Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Getting Off The Grid - January On The Homestead



Getting off the grid is about my journey. The idea and then the struggle to make it happen, mostly without the money needed to "just do it now." Learning to grow food. Learning to home can food. Learning everything as I go. No guidance except for books and what I watch on t.v. Come join me in my life of discovering, how to get off the grid.



January is a hard month on the homestead, there is not much I can do outside because of the crazy weather pattern, cold one day and hot the next. Snow one weekend and sunny with a heat wave the next. Its just the ninth and here in central Alabama the ground has been frozen solid with night time temps of 9 degrees to today at 50 something degrees and its rainy. 

I have been checking out the new seeds, I reckon I need to go ahead and order what I want so they will be on their way, some to start inside, some that goes straight into the dirt. That is about all we can do right now, plan for the Spring vegetable garden.

From The Garden: 



There are some greens still making it, kale and collards, mustard greens too, but they were "touched" by all the cold. Not dead but what is called burnt, they will revive with the warmth.

I had planned to share and home can kale all winter but this year I got sick with the new flu stuff going around and I just felt to weak to stay bent over picking, to weak to stand and wash them up and to weak to cook and pack them into jars. With that being said, if its Gods will, I will have greens all the way into summer and I will be able to home can them for the next year or two. Plus share! I have to share the greens, its just something I do.



This week I will transplant the tomatoes and bell pepper plants to bigger pots, I am hoping to have nice red tomatoes and sweet bell peppers before the Spring planting season comes, not any to home can but enough to eat. 

Progress Around The Homestead :

About the only thing I have accomplished is the backyard, the electric fence is up and had already taught the dogs they cannot escape their area. 

While some people thinks this is not a big deal, it is. 

Why? 

I have dogs that love to hunt and kill small game so if they are running loose I cannot have wild rabbits, to hunt and eat if need be, and I cannot have chickens. Although chickens would be in a pen if the dogs thought they could just climb over and into the pen to eat the chickens they would. But being broke by the electric fence they are less likely to try get passed a fence, heading out to roam or into another animals pen when they see those wires. 

Stockpile :

I have been enjoying the stockpile! Instant meals when I am tired. Nothing like opening a jar of homemade vegetable soup when you are sick and it taste fresh as the day you made it. Or chili on a cold day to warm you up. All those wonderful strawberries made into jam on a slice of hot toast in the morning! Home canning food taste so much better than store bought.

I have not home canning anything in a short while. I just don`t like the thought of having to buy food to home can, unless its something I don`t grow.

However, I did buy up eight cases of pint canning jars. They were on sale and I also had coupons to make them as cheap as $5.00 per case, the plus is they have lids with rings too.

The only other thing is deer. I did receive a little deer meat and I will be home canning that soon. Its in the freezer at the moment because it was late when it was dropped off. 

I always give thanks to God for providing animals for food, they give their life for others to have life.

Learning : 

So far this month I have not read anything new to learn for the homestead. 

But......

 I seen a sale ad that has solar panels on sale and I have saved enough over the year to make this purchase. I am sure this week I will make that purchase, its time for me to spread my wings and fly, not far but a start.


How are things on your homestead?

By Andria Perry
Photos by Andria Perry


 


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22 comments:

  1. wow, you have sprouts. Mine did not even come up yat.

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  2. Amazing that you're doing this! Takes a special person to commit to all that's involved, wow, very impressed!

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    1. My motivation is the power and water bill.

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  3. Wow! Andria, where do you get all your energy? You are very impressive. I like what you are doing.

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    1. Thank you. I have no idea but I think making lists help.

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  4. I re-potted my pawpaw seedlings. That's about it. I agree...it seems harder to get anything done in January.

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  5. I went by the co-op today, got okra seed and eggplant seed for a couple dollars!

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  6. Sure is a lot of work!! Dealing with some crazy weather ups and downs can't make it easy. I admire your commitment. I hope you feel better soon and best of luck!!

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  7. I'm impressed with your strong commitment to living off-the-grid and admire all you have accomplished. Hope springtime arrives early for you so you can get your garden planted. Best of luck to you.

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    1. Thank you. I am awaiting Spring, one of the best times of the year.

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  8. I hope you're shaking off the flu by now!

    Greens already? Wow. In Virginia, over the weekend we had two mornings in a row when my thermometer showed zero (Fahrenheit), which is not surprisingly the number of green things growing in the yard now. (This will change by next weekend if we get the expected thaw.)

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    1. Yes here I usually grow them all winter.

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  9. In my mind I've always wanted to learn to can. My grandma used to make the best jelly from the apple peels that us kids wouldn't eat!
    I know also in my mind, that this is something I will never do.....even though we inherited all of my mother-in-laws canning supplies when she passed. It's all up in the rafters of the garage, so maybe I shouldn't say it will never happen.

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    1. Hang onto it all. You never know how life will become.

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  10. I love the line tasting fresh! What a great concept. As always - awesome share!

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  11. We haven't had the bitter cold we had last year and so far it has only gotten below zero a couple of times. We have had some major snow storms, though. We had one that partly collapsed a section of the top of the chicken pen. The chickens are fine, but for over a week, I could only get into the pen near their coop, just enough to feed and water.

    We had a few days that got up to the high 30's and low 40's, though. That partly thawed the snow on top of the chicken fence roof and I was able to get a make-shift prop under the sagging section. The chickens naturally took advantage of that, which is good.

    We are currently under a storm warning for snow coming in...1-8 inches here in the river valley floor and 2-3 feet a few hundred feet above us. The prop in the chicken pen will have to do until spring when I can properly shore up the roof. I don't know yet if we will have a return of bitter cold or if it will continue to move mostly to the east of us. A lot of cold weather records have been broken in the northeast this year.

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    1. I am sure we broke cold/low records here.

      I was at the Co-op a few days ago and I got the delivery dates for the new chicks. They are asking $2.75 each.

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  12. I'm sure you'll be the winner in your fight with difficult winter months because of your detailed forethought of all actions connected with the homestead matters! Wish you a great success!

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    1. I thank you very much for the compliment.

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