self sufficiency.





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11/3/2008
After hitching a ride out of the city on the Slow Food movement, some newcomers to the country look back on their transition decision.
7/2/2013
The sweet spot in self sufficiency is to have just enough...with a bit of surplus to meet your needs and a few friends and neighbors.
8/15/2011
Fond memories of a self-sufficient farm in Armstrong County, Pa., show how hard work and family together results in a truly meaningful life.
7/12/2011
This grandparents’ homestead housed a number of generations and everyone participated in daily chores such as pumping water for baths, melting lard for bread, and using cloth flour bags to make curtains, blankets and dresses.
4/13/2011
Cam promotes the return to our independent roots.
4/5/2012
Young homesteader Robert Maxwell  explores his discoveries as he moves toward self-sufficiency and homesteading.
6/28/2011
A rural home in La Porte, Iowa thrives on all the elements of nature including bird feeders, a veggie garden and table scraps.
5/11/2009
What skills are you learning in hopes of saving money?
7/27/2011
Julie Lavigne relates her grandparent’s home in the city, a modern homestead for their time, and proves you can live a self-sufficient lifestyle in an urban setting.
11/8/2011
Cam enjoyed a recent workshop he held at Sunflower Farm, and the participants seemed to enjoy it too!
8/16/2012
Cam undertakes an experiment to see how much food he can produce on his one acre of garden space.
5/12/2011
Cam responds to a negative comment about a previous blog.
10/18/2010
While there are plenty of great reasons to grow a food garden, we recently polled readers to find out their primary motivation for gardening. Read their interesting results, plus tell us more about your gardening philosophy.
9/5/2013
Tips for those with “Barnheart.”
9/28/2010
Learning to save seeds from one harvest to the next takes you a step further towards self-sufficiency and helps to save genetics of plants needed for the future.
2/14/2011
When you live in an off-grid house in the country, it's important to be handy!
9/15/2011
Cam wonders why more people don't prepare for blackouts.
1/31/2012
Cam describes his ongoing inner dialogue concerning his carbon footprint.
3/6/2012
Cam thinks its important that we all have a Plan B, no matter where we live.
1/28/2013
How we deal with unexpected incidents.
3/8/2013
Noting the time and marking its passing, keeping us in the present.
1/25/2012
There is a coming resurgence of the appreciation of the hearty homespun sorghum syrup. Something is special about being part of making this “home-made” sugar that speaks to the self-reliant nature inside all of us. You can be part of the Sorghum Revival!
6/21/2010
A new course, Radical Urban Sustainability Training, teaches city- and suburban-dwellers the skills they need to develop a self-reliant and sustainable lifestyle.
10/10/2013
For the past few years, we've experimented with different ways of storing food fresh and now we're eating garlic, onions, squash, carrots and beets in June.
9/26/2013
To grow, keep and eat your own food keeps you away from the food industry, the fossil fuel based agriculture, food stores and logistics.
3/14/2014
If you know much of each food from your garden you consume each year, you can better plan how much to grow.
7/14/2014
The beauty and refreshment of our swimming hole are a swell compliment to work and sun of our homestead.
5/29/2013
Completing tasks in preparation for a few days away from the homestead
12/16/2011
If we want future generations to live self-sufficient lives, we have to pass on the knowledge. This week's "Photo of the Week" reflects that point.
3/20/2013
How to define an egg shed? Let’s look at the definition of watershed to give the egg shed concept more shape. A watershed is defined by the Environmental Protection Agency as: “The area of land where all of the water that is under it, or drains off of it, goes into the same place”. Based on the definition of a watershed, an egg shed could be defined as: the eggs produced within a certain distance that go to a specific place. That place could be your kitchen.
1/10/2011
What’s your idea of a delicious and wholesome breakfast? A fluffy, organic egg omelet made with fresh vegetables? Perhaps scrambled eggs and roasted garden veggies? No matter what your preference, it may surprise you to learn the link between the
12/12/2012
Ode to our hand saw...why we choose to live without power, and what we've accomplished by hand.
2/5/2013
Many years ago, years before I moved to the country, I was what would be considered "a prepper." I saw disaster every time I turned on the TV, or read the news on the internet, or visited forums that talked about stockpiling beans and bullets. I panicked, thinking I could never have enough control for the sake of my family, never be "prepped" enough.
11/4/2011
Western civilization is totally dependent upon cheap and abundant energy. Three quarters of the petroleum we burn in our engines is imported. Could it be cut off suddenly? Without cheap and abundant energy, our way of life would collapse. If we value our freedom and independence, we should not be relying on foreign petroleum. We should be making our own energy. 
12/26/2012
The thrill continues living in our handmade house.
1/10/2013
We haul our water from the river - walking water!
1/26/2013
Making the most of a winter walk to home.
2/7/2013
Des Moines, Iowa, gardeners may soon find themselves in hot water with their City. A local resident recently took front yard veggie growers to task for what the resident feels to be unsightly lawn growth. Beets and berries, it seems, do not have the same aesthetic appeal as a green, freshly-mowed front lawn.
