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Homesteading/Living Simply/Self-Sufficiency


While homesteading, living simply and self-sufficiency all mean somewhat different things, we find that the three of them go together in a wonderfully synergistic manner. Focus on any one of the three seems to automatically bring progress in the other two categories in a very natural way. If we think of this as a triangle, homesteading and living simply form the two base angles with self-sufficiency forming the apex. One result of living this triangle is an enhanced awareness of the inner dependence on the Self, Nature, God and so on. Another result is that through the constant discovery and use of human power to meet challenges, we are brought into alignment with the laws of natural living. Below is an ever growing list of links divided only approximately into the three areas of homesteading, living simply and increasing self-sufficiency. As these categories overlap so much, looking through all three will give a broader view.

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Homesteading

American Livestock Breeds Conservancy - Many rare breeds are ideally suited to being raised on homesteads. They are hardy, developed historically for certain climates and geographical areas, disease resistant and tasty. Learn about them here, discover what is best suited to your area and serve yourself and your community through the livestock you chose to raise on your life enhancing homestead.

Center for Essential Education - " The Center for Essential Education at Homestead Heritage is dedicated to nurturing the enduring values of the past and applying them with new understanding to the present and the future, to create a living continuity from one generation to the next." We really appreciate this mission and the experiential work they are doing at their Homestead Heritage community. Their site offers kits and booklets on a variety of subjects. We own and frequently refer to their Soft Cheese Making booklet. It details simpler ways of making soft cheeses without fancy cultures and equipment.

Homestead.org - Rural Living Principle and Practice - With articles from a number of contributors, this site contains information about many aspects of homesteading including livestock, gardening and orcharding, self-employment, alternative energy, recipes and more. There is also a forum and a chat room available for interested homesteaders.

Homesteading Information Directory - Think of this as a very large homesteading data base. Lots of links, books for sale and so on. A great place to browse and learn.

The Humanure Handbook - Author Joseph Jenkins provides all of the knowledge, detail and how to's in this well known book for composting human "waste". He argues that using a limited supply of fresh drinking water to flush away a resource that should be transformed into soil building nutrients anyway is just plain wrong-headed. You can easily buy this book at Amazon.com and similar places. This link will take you to his book offered free on-line. Take a look. We can all save drinking water, improve our soils and build one more simple way to be free of the need for a power source all at the same time. His information about composting, by the way, is dense with scientific detail and eye opening.

Hydraulic Ram Pumps - "Low maintenance pumping of water without electricity" - This site has pages and pages of links to information and resources for pumping clean water. This organization works to provide clean drinking water all over the world. As such, their links cover ram pumps, hand pumps, water testing, well drilling, collecting rainwater and much more.

Kencove Farm Fence Supplies - Suppliers of every sort of fencing you may need for any type of livestock. Includes appropriate fencing and supplies for rotational grazing. Instructional books and videos. Free phone support and fencing manuals.

Many Tracks - I have read articles by Sue Robishaw for years in Countryside Magazine. This is her home web site together with Steve Schmeck. Find interesting articles here about homesteading, gardening, solar energy and solar ovens, art, folk dancing and more. What do you think of her window quilts? I am thinking of trying to make some for our farmhouse. Check out Many Tracks Publishing for some titles you probably haven't seen before and peruse the free Reader's Guide that goes with each books.

The Modern Homestead - This site is full of intelligent, informed writing about a range of homesteading areas of interest including raising poultry, establishing cow shares, caring for soil and even some fiction. Links, book lists, things to think about.

Raising Rare Livestock Breeds - This is the best article we have read about not only the importance of preserving rare breeds but also aspects to carefully consider in raising them yourself. Many links to rare breed organizations is included. Highly recommended.

Thomas J. Elpel's Web World Portal - These interconnected web sites take homesteading to a new level of consciousness and skill. Separate sites cover alternative building, wilderness survival, botany and more. Subjects of articles range from teaching recognizable growth patterns of plants to green business and economics to alternative technologies and energy sources to the shift in cultural consciousness aimed at in the work of his Green University™. A very thought provoking site with an important vision and useful and unusual resources.

