Self Sufficient Skills

All posts tagged Self Sufficient Skills

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By Staff Writer – The Survival Place Blog

When the world’s ending and there are no more manufacturing companies and farmers left to provide you with food, will you be able to survive? If the answer is “yes” because you’ve saved up tonnes of canned food, then there’s some bad news waiting for you: what will you do when it runs out? You can’t rely on the possibility of the world fixing itself after an apocalypse, and unless you’re going to hunt other people for their canned food then there’s only one way to feed yourself: being self-sufficient.

It’s easy to be self-sufficient, but you need to remember that there’s some skill involved and a lot of knowledge to pick up before you can really become self-sufficient with your food. So to help you get started, we’ve detailed four different methods of getting your own food so you can practice in the event the world is turned upside down.

Gardening

Gardening is basically just farming on a smaller scale. Start by learning how to grow vegetables and fruits in your backyard. Remember that the climate makes a huge difference to what you can and can’t grow, so don’t expect to grow everything in your backyard. Start with easy things to manage such as salad leaves, potatoes or beans. They’re relatively easy to get started with and they don’t require much work to get started. Once you’re comfortable with your gardening skills, expand by stretching your backyard, buying more plots of land, or writing down some farming notes in a handy notebook so that you’re ready.

Fishing

With so much water out there, there’s bound to be some fish in nearby lakes and rivers. If you’re lucky and live near a larger body of water, then the fish will be fresh and full of life. However, you may need to invest in a fishing boat or a similar device to get out further into the waters in search of more bounty. Check this trolling motor buying guide if you need a bit of assistance in picking the right motor for your needs. Remember that fishing requires a lot of patience and not everything you fish up is edible. Some fish might be infested with parasites and some might be covered in sewage and sludge from inner-city rivers.

Foraging

Foraging is a key still for any survivalist. Living off the land is something that many in the prepping community speak about, but people usually don’t know much about what is edible or not. You need to know where to find edible plants and fruits, you need to know what is poisonous and what is edible, and you need to be able to stomach nutritious plants even if they taste horrible. If you find yourself in a survival situation in the future with nothing but the land to live off, then you’ll be glad that you studied edible plants.

Hunting

Lastly, we can’t forget about hunting. While using a gun is the simplest method of hunting your prey, you may want to learn how to throw a spear, use a bow, or even create traps to get a hold of fast animals. Survival hunting, much like foraging, is an essential skill to learn but you need to be prepared to kill an animal for the sake of your own survival—something that not everyone can stomach.

This article was originally published at The Survival Place BlogFeeding Yourself the Self-Sufficient Way

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8 Overlooked Ways To Make Thousands Of Extra Dollars Off-Grid

Image source: Pixabay.com

By JD Lara – Off The Grid News

Any homesteading off-gridder knows that income from selling produce isn’t always sufficient. Costs for the building and repair of farm structures, purchasing additional livestock, veterinary expenses, real estate taxes — and everything else in between – can leave a homesteader struggling to keep afloat.

If making extra money is in your bucket list right now, then here’s a few things you could consider. The key is to think outside the box. Look for new or unusual needs in your community, and find ways to meet them. Keep an eye out for opportunities that may come up. If you start thinking like an entrepreneur and marketing like a pro – and of course, delivering extraordinary goods – customers will soon be knocking at your door.

And with a little hard work, you can be making thousands of extra dollars.

Continue reading at Off The Grid News: 8 Overlooked Ways To Make Thousands Of Extra Dollars Homesteading

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By The Survival Place Blog

Making your home more environmentally friendly is important. You need to live a greener life alongside the environment. Becoming more self-sufficient is a wonderful way of making sure you improve survival skills and help care for the planet too.

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Solar Energy

We are moving towards a greener and more eco-friendly world, and this is a good thing. But we still have a way to go yet. So you need to do as much as you can to make sure you are as energy-efficient as possible. In recent years we’ve seen the likes of Chile’s Renewable Energy Conference show the importance of greener living. It doesn’t matter if you’re a business or an individual, renewable energy is the future for all of us, so we need to understand that and prepare for it.

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Grow Your Own Food

One of the key things you can do to have a greener life is to start growing your own food. And you’ll notice that more and more people are doing that these days. You don’t even need an allotment to do it. You can convert areas of your garden into a vegetable patch, etc. Growing your own food is a wonderful way to enjoy the freshest produce and save yourself some money in the process. It also allows you to learn the skills of planting and growing and feeding yourself naturally.