11/25/2008
The Self Sufficient-ish Bible and accompanying Web site offer some universal tips for urban self-sufficiency.
9/30/2008
Who isn't worried about the economy right now? Here's some good advice on what to do with your money.
10/13/2008
I taught myself to play a musical instrument, and I'm certain you can do it too.
9/1/2010
If your job, finances, family commitments, etc., have thwarted or delayed your dreams of self-reliance, you don’t have to wait until you can afford a 20 acre parcel. You can start working where you are now to build and nurture self-reliant living skills that are sure to provide you with more peace of mind and improved health, and will most likely be of great personal benefit during the coming decades of global challenge and change.
12/19/2013
There are some veggies, herbs and edible flowers that are self seeders. Plant them once, let them go to seed, and you will have continuous plants year after year.
1/10/2014
By focusing on the conscientious habits and self-reliance of its readers, MOTHER EARTH NEWS has seen its audience quadruple over the past decade. Publisher Bryan Welch discusses the reasons for this growth.
5/12/2012
Many of us suffer from low self-esteem. Negative self-images plague our lives, robbing us of happiness. Here's an exercise that can help you rid your self of those thoughts that prevent you from seeing who you really are.
5/11/2011
We are collecting Wit and Wisdom From Our Elders: tips and stories of how people took care of their homesteads in the past. Share your stories!
2/27/2013
Pick something new to learn this year from Granny Miller’s list of 101 basic homesteading skills.
9/12/2013
The documentary film “Beyond Off-Grid” is nearing completion and includes a dozen specialists across the United States living self-reliant lifestyles.
4/2/2014
Compost happens, yes. But if food scraps are thrown into a pile and left to rot, a hot smelly mess may be taking over. That’s because the process of composting is a symbiotic relationship between carbon and nitrogen. Or at our home, cardboard and food scraps.
7/22/2012
Our minds can play tricks on us, and often do, bending and shaping our perceptions to our own liking. As a result, what we hold to be true about ourselves, others, even the world around us, can be dead wrong.
8/18/2010
Renowned inventor Craig Vetter discusses his history with aerodynamics and motorcycles, and his vision for doing more with less energy.
5/26/2011
What a nice surprise it can be to notice new spring babies emerging from where their parent plants grew the year before. Volunteer plants are a wonderful gift!
7/16/2012
Living a ranch life in northern New Mexico in the 1960s consisted of hard work and knowledge. It was not the romantic life that many people imagine it to have been.
2/19/2013
To say the sawmill is just a piece in the homestead puzzle might be a slight understatement. In some ways, it's a key factor.
5/29/2013
If know you're destined to live in the country, or just more self-reliantly, but are overwhelmed by all the choices, here's a place to start.
7/16/2013
The journey to a self-sufficient life is a bumpy ride. Having a backup plan — or two — can make all the difference in your progress.
9/28/2012
A MOTHER EARTH NEWS editor gets a chance to spend her birthday at the fair, surrounded by fun and inspiring people and activities.
5/26/2010
Self-pollinating apple trees allow homeowners with little space to reap the benefits of this fresh, nutritious fruit. While typical apple breeds require planting at least two trees in the same space so they can pollinate each other, self-fertile trees can produce fruit without another tree around.
5/14/2011
Steve Maxwell spotlights the three myths that prevent people from realizing the full value of the self reliant lifestyle, and how to dispel them
11/20/2011
Removing large quantities of snow. For more on how we cope with snow check out our personal blog at www.brucecarolcabin.blogspot.com where we post regular updates on our life here on the mountain.
1/6/2014
Self-dubbed “lunatic farmer” Joel Salatin describes how sustainable living and more conscientious agricultural practices can mend and revive a planet pushed near the brink.
10/17/2011
Actor Carel Struycken is famous for his role as Lurch in Addams Family, as well as many other roles. He is also a big proponent of permaculture. Nyerges talks with Struycken at his Pasadena home about permaculture and sustainable farming.
4/26/2012
Robert Maxwell discusses why he chose self-directed education over formal college, and how this option might work for others, too.
5/16/2012
This blog post tells what life was like on the self-sustaining farm of Olen and Anna Mae Showman located in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia during the middle of the 20th century.
9/12/2012
Deb Murphy shares her dad's boyhood stories about making ends meet on the farm in 1930s Nebraska.
2/10/2013
To counteract life's stresses and strains, to slow down the pace of life, stop and smell the roses...or any flower. In the absence of flowers, you'll find another way to bring a smile to your face, the songs of birds.
3/13/2012
In each of us is an innervoice that really knows what we want to be and what we want out of life but we continually ignore it for the sake of security or out of fear of failure or a million other reasons. Listen to the innervoice and heed its advice.
4/30/2012
Life is full of amazing things and remarkable people that make our lives richer and worthwhile. However, many of us hone in on what's wrong with life and others. Focusing on the good will bring great happiness to you. It will turn your life around.
