Redefining Homesteading

| 2/7/2013 7:40:15 PM

 homestead chicken coop 

Homesteading has become the "in" thing to do these days. I see lots of companies capitalizing on that. But their definition of homesteading isn't the same as mine.  

A $1300 chicken coop. Really? Do the chickens lay more eggs? Is it self-cleaning?

Solar systems costing upwards of $20,000. How is that ever going to pencil out as saving on electricity? Sure, you're off the grid, but you're still dependent on expensive equipment that has to be supplied and serviced by someone.  

How sustainable is your garden if you are purchasing all kinds of fancy soil amendments?

To me, homesteading is living more simply and sustainably. It means using what you have on hand. It means thinking outside the box instead of running to the store every time you need something. I am not against modern conveniences. My car gives me freedom. My washer and dryer save me time and pain. The internet enables me to work wherever I can connect, and my computer and Kindle carry tons of paperwork and books electronically for me. In fact, hey, if somebody wants to spend $1300 on a chicken coop, that's fine with me. I might even admire its "purtyness". But I don't call it homesteading.  

4/20/2013 10:03:39 PM

It appears that the issues with the GRIT landing page and comment section has been resolved. I'm looking forward to hearing about what has been happening on your gardening/homestead this last month. May GRIT blogs live and prosper.

2/12/2013 1:03:42 AM

Robyn, good to hear from you again. Another post from you that's filled with great ideas of recycling. Almost everything has a second life use, don't you think. I'm kind of half way to where you are. Urban life has the twist of keeping the neighbors happy too. I can't get to ugly with recycling things for second life use. So for I've been able to keep the balance. They let me know when I've crossed the line. They are a great bunch of neighbors and I do indeed get along great with them. I am going to reuse my plastic milk and juice containers in the garden this year. My thought is to drill small holes (about four) at the bottom of the bottles and bury them in the dirt up to the neck. Then plant a tomato or green pepper next to the bottle. When watering time comes, fill the bottle with water and let it ooze out the bottom to water the plant. It will be a more effective way to water I think. Have a great reuse day.

2/11/2013 8:49:47 PM

I agree and with my bad back using 500 gallon water troughs with the bottoms rusted out puts a new look to a raised bed. Good article.

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