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Discussion Starter #1
Would most of you say that you have a deep, personal philosophy that has led to your interest and pursuit of homesteading?

What I mean is, do you homestead mostly b/c you grew up that way and just think it's the best way to live or do you homestead b/c you have beliefs in God provided the Earth to be taken care of by us or some other reason.

For example, I became interested in homesteading in my mid-20s as I became more environmentally aware of the impact that modern consumerist society has on our planet. To me, it just seemed that people were taking more than their fair share from the Earth and that the homesteading mentality was the right balance of taking from the Earth and giving back to it. So I have an entire belief system, I guess, that leads me to believe the homesteading ethos is a correct one.

I get the impression that others on here homestead for different reasons and am curious to learn about the beliefs of those people. So I guess my question is, what leads you to homestead as opposed to living in some other way? Any comments are greatly appreciated.
 

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Well, for me there is no real philosophy, I am afraid. I just like to do whet I WANT to!

In the city I cannot keep chickens, or keep more than 2 hives. The lots are not big enough for all of the plants that I want to plant. And, worst of all, people take the lawns SERIOUSLY, and expect you to, also. They peek over the fence to see what you are doing. It is hard for me to relax and do what I like doing if I attract a lot of attention. I want to put my attention on the project, not the neighbors.

I am also a MUCH less tense person when I am not next to a busy road. I much prefer trees to cars.

So, if I homestead because I just like it, does that make me a hedonist? :p
 

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Terri said:
Well, for me there is no real philosophy, I am afraid. I just like to do whet I WANT to!

In the city I cannot keep chickens, or keep more than 2 hives. The lots are not big enough for all of the plants that I want to plant. And, worst of all, people take the lawns SERIOUSLY, and expect you to, also. They peek over the fence to see what you are doing. It is hard for me to relax and do what I like doing if I attract a lot of attention. I want to put my attention on the project, not the neighbors.

I am also a MUCH less tense person when I am not next to a busy road. I much prefer trees to cars.

So, if I homestead because I just like it, does that make me a hedonist? :p
Me too. :D I love animals and gardening, always have. When you live close to other people who want to control what you do on your own place, it was time for me to get serious about getting my own homestead.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Terri, if you homestead just b/c you like it, I think it just makes you a lot smarter than most people! lol

However my next question is, how far do you go into homesteading? Do you live off the grid, preserve your own food (what percent of your total food?), make your own clothes? I could ask questions all day about this.
 

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I have a real need to feel secure. Living in a city with a mortgage and high taxes dependent on a city sewer/water treatment plant and food from store that comes from a foreign country doesn't do it for me.

Having a lot of animals like a mini-farm isn't my idea either. But having a place paid for with low, low taxes. Having a garden and fruit trees and a few chickens and bee hives and room that I could have a pig if I wanted or a goat does. Also having a well and a septic system that works also appeals to me.
 

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I'll answer with a quote that I love:

William Commanda, Mamiwinini, Canada, 1991

"Traditional people of Indian nations have interpreted the two roads that
face the light-skinned race as the road to technology and the road to
spirituality. We feel that the road to technology.... has led modern society
to a damaged and seared earth. Could it be that the road to technology
represents a rush to destruction, and that the
road to spirituality represents the slower path that the traditional native
people have traveled and are now seeking again? The earth is not scorched on
this trail. The grass is still growing there."
 

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I got into homesteading for several reasons. (I was raised kind of in the country for part of my life but with a dad who wanted no animals other than an occasional cat or dog for pets)

One main reason is that I feel it is every person's personal responsibility to take care of their own family's needs as much as possible....not the government's....not anybody elses's....

So homesteading is a good way of doing that by growing your own food; spinning wool and other fibers to make clothes; goats for milk; hens for eggs; etc....Wood to heat our home from our own woodlot, etc.

While known of us can be entirely self-sufficient now, we can be as self-sufficient as possible!

Also, I love the homesteading lifestyle...quieter....a slower pace....the true enjoyment of nature....(and often the true awe of nature such as only a country-side view of a huge lightning storm of how everything we do seems to center around the weather).

For many of these same reasons we were a homeschooling family, although they are now all grown up and away from our homestead with homes of their own, many on their own little homesteads....

We've also looked into the home church movement but even that is proving to be too "organized" for us....

We aren't homesteaders in that we live way out in the wilderness, although I would love that, but I write for two newspapers from my home office and husband is a licensed electrician and handyman, based from here at home....

So we do have income from off the homestead but it is generated basically here on the homestead too....

We heat with wood, have no clothes drier, have a propane cook stove but also cook on the wood heater, but are still on the grid.
 

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Most of what we use is bought.

Oh, it's true that I buy few fruits and veggies right NOW, but the winter is a long one. I will start buying veggies and fruit eventually. I haven't had the energy to can yet this year, so I have given away the excess tomatos.

