Am I Really a Homesteader? (How I Got Here & Where I’m Going)


Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.Warning: This post is a little long, and at first it might not seem homesteading related. But I want to start to really tell my story and my truth as I move deeper into the homesteading lifestyle and share more of myself here with my readers. This is the story of how I evolved into the person I am today: a homesteader, writer, country girl, punk rocker at heart and so much more.

I turned 31 yesterday. It was uneventful. I blogged and worked all day. I mommed. My husband worked on our new house. Our old house where we still live was quiet and I spent most of the day alone as my daughter slept and my phone lay dormant with a dead battery. 

It certainly doesn’t compare to my 21st birthday, full of drinking and debauchery and meeting new friends in foreign lands (I lived in Europe when I turned 21). Instead, 31 is peaceful, and this birthday has been a time of reflection rather than a time of raucous celebration. And that’s just fine with me. Because that’s the life stage that I’m in right now:)

But as I reflected on my life until now and on all of the stages I’ve gone through, I thought hard about this homesteading journey that I’ve found myself on. Is it really a forever thing? Is it just a phase? A stage in my life? Will I still want to live this way at 41? 51? 81? 

Ten years ago, homesteader wasn’t even a part of my vocabulary, let alone a title I gave myself. Back then I defined myself as a world traveller, a University student, a writer and a bit of an anarchist. Today I am much, MUCH more of a homebody than a traveller (homesteaders often are, but funds and family circumstances don’t exactly allow for a lot of jet setting these days either). 

Two degrees and tens of thousands of dollars later, I’m finally no longer a University student. I am definitely still a writer. That I have always been. And deep down I’m still a rebel at heart, although I don’t know that I would use the term “anarchist” anymore.

Somewhere along the way, I stumbled upon this homesteading lifestyle and fell in love. And the rest, as they say, is history. It is now a piece of me and a large part of how I define myself. Have I changed? Did I used to be someone that now I’m not? Am I someone now that I will no longer be ten years from now? Of course! But I prefer to use the term “evolve.”

 

Related: The Difficult Path to the Simple Life

 

On Rebranding Myself

A family member with a career in marketing said to me the other day “you should do something where you teach people how to rebrand themselves, because you’ve rebranded yourself many times over the years.”

She continued, “you used to be a skater girl, then a punk rocker,” and as she trailed off, I filled in the rest…

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.

In my “punk rock” days, I was definitely more into music and straight up rebellion than gardening and self-reliance, but I’ve realized over the years that they go hand-in-hand and those days helped shape who I am today and the values system I continue to live by.

I was a punk rocker for a good few years. It was during the “anarchist” days throughout high school and my early twenties. I was really only ever a wannabe skater girl. I was too scared of hurting myself to ever actually ride my skateboard. Go figure… This country girl at heart has just never done well with concrete!

But I was most definitely a punk rocker. I was angsty in my teenage years, like many others of a similar age. I was also a writer for a local youth newspaper because I had always been a writer. I’d been writing since I could hold a pen -anything and everything. And this continued throughout my teen years. I used this gift to write music reviews of bands I loved, listened to and even got to meet. I used it to write social commentary on the ills of society. And I used it as therapy, because writing has always helped me to organize my thoughts and clear my mind.

I was also aware and engaged in politics and social issues and held a deep disdain for authority figures who abused their power; For unfair laws and practices that benefitted the rich and while taking power away from the poor and marginalized; For social conventions and accepted norms that brought harm to our planet and the people on it, and for so much more that I thought of as wrong with the world.

I dealt with it by rebelling and wearing my contempt on my sleeve in the form of studded leather arm bands and tattoos. I listened to punk music where others used their guitars and microphones to reinforce the message that society was doomed, governments were corrupt and there was basically no hope for the future, so let’s all get drunk. And I did. I drank too much and did whatever I could to get out of my mind and forget that the world was as shitty and unfair and unforgiving as it appeared to me in the sober daylight hours. And it worked. For a while.

But as I aged and matured, I began to grow out of this angsty teenage stage of life and look for meaning and identity in other places. 

