Friday, January 19, 2018

Getting Off The Grid - Is It Depressing?

Watching out the window as the snow falls, looks like tiny snowballs and not big fluffy flakes. Accumulation was only an inch but that inch stopped all activity outside, after all this is Alabama, central Alabama! Not three hours north on the Tennessee line where some of the mountains do get snow, No I am way on down, a couple hours from the coast. Snow comes around every few years, or five. Not twice in one winter.
snowfall in the shadows

Do you think the snow fall is depressing since you can`t go anywhere or do anything? I am going with no, not around here. Yes it snowed but this did melt off quickly but the temps did not rebound as fast and yes its rare to get a 0° at night in these parts of the country. Snow on Tuesday and 60° on Saturday seems to be how we roll this year.

On The Homestead :

The greenhouse. I did get the greenhouse up last fall and I did have a few plants inside, they did die because I got sick. So the greenhouses location, where it is now, was not a good idea, I did not make that choice and I am so glad its portable and I can move it. In my opinion it needs to be closer to the house so I can get to it better and so the bright southern sun hits it even more, I think my opinion has been proven, I cannot talk care of plants way down in the field all winter. I am glad that it held up to the winds we have been having. With that being said I am still sowing seed in the house, and they live by the southern windows. I only have tomatoes, sweet bell pepper and basil right now.

For The Garden :

 Notice that right now its not "what is from the garden" but what is for the garden? Yes there are some pitiful greens left and I am not picking those, so its all about what I intend plant this coming spring.

Planning. Starting some seed inside to get strong healthy plants ready.

When I ran into the dollar tree for can foods for my uncle I seen seed for .25 each packet! I grabbed up four packs. One tomato, one cucumber and two herbs, oregano and parsley. 

I add those to the seed I caught on sale at the co-op last week, cabbage, eggplant and okra and what seeds I have harvested from the year passed.

Stockpiling :

This is the first year that I am depending more on the stockpile than the grocery store and it feels so freeing! I feel empowered, that I can provide for myself without money or shopping. That if the SHTF (shit hits the fan) and things go bad, I can survive and teach others how to also.

With only around a month into winter I have used around  four cases of food from the home canned stock. I do notice that I use many tomatoes or tomato based foods.

I did not keep a count of the frozen stuff from the garden, that I have used this far. 

I still use the old stand by tin canned foods that is store bought that I have stockpiled, but that is okay, some foods like beets and sweet peas, I did not have in my garden and home canned, yet.

Learning :

Last week I do not think I did any learning as far as my homestead. Although I wish to, NO, I will be off the grid I do not see a complete escape from working, or making money, because of the property taxes and business license have to be paid.

While some have said that I should teach, I am reluctant because what if someone cans food wrong and dies? I would feel like I did not teach them enough. But I am still thinking about all the nature talents that live in the this house that can make money, from fishing lures to soaps.

I have to say that everyday on the homestead is a learning experience. You can read books, you can watch video but every homestead is different. From walking the woods looking for edible mushrooms to picking winter greens, no year is the same. Some years its all about tomatoes, some years about squash, the garden is never predictable. 

Its always changing and that is the thrill of making a homestead and getting it to work. Achievement and failure.

Not much going on, depressing? Nope because I am looking to the future days of the hot sun on my back while harvesting fruits and vegetables.

By Andria Perry
Photos By Andria Perry


  1. I so badly want to have a garden but the soil where I live is bad. I have learned so much from you. I have started a little indoor herb garden that is doing well. Thinking of add vegetables.

    1. I am so glad that you have started growing herbs. My sister cannot grow in the ground but uses 5 gallon buckets for tomatoes and bell peppers. Although buying potting soil can be costly, She bought one bag per month till she had her buckets filled, that way she did not feel the pocket book burn. And the soil is good for always.

  2. Few people have actually died from home-canned vegetables. You might check official guidelines for minimum cooking time to destroy botulism before posting recipes...

    1. You are funny! I do give the pressure canning times when I post how to can.

  3. I really want my daughter to start reading your blog....she's going to get lost for days reading, but she really wants to homestead. They had planned to buy a farmhouse this year, but now her hubby is saying at least 3 more years :( She's already got some great plans ahead for gardening from their mobile home....and she's done great in the past as well.

    1. LOL, she will see its a struggle. But when I get there, life ill be easier.