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Limited Technology

Technology is so prevalent in life these days that many people have forgotten how to do things without it. There are a lot of things we take for granted these days because we have technology to do it all for us. So, to enjoy a more natural life, you need to make sure you limit your technology usage. This doesn’t mean you have to go all out Amish. But, you should try to cut down on the amount you use, and, where possible, refrain from using technology. This will give you a greater appreciation of the outside world and how wonderful nature can be sometimes.

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Learn to Live off the Land

It’s important to learn valuable survival skills wherever you can, and that means living off the land. You can take weekend or week-long excursions to learn how to do this. You can also move to somewhere more remote so you can make full use of the natural resources that are around. Our ancestors used to live off the land all the time, and we have lost our way somewhat. If you can learn to do this, then you will have picked up some of the most valuable survival skills. It means that if anything were to go awry, and you had to survive in the wilderness, you’d be fine.

Having a more simple and stripped back existence is crucial for helping you live life alongside the environment. You want to try to turn your home into an eco-home and learn to live alongside nature a bit more. We get so caught up with technology these days that we wouldn’t survive without it. At least you’ll be okay if the apocalypse should hit!

This article was first seen at The Survival Place Blog: Environ-Home: Live Life Alongside the Environment With These Awesome Hacks

By Daisy Luther – The Organic Prepper

In the last weeks of winter, you can sometimes find yourself in limbo. You’re itching for spring and the smell of the freshly turned dirt, the magic of planting seeds, and the good weather to get outside and have some fun. Meanwhile, it’s still cold, possibly slushy, and definitely too soon to plant or bring home baby animals for the farm in most areas. This week, the Self-Reliance Weekly Report is about taking some time to audit your self-reliance, get organized, and plan some projects. (And if you’re getting a big tax return, that might help fund your efforts.)

  The Self-Reliance Weekly Report is a collection of strategies, made up of the articles, books, DIYs, and products that I found useful on my own little prepper’s homestead.

Prepping

Being organized is incredibly important.  It’s always nice to have a home in which you can find tings quickly, but in a disaster situation that takes on a whole new level of importance. If the lights are out, how quickly can you lay hands on needed supplies? How long would it take you to find a vital first aid item while a family member suffered a medical emergency? This article will help you get your home and preps more organized. And while it’s all well and good to put things away properly, it’s also important to document where you put stuff, especially when your “stuff” is prepper level and placed in various hidey-holes all over your home. (Speaking of hidey-holes, here are 20 places to stash your preps.)  Finally, here are a few hacks to help you stash things away.

Are you just getting started with your preparedness endeavors? This guide is your outline. If you want to be prepared, break it down into simple steps so you don’t get overwhelmed.  Make sure to use checklists to document what you’ve done, what you need to do, and how you plan to do it so that you stay on track. This article can help you build a one-month food supply quickly so that you have at least some supplies while you work on your survival plan. If you have a tax refund coming, here’s a guide to spending it on preps.

Are you absolutely positive you want a prepper “team”?  In fictional accounts, people always band together with others who are like-minded, and indeed, going it alone is difficult and dangerous. But building a team is also rife with potential conflict. Read these scenarios and think about how to avoid the problems that go hand-in-hand when you team up with others.

Have you ever dreamed of going completely off the grid?  My personal long-term survival plan doesn’t include fancy solar arrays that work in the shade, whole house generators,  or propane fueled modern appliances. If there was a power outage with no end in sight, my goal is to go low-tech. The best way to do that successfully, of course, is to begin creating your off-grid lifestyle now. Read about how one family transitioned to a completely off-grid homestead for a fraction of the cost you might expect. While every idea may not work for you, the couple’s creative solutions may inspire solutions that will work.

Homesteading

Use your tax return to improve your homestead. No matter how big or small a lump sum of money is, you can use it wisely to improve your homestead. This very thorough list gives suggestions for all budgets. If you are looking for some tried-and-true mechanical items, this lifelong farmer recommends his top 4 tools.

Are you using raised beds for your garden this year?  I am a big fan of raised garden beds because they help you amend and water only the soil you need, two things that are very important in my hot, dry climate. Those aren’t the only reason to switch to raised beds – check out this list of why raised beds might be the best choice for you, too. This is a very simple, inexpensive DIY to make your own raised beds for your backyard garden. If you aren’t into building, I’ve had some excellent success with these cloth raised beds by the company that makes Smart Pots. (They’re very budget-friendly, too.)  And if you’re just getting started, here are 10 of the very easiest things to grow in your new raised beds.

It’s seed starting time – woohoo!  Last year, because of when I moved, I ended up buying plants at the nursery. This year, I can hardly wait to start my seeds indoors. There’s something magical about nurturing those teeny little seeds and watching them sprout, and it’s far more economical, too.  This page has a ton of absolutely fantastic articles on seed starting that you should check out before you do anything. By the way – don’t spend a lot of money on storebought seed mats or seed tape. It’s unbelievably easy to make your own using common household supplies.

