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Thread: Learning to be self-sufficient
03-23-2013, 11:37 AM #1
Learning to be self-sufficient
Within the next year and a half we should complete our house on the family farm (which we drive back and forth to daily as it is). All of our gardens, farm land and farm animals are already there. I'm really wanting to learn how to be a "true" homesteader (or self-sufficient) and would love some tips. How would I start out so that, possibly, by the time our house is done we'll be able to achieve our dream? Thanks for any tips!
- 03-23-2013, 01:46 PM #2
- Rep Power
Seems to me, you're already well on your way. Start slowly and realize that you're going to make mistakes. Get to know your neighbors with the realization that it will take a long, long time for them to get to know - and trust - you. Help them before asking them to help you. If they offer assistance with something, take them up on it then be exceptionally trust worthy. Your reputation is EVERYTHING in the country.
Like the "Step Down to Frugality" advice on the other thread, you'll dream of doing some things (i.e.: live off-grid) then realize some of it might be too drastic ("Gee, I like to pay my bills on-line but without electricity our router doesn't work"). You'll be deciding to make trade-offs constantly.
For instance, I was talking to a girl friend about the benefits of kerosene lanterns for lighting. She poo-poo'ed the idea because she grew up in an off-grid house. She said, as a kid, it was her job to clean the glass shades on the kerosene lamps. She hated it and vowed to never do that again. I know that the first time we all got sick with the flu, we were exceptionally grateful that we could just turn on the furnace for heat. Having to wait for the wood stove to heat up would have been agony, much less carrying in more firewood (or heaven forbid, chopping more because as you'll soon learn - you never chop enough wood your first year.) Not to even forget how that wood smoke just tends to make my asthma worse.
I'm not trying to discourage you. All I'm saying is you'll realize that modern conveniences were created for a reason (and air conditioning IS heavenly). You'll find your own equilibrium.
03-24-2013, 11:47 AM #3
Cookie thank you! I agree with you, there are some modern conveniences that I don't really want to live without. I guess I just want to be able to do it if I had to. My goal, really, is to be able to live off the land; to try and have things where I'm able to have my conveniences but at my own doing (except electricity & water, I really don't wanna go without those!). We have a woodstove already and I LOVE it! I'd like to be able to make and grow as much of my own things as possible. LOL, I think I rambled a bit here...my old English professors would have my head for this but I think I got my point across (maybe).
03-24-2013, 12:08 PM #4
- Rep Power
Liveing off the grid is good in a way to live but very hard work..and a 24/7 job..Even if your sick or tired you still have several things to do..If the temp is 100+ humidity high a cold drank would be so nice with ice...lol..I love the heat of a wood stove..I don't like the smell of the lantern..or cleaning the globe..You would have to build a fire even in the summer when it is so hot to cook...and no airconditing..you don't think you will miss these things until they are gone...take it slow..Do what you want but don't leave them out when your putting your dream home together..
03-26-2013, 06:08 PM #5
Brat, that's good advice! Design my house so it can be "self-sufficient" but doesn't have to be!!!Brilly, that's a good idea on planting the garden! Right now it's on a different section of the farm, but we don't have orchard trees planted yet so I can place those smartly. I also like the idea of the fire pit outside. I've always wanted to learn to cook with those BIG cast iron kettles!
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