(Part 1 of a 2 part series)
Like many people my age (mid 50’s), from this region, I grew up with an outhouse, drank water from a well and raised livestock for food. By the age of 10, knew how to plant and weed all of our garden vegetables, gather eggs, butcher chickens and milk a cow. I knew how to harvest blackberries, hazelnuts and persimmons. What city folk called weeds, I knew as edible plants.
Children today, even those in their thirties, have little or no knowledge of these things or how to be self sufficient or survive independently when this economy eventually collapses. Their minds are focused on conveniences… On how much free time they can acquire so they can beat the next level of their favorite video game.
I, myself, fell into this trap of acquiring all the most modern conveniences. I relied on them for comfort, for entertainment and for diversion from the hectic pace I had placed myself into in order to get even more…my stress levels had increased, my focus was on things other than God and family and my time was spent working in order to pay for these ‘so called’ conveniences.
I was selling my life in order to accumulate things that I couldn’t enjoy because I was too busy working in order to keep paying for these ‘luxuries’. It was a viscous cycle that was making me old before my time, and causing me to miss out on what really mattered, which was my family relationships.
I began to look back on those times I was growing up, and I realized how much more peace we had back then. Where the family spent time, real quality time, together not sitting in front of the TV, telling our son, daughter or spouse to ‘Shhhhh’.
So the first thing to go was Cable.. now there were no more fights over what to watch and no more ‘Volume Wars’ coming from each of the bedrooms.
According to an FCC report issued in May 2014, the average cost of cable TV was $64.41.
That was a huge financial relief that also allowed us more time to enjoy each other’s company. Instead of TV, there were board games, yard games and time to develop and share new hobbies and interests.
One of those interests was greenhouse gardening. We began small with an 8′ x 8′ frame wrapped in plastic and were amazed at how much produce this tiny structure could produce. We plowed a garden spot with a borrowed rototiller and had saved so much money on produce that year, we decided to expand our homesteading lifestyle to include chickens.
The following spring, we purchased 12 baby chicks and began construction on a REAL Greenhouse. By mid Autumn the greenhouse was nearly complete, the chickens started laying, saving us more money and we even sold the surplus eggs.
We were beginning to reap the benefits of Homesteading!