DIY

Books and Products

The following are products that I personally use and have recommended in the article above. (These are affiliate links, and purchasing through them costs you nothing extra but provides a small commission.)

Creating-Your-Off-Grid-Homestead-750x971If you’ve ever thought about creating your own off-grid homestead, do I have the book for you. It’s called Creating Your Off-Grid Homestead: Radical Inspiration and Practical Advice. I read this entire book in one sitting, then went back over it to choose some projects for my own homestead.  Teri Page documented her family’s creation of a home that is completely off the grid. She is careful to point out that not every family wants to live like hers does, and ends each chapter with a list of thought-provoking questions that will help you to make decisions that will actually be workable for your own situation. The family spent very little money creating their homestead, so don’t think this is a giant undertaking only fit for the very wealthy. I strongly recommend this book for anyone who wants to go completely off the grid or for those who want the capability to function when the grid is down, while still enjoying their modern conveniences today.

ORDER HERE

Smart PotsCheck out this economical raised bed solution. If you are looking to add raised beds to your yard but don’t have the money to invest in high-quality wooden beds, try these fabric raised beds from Smart Pots. I had excellent luck with them – they provide excellent drainage while keeping moisture in at the same time. You can easily move them the following year if you want to relocate your garden, unlike a more permanent structure, and, best of all, if you don’t have good soil or an actual yard, you can place these on a patio or deck. A 50″ diameter bed is only $32.47 at the time of publication. I plan to use mine again at my new location for some of my veggies.

ORDER HERE

Preppers WorkbookGet organized and get prepped!  I’m a huge fan of lists, and The Prepper’s Workbook: Checklists, Worksheets, and Home Projects to Protect Your Family from Any Disaster does not disappoint. You can use this book to go through your preps and get the satisfaction of marking this off that you already have. Then, with what you have left, you can make an easy list of the things you need to still acquire. The book is laid out in a workbook format that is simple to use. You will be far more organized after going through the steps in this guide.

ORDER HERE

 

Farm Blog

We had a big success at the homestead this week: we had our first meal of home-raised meat. Those pesky ducks went over to a friend’s place last week, where I bartered one of them in return for having the others butchered. (Due to our impending move, I just wasn’t quite ready to embark on butchering them myself.)

I don’t think I’ve ever had a more satisfying meal in my life. No, it wasn’t cooked absolutely perfectly. (This was my first time cooking duck – total learning experience.) It wasn’t gourmet. But the fact that I provided a good life to these animals instead of the suffering that occurs at factory farms combined with the fact that we are finally realizing some food from all of our efforts made it seem like the finest feast that was ever served.

I picked up some farmer’s market asparagus and served it with some squash from the root cellar. Here was our dinner:

Duck dinner

Also from the food front, we’re getting 5 eggs per day on a regular basis. I’m hoping that this is the year we finally accomplish our goal of raising more than half of our own food.

Hopefully, I can keep up with my publishing schedule over the next couple of weeks, but if not, you’ll know that I got buried under a pile of boxes. Moving when you are a prepper is such a vast undertaking, and one I’ve done way too many times.

While renting is awesome in that I’m not paying the $18,000 bill to relocate our septic system and pump it up a hill, what isn’t so awesome is the lack of control you have. When you rent, even with a lease, you are subject to the whims of the home’s owners. If the property is sold, sure, you still get to stay because of your lease, but there may be changes that put a damper on your homesteading activities. If something goes wrong, the repair timeline is completely out of your hands. Fellow renters, I’m sure you can relate.  Anyway, 3 more weeks and we’ll be done, just in time to welcome our baby chicks and start our seeds.

What’s going on at your farm or urban homestead right now?  How’s the weather in your area? Please share your updates in the comments below!

This article first appeared at The Organic Prepper: The Self-Reliance Weekly Report: Getting Organized

About the author:

Daisy Luther lives on a small organic homestead in Northern California.  She is the author of The Organic Canner,  The Pantry Primer: A Prepper’s Guide to Whole Food on a Half-Price Budget, and The Prepper’s Water Survival Guide: Harvest, Treat, and Store Your Most Vital Resource. On her website, The Organic Prepper, Daisy uses her background in alternative journalism to provide a unique perspective on health and preparedness, and offers a path of rational anarchy against a system that will leave us broke, unhealthy, and enslaved if we comply.  Daisy’s articles are widely republished throughout alternative media. You can follow her on Facebook, Pinterest,  and Twitter,.

