Don’t be upset if you go to try natural shampoo for the first time and aren’t pleased with the results. For those that have tried natural shampoo already, you know how frustrating using a natural shampoo can be. Enter the acclimation period. Every time we make a change to our rituals or our habits, our body always needs a little time to catch up. Once I realized that results were not going to be instant I calmed down a touch. I had also experienced this acclimation period with natural deodorant and was met with success, so I knew there was hope if I stuck it out. When it comes to hair, sometimes acclimation can take two weeks, sometimes a month or more. The pain point here is that it sucks to have a bad hair day out in public for an extended period of time. Luckily I have a few hair care tricks and perspective shifts to push you through it!
For those of us who enjoy six straight months of winter, we know the value of a good warm home. Chickens originally were jungle fowl, evolving in climates very much unlike our frigid Midwestern winters. As chicken owners, it’s important to make your hens comfortable for those nippy nights. When our flock grew from 8 to 38 hens (oh chicken math!) we needed a sustainable, cost-effective, and efficient way to house all our flocks from December to March. Enter, the temporary straw bale chicken coop.
Originally, we had our hens in our mobile chicken tractors, which have zero insulation. These tractors are fantastic for the summer because their construction allows for tons of airflow and shade, but with our cold winters we knew they would offer little warmth. The idea for straw bale chicken coops came to us mid-breakfast in late December right before we were due a couple big freezes. The benefits of a straw bale coop kept piling up as we thought about it. It took me a simple Google search to find a local farmer, who then delivered 77 bales of organic hay that weekend. Kismet! Let’s go over those benefits.
There are many reasons why homesteaders decide to bring a rooster into their flock. For me, there was a moment last winter where I woke up in the middle of the night and thought, “I want to hatch my own chicks.” In that late night epiphany, I knew I had to get a rooster in order to make that happen, because, well, mother nature. Now I have four gorgeous roosters and will never go back to having just hens. Let’s break down the pros and cons of owning a rooster to help you decide if having one is right for your long-term goals as a chicken owner.
Whether you have long or short locks, finding a shampoo that actually works and is free from harmful chemicals can feel impossible. My own toxin-free shampoo journey has been rife with greasy hair, dandruff, and itchy scalp. I spent countless showers in hopes that a new random hippy dippy shampoo I found on Etsy would finally be my saving grace, but my early shampoo adventures wound up disappointing and left my hair feeling like it hadn’t even been washed. So why go to all the trouble of finding a toxin-free shampoo? As Part One of my Natural Hair Care Series, we are going to dive into the reasons why you should avoid these main culprits that are in generic shampoo and consider switching to a natural hair care routine. I encourage you to click the linked studies cited below and read further into the findings for yourself. Let's get started!
Thanks for stopping by Green Willow Homestead! From chicken rearing to orchard planting, we've got our hands full and we love sharing what we've learned along the way. Follow along as we strive to live sustainably and turn these five acres from just property to a fully functioning small-scale homestead.
1. Joe Salatin
2. Rachel Carson
3. Wendell Berry
4. Temple Grandin
5. Sustainable Dish
6. Zero Waste Home
7. Allan Savory
Favorite Books of 2018
2. Bringing it to the Table
3. Holistic Management
4. The Small Scale Poultry Flock
5. In The Company of Women