been celebrating with a special birthday breakfast since becoming a family. i absolutely love our sweet birthday traditions. they're simple, affordable & meaningful. 

today i am sharing three steps for creating your own simple birthday celebration on a budget!

1. spend your time, not your money - my husband's love language is quality time.  more than the cute decor & birthday gifts, he asks for my time. so instead of spending hours & hours on decor, i choose to create simple vignettes for the table so that i may spend time with him. 

2. diy is your friend - we keep a box in our closet full of banners, bunting, happy flags, & bits of party decor. often times we have made these items, but sometimes we make small purchases to freshen up our box of birthday decor. this year i purchased new stripy straws & the red striped banner hanging from the chalkboard for under $4 each. 

we also write a birthday celebration message on our family chalkboard. if you don't have a chalkboard in your main living space, diy or purchase one. it's one of my favorite items in our home because it serves so many purposes. 

i also made those "happy birthday" & "yay!" flags, inspired by my sweet friend amy. we keep these in our box & pull them out every year for brightening fresh bouquets of flowers from the garden.

simply cut out colorful cardstock into the shape of a small flag. hand-stamp your letters onto the paper flag. hot glue to a wooden stick & happily use!

3. cook a special breakfast - for our birthday celebrations, we always cook the other person a special birthday breakfast. this year i made luke delicious homemade waffles with fresh berries. we spent the morning sharing breakfast & conversation over coffee.

i love our simple birthday traditions because they're meaningful moments that never break the bank. 

what are some of your birthday traditions? how do you make simple birthday celebrations meaningful?

freckled hen farmhouse EC workshop: canning & preserving recap!

several years ago when i taught my first canning class, i remember wishing for one day when i could host canning classes on our dream farm. friends, it thrills me deep down in my soul that this tiny wish, this big dream for one day, is now

we hosted our freckled hen farmhouse EC series: canning & preserving workshop this past weekend & it was absolutely wonderful!

i cannot thank the handful of gals enough who said yes to this crazy dream & joined us on the farm.

i want to give you a peek into the amazing day i spent with our canning gals on the farm... grab a cup of coffee & get cozy, friends.

luke & i poured hours into getting the farm workshop ready. we filled wheelbarrows with perennial flowers & decorated our old blue bike with burlap & a chippy wooden star. 

we wanted our space to be inspiring for the amazing ladies coming to the farm. our hope is that they would feel relaxed & rejuvenated while learning a skill they could bring back to their own home.

these ladies were amazing. we gathered in the kitchen peeling & coring tomatoes. that morning, we were strangers, but amidst the chopping of vegetables & stirring of pots, we talked of our lives & grew together as friends. 

at one moment, i stood back & admired the chatter in our farmhouse kitchen. i closed my eyes & imagined the incredible women before us who would gather in kitchens together putting up sustenance for their family during the winter months.

over pots & jars, us sisters made herbed tomatoes. we decorated our jars with the sweetest fabrics, ribbon, twine, wooden spoons & tags.

once the labor of the day was finished, we shared a farm to table lunch & then headed to prairie grove for an afternoon of junkin'!

our friends at hogshead tours picked us up in their wonderful 1970s volkswagen van. our driver even wore suspenders & a bow tie! we felt like junkin' royalty, y'all!

in praire grove, we visited the best of flea markets. colorful, chippy & rusty oh my!

the gals walked away with a handful of treasures. i managed to find an old ladder for five bucks. the rule that it had to fit in your lap in our hogshead tour van? yeah, there's always an exception if it's chippy & cheap, y'all. 

our first workshop would not have been as meaningful & wonderful without the artists who showered us with gifts in our swag bags. i feel like these gals, across states & borders, were there with us, stirring pots & canning tomatoes. 

big hugs to our maker & artist friends who contributed to our swag bags & graciously sponsored our first canning workshop:

as we ended the workshop & the gals gathered their things to head home, i was in awe of my tribe who surrounded me & assisted me in making this happen for these incredible gals. big hugs & giant golden stars to lesley of recipe for crazy & kara of arch+craft for being my right-hand gals before, during & after the workshop. these girls made food, washed dishes & helped out in a kajillion more ways than i could even begin to count. i am so thankful to call these amazing women friends. thank you, lesley & kara. i love you girls!


i cannot wait to share more details about our upcoming "inspiring home" workshop happening on our farm in the early winter months. as we put our gardens to sleep, light the first winter fire & cozy up within our homes, i am inviting you onto our farm for a day of creating within the home & cultivating an inspiring home on a budget. more details to come! ... xo.

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