ResistanceToTyranny

By Pat Henry – The Prepper Journal

I think it is fair to say that one aspect of some prepper’s motivational drive to do what we do stems from a desire to resist tyranny. Perhaps I am only seeing what I want to see based on my own personal outlook on life, but I have a lot of anecdotal evidence that backs me up. When a person starts to sense within themselves a growing desire to be more self-sufficient, they routinely experience the side effect of not wanting to be told what to do or how to live their life.

Preppers by very definition are taking steps now to take care of themselves should something unforeseen happen in their lives and the usual safeguards of society aren’t available. We proactively take charge of our lives and pull back segments of responsibility away from others while we have the time, resources and relative calm that we may not be able to muster while chaos is swirling outside our doors. During a disaster making sure you can provide for yourself makes sense as you never know when or if help will come to your aid. Absent a disaster though, this rugged individualism for some of us spills outside the lines of food, water, security and shelter and flows into the rest of our lives. The willingness to be your own boss and determine your own future in large part isn’t constrained only to some violent calamity. We aren’t dependent on people in various positions of authority telling us what to do until there is a disaster and then we completely change. We see problems or potential problems with the way things are now and take steps to change that situation in our lives.

TyrannyArbitrary or unrestrained exercise of power; despotic abuse of authority.

The preparedness mindset in my experience usually rebels in some form when we aren’t able to act in ways that we choose due to our personal beliefs or convictions. This rebelliousness manifests itself in many ways. Whenever we are taxed highly, whenever we aren’t able to conduct commerce with another person without penalties or heavy regulations or when our health choices contradict with people who have zero vested interests in our lives, there is a growing sense of frustration. When our Constitution is not followed, when policy is created outside of law, when freedoms are taken away and alternative moral issues are forced upon us, the frustration can grow into outright anger. When you have too much anger without any hope of redress of grievances, that usually leads to protests. Protests that are exacerbated with heavy-handed law enforcement tactics can turn into riots. Riots that are the result of dire social circumstances, economic worries and violence can evolve into revolution.

You say you want a Revolution

We as people are a good way away from anything remotely resembling true Revolution, at least here in the United States. Other countries are much further down this slope than we are although that doesn’t mean the right set of circumstances couldn’t light the same fire in the 320 million people within our borders someday. The internet is full of very troubling news on so many fronts that many people take to their favorite social media outlet, forum, talk radio show or even prepping blogs to voice their anger. I don’t have to list all of the reasons why you could be frustrated because you know them already.

Many people seem willing to start a fight right now. They are mad as hell and they aren’t going to take it anymore. Some want to march on Washington. Others want a certain political candidate to get elected and still others think boycotts of major companies or products will bend the world to their will. A small contingent believes that the only way to fix things is to go to war. The only way to get our country back on track they say is to arm themselves and rise up a Revolution that will finally overthrow the oppressors.

PoliceTyranny

I have written many articles dealing with this subject from different (I hope) perspectives. I still contend that national elections no longer matter because our national problems are too deep. The corruption of our system is too invasive to be changed by one man or woman and the wealthy interests with their own agendas are really controlling things in our country. I also don’t believe armed revolution is smart. Unfortunately, I can see how it may be inevitable at some point in the future, but I do not want to hasten that day. So what can you do to make a difference?

Resist the tyranny you still have control over

The capacity to create your own power is a small step you can take to get control over your own energy needs.

There are many facets of your life that while you can’t change everything, you can make small meaningful changes that put you back in control. Some of these changes are simple while others are more involved, but each is its own form of resistance to what you are being told is good and right.

Resist the food they want you to eat – You can make healthier choices with your food. It is not as easy as pulling through the drive through at McDonalds but what you put into your body has tremendous impacts on your health. Grow your own vegetables in a garden on your property. They will taste better than anything you can buy in a grocery store. Raise your own chickens for eggs, raise rabbits for meat. This will not only give you healthier hormone free protein but provide a backup source of food if the grid goes down.

Resist the news they want you to hear – If you are still listening to the “mainstream media” you are only getting part of the story and it is the part they want you to know. There are a thousand websites out there offering different opinions on virtually every issue. Don’t simply turn on the TV and believe what the talking heads are saying, research a topic. Consult other sources and listen to other voices of opinion and fact for a more diverse and well-balanced understanding of what is going on in the world. Sometimes, other countries have more information about news in American than the big networks have.

Every alternative explanation for an event isn’t a conspiracy theory and even if it is, there is nothing crazy about an alternate theory of someone planning to keep something secret. It happens every day.