When I went on to University, I had the opportunity to do a study-abroad program in Vienna, Austria. I snapped it up and went off to Europe for a few months. I travelled across 16 countries while I was living there and had the time of my life. Travelling started to open up a whole new world to me. 

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.I caught the travel bug bad, and when I got home I was already planning my next trip. But I was still a punk rocker at heart. And I was still a writer. I was enrolled in journalism school after all and was still writing social commentary about all of the things that pissed me off when I was fully entrenched in my “punk rocker” stage of life. I just didn’t wear studs anymore.

 

My Travelling Years

In my early and mid twenties, I became a world traveller. It’s sort of what I was known for at this time in my life. I had done my stint in Europe, and it wasn’t long after I’d returned home to Canada that I was invited to participate in a volunteer program in Africa for a few months. Of course I jumped at the opportunity.

 

Related: Living “Off the Land” in Africa: Finding Homestead Inspiration In An Unlikely Place

 

I ended up living in West Africa for a few months and it changed my life and perceptions in so many ways. Read more about my time in Africa here, and how it helped shape me into the person (and homesteader) I’ve become today.

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.

This is called “African Homesteading” 😉

I was exposed to a completely different way of life and the culture shock was like a defibrillator to the heart. My experience living in West Africa changed me in profound ways that I only now understand as I reflect back on my experience almost a decade ago. But when I returned home, I was still that punk rocker at heart. Africa had only reinforced to me that the world is divided among unfair lines, that the unequal distribution of global wealth is one of societies greatest downfalls and that ignorance can dehumanize even the most beautiful people because we fail to look past the surface and only know what we hear from others who are like us.

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.I was still a writer too, and now I had started documenting the world through the lens of a camera. So I guess you could say I was a photographer too. Not a great one, but it became part of my arsenal nonetheless.

And by now I was definitely a world traveller. I couldn’t wait for my next big trip.

 

The Corporate “City Girl” Days

I had always grown up in the city, I was born and raised in Vancouver, BC, and that’s where I always came back to. So when I returned from Africa, that’s where I returned to.

I finished up the last few requirements of my journalism degree and by this time I was itching to get a job in the “real world.” I ended up getting hired on as a travel consultant with a major agency and got assigned to an office right in the heart of downtown Vancouver. I felt like a big kid now.

I had finally moved out of my mom’s place in the suburbs and was living in the south end of the city. I took the train downtown to work every morning, enjoyed drinks and appies at some of the hottest spots after work on many an evening, and took the train home at night. 

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.

I worked in travel sales and looked at brochures and flight routes day in and day out for a year and a half, and my heart still ached to see the world.

At home, inspired by the self-sufficiency and cooking skills I’d picked up and been privy to in Africa, I started to learn to make a few meals for myself and even grew a small herb garden and a few tomato plants (although I honestly don’t remember if they ever even bore fruit). 

A piece of me wanted nothing more than to travel forever, and another piece of me yearned to create a life for myself and (one day) a family in a comfortable home where I’d spend my days in the kitchen creating things from scratch. I guess it was the first real thoughts I had had about anything “homestead” related, but those thoughts were in a stage of infancy back then and I had no idea what they would lead to.

At 24, I was still a world traveller. I still had places to knock off my bucket list, and that was my priority. But being a travel agent downtown was stressful. There was always pressure to sell more, mark up higher and work longer hours. 

One time, I went to visit some good friends (my friend whom I had lived with and travelled around Europe with and her new husband) at their new home on a small, rural island off the west coast of B.C. I remember the feeling I had as soon as I got off the ferry and met my friend. I had an overwhelming sense of peace and calm come over me. And as we stood on her balcony later, overlooking gardens and forest and deer roaming the backyard, enjoying the silence of the forest with no traffic or city sounds to interfere, at that moment I knew that at some point in my life, I needed out of the city. I needed to be here, or in a place much like this.

But I returned to the city and to the traffic noises and to my stressful job and planned my next move, which, at this point in my life, was not to some small, rural island, but to the very large and exciting island of Australia. I would travel there to see my other good friend (whom I had lived with in Africa) and would spend a year there working, travelling and gathering more incredible experiences to fill my memory bank with.

