How does our national situation affect our Homesteads?greenspun.com : LUSENET : ACountryPlace : One Thread
What are you all expecting? Do you feel that special preparation is necessary? If you had to be self-sufficient tomorrow, could you?
Personally, I don't know what to expect. I do know that whatever comes I want to be as self-sufficient as possible. This is saying a lot, because if it happened tomorrow, I've got myself in quite a fix. We are working quickly to resolve our situation. It is very possible that our economy will bring about major changes soon. How many of you have full larders right now? I don't, but I expect that before things get to bad I will have one growing season. Whatever happens I intend to resolve our situation as quickly as possible. How are you all fixed for seed? It is funny how we were all waiting for Y2k and now this.
Little Bit farm
-- Little bit farm (littleBit@compworldnet.com), September 21, 2001
This has been my concern, because, truly, no one knows what is next. When we were in Texas, we had a smallish house, on five acres, all the outbuildings we needed, two gardens, lots and lots of fruit and pecan trees. In not too much longer a time, we could have had it paid for...But, you know how it is, the work was here, so we sold, moved into a larger, way overpriced house on just two acres(no fruit trees). We have a good garden space, but are having to redo the barn. And we will never have this place paid for. We have our chickens and goats, and the pantries are in pretty good shape, but I'm still feeling insecure. I'd feel better if we had a piece of ground paid for, and were closer to home.
-- mary (firstname.lastname@example.org), September 21, 2001.
I don't know about you LBF but we've used up our y2K supplies. When my wife was out of work for a while we depended on what we had stocked up.
I think it's just good ole common sense to stock up when you can. It hardly ever gets wasted.
Were working on a 8 month plan to restock.
-- Kenneth in N.C. (email@example.com), September 21, 2001.
Hello LBF, You don't mind if I call you LBf, do you? I think the best preparation everyone should make is to get out of debt as fast as possible. Prior to the Great Depression many folks were playing the stock market. They way that they played it was to give a broker 10% of the value of the stock. As you made money on the stock, your profits went towards paying the 90%. This usually worked out pretty good for people as long as the stocks kept increasing in value. Prior to the Great Depression people borrowed money to buy land using their stock portfolios as collateral. They did not borrow the way we do today with 15, 20, or 30 year mortgages. Most mortgages were only 3-5 years long. When the stock market crashed, those that had invested 10% into the stockbrokers hand lost everything. Losing everything of course made their portfolios worthless. Mortgages were closed and banks wanted the entire balance of mortgages paid in full. Well, of course we know the rest.... So, if I was in debt I would be doing my best to get out of debt as fast as possible. Sincerely, Ernest
-- http://communities.msn.com/livingoffthelandintheozarks (firstname.lastname@example.org), September 21, 2001.
I feel it is the resposible thing to always be prepared and stocked up. While I am never very low on supplies, I am really stocked up now. This time of the year is a good one for us, because the garden items are all canned, I have over 700 jars of home-canned fruits, vegetables, relishes and etc... put back. Also we will be digging about 20 bushels of potatoes this weekend. Our freezer is stuffed full. I have tons of eggs. I have been buying a lot of extra supplies at the stores because my husband does construction work, and this is his best money making season. In the winter it seems like the construction work shuts down. But we are used to that. I always have my bills paid a month ahead and I have money put back for an emergency. My kids all have enough clothes ahead for a year at least. We hwve bags of coats and boots in larger sizes put back also. I like being prepared for anything.
-- Melissa (email@example.com), September 22, 2001.
Hi Little Bit,
I don't guess anyone is as self-sufficient as they'd truly like to be, but I think a lot of us are more self-sufficient that many others out there. Specially those who don't have the knowledge and support of these forums.
I can't begin to tell you (and everyone else) how valuable the information is that is shared here. No one person can know everything but when everyone's "little" knowledge is shared it makes everyone more knowledgable. (Does that make sense?) I have learned things here I didn't even know I wanted to know. For instance, I just read that butter can be canned! I had no idea. I also feel confident that if I have a question there will be plenty of friends out there who can answer that question. That's truly amazing.
As far as my family is concerned, we're always as prepared as we can be considering the circumstances we live under. I'm not on my 50 acres in the woods and off the grid like I dream about, but we've got food, medicine, books, clothing, firewood, water, and most importantly, each other, plus many other things that make our lives comfortable. If the stores shut down tomorrow, we'd get by for up to a year provided we're not too picky about eating beans and rice two or three times a week. (But as my mother always said: "They're better than snowballs".)
I believe it's also important to know how to do as many things as possible. Anyone can go out a buy bread(provided there is bread to be bought and money to buy it) but I like knowing I can make my own bread if I want to. Same for raising chickens, planting a garden or the many, many tasks that so many people on this forum know how to do. I'll bet that most of us don't realize how much we truly know. We just sorta take that knowledge for granted because it's part of who we are and how we do things.
I guess I think of our lives as a work in progress, so I'll just keep on working on it.
Wishing you enough.
-- Trevilians (aka Dianne in Mass) (Trevilians@mediaone.net), September 23, 2001.
I am way away from being self sufficient.
I could forage enough natural foods, hunt enough game and fish enough to keep my family in food, though some lean times would exist. But that would be if I WAS THE ONLY ONE OUT THERE. Hard times would force many familys to do the same thing and I don't think the land could stand all the competition. Animals would spook out, plants would be needlessly destroyed, in short, we would get hungry.
I plan on taking two or three deer this season, just to be sure my two freezers are topped off. If I lose electricity, I'd make jerky, smoke the meat, or can it. I'm gonna get a whole bunch of seeds for sprouting; low cost, no refrigeration required, veggies on demand.
-- j.r. guerra (firstname.lastname@example.org), September 24, 2001.
Being prepped in case of emergency, crisis or disaster is just plain common sense most especially for us homesteaders who are in positions to be able to do it so much more easily than folks who live in urban/suburban areas.
My personal take on what to do to safe-guard our homesteads is not to personally prepare against terrorists - they're far more likely to strike at those attractive urban targets like the World Trade Center that we've built for the last fifty years.
As homesteaders I think our greatest threat is going to come from our own government as it responds to the perceieved threat. If you want to live in an intensely urbanized area with a very high population density then some of the ideas for security measures that have been floated since the September 11th attack might make good sense but for those of us who choose not to live in such areas they not only don't make good sense I percieve them to be pernicious attacks on our rights and liberties. Unfortunately they are only the beginning, we've got a lot more coming.
It will never be stated as such but we homesteaders are never going to be loved by central authority because of the fact that we don't *need* most of what the government insists upon giving us. Self-reliance is at the heart of what homesteading is all about but self-reliance is almost always going to conflict with an expanding central government and expanding is just what our government is now doing all in the name of "security."
This isn't really what I think Little Bit had in mind when she started this thread but it's what I see as being the greatest threat to us as homesteaders. Not all of the United States is urbanized nor does it want to be but we're going to see (and are seeing) our government attempt to treat the entire nation like it's one big city.
-- Live Oak (email@example.com), September 27, 2001.