Saturday, August 29, 2015

Stacia Lynn's Herbs

This is my Herb Garden & yes we grow several herbs at our house & we use even more than what I grow.

Sage & Oregano Dried on Stem
Closeup of Our Labels
Sadly, with the changes in the population in our home my plants are out producing what we can use & I hate to waste them so I continued to dry herbs like mad. When my husband saw about 20 bottles of just 1 herb he told me "We can't use 20 bottles of oregano". LOL True, so on a long trip we discussed the idea of starting an herb business with what I have already dried this season & expanding our herb garden this next spring if it goes well. This was in about mid July so by August I had created labels, found packaging to start with, researched pricing and a few selling venues.

Closeup of the dried product packaging

 We participated in our County Fair this year in August & our herbs were Award Winners!!! I am especially happy with my sage, these are our entries:




The fair was a lot of fun, my youngest 2 entered every baking contest through the week & won a blue ribbon & $25 for a cooking with peanuts entry, Mini Peanut Butter Cups with Peanuts added to the filling & crumbled on top with Sea Salt, YUM! That was one of my recipes. Her sister earned 2 red ribbons & $20 for an entry in the Chocolate Baking Contest with my husband's Best Chocolate Cake Recipe which she added chocolate chips to in case cocoa powder alone was not enough. She also entered a cooking with cheese contest that she earned a red ribbon for cheese puffs which is a recipe she found on her own. There were also winnings in a contest for Critter Crafts from recycled materials, 3 entries and 2 of them won first & second another red & blue ribbon so she beat herself out & won another $25 bringing the grand total to $45 for the older sibling. I entered one of my 4th of July Cookies which won a blue ribbon, this was in the open cookie contest at the beginning of the week & here are my cookies:

Patriotic Spiral Cookies
My Baking Contest Winners!

There was other fun at the fair too, elephants to learn about & ride, train rides, animals to see, & so much to look at that everyone else entered, we have plans to enter more next year!
The Elephant Encounter
The Train Ride, Faking Asleep!

In August I started going to our local Farmer's Market every Saturday morning to sell my herbs armed with my blue ribbon bragging rights! I did okay the first week which was really windy so not the normal customer flow. I returned again & did well again, the next time my youngest decided she should come with me so now I had a helper. In the meantime I started looking into other herb related products I could sell. I found that infusing herbs with dried herbs was another avenue so now I am doing that as well, sold my first infused oil on my 2nd day at the Farmer's Market & I have since made a few variations & sold 3 bottles on my last trip, YEAH!!! The first week I had my helper we entered the raffle & she won, check it out!

Farmer's Market Raffle Winner!

Her dad was able to bottle these into 13 quarts of peaches, they are delicious! This is also part of why she wanted to go back the next week, with 2 friends in tow!

So now we have a weekly place to be on Saturday mornings & hopefully a growing home business to keep the girls & I busy for now. We have dismantled our deck & rebuilt stairs on the back of the house & my DH has decided that he will be building me planter boxes with my wood from the original deck so there is the garden expansion, YEAH!!! Can't wait to start on plants for next season & a website to expand our customer base!