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Our Homesteading Goals for March 2017

Our Homesteading Goals for March 2017

Can you believe it’s already MARCH!?! I sure can’t! Time sure is flying by this year I feel like, which makes sense because we’ve had a lot going on. It’s a lot of work working towards the self-sufficient life, but it is well worth it! 🙂

This post, as the title suggests is our goals post for March! I know we’re already 9 days into March, but I want to get this out there, so here it goes…

Get the Garden Prepped

For the last couple of years we’ve had 2 raised garden beds, one is 4 ft by 10 ft and the other is 5 ft by 10 ft. The harvest from these beds the last couple of years was so-so, and I feel like that was from not maintaining the proper balance of nutrients in the soil. But here we are again, Spring is near and it’s time to start thinking about planting again!

Last fall when we put the beds to sleep we piled on all of the compost we had on hand, a ton of grass clippings and wood chips, and we finished it off with a pile of leaves. I was just out there looking at it the other day and it’s starting to look very promising.

So this month we want to finalize our garden plan, start some seeds indoors, and add an additional layer of compost to the beds. We also need to redo our fencing around the beds. We have a large number of deer in our backyard and last year we had a cheap 7 foot high garden fence which did the trick, but is in dire repair or replacement with something else.

Bring Home the Chicks

Last month we finished up the chicken coop, well, we’re about 95% done, and this month we are going to bring home the chicks! As I had mentioned in a previous blog post, we are going to be picking up the chicks from Tractor Supply! They get new shipments on Wednesdays and Fridays until April 30th, so I’ve been calling up there eagerly waiting for them to get in some Black Australorps or Buff Orpingtons. I don’t know if the kids are more excited or if we are! 🙂

Prepare/Welcome? New Baby

As some of you may know, we are expecting our 4th child, and our first girl in the next couple of weeks!! We are eagerly awaiting her arrival but have a lot to do before she gets here to ensure we have plenty of time to relax and bond with her 🙂

In the last few weeks before her arrival we want to ensure we have a lot of freezer meals made and put up, as well ensure the pantry is stocked. We still need to pack our hospital bag and figure out the plan for when my wife goes into labor, such as who is going to watch the boys and all of that kind of stuff. Definitely some exciting times!

Stock Up on Non-Food Items

Lastly, this month we want to stock up on all of the essential things we need that are not food related. What I’m talking about here is toilet paper, paper towels, personal care items, etc. We want to buy this stuff in bulk and have a system in place where we’ll always have a multi-month supply. We think this is a good idea because it is just one less thing we would need to worry about during our bi-monthly grocery store trips.

Leave a comment below with the goals you are currently working towards, we’d love to hear them!

Until next time, God Bless and Happy Homesteading!

Andrew & Maria

Being Prepared on the Homestead: Bad Weather

Being Prepared on the Homestead: Bad Weather

A few nights ago we had a HUGE storm blow through. It woke the kids up and it kept my wife and I up for most of the night. Not only were there torrential downpours for hours, but also thunder/lightening, hail and strong winds. It was quite a site to see as I watched (during bursts of lightening) a valley in the backyard fill up with water and get larger and larger.

As I laid in bed trying to fall back asleep amidst loud bursts of thunder and pounding rain on the roof, I started realizing how unprepared our family is if our power would have went off or worse…

We are completely dependent on the power grid, and like many, this hasn’t really crossed our minds as much as it should. It takes storms and situations like this to get your thinking back on track and to have a plan in place when a disaster strikes.

Some of the things that came to mind were –

  • Where are the flashlights? I know where one is, I think, but are the batteries in it good?
  • Where are the batteries? Do we have enough spare batteries?
  • Emergency updates and communication. What is our plan to receive updates on the situation if we can’t just turn on the TV or check or internet?
  • What if our drains become clogged and water starts coming into our house? When was the last time I checked the drains?
  • If the power is out for a while, what are we going to do with all of the food in the fridge/freezer?

Although we made it through the storm without much damage, it did help me to get my mind back on track and think about what needs to be done to better prepare my family in the future. You never know what mother nature is going to throw at us, but by staying alert, being prepared, and staying calm, you’ll be much better off.

Until next time, God Bless and Happy Homesteading!

Andrew & Maria

Being Prepared on the Homestead: Water

Being Prepared on the Homestead: Water

Homesteading and preparedness go hand in hand, even if you don’t realize it!

I wanted to use this post to share some of the things that I have been thinking about lately as we have been working on pursuing our homesteading dream. The more that we travel down the homestead road, the more I realize how dependent we have become and how unprepared we truly are!

Water

Let’s face it, water is one of the most important resources that we need! With that being said, I do feel as though a lot of people, including us, take it for granted… We don’t think about all that goes into what makes our water clean and drinkable, all we do is turn on the faucet, fill up a glass, and take a drink. What if one day we turn on the faucet and nothing comes out?

We’ve always had a couple of extra gallons of water on hand, but not nearly enough for our family of 5, especially if the water was off for an extended period of time. What about our garden, what our animals? How are they going to get water? We need to think about those things as well.

So lately I’ve been thinking about this a lot, and this is definitely an area that we need to work on ourselves. I think we’ll continue to buy a couple extra gallons of water whenever we are at the store, but that water doesn’t last long in the cheap plastic containers that it comes in. I’ve been scouring Amazon the last couple of days for some ideas and here are some of the products that I’m interested in.

Products

     

As I’m trying to develop our plan for water preparedness, I’m thinking about water storage, water filtration, and water purification. Whichever route we end up taking and whichever products we end up going with, we’ll need to begin to fold this into our routine so that we become comfortable with these alternate methods of getting and using water. Someday it would be great to have a well or a natural spring, but until we get to that point, we’ll need to have alternate backup water plans.

We’d love to hear what you are currently doing in this area, so please leave a comment below!

Until next time, God Bless and Happy Homesteading!

Andrew & Maria