5/21/2012
Many of us grow up disliking, even hating, ourselves. Learning to love oneself is no easy task, but it is vital to creating happiness and loving others. If you can learn to love yourself, you'll be rewarded many times over and be able to love others.
7/1/2012
Are you one who can't get things done on time or follow up on promises? If so, you are probably an excuse maker. To get off the hook, you'll come up with a thousand reasons why you didn't get your work done. Read this blog and put an end to excuses.
12/26/2013
With more than 40 years of expertise on how to live on less (and love it!), MOTHER EARTH NEWS introduces our Guide to Self-Reliance and Country Skills app. This app, available for both Apple and Android smartphones and tablets, contains advice and how-to on organic gardening, raising backyard chickens, canning and preserving your harvests, and how to save money by applying a DIY mentality to your life.
8/25/2011
When we stayed on an organic farm in Costa Rica, my kids and I experienced the beauty of self-sufficiency and saw how truly sustainable development benefits the local community as well as the global one. Mostly, we miss the homemade butter.
12/28/2012
Many readers can't say no to spouses, children, bosses, and so on. To please and care for others, we often sacrifice ourselves, working long hours, exhausting our energy. There is a cure. It's a two-letter word that starts with n. Try it.
1/1/2013
In this blog, I challenge readers to abandon the typically new year's resolution and embarking on a New Year's Revolution. Read it and see if you'd like to join me on what could be an exciting and profitable new venture.
1/19/2013
We all have a rule book inscribed in our minds that dictates how we and others should act. Though handy at times, it often becomes a liability, a huge liability. See why in this blog and what you can do about it.
10/1/2012
Worrying about what others think about you can drin you of energy and make you do some pretty stupid things. What if you could rid yourself of that penchant? What kind of life would you lead?
3/3/2012
Creating the life you want, both personally and professionally, requires clear goals. By establishing the direction of your journey and sticking to your goals, you can achieve anything you want.
3/9/2012
Many people admit that their lives haven't turned out the way they'd hoped. Fortunately, it is never too late to re-design and re-create your life so that you live up to your full potential and find the happiness and fulfillment you seek.
7/8/2012
Many of us listen to negative internal messages about ourselves that drag us down, robbing us of happiness. To find happiness, you must change the dialogue inside your head. Focus on what is good in you and all that you do to brighten others' lives.
8/8/2012
Our minds are powerful things. The beliefs we hold and our perceptions can be dead wrong. Our minds can even create pain that doesn't exist. Questioning what we perceive and believe can help you live a more conscious, honest and successful life.
9/12/2011
Rancho Margot in Costa Rica is completely off the grid and constantly closing the circle. Nothing is wasted on this self-sufficient ranch, where everything is considered a resource--including methane from the compost ovens.
3/27/2012
Learn about the advantages of urban farming from those who are leading the way. The benefits include improved food production, increased revenue sources and reduced energy use.
1/4/2013
In this New Year, my first recommendation for personal transformation is to give compliments generously to those who grace your life. You'll brighten the lives of others and your own life enormously.
11/11/2012
One of the big barriers to personal happiness is a nagging sense of inferiority. It starts early in life and plagues many of us throughout out lives, poisoning relationships and robbing us of happiness. Here's how to start erasing those feelings.
11/11/2012
One of the big barriers to personal happiness is a nagging sense of inferiority. It starts early in life and plagues many of us throughout out lives, poisoning relationships and robbing us of happiness. Here's how to start erasing those feelings.
3/24/2012
LIfe is full of adversity. Whether you succumb to it or bounce back is up to you. Knowing that no matter what life throws your way you will emerge stronger will help you become more resilient and stronger and will help you create a happier life
4/2/2012
Life presents many challenges, but if you consciously choose to be strong and resilient you can recover more quickly and grow even stronger. Your experiences will make you better able to cope and will help you live a happier, more productive life.
4/10/2012
Adversity is a part of life. Enbrace the hard times. Sometimes, adversity can lead to new opportunities that allow us to pursue new paths, sometimes even re-invent our lives. Knowing something good may arise can help us cope with adversity, too.
11/11/2012
One of the big barriers to personal happiness is a nagging sense of inferiority. It starts early in life and plagues many of us throughout out lives, poisoning relationships and robbing us of happiness. Here's how to start erasing those feelings.
12/12/2010
Building housing projects in developing regions is extremely rewarding, but also quite challenging. It’s prudent to draw ideas from as many resources as possible to improve the process. The following guidelines have proven effective.
2/21/2013
We all have dreams but why is it that some are so lucky that they come true?
1/13/2013
Many of us make a habit out of complaining, when in fact our lives are pretty good. In this blog I suggest that gaining perspective -- focusing on how good your life really is -- will help you live a much happier life. Give it a try.
5/1/2012
There's honey in the hive, peaches on the trees, and food on the table, but it's still a long way from self-sufficiency.
1/28/2013
OK,I'm giving no hints as to why you should think like a chemist...Read it and see for yourself. At the very least, you'll be entertained by a crazy new way of thinking about life.


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