I did it. And it is empowering. My husband and I moved from convenient-reliant to self-reliant living this past year. We have so many new projects to enhance our self-reliant ways, but we did so much this past year. These are just a few: bees, egg layer chickens, meat chickens, pigs, more gardens, big perennial garden etc.
New animals for 2014: sheep (dual purpose- meat wool), 3 times as many pigs, more egg layers (cause they're fun), lots of meat chickens spring and fall. This year's focus was on butchering skills and how to perfect the process so I can do large numbers effectively and quickly.
New projects for 2014:
1. Better more permanent fencing for chickens, pigs, and all the animals.
2. I would like to make a cob lean to shelter for the animals. It isn't necessary because of the woods I have but why not.
3. Clover/alfalfa sectioned feed plot for the free-ranging beauties.
4. Add two more colonies of bees. It's addicting. I love bees.
5. New herb and tea garden.
6. REALLY wish I could put jersey cow on this list, but realistically probably not this year... Unless of course it was free and then I would just let it live in my basement.
7. Make a cob oven and outdoor food work bench.
8. Plant lots of new varieties/heirlooms fruit and veggies.
9. Build a strawberry planter... or three I meant.
10. MULCH like crazy!
11. Start a meat club/CSA- that's a work in progress. I might just use an email system where I raise meats for those that want healthy meat. If you are one of those in the area be sure to send me your email. I will be doing meat birds/chickens this spring.
12. Continue to grow my online business modernroots.org/country-store and grow it via the Farmer's Markets. I LOVE FARMER'S MARKETS!! Great way to get homemade, healthy, local foods. By the way, if you haven't tried my soaps, body butters, or salves...no time like the present ;)
13. Finish insulating and siding my chicken coop.
14. Finish my process for making bio-diesel. I got the process itself down, but now it's quantity I need. If you are a restaurant owner/know someone that is and have non-hydrogenated oil - please consider selling it to me :) There are two large companies here that take all the restaurant oil- I just need a couple restaurants and I'll pay ya. They usually pay between 4-8 cents a gallon. We can talk :) We bought a truck with a dump bed and lift so I can maneuver the oil in the winter too.
There are lots more projects I have but these are the main ones I'd like to accomplish.
Many people want to 'lose weight' for their new year's resolution, but if their overall goal was to become healthy and change the types/quality of food they eat- it wouldn't just change their weight but their lives. In fact, the lives of those around them too! Talk about a New Year's Resolution.
By the way...I am still researching breeds that I want for the animals I have listed. I like heritage breeds but am up for almost anything that is stellar so leave a comment with your favorite you raise OR one that you think you would like to raise and why!!
Who Writes This Blog
It's me, Meg. Checkout 'My Story' for more about my mission.