I have been giving this post a lot of thought lately, mostly because of all of the “nay sayers”. When I tell people about my homestead and the things that I want it to become I often get comments like, “Why on Earth would you want to milk a goat?!” or “That sounds like a lot of work” or a plethora of other comments. So it really got me to thinking about the WHY of what I havede started here. I want to fill my toolbox with the skills that it takes to survive on our own.
I am not saying that the apocalypse is coming or anything like that, all I am saying is, “It’s better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it”. I may never HAVE to live without the grocery store, but by darn if the grocery store isn’t an option anymore I sure as heck don’t want my family to be hungry. When I look at my little girl, I can’t imagine the guilt I would feel if something were to happen and I had no way to feed her. Knowing full well that I had the opportunity to train myself, and cultivate the skills necessary to keep her fed and happy.
Another thing I that is driving me to this lifestyle is the health of my family. I am horrified at all of the junk and artificial things that we have been putting into our bodies. I am starting to understand the fact that the processed food we eat day in and day out is slowly killing our bodies. I know that sounds dramatic, and it probably is. However, I once had someone give me this analogy, she said to imagine our bodies like this beautiful Porsche. If you drove a Porsche you wouldn’t dump ketchup in the gas tank and expect it to run like a sports car now would you? No, you wouldn’t. Our bodies are the same way, if we keep dumping junk into our gas tanks how can we expect our bodies to pump on all cylinders and last us forever? God gave me this body, and I intend to take care of it. Growing my own food, and using as many natural ingredients as possible seems like a great place to start.
My dad is a full time cattle rancher. This means that the ONLY job he has is ranching. He isn’t a weekend rancher, he doesn’t do it for supplementary income, the ranch is what puts food on the table. I am the youngest of 6 kids and I will be the first to admit that I was spoiled. I didn’t have to spend as many long days on the back of a horse trailing cattle as my older siblings did. My dad will tell you that all of his kids learned how to work except his last two (my sister and I). It wasn’t until recently that I started to wonder if I wasn’t spoiled but that maybe I missed an amazing opportunity to learn how to be tough and work hard. So, with this homestead I want to learn how to work hard, and I want to teach my kids how to work hard. I don’t have the luxury of sending my kids to the ranch with dad to have them learn how to work. My husband is an Accountant and he goes to a 9-5 day job. I stay home with the kids so I feel a huge sense of responsibility to teach them how to be tough, hard working individuals.
When I was a kid my mom NEVER stopped going. I am pretty sure even though she didn’t call it “homesteading” and she definitely didn’t blog about it, she was one heck of a homesteader! She most certainly has the skills necessary to be self-sufficient. She made bread ALL THE TIME, she canned and preserved anything that could be canned and preserved. She grew a garden. She raised chickens. There was a period of time when we milked the family pet goat. Like I said, my mom was always on the go. One time a couple of salesman came to the door in the middle of the day and they were surprised that my mom was home and able to answer the door. They said, “Oh! We thought you would be at work at this hour!” (meaning a 9-5 job). My mom’s response will never leave my mind when she said, “I work all day long every day”. I want to be the mom that works her tail off all day everyday and leads by example just like my mom did.
I could go on and on about the WHY of this adventure that I am headed out on, but this is supposed to be the “mini” farm minute so I will wrap it up. I am so grateful that I have the means an opportunity to live this life that I live. I hope that if you are even considering starting the journey to live a more self-sufficient life that you do it. That you start today, make a plan, and execute it!