I am technically in town, so for livestock I only keep a few contraband layers. We buy our meat, flour, pasta, and so forth.
 

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Hubby grew up on a farm, and somehow, by God's kindness, we stumbled upon a sweet property with more acres than we would ever have dreamed of looking for.
We have always valued personal accomplishment over paying for things from others. We desire to be as self-sufficient as possible for our own financial and emotional security. We both desire to care for the property which is in our charge. And we believe that in an area of suburb upon suburb, we can provide a place of rest and calm for others while hopefully providing for our familiy.
However I still stay pretty practical - why make my own hamburger rolls when I can get them on sale and keep 'em in the freezer. Okay, I probably could clean the rooster I don't want, but for $7.00 I can buy one cleaned and ready to go.

But at least Iknow how if I needed to.
:)
 

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Voluntary simplicity here too. I'm not out in the country really because I like to have neighbors (a reverse claustrophobe if you will!! lol) an I am on the gri (sorry one of my keyboar keys is broken-guess which one) but I try very har to conserve an be self-reliant.
 

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I spent my formative years in the country. My dad worked in town, but we raised our own poultry, meat, fruit and vegetables. My parents learned to can, bake, smoke, butcher etc. They did wonderfully well with this, considering dad had been a truck gardener in Holland and Mom was born and raised in Amsterdam. We came to the US when I was 5 and left the farm for town when I was 12.
Still, I always had some animals of one sort or another and we had a huge vegetable garden. Two years ago the wife and I moved back to the country. City life just wouldn't let me raise the animals we wanted.
Now we have a small acerage and raise chickens, ducks, peafowl, guineas and Highland cattle. We have a large garden and are developing an orchard. We have plans to expand into geese, goats, rabbits and maybe a dairy cow. Its a little rough learning to do all this in our 50's, but it sure is fun. Just spent yesterday and today butchering 13 young cocks and canning them. They are too low in fat to fry, so now I have instant chicken soup! We're also raising our 3 year old granddaughter. She still asks where the steer is, and then remembers that he is in the freezer. Watching the chickens being plucked she told me she liked chicken so it was OK!
 

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Is nature a part of my philosophy? No. I have no nature based faith. I don't worhip the earth or anything that God created. I do believe that we are to be good stewards of what God created.

Why are we homesteaders? Because I prayed for a place in the country away from the control of a bunch of control freaks. If I own a boat I want to be able to park it in my driveway, not pay some storage place to keep it for me until somebody breaks in and steals it.

No, really, I grew up being taught by a lot of my relatives that you were not totally free until you owned your own land. It may not be much but it would be yours. Until you have a place to hang your hat that you can say is yours, somebody else is going to tell you how high to jump until the day you die.

People talk about retiring and then selling their homes and moving to FL and renting a condo or living in a retirement community where they will pay lot rent for the land that their mobile home sits on until the day they die. That is not my idea of retirement.

I want to be able to look out my door and look at the trees and dirt and the garden and the chickens and know that I can call that little piece of paradise mine until I die. I want to know that they can raise the interest on the mortgages, or the rents all around me but if I own my own place it is mine until the day I die and that is not going to affect me.

I want to know that I can grow a garden a put food on my table and if the prices go up in the grocery store then I won't have to go ask for foodstamps because I will have put my food away for hard times.

Homesteading is knowing that God has provided a way for me to stay okay.
 

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We are not homesteading yet , and not even sure if technically its called "homesteading" that we are planning to do.

We plan to buy 10 acres or so out in the country and live as self sufficiently as possible. Main reason being affordablity and better lifestyle for the kids.

I would really like to grow and raise a part of our food, have some privacy, be able to do what we want with out neighbors or city limits rules stopping us.

We dont plan an "off the grid" type of existance just country,gardens,animals,do-what-we-want kind of lifestyle. :)

How nice it will be for the kids to be able to leave their bikes on the front lawn with out neighbor kids stealing them. :p
 

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People keep saying "slower pace" and "voluntary simplicity." WHAT? I've been running my butt off all summer and I'm still behind! I've got rams unpenned, which means I may have lambs in January (AAAKKK!), tomatoes all over the counters, chicks in brooder, hay to put up in the barn...

No really... where is the slower part? I keep waiting for that to happen. And the simple part. True, pounding in fence posts is pretty simple. Pounding in fence posts with the lambs checking out the post is... not so simple...

Living the simple life? Priceless.

Now, if I could only figure out how to do that...
 

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I just wanted to live like this all my life. I grew up in the suburbs of Atlanta. My dad did plant a small vegetable garden. When I was old enough, about 8 or 9, I took it over and expanded it. I told my parents when I was very young, around 5, that I wanted to live on a farm. They didn't take me seriously. When I bought my first little homestead, they couldn't believe it. My mother still questions my ambitions, but this is how I want to live (how I have to live). If I had to live in the burbs, I think I would literally die.
 