 

How I Met My Mister

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.I had also recently met my now husband, Ryan, and we maintained a long distance relationship while I was there. After four months of flying solo, he joined me in Melbourne, and we’ve been together ever since.

We split the rest of the year there between living in Melbourne (sometimes in a tent in our friends’ backyard and other times in a rooming house with a bunch of strangers), travelling all over the country (from the East Coast to the West Coast and the Outback in between), and living  in a trailer park in Byron Bay, where I worked as a maid and ran home daily screaming about cockroaches and big, disgusting spiders. 

Ryan did the occasional repair job or got a travel sales gig in town every now and then (we had met working at the same travel agency). But between maid work and his occasional paid gig, money was always really tight. So this is where we really learned to live frugally as we needed to get creative about making our money stretch. 

One of the main ways we did this was by cooking almost everything from scratch. We would make our weekly trip to the grocery store, load up on all of the basic, staple items that were on sale for a reasonable price and walk back a fair distance with a shopping cart we had “borrowed” from the store. Then we would cook up all sorts of meals from scratch with the basic meat, veggies, bread and dairy products we had purchased from the store. Sure we weren’t baking the bread from scratch, but I loved the empowering feeling I got from creating a tasty, nourishing and overall satisfying meal with our own two hands from a few basic ingredients. 

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.

Ryan and I ready to cook up a meal for a visiting friend in our doublewide trailer in Byron Bay. This is where I learned the true value of frugality and how to make a dollar really stretch. P.S. Check out those tans!

Other than the occasional tin of soup or package of cheap ramen noodles, this really was when my love for cooking from scratch grew from the seed that had been planted during my time in Africa to a healthy seedling waiting to be nurtured into something bigger.

 

Home Is Where My Heart Was

When we finally returned home from Australia in 2012, we began settling into domestic life in our new condo back in the suburbs of Vancouver. For the first time in years, I couldn’t wait to put down some roots in one place and start nurturing my newest passions, which included cooking from scratch and setting up a comfortable home.

And that’s exactly what I did. And a couple years later we got married. And I went back to school to get my teaching degree because, even though I was still a writer, and a punk rocker at heart who had now earned a gig writing social commentary under a pseudonym for an edgy new local magazine, I was now in the market for a more stable life with a stable job that would give me enough time off to do the things that now called to my soul: Domestic activities like cooking and crafting and creating and keeping house.

So I became a University student once again. But quite honestly my heart wasn’t in it. Not fully anyway. 

In my downtime, I started watching cooking shows that inspired me in the kitchen, and both Ryan and I started watching a lot of documentaries about the food industry and factory farms and how it’s all produced. And the punk rocker in my heart watched in contempt as a fire burned in my belly that urged me to do something about this injustice, this deceit, this awful practice of pumping out pesticide-ridden, hormone-injected, horribly raised and treated, overly-processed food (some of which can hardly even be considered food) in order to turn a profit and feed the world’s population for a cheap price tag (but a very hefty cost to our overall health and well-being). 

And so I started down the path of wanting to know where my food came from and how it got to my dinner plate. And that eventually led me to my local farms and farmers markets. And to watching shows about farming and homesteading and self-sufficiency. And it got me really excited, because for the first time, I felt like I could make some real, tangible life choices that were in line with my beliefs and with who I was and always had been deep down. 

 

Related: Why I Homestead

 

Homesteading aligned with the writer in me who knew deep down that I wanted to share what I was learning with the world. It aligned with the punk rocker in me that was disgruntled with the status quo and wanted to be a force for real, positive change in the world. It aligned with my quiet, rural soul that longed to find peace somewhere out in the country, closer to nature and far away from the traffic sounds and bright lights of the big city. It even aligned with the traveller in me who was never afraid to pack up and lay down roots in a new and unfamiliar place. And I figured I could be a teacher and a homesteader at the same time, so why not?

As we learned more about the homesteading lifestyle, we made plans to move to a more rural area of our province and even set a rough date to do so, but we still lived in our condo in the suburbs for at least a couple years after we even started talking about moving. 

