Untrained Housewife was started to celebrate the journey to knowledge and self-sufficiency. The thing is – it’s not an easy journey.
I’ve grown so much the past few years and we’ve added a lot of milestones in our path to increased self-sufficiency. And we’ve had a few set backs as well.
Milks Goats and Meat Chickens
The biggest set-back: Last year I barely milked the goats at all. I had an infant to tend to, a business to run and it was crazy weather. We weren’t consistent enough to keep our goat in good milk and then the terrible heat wave began and she dried up.
No big deal. I will pick it back up again this year. We’ve taken our two goats to the neighbor’s house for a month-long rendezvous with a buck. And we’ll have new babies this April-ish and get a chance to try again.
Our biggest success: 2011 was the year we ordered baby chicks in the mail. Half were for egg production and half were a meat breed of chicken that we were able to process last May. In fact, my mother-in-law is making a big pot of chicken soup with one of the last of those birds right now.
Talk about an amazing feeling! By the end of the afternoon when we finished processing the birds, the freezer was full! Of the highest quality, most nutritious, and least expensive meat available for my family. Such a fabulous feeling.
The Importance of the Journey
I don’t think self-sufficiency is ever fully achievable. We grow, change, learn. Our circumstances change. Our focus shifts.
And that’s ok. Or so I’m learning.
Developing a more self-sufficient lifestyle is partly about understanding your boundaries. Your personal limitations.
And taking the risk and the chance to push the boundaries of where those limits are. Do you just “know” that you could never have a backyard chicken flock? Do you “know” that you have a terrible black thumb and could never grow your own food?
Why not try again! This is the year for taking a chance and pushing the limits of what your family considers normal. Choose one thing to focus on this year as you take the next step towards self-sufficiency.
For me this year it’s starting the garden from seeds – heirloom seeds that I can try my hand at saving for the first time. It could be a colossal failure, but it could be a brilliant success. Chances are it’ll be something in the middle and that is ok with me.
What step will you take this year to increase your family’s self-sufficiency?