If you think you are too small to make a difference, you haven’t spent the night with a mosquito. – African proverb

Resist the erosion of your privacy – This might be the hardest thing you can do unless you really unplug and move to that cabin in the woods, but you can take steps. For one thing, don’t put the details of your personal life on social media. Companies like Facebook mine all of your data constantly. The NSA does as well, but you can choose what you share. Don’t offer information to people who don’t need it. Ask what is being done with your personal information. Don’t sign up on websites that need to know every last detail about you. Do you really think it is important to put where you live, your birth-date and who you are married to?

Canning your own vegetables gives you food security.

Resist the monopoly of the electric companies – Solar power isn’t cheap, but you can start small and grow your system over time. A small 400W solar panel starter kit that charges batteries, can give you backup power for emergencies and power some of your home appliances full-time.

Resist the chemicals and poisons in the water you drink – Fluoride in the water is a divisive issue. Many people think it is good for you even though the EPA just recently reduced the amount of recommended fluoride in water. If it’s so good, why wouldn’t they increase the amount? Even if you like fluoride there are other chemicals from prescription medicine to glyphosates that appear in the same water you drink. You can purchase home water filtration systems that will greatly cut down the toxins your family is consuming.

Resist the poisons they want to put in your body – Our nation is on too many drugs. If it isn’t a prescription for one thing, it is a pill for another. Can’t sleep, take a pill. Have gas? Take a pill. Suffering from mood swings, high blood pressure, itchy teeth or swollen ankles? Take a pill.

In my completely unprofessional opinion, I would argue that almost all of the prescriptions people are on are unnecessary and could be avoided with better diet and exercise. How long do you really think you need to be on an anti-depressant? If you are still depressed, maybe that pill isn’t helping? Don’t take my word for it, but if the grid goes down and you are no longer able to get your pills, what will you do?

Resist the national push to assume debt – You don’t need that 72 inch big screen TV. Yes, they are pretty cool I will admit and if you can pay cash for it, go right ahead. You know what has always struck me as hilarious? It is when I drive past the poorer part of town, past housing complexes and every single building has satellite dishes plastered all over the side. Poor enough to need assistance, but not too poor to afford satellite TV. It’s all priorities. If you really want to be free, then you need to free yourself from debt.

Resist Government Tyranny – What can you do to resist tyranny without open rebellion or revolution? You can stand up for what you believe. You can put your money where your values are and support causes that are under fire from government. If you want to change laws, you have to start locally because nationally it is a lost cause for now in my opinion. Run for office in your town, attend town meetings, vote for referendums. Join civic counsels and let your voice be heard.

These are just a few ideas I have, but your own creativity will show you other ways that you can make a stand without joining a riot. Resistance to tyranny doesn’t always have to come at the barrel of a gun. That day may come in time, but for now we have ways of asserting control within our lives still. While we can, make a difference in your life and the lives of your family in ways you still have some say left. There will be plenty of time for revolution later.

This information has been made available by The Prepper Journal: Changing How You Think of Resistance to Tyranny

MustHavePrepperBooks

By

For a long time now I have been meaning to post a list of prepper resources. I do have a lot listed our our Resources page, but I hadn’t really spent any time listing the resource books and materials that I recommend. This list below is made of entirely of books I own and have read. Well, almost all of them have been read. Some like “Emergency War Surgery” keep getting put on the back of the pile, but every other one has been evaluated by me and I believe that these books are a tremendous resource to preppers and survivalists not to mention homesteaders or anyone looking to be more self-sufficient. This to me is just the beginning of your library of must have prepper books.

I wrote a post a while back about the importance of having physical copies of reference material like this for a number of reasons. Without rehashing the entire post, which you can read here, the need for me is simple. If the computers go down, or the electricity is out or they simply stop printing books… you need to have a library of information that you can put your hands on. These books serve me and my family in two ways. First, books like “How to Survive the End of the World as We Know it” were foundational. Books like this enabled me to open my eyes and begin to see what I needed to do for my family’s safety. Other books such as “The Encyclopedia of Country Living” sit on the shelf until I want to learn something or have a question.

Below I have listed a great starter library for the average prepper. This will give you both the foundational material as well as the reference should our lives be turned upside down one day. If you can’t get on the internet or make it to the library, you will wish you had books like these to reference when you need it. Even if nothing ever happens, these books are great to have around your house and will always be there if you need them.

I have also added this entire list to my Resources page today so they can sit in one easy to find place.

Survival Manuals – Introduction to concepts

Homesteading / Self Sufficient Skills

Natural Remedies / First Aid

Tactical Methods / Strategies / Security

Fiction – Philosophy – Foreshadowing

This article has been made available by The Prepper Journal: 32 Must Have Prepper Books