Book Review: The Witchy Homestead by Nikki Van De Car

Review by Tenae Stewart, The Witch of Lupine Hollow | Instagram | Website

About the Author

Nikki Van De Car is the author of ten books on crafting and magic, as well as a freelance book editor. Her books are staples on many witches’ bookshelves, including Practical Magic and Wellness Witch. She has also penned children’s books, helping to introduce the cosmic and magical arts to kids, including The Junior Witch’s Handbook and The Junior Astrologer’s Handbook. 

Instagram | Website

About The Witchy Homestead

This book is a lovely addition to any witch’s collection, green, kitchen, cottage witch or otherwise! Van De Car is a respected authority on practical, down-to-earth magic and she does it again with The Witchy Homestead. This book presents spells, rituals, and even therapeutic remedies in an accessible and actionable way. And make no mistake: this book isn’t just for those living in a rural area on lots of land, who may fit the stereotypical definition of a homesteader, but is truly accessible whether you live in an apartment, condo, or bungalow. 

There are three sections in the book: Enchanting Your Food, Enchanting Your Health, and Enchanting Your Home. Each contains recipes, plant profiles, and practical tips of all kinds. The Enchanting Your Food section is focused on growing your own food and cooking with it. This section includes tips on composting, foraging, plant identification, and cultivating common plants and herbs. 

It’s not all practical, “mundane” info either, even though the book dives straight into practical ways to get your hands dirty in the garden. Much of this book is focused around the four elements of fire, earth, air, and water so there are spells, blessings, and enchantments to align with the energy of the elements in your garden and kitchen. There are also brief, handy plant profiles, including not only uses and cultivation, but also which crystals to pair with each plant or herb to boost and amplify its energy – a fun addition that I just love! 

The second section, Enchanting Your Health, is all about home remedies and easy, natural ways to care for your skin and hair, heal a cold, or practice preventive medicine. This section includes a mantra to live by, “if you can’t eat it, don’t put it on your skin”, and practical methods of skincare that don’t include miles-long, unpronounceable ingredient lists. There’s also classic remedies included like fire cider and sleep tonics. 

On the spiritual side, this section includes an extensive list of crystals and their uses, a spell for cleansing and healing with the water, element, and magical additions to many of the suggested remedies. You’ll also find breathwork practices, dream spells, and ritual baths here! 

The final section of this book is called Enchanting Your Home and is dedicated to bringing your practical and magical activities into the daily experience of your home. This section is perhaps the most outright magical part of the book, sharing everything from a list of magical houseplants to altars, sigils, and more. 

It’s also worth noting that The Witchy Homestead is filled with stunning, full-color illustrations by Zoe Ingram. The illustrations have a playful, whimsical quality achieved by a collage-style effect that is absolutely charming!

How This Book Will Help You Take Practical Action 

This book is loaded with practical insights and straight-forward instructions. Though it dives deep into complex herbalism topics like foraging and tinctures, Van De Car keeps the presentation light and approachable, without being surface-level. There are even detailed instructions on how to identify whether or not a plant is poisonous when wildcrafting! She skillfully guides the reader to be able to apply the wealth of knowledge shared in the book, without getting bogged down in feeling like you have to know absolutely everything about a subject before you can get started. 

How This Book Will Help You Nourish Yourself

I love that this book is filled with so many magical ways to practice self-care. Although much of the book is focused on physical self-care, including skincare, preventing colds, and the like, there is also a lot of attention given to mental and intuitive self-care as well. It’s so important that we nourish our whole selves and this book can really help you do that. Van De Car uses the framework of the elements as a guide for holistic self-care: fire for passion, earth for grounding, air for clarity, and water for cleansing. 

The Witchy Homestead can be purchased here

About Tenae: Tenae Stewart is a practicing cottage witch, a certified astrologer, a coach, and a published author. She is on a mission to embody simplicity in magick, astrology, and self-care. Her work empowers modern witches to nourish their minds, bodies, and intuition so they can be their most magickal selves – all day, every day. Learn more at www.witchoflupinehollow.com 

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