Friday, October 9, 2015

Eight Ways to Homestead-No Matter Where You Live

We presently live in suburbia.
While we wait (and wait, and wait) for our home to sell,
we participate in homesteading practices.
Although our present location prohibits us from certain things,
we take measures to do what we can right where we are.

1.  Grow what you can.
Whatever the size of your yard, patio or deck,
food can be grown in containers.
We find pots all the time in our neighbors' recycle bins,
so little money is needed to get started!
Seeds are inexpensive and the only real investment
is creating a soil mix that will provide your family with food.
We have a modest garden now,
but everything we learn will make the transition to a larger garden that much easier.

2.  Support your local farmer.
Even if you don't grow your own,
supporting others who follow responsible farming practices
is a worthwhile endeavor.
We buy some of our produce from friends who grow pesticide-free goodies
on their 10 acres.
We also buy free-range eggs from a local chicken lady.
We plan to have our own chickens someday,
but until we can, we appreciate those who raise them respectfully.
Start with Local Harvest to find the best locally grown food.

3.  Frequent your local farmers' market.
Buying from local growers, farmers and craftspeople,
solidifies the sense of community.
Keeping small businesses and cottage industries going,
ensures that the local economy will thrive.
We're all in this together.

4.  Learn to scratch cook.
Eating seasonally not only provides your family 
with more nutritional and fresher meals,
it also provides an opportunity to utilize every bit of purchased food.
We scratch cook because it's important for us to know 
what's in our food.  We also deal with multiple sensitivities,
so making our own is vital to our good health.
Start with cookbooks obtained free from your local library.

5.  Make your own bread.
Anyone who has made the leap to producing their own bread
knows how life-changing it can be.
This is by far one of the best things I've ever done.
The end result is so far superior to anything you can find at the supermarket,
and having a hand in creating your own food is so rewarding.
It begins with the basics.
6.  Buy only what you need.
Be frugal in what you bring onto your homestead.
We try to reuse or repurpose as much as possible.
We also believe in repairing items when they break,
rather than running out to purchase a replacement.
Keeping the material items to a minimum
means less to keep track of, less to maintain and less to clean.

7.  Be willing to learn a new way to do things.
Being open to new methods is always a good idea.
Learning a different route to tackling projects
can be as simple as seeing it from a varied perspective,
or employing You Tube videos to work through a problem.
The other side of this is sharing what you've learned.

8.  Learn to barter.
Money doesn't always need to change hands 
in order to get what you need or want.
Keep in mind that you are a multi-talented person 
who has a lot to offer.
Maybe you play piano, have a green thumb,
or can fix anything that's broken.
These skills can be swapped with others for their time
in an area in which you may not excel.

There are so many ways that those in "less than ideal circumstances" 
can embrace the homesteading lifestyle.
It has very little to do with location,
and everything to do with one's state of mind.

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