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No real philosophy here either. We do it because we love it. I've always been interested in country life, even as a kid I wanted to be a farmer. I find people in large amounts exhausting, I go to town as little as possible. I also don't like to feel dependant on the 'system' for what we need. We've been doing this for 30 years and I can't imagine living any other way. Like MorrisonCorner, we have yet to find it a 'simple' life, we're too busy!
 

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Haven't hit the actual homestead road yet - just slowly heading that way - but reason why: My life is more important than sitting around watching TV and spending money on stuff. It was taking away from quality of life - which I was really kind of raised with tv, etc. Though the parents had horses and was riding when younger (& we lived 7 miles from town) it was not a closer to God/homestead life. Riding horses for pleasure is just a hobby (though they thought differently and they pushed it), so it didn't instill anything as in living off the land, etc...so that whole thing just soured me...
So realizing I was not really maturing as a christian/person (tv, shopping, etc holding it back) has I was reading about frugality (& of course my bible) a few years back things started to hit home...then reading books like "Mortgage Free" by Rob Roy, then books refered to other books and that is why trying to head to a "living off the land" way of life is on my plan. So with much prayers and planning it's going in that direction. JackieA
 

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It is said that when Adam and Eve got into a tight place with God, God cursed Adam and made him a farmer; he then cursed Eve and allowed as how she would bear children, and have the all grief that goes with it.

Now the fact is that all people are farmers in one of three ways: either they farms for themselves and wades the thorns and thistles, they raise varmints, or they work at something else and fanangle someone to do their farmin' for 'em.

Well, time went on for for Adam and Eve an they went to grinding out rug-rats left and right. Adam tended to his thorns and thistles, and Eve looked after the wee bairns feedin' faces an' wipin' backsides.

By and by, the eldest two of their young'uns reached the age that they wanted to go to palaverin' with God first hand, the eldest, who was a farmer like his pappy, offered God some grain; God may have been on one those low carb diets, or he was rememberin' his curse 'bout farmin', but whatever it was he didn't take to the eldest boy's offerin's.

Now the second eldest tended varmints and let them harvest what ever grew in the fields 'mongst the thorns and thistles while he rear'd back on a big ol' rock or agin a tree stump and let them do the varmints do the work o' harvestin' the fields. Well when he got 'round to offerin' God somethin' he made it one o' his prime varmints. Now whether God was still on his protein diet or whether he was just partial to rack o' lamb I cain't say, but I do know that God was plumb tickled with the second boy offerin' and this agrevated the older boy to no end.

They's more to the story but for now it enuff to say that today we still have them as swears by veggies and are down on blood lettin', them what big on raisin' varmints for food, and them as plays like God and makes advantage of the others but are above touching a hoe or a goad.

A body's got yo fall into one of these brackets so it works for me that that I rasie varmints, don't eat no kind of a green thing except lime Jello, and don't raise green stuff except for my varmints.
 

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Haggis said:
It is said that when Adam and Eve got into a tight place with God, God cursed Adam and made him a farmer; he then cursed Eve and allowed as how she would bear children, and have the all grief that goes with it.

Now the fact is that all people are farmers in one of three ways: either they farms for themselves and wades the thorns and thistles, they raise varmints, or they work at something else and fanangle someone to do their farmin' for 'em.

Well, time went on for for Adam and Eve an they went to grinding out rug-rats left and right. Adam tended to his thorns and thistles, and Eve looked after the wee bairns feedin' faces an' wipin' backsides.

By and by, the eldest two of their young'uns reached the age that they wanted to go to palaverin' with God first hand, the eldest, who was a farmer like his pappy, offered God some grain; God may have been on one those low carb diets, or he was rememberin' his curse 'bout farmin', but whatever it was he didn't take to the eldest boy's offerin's.

Now the second eldest tended varmints and let them harvest what ever grew in the fields 'mongst the thorns and thistles while he rear'd back on a big ol' rock or agin a tree stump and let them do the varmints do the work o' harvestin' the fields. Well when he got 'round to offerin' God somethin' he made it one o' his prime varmints. Now whether God was still on his protein diet or whether he was just partial to rack o' lamb I cain't say, but I do know that God was plumb tickled with the second boy offerin' and this agrevated the older boy to no end.

They's more to the story but for now it enuff to say that today we still have them as swears by veggies and are down on blood lettin', them what big on raisin' varmints for food, and them as plays like God and makes advantage of the others but are above touching a hoe or a goad.

A body's got yo fall into one of these brackets so it works for me that that I rasie varmints, don't eat no kind of a green thing except lime Jello, and don't raise green stuff except for my varmints.
I don't know if God was on a protein diet or not, LOL! He did take grain offerings, He liked cereals once in a while, says so!
 
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