Perhaps the most surprising, consistent thing we’ve discovered about living conscientiously is how happy it makes us!
As we experience the satisfaction of finishing a batch of homemade cheese, putting the final touches on a new workbench, plucking buckets of ripe tomatoes in the garden, or putting up dozens of quarts of homegrown fruits and vegetables — we smile in spite of the long hours and sore muscles. “There is nothing more satisfying after an honest day’s work than sitting down to a home-cooked meal prepared with food from your land, a fire in the woodstove and hand-knit socks warming your toes — and knowing you did not have to depend on anyone else to enjoy these comforts,” says one homesteading reader.
Physical labor, self-reliance and the engagement of ancient human skills can be a powerful antidote for the stresses and fears placed on us by the modern world.
But don’t stop there — please help us spread the happiness around! We maintain International Homesteading Education Month to help modern homesteaders connect with one another. Self-reliant, interconnected communities are stronger than any single household. Sharing skills with neighbors is a great way you can propagate the satisfaction and security that come from self-sufficient living, whether it be through open houses, community-level classes and workshops, or even multiday fairs and conferences.
You can learn and share any time of year, of course, but we at MOTHER EARTH NEWS want to encourage you to join us and host an event in your community this September as a part of our second annual International Homesteading Education Month. The 2012 inaugural celebration was a smash, with hundreds of events across North America. Let’s keep the energy going and use this September to build a grass-roots, community-based renaissance of self-reliance and conscientiousness.
At our website, you’ll find an international calendar where you can post and advertise your event. You can also search by category or location to discover events happening in your area.
Worried you don’t have the credentials to host a happening? Don’t be. As one 2012 host said, “Anybody could do this stuff. You just have to be willing to try, and willing to make a few mistakes.” Another option is to invite an expert to your place to speak or conduct a workshop. We’ve created a Speaker Finder to help you connect with others in your area who are comfortable teaching homesteading skills.
So, are you ready? Let’s dive in, meet our neighbors and share cool skills — smiling all the way.