In the meantime, I learned as much as I could about this lifestyle I wanted to lead. I took out cookbooks and homesteading guides from the local library, tried new recipes and grew a few herbs (although growing anything on our north-facing, shaded balcony was tough). 

I became really familiar with our local farmers and farmers markets and started learning more about cooking with organic, local foods, what grew well in our area (and in the area we planned on moving to), what wild edibles were available to us and how to forage for them, and even how to preserve seasonal foods in the most basic ways, like freezing and infusing them in oils and alcohol.

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.

I fell in love with cooking healthy meals from scratch with local, seasonal ingredients. This was the slippery slope that eventually led me down the homesteading path I’m on today!

Eventually, the time came to move. And while the move itself was actually quite traumatic (which I plan to write about someday in a future post), when we finally settled into our new home on Vancouver Island, I knew we had made the right life choice.

For the past three years we have lived here, in the same place where we started out: in a 100-year-old farmhouse on a one-acre lot with a small garden we put in and an equally small greenhouse and a few fruit trees and a huge yard that we share with our neighbours who free range chickens and sell us their eggs. 

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.

Our current house that we will be moving from soon. We’ve learned so much living here in just 3 short years. We grew our first gardens here, learned how to can food here and acquired many other valuable skills we will take with us as we continue to evolve on our journey.

During our time here, we have really dove in deep to the homesteading lifestyle and continue to dive deeper. While we don’t grow nearly all of our food at home, we do grow a variety of fruits and vegetables each year and have acquired all sorts of homestead-y skills over the past three years, like organic gardening, canning and preserving foods, baking bread from scratch, candle-making, DIY-ing many of our home and body products, building our own garden beds, greenhouse, composter, hoop houses and indoor growing stands, and much, much more.

This year, we purchased our first house as we now have our second child on the way and need to move out of this wonderful “starter homestead” that we’ve been renting. We’re actually downsizing to 1/4-acre lot, but one with much, much more established garden space than we have here with huge potential for food production.

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.

Our new house. Small but mighty and brimming with homesteading potential!

No, we still won’t grow all of our food for the year on our little plot of land. And no, we still aren’t quite in a position to have livestock yet. But with every day, week, month and year that passes, we continue to move deeper into this homesteading lifestyle, and even on the most difficult days, I never doubt that this is the right path for me and my family.

The writer in me has found a niche as well, and has flourished with passion ever since I launched this homesteading blog a year ago, on my 30th birthday. The punk rocker in me feels like I’m sticking it to the system by increasing my self-sufficiency and making conscious life choices that align with my core values rather than willingly lining the pockets of the people and corporations that I loathe. The quiet, rural soul in me is finally finding peace out in the country, doing what she loves best: gardening, cooking, creating and living a slow, simple life. The University student in me is glad to have finally found my true calling in life, and to be able to put those writing and photography skills from journalism school to good use. 

As for my teaching degree, while I did work as a teacher for a few years, I decided that’s not for me. But I do know I want to homeschool my own children, and I feel confident that I have the skills to do that. And the traveller in me? She’s fulfilled having seen much of the world already and is happy to be in one place for a while, putting all of her experiences, learning and skills to use in this new stage of life. 

Have you ever wondered whether you can really call yourself a homesteader or felt like other people think homesteading is just a phase you'll grow out of? I have. But guess what: I am a homesteader, among many other things that led me to where I am today. This is my story.So as I sit here, now 31, reflecting on my past and on all the things I’ve done and people I’ve been, I wonder “am I really a homesteader?” And I know that the answer is yes. It’s a piece of me now just like all of the other pieces of me. And it always will be.

Sure, I may evolve over time. My passions and interests and talents and skills will grow and change and adapt, but I will always be all of the things that make me who I am, and I am proud to add homesteader to that list.

Because at the end of the day, I’ve never rebranded myself. I’ve built my character over the years. I’ve spent time really getting to know who I am and what my purpose is. I’ve travelled the world in search of myself. I’ve studied, rebelled, experienced and written for years trying to find the right path for me and my soul. Now I’ve found it, and while I don’t know exactly what that path will look like 10, 20 or 50 years from now, I know that I’m headed in the right direction, and that, in fact, I always have been.