Weblife.org - The mission of this site is to provide practical information about sustainable living for free. Find free books, information about cooking and nutrition, as well as art and poetry. Impressive page of links covering everything from technology to native skills and gardening and homeschooling in between.

 

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Living Simply

Aussies Living Simply - This is an online community of people dedicated to living simply, permaculture, raising livestock, organic gardening, skills in the kitchen and more. Find a seed exchange, recipes for foods and household products and more. Membership free.

Earth Star Primal Habitat - Kevin and Donna live in a beautiful B.E.L.L. (Biogenic, Ecodesic, Living Lighthouse) home they built themselves. They draw inspiration from the late Edmond Bordeaux Szekely, who translated the Essene Gospel of Peace and founded the Science of Biogenics for everything from the house they built to the food they eat and the lives they live which are becoming ever more natural and transparent. This web site offers a range of articles about natural nutrition and healing (lots of raw food here), meditation, simplicity and the practical know-how necessary to live this way. They have recently started writing for magazines. These articles along with a couple of their books are available on the web site. This site is very peaceful and I have gone back to it again and again for years. I frequently check in at their Creative Simplicity Discussion Group as well for conversation, useful info and resources.

Ecosustainable Hub - The link here is to the links page of this site which is subtitled "Resources and tools on ecology, environment and sustainability". This is a truly massive links page divided into 21 categories. At least some of it leads to living simply. Probably all of it leads to living interestingly.

Homemade Economy - A small, simple site with articles about why homemade brings benefit all the way to articles about using mind mapping for time management, planting a successful kitchen garden, knitting and saving energy.

The Simple Living Network - "Transform Your Life By Learning To Do More With Less" Find an extensive resource directory. Engage with study groups and discussions about living simply. Receive a free newsletter. As site says, "Resources, Tools, Examples & Contacts For Conscious, Simple, Healthy & Restorative Living".

 

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Self-Sufficiency

Beaver Buckets Authentic Reproductions List of Links to Historic Reproductions and Information - This is a broad list of links ranging all the way from the making of baskets, candles, soap and beaded jewelry to sources for washboards, historic clothing and furnishings, and tools of all kinds.

Deliberate Life - "homesteading, survival and voluntary simplicity" This web site contains an extensive list of information geared towards self-sufficiency such as how to make toothpaste, how to build a barn, an inspiring list of "Homestead Heroes", how to buy a tractor, how to forge at home and so on. Site includes a blog as well as a link to Deliberate Life: The Ultimate Homesteading Guide, her published book available through Lulu.com.

How Can I Recycle This? - Creative Ideas for Reusing and Recycling Random Stuff - People write in with questions about how to recycle everything from bones to old wallpaper, old T-shirts or old windshield wipers. Others write in with suggestions, resources and personal experience. A great site that can spark your imagination.

M&M Industries, Inc. - This family business sells plastic pails for storage and shipping. They cater to both industry and home storage needs. They sell Life Latch® pails for food storage and are happy to send samples.

Mini Farming for Self Sufficiency -

Oasis Design - The folks at Oasis Design provide original designs and content about living within the means the earth provides us. They specialize in practical systems for living well in harmony with nature and each other and believe that well managed resources obviate the motivations for resource wars. There are hundreds of pages of information here to get you started. Especially look for practical information on gray water systems.

Solar Haven - An older couple builds a haven of self-sufficiency in the desert. There are over 400 photos, diagrams and documents on the site to help others along the way. Review Ana Edy's classic book Solviva, How to Grow $500,000 on One Acre and Peace on Earth. There is also information on this site about wastewater in addition to detailed designs available for purchase for solar homes, greenhouses, and composting and grey water systems

Solviva - Sustainable Solar-Dynamic Bio-Benign Design Offering Better Ways to Live, at Less Cost Today and Tomorrow, Anywhere on Earth - That subtitle should be enough to make you want to pay a visit to this web site.

USA Emergency Supply - I found this site when looking for a better price on Gamma Lids. Carries a full range of food storage, self-sufficiency and emergency supplies. No intense philosophy - just information. Great prices.


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