Episode 37

Jenise and Marianne Talk About Chickens, Yogurt, Sourdough,Permaculture, Bugs and More.

When we started this podcast, we explored many topics together- including chickens. Then, we started to reach out to people we thought had great information to share and got so excited about our respective interviews that our conversations fell to the wayside. Now, we are back with the intention to share with you on a regular basis what we are learning, exploring, doing and most of all, are excited about.


It’s spring and nature is doing its thing. My chickens certainly are. Two of my girls went broody and one returned to the chicken enclosure two weeks ago with three babies.

Talking Chickens, Yogurt, Sourdough, Permaculture & more

Hen with 2-week old chicks

I was thrilled. Baby chicks! They are so cute! Another hen was out somewhere in the yard sitting on her eggs and I couldn’t find her. A welcome for the plants, rainfall got me worried for Rocky and her eggs. If they get wet, more likely than not, the embryos will not develop further and the sacrifice a broody hen makes by practically starving herself would be for nothing.

Imagine how happy I was when I found her under my porch with babies peeking out from under her. First, I saw three, but


[clickToTweet tweet=”I was thrilled. Baby chicks! They are so cute! #chicken #podcast” quote=”I was thrilled. Baby chicks! They are so cute! “]


Talking Chickens, Yogurt, Sourdough, Permaculture & moreevery time I checked on her, there seemed to be more. The final count for this super star mommy hen was 17! I have no idea how she managed to care for that many eggs. And what will I do with all those chickens when they grow up!!

My dogs got a little bit too interested in the new family under the porch and I needed to move her fast. A dog run, some cardboard, and a plastic screen came to the rescue. Add rope which used to hold straw bales together, a piece of fencing, an old milk crate, and the luxury hillbilly chick nursery took shape. People (like my husband) always ask me why I am keeping all this “stuff” around. Well, this is why. It all finds a second, third and often fourth use as life unfolds at this urban homestead.

Even though we try to reuse items around the house for our chickens, there are times where we will order supplies. Amazon has chicken feeders, bedding, and even food. If you order through our affiliate link, you are supporting the podcast.

Talking Chickens, Yogurt, Sourdough, Permaculture & more

Hillbilly Chickens Nursery


As I mentioned above, the baby chicks get to enjoy freshly made yogurt on a regular basis. But I did start making yogurt for the people in my family in the first place. It is so very easy and much cheaper than buying the ready made product. Another benefit is eliminating hundreds of plastic containers which would eventually land in the landfill. My personal next step goal is to try my hands at making cottage cheese. For a while, we followed the Budwig diet and had an empty container every other day. That is a lot of plastic tubs to try to find new uses for.

Find Yogurt starters here.


Chickens, Yogurt, Sourdough, Permaculture & More

A sourdough starter needing to be fed

Jenise and I discovered that we both had been experimenting with making sourdough bread. Jenise likes to work with spelt flour, I prefer to have a pure rye starter. However, for the first time since I am baking with sourdough did I make a starter using whole wheat flour.

We both agreed that our breads are easy to make – no prolonged kneading required- and they are delicious.

We make our own sourdough starter, but there are many available for purchase if you don’t want to make your own.




Sustainable Living Tip

Chickens, Yogurt, Sourdough, Permaculture & More

Baby chickens feasting on homemade Yogurt with freshly ground flaxseeds

We are starting to make short videos offering up some tips to make small changes bringing us closer to living more sustainable. Jenise started with a great tutorial on making your own Cashew milk. Of course, you can use other nuts as well. You can watch it on the Sustainable Living Podcast UTube Channel.


Have ants ever invaded your honey? If not, you are lucky. Or you are missing out on the opportunity to embrace the ant -as we called it. My son and I decided to just ignore that they are there and use the honey anyway. Imagine freshly made sourdough whole wheat waffles topped with also freshly made goats milk yogurt mixed with honey. Yummy! We didn’t even taste the ants at all.

One reason I embraced the “ant eating” is that I had read several articles on the high nutritional value of insects. The authors stressed that our current meat consumption is not sustainable for many reasons and insects are a great protein source; grow fast; are low on the food chain and such free of accumulated toxins many bigger animals have; are easy to produce; are cheap and supposedly are delicious. To be honest, even though I supported the L I V I N farms kickstarter campaign, I haven’t really eaten any insects besides the before mentioned ants and an occasional fly when I rode my bike with my mouth open. I will let you know if and when I am ready to give it a go.

However, edible insects snacks are all the rage and even Amazon carries them.

Free Permaculture Course

Last month, I had the pleasure of interviewing Andrew Millison who created a free 20-hour online Permaculture course offered by Oregon State University. You can listen to it here. The start of the course is almost here, but it is not too late to sign up. Free is a very good price! This short intro video on UTube will give you a taste of what is to come. To sign up, click here.

Talking Chickens, Yogurt, Sourdough, Permaculture & more

We talked about many more things, but you will have to listen.

Jenise and I would love to hear from you. Please tell us what you think, what you liked or disliked about our show or what topics you want to hear. You can leave a comment, send us an email or engage with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

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