For those who dream of more space, self-sufficiency, sustainability, a closer connection to nature and/or getting back to the basics, the transition from urban or suburban confines to the expanses of rural life can seem overwhelming. Here, Dawn Head is a valuable resource, serving as a writer and editor.
She has lived in many different suburbs in several states as well as in several homes in a major metropolitan city. Now she lives at her present homestead (for a decade+), acquiring more skills and interests through the years. She is no longer a "city girl"!
Dawn has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana.
Versatile gardening expertise
Dawn's proficiency is not limited to a single gardening style or climate. She has cultivated thriving gardens under across various USDA hardiness zones, including the hot and dry challenges of desert environments. Her experience spans desert gardening, winter, fall, spring, and summer gardening, as well as planting from seeds or starts.
Food gardening is her favorite and includes everything from tomatoes, peppers, okra, root vegetables, leafy greens to herbs and fruit trees. She loves container gardening, raised bed gardening, and composting.
She's a chicken lady
Well-versed in chicken math, she once had a flock with 23 chickens. She loves raising chickens for eggs, and keeps mild-mannered breeds to produce a colorful assortment.
Installed renewable energy
Committed to sustainable living, Dawn is knowledgeable about solar panels, understanding the intricacies of harnessing solar energy in a rural setting.
She has expertise in rainwater harvesting, rerouting, and cisterns, a crucial aspect of sustainable rural living.
She cooks all the time
Dawn's passion for cooking and baking from scratch and to serve her family "real food" means she spends lots (and lots!) of time in the kitchen. Her family enjoys picking fruits, vegetables, and herbs from the garden.
Moving from city and suburbs to acreage
She has moved... a lot! She's lived for a decade in a major city and several decades in the suburbs. Now she lives in a rural setting without HOAs or restrictions.
Dawn enjoys spending time with her family, getting together with friends, reading, walking, talking on the phone to her long-distance family and friends, visiting farmers markets, thrifting, trying new recipes, coffee, chocolate, buying products with as few ingredients as possible, crossing things off her to-do lists, and decluttering.
Dawn's tip for people who want to get started homesteading:
Choose one thing you can do that will bring you "back to the basics". Maybe it's buying eggs from a neighbor or organic eggs from your local grocer. Buy a basil plant and use the leaves. As it grows, take clippings; root them and grow several more plants. Save the ends from your vegetables and freeze them for when you make a broth. Make a broth! Do one thing and then expand from there.