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1 Comment

  1. Gerald Banda

    Very inspiring!

    Reply

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ABOUT ANNA
Hi! I’m Anna, and I’m a city girl turned modern homesteader who’s passionate about growing, cooking and preserving real food at home, creating my own herbal medicine and all-natural home and body care products, and working toward a simpler, more sustainable and self-sufficient life each and every day. 
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Never before have we had access to so much information at our fingertips. Whether you have a question you need answered, are looking for a tutorial to walk you through a specific task or are searching for a recipe to help you figure out what to make for dinner, all you have to do is Google it.⁣

But the problem is that there's no real way to be sure whether the information you find on line is genuine. Is the person who wrote or shared it actually sharing their own experience, or are they too simply regurgitating answers that they Googled?⁣

As we barrel full speed ahead into the era of AI and deep fakes, it will be even more difficult to know whether the information you're getting is even from a real human!⁣

While it's definitely an exciting time to be alive, so many people are feeling overwhelmed, and are craving a return to the analog world; To a world where information was shared in the pages of trusted books and publications, or was passed on from human to human, from someone who held that knowledge not because they Googled it, but because they lived it, experienced it, even mastered it.⁣

That what sets Homestead Living magazine apart from much of the information you'll find online: We don't have staff writers, we have experienced homesteaders sharing their hard-won wisdom in each issue. And while we do offer a digital version, we're also now offering monthly PRINT issues for U.S. subscribers (Canada and elsewhere hopefully coming soon!)⁣

Plus, until the end. of January, you can get your first 12 issues of Homesteading Monthly for just $1.00!⁣

No matter where you are on your homesteading journey, if you've been feeling overwhelmed with the sheer volume of information and the noise of the online world and have been craving a return to the real, the tangible and, quite frankly, the human, Homesteading Monthly was made for you. ⁣

For homesteaders, by homesteaders.⁣

*** Comment "Homestead" below and I'll send you the link to subscribe! ***
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When I graduated from university with a degree in journalism many years ago, I remember thinking that while I knew how to write, edit, interview, shoot, and handle just about every part of creating a publication from the editorial standpoint, I really had no clue how to actually get published, let alone how the printing process works.

Over the years I’ve followed my passion for writing, editing and creating content, figuring much of it out on my own. From creating my blog to “self-publishing” my own digital/print magazine for the last 4 years, I’ve taught myself most of the practical skills necessary for turning an idea into a publication and getting said publication in the hands and in front of the eyes of many hundreds of readers.

But now that I’ve joined forces with the team at @homesteadlivingmagazine and @freeportpress, we’re all able to level up and reach many THOUSANDS of print and digital readers together.

People are HUNGRY for tried and tested advice on homesteading and self-reliant living. There’s a huge movement happening right now as more people wake up to all of the corruption in the world and realize that many of the systems we have come to depend on are fragile and on the brink of collapse. People are ready to take matters into their own hands by growing their own food, preparing their own meals, becoming producers instead of merely consumers and taking control of their health, freedom, security and lives.

I’m so proud to not only be a part of this movement, but to be at the forefront of it with some of the most passionate, talented and driven individuals I could ask to work with.

Getting to meet and brainstorm with some of the team in person and tour the printing facilities over the last few days has opened up a whole new world of possibilities, not just for me, but for everyone who considers themselves part of the modern homesteading movement. We are growing faster than I could have ever imagined. We’re creating a system outside of the system! We’re charging full steam ahead and we invite you to climb aboard and join us for the ride:)

#homesteading #modernhomesteading #homesteadliving #selfsufficiency #selfreliance
...

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It’s been a minute since I popped into IG to say hi. (Hi! 👋) But before I share what’s been going on behind the scenes, I thought it would be a good time to (re)introduce myself, because I’ve never actually done that before!

My name’s Anna, and I’m a city girl turned modern homesteader living in the beautiful Comox Valley on Vancouver Island. I live with my family (human, furry and feathered) on 1/4 acre property where we grow and preserve hundreds of pounds of our own food every year, and strive to live a more self-reliant lifestyle in all that we do.

