ECE To Homesteading
I am Andrea Preissl and I am a certified Infant Toddler ECE (Early Childhood Educator). I am also a full time Mom with a dream to have a large homestead. With 15+ years of childcare experience and a new found love for living a sustainable life, I am here to share my knowledge and journey.
I talk about everything, from teaching your child through play to parenting tips, and from raising backyard ducks to how to grow your own food all with your children at your side.
With having worked in the childcare field since I was 18, I assumed I had come across all types of children and learned all the tips and tricks. But, when my son was born I realized that I was still learning… ALOT. The biggest reality check was “what works for childcare kids does not always work with your own.” And working in daycare, you don’t learn about breastfeeding and sleeping through the night and other issues that only come up for the parents.
I still continue to work in childcare, although it’s a little different. I currently work part time at an in-home multi age childcare centre, and I bring my son along with me. So it’s not often I get stuff done without him around.
When we are at home my son (born 2017) enjoys “helping” me through-out most of the day. Or he’s wanting me to play with him. I’m a firm believer in letting children learn by being hands on, taking risks, and learning from their mistakes. I agree with this philosophy when it comes to play as well.
Letting children have plenty of time for free play and being able to use their imagination to come up with new games that they are interested in is incredibly beneficial. Children learn through play, so it is our job as parents and educators to provide the materials for them to explore and learn from.
In the summer my son helps me as we pick berries to freeze. We make and can the jam as well. He helps me plant seeds, water them, and watch them grow. Children are more intrigued to try new foods when they have helped and watched the growing process from seed to table. Yes it’s a little messier and the tasks take a little longer but it is 100% worth it. I feel it is incredibly important to teach children how to live a more sustainable life. After all they are the future of our world. If we want it to be a good life for them we need to teach them how to care for it.
My in laws own a large farm only 5 min away with hay, horses, and egg + meat chickens. Growing up in the city all my life I see the difference that the rural life has made as I watch my son grow. But it’s not from the large open spaces, farm equipment, and farm animals, it’s the lifestyle. The way we he learns about where his food comes from, why it’s important to reduce, reuse, and recycle. Learning the importance of respecting nature and the outdoors.
Although being a mother and taking care of our backyard homestead is a 24/7 job, when I’m not working at the daycare or on my blog, I enjoy gardening, scrapbooking, and crocheting. I enjoy being outdoors. If it’s not a day at the lake, or a trip to the ocean, it’s a walk through the forest. 99% of the time my son is with me but I find being outdoors helps us both to reset.
I decided to create this site to share information. My friends constantly ask for advice. From play related activities and toys, to sleep struggles, tantrums, and potty training. Some ask about gardening stuff like how to grow tomatoes, what can be planted together and what cannot. And just for fun I decided to share my journey as I work towards my dream of having a homestead. I want cows (highland cows specifically), goats, pigs, chickens and ducks. As I don’t live on acreage yet I have to work with the space I have. Which is a small backyard. So I added a couple extra garden beds. Then some pet runner ducks to help with bug/pest control and egg supply. We just started getting eggs from them and I cannot be more excited.
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