10 Tips to start becoming Self-Sufficient
If we learned anything from 2020 it's that everything is unpredictable. Since moving up to Northern Nevada and a big motivation for starting our farm was our want to become more self sufficient. The more we can provide for ourselves, the less we need to depend on grocery stores and other commodities. Here's some things that you can do to become more self sufficient.
Grow your own food. -- You don't have to start a farm by any means. Start with the things you eat most and get a feel for growing. Do some research about things that grow well in your growing zone and try those too. The more things that you can grow at home the better. Plus they taste better anyway!
Preserve your own food. -- If you grow it, you need to make it last. There are many, many different ways to preserve the crops your grow. Make jams and jellies, dry your fruits, can your own vegetables, dry your own spices, the possibilities are endless.
Get some chickens. -- If chickens are allowed in your area they are a great addition to your homestead. They will eat all the pesky little bugs and you'll get eggs once they are old enough. You can raise meat birds to butcher yourself as well. Keep them away from your garden though because they'll eat everything in sight. But you can also give them leftover scraps from that salsa you made and they'll love you for it.
Make everything you can from scratch. -- Pinterest and Google have a TON of recipes for just about anything. Start with handmaking your bread for the week then try other things that you use on a regular basis.
Learn how to make your own soaps and cleaners. -- It's really simple to do. Most of us have vinegar and citrus in our kitchens right now that can be made into a household cleaner. You can make everything from soap to use in the shower, to shampoo and conditioner, to laundry detergent, to the spray you use to clean the kitchen table. You'll know exactly what's in it and you'll get a way from using harsh chemicals and detergents in your home too!
Compost! -- It will help reduce the waste that you send to the landfill and it will provide great nutrients for your garden as well!
Ditch the paper products. -- Replace all the paper towels, napkins, and plates with reusable products. You'll save a ton of money. Repurpose old towels and napkins into cleaning rags too!
Start a home-based business. -- You can do anything from selling eggs, to sewing clothes, to making soap, to canning food. Just be sure to check your local regulations and get any licensing you may need!
Get out of debt. -- That's easier said than done in this day and age but you don't NEED the latest iPhone (I'm talking to myself here). Pay off the stuff you owe and live frugally. Know the difference between a need and a want.
Save your seeds! -- Everything you're growing produces seeds. So learn how to save them and use them to replant the following season.
If you're in an area where it may not be possible to own a dairy cow or have chickens in your backyard. Find and support a local farmer in your area. Chances are there's someone down the road from you growing radishes or that has eggs or fruit trees. Go to your local farmer's market and make connections with local makers or attend workshops to learn how to do something you're unsure about. Don't be afraid to ask for help!