It has taken me a while to get comfortable with thinking of us as homesteaders. The reason I suppose is because we both still work outside the home for our income, we also rely on electricity, gas and other technologies to live our daily lives. I am writing a blog and taking pictures with a smart phone, lap top and sometimes even a tablet. I have a hard time considering those things “homestead” materials. But that just goes to show that it doesn’t have to be all or nothing.
People sometimes ask if we are preppers in a tone that is to assume we are in some way preparing for a zombie apocalypse. That’s the all or nothing way of thinking. I think if we felt like we had to do any of this (to be prepared for something) it would take the joy out of it for us.
It’s really just a simple matter of the Z Man and I wanting to live a better life, eat “real” food and get away from all the consumerism, the waste and the Jones’s lifestyle. We plant our gardens thinking about what we like to eat and how much we will need to get us through until next years planting season. It’s really just for the food, that’s it.
And, I have to say that after listening to Michael Pollan’s book on cd The Omnivore’s Dilemma and watching his television series Cooked, I have a new and better perspective of how I want to live and what I want to put in my body. If you haven’t had the opportunity to hear what he has to say, then you really should. It puts things in a very different perspective.
Here are a few of the things we do mainly because we like saving money.
- We raise two good size gardens every year
- We “put up” (canning, freezing or preserving) those garden harvests
- We have chickens
- We raise pigs (for food) and process them ourselves
- We cook most all of our meals from scratch
- We heat our home with a wood stove from wood that the Z Man cuts and chops himself
- We fix or recycle as much and as often as we can
- We use a clothes line to dry our clothes
- We prefer to live a simple life
- We spend less than we earn and we save as much as we can
- We do our best not to waste
- We reuse, repurpose and recycle
- We often barter for services or goods when we can
No we don’t have a huge plot of land and we do pay a mortgage for the couple of acres we live on. But, to be able do these things and live a simple life you don’t have to have acres and acres of land farming large plots of grains or livestock. Homesteading is a lifestyle. We try to live life as much as possible by the things we can do for ourselves. There are no specific requirements to do that, other than to try to be as self sustainable as possible. I said a simple life, that doesn’t mean “easy life”
We are looking forward to Spring. Hopefully the weather will let up a bit because it has been a very wet fall and winter and the ground is saturated. But with the first warm, dry days we will be playing in the dirt, getting the pig pen ready and hopefully starting our bee hives. I’m really looking forward to that.
If this lifestyle that makes us happy also makes us homesteaders then I’m good with that.
Till Next Time,