I'm curious how you all manage to run your homestead and work a full time job. Now granted we still live in town but with me working full time I don't have a spare minute to get anything done. I get home and make dinner, do a load or two of laundry, start working on whatever project I've got going (right now trying to get the kitchen finished remodeling).. by then its about 10pm.. time to take the wife to work..get home around 11ish and off to bed to start again at 6. I've been working on this kitchen for a little while now and I'm not even close to being done (still got cabinets to build, floor to put down, trim to do, etc). Anyway my point is how do you do it all? I know theres no way I could come home from work and do a full days worth of work (feeding, milking, haying, etc) and ever sleep. Do ya'll keep it so small its managable? And if so how much of your subsistance are we talking.. can't be close to 100% I'd think. I guess maybe I'm just a bit jaded.. Our area is low wage jobs (even with education which I have). Now I could take on 2 full time jobs.. but then the problem multiplies... I just don't get it. Here is my issues I could use some help with. We know we want to run a small-medium size organic farm (dairy) and we know we want it to be in VT. Looking at farms for sale at this time it looks like +/- 250k to get a place thats got a house and is setup to milk with 80 acres (this is just what we've found, probally not an indicator of market all over the state). What would be the best route to get started on a savings plan to purchase something like this? Idea being to have it paid for within 5 years (before we move). And now the real monkey wrench.. All at Near minimum wage (6-7/hr). The wife works at the hospital and makes good $$ that takes care of the bills we currently have. I am able to save all my paychecks toward our goal.. But I don't see a way at this time.. Figure $7 x 35 h/wk = $245 - 40 (tax) = $205 x52 = $10660/ yr for 5 years = $53,300.. + 175/month we save in food per month( thanks for the tips on this one) Not even close for downpayment. SIGH I'm out of ideas. We've cut back just about as much as possible. Mortgage, utilities, phone/internet, insurance, food, trash is about it. If I could get the time to get the house finished and sold (hopefully make enough to build a small cabin on our land (which is paid for) we would be able to do away with nearly all those bills (minus gas of course).. But the underlying problem remains (low wages). As I said we're out of ideas and at the breaking point.. Any advice would be very graciously accepted.