I for one and glad to see that the whole "homesteading" and "self reliance" trend is still going strong. I've been looking back and reading things I wrote from way back in 2008 and I must say Wow. My life has really been rough! LOL Besides that, I've been reading all the things I've written about gardening, simplifying life, saving money, being frugal and self reliance. It's a little hard to realize how much harder life is now compared to just 6 years ago. The "little recession" that never went away has hit me pretty hard in combination with the outside forces in direct contact with the farm that I should have had better control over. Being completely wiped out about once a year no matter how hard you try is hard to deal with.
So, what's the big advice from all of it? Frugal living and self reliance pay off in the fight for survival.
Be careful of who you put your trust and faith in because it usually doesn't work out so well.
Even if it's only possible to grow a small portion of the food you consume, it makes a difference.
Keeping purchases and expenditures to absolute necessity adds up.
Never giving up, no matter because it will make a difference.
Not sweating the small stuff (even the big stuff) will make a difference.
It's okay to be upset and disappointed about things that don't go as planned, as long as you keep going and keep trying.
Small additions, one at a time are easily handled and incorporated into the homesteading plan. Overwhelming yourself never works out well, especially when you have to do all the work yourself.
So now, here it is, basically a complete start over, again. Some things aren't so bad such as the kitchen being partially complete, the animals coming out of the hard winter in decent shape and the ground drying up enough to start working on the gardens.
This years start is going to be pretty close to 1800's pioneer living. The electric service here is slated to be terminated on Wednesday of this coming week. Once it's shut off, the fee to turn it back on will prohibit reconnection for a long time. So, I will be simply dealing with it as I can. Should be interesting to say the least!
The seed starting has commenced. Another season of production is on the way. As I go, I will be building a roadside farm stand to take advantage of the access I have to a busy rural route.
A disappointment from not having any calves this spring. Where I should have had 2, neither cow was bred by the runt of a bull I had here for a year. I did notice the Holstein bull showing interest lately. Maybe in 10 months I can remedy the lack of fresh cows milk, greatly adding to the homestead food supply. Meanwhile, the milk goat is coming along well, the new baby is getting stronger and the Momma is healing from the birthing. Fresh goats milk and cheese should be in the works soon.
The chicks are growing, both sets of them. The new coop is still incomplete as the funds needed have been diverted to the bills and just trying to stay afloat financially. Just need to hang on until the farm produce can supplement the paycheck. I should see the first eggs about the middle of May from the first group. July for the second group. Not a big addition to the piggybank but better than nothing.
So, what's the homesteading/farming plan for this year? A farm rebuild, produce from the gardens, goats, goats milk, goat cheese, goats milk soap, chickens, eggs, rabbits, finish the kitchen, get inspected and start baking again. Then add in the woodworking projects when my future farm helper/ partner gets here later in the year. Then, the second helper/partner arriving at the end of this year.
Best part of this is, there's hardly anywhere but up to go from here.....