I grew up in Vancouver and had pretty much zero experience homesteading before my husband, Ryan and I decided we wanted to escape the rat race, become less dependent on the modern industrial food system (and all modern industrialized systems), and dove head first into this lifestyle around a decade ago.

We packed up and moved to Vancouver Island where we live now, started our first garden, and the rest is pretty much history.

(Well, actually that’s not true… There have been A LOT of ups and downs, successes and failures, wins and losses, struggles, challenges and pivotal moments along the way, but those are stories for another day).

Over the past few years, our decision to follow a less conventional path that aims to break free (at least in some part) from “the system” has been affirmed over and over again. We all know for a fact now that our food system, healthcare system, financial system, transportation system and so much more are all really just a house of cards built on shaky ground. We’ve been lucky so far, but sooner or later it’s all liable to collapse.

But preparedness and security isn’t the only thing that drives us… The peace of mind I get knowing that everything we grow is 100% organic, and that the ingredients in our food, medicine, personal and household products are safe and natural is worth more than anything I could buy at the grocery store.

(I’m not perfect though. Not by a long shot. I still rely on the grocery store, on modern medicine, and on many modern conveniences to get by, but I balance it as much as I can:)

(Continued in comments…)
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I’m all about practical gifts; Gifts that will truly make life easier and contribute to my and my family’s wellbeing. And our family includes our animals!

One of the ways we make sure our chickens are taken care of is by letting them free range during the day, but making sure they’re locked up and safe from predators at night. But who wants to be up at the crack of dawn to open the coop, or wake up to a bloodbath because you forgot to close the coop the night before?

(The answer is obviously no one… No one wants that).

Automating our homesteading tasks as much as possible allows us to worry about other things and saves us a ton of time. Plus, it makes sure that things get taken care of, whether we remember or not.

Using an automatic chicken door has been a GAME CHANGER for us. It’s one of those lesser known homestead tools that can make all the difference, and I’m always recommending one to anyone who keeps chickens!

This chicken door from @chickcozy_ is so easy to install and use too, and right now you can get one for a steal during their Black Friday sale!

Save over $40 off an automatic chicken door, plus use my coupon code for an ADDITIONAL DISCOUNT!

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Comment “Chicken” below for more info and to get my exclusive coupon code! 🐓

#chicken #chickens #chickendoor #chickcozyautodoor #chickcozy #chickensofinstagram #chickensofig #chickenlover #homesteadlife
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Yes, you read that right…

Modern Homesteading Magazine is coming to an end.

This decision has not come easily, but there’s a season for everything, and more and more I’m feeling called to transition out of this season and into the next in both life and business.

And so this final farewell issue is bittersweet. On the one hand, it’s the first ever annual issue, with 100 pages packed with brand new content that celebrates the best of the past 32 issues!

And it’s the first issue I’ve ever offered in PRINT!

But on the other hand, it marks the end of an era, and of this publication that I’ve absolutely had the pleasure of creating and sharing with you.

If you’re a digital subscriber, you will not be charged a renewal fee going forward, and will continue to have access to the digital library until your subscription runs out. As part of your subscription, you’re able to download and/or print each issue of you like, so that you never lose access to the hundreds of articles and vast amount of information in each issue.

Rather than subscribing, you can now purchase an all-access pass for a one-time fee of just $20, which gives you access to our entire digital library of issues.

Plus, for a limited time, when you purchase an all-access pass you’ll also get a gift certificate for a second all-access pass to gift to someone else.

I’m also still taking preorders for the print version of this special edition issue, but only for a few more weeks!

When you preorder the print issue, you’ll also get a digital copy of the special edition issue (this issue only), and will receive a print copy in the mail later this year (hopefully by Christmas so long as there are no shipping delays!)

Click the link in my profile or visit modernhomesteadingmagazine.com to check out the latest issue, purchase an all-access pass to the digital library and/or preorder the print issue today!

Thanks to everyone who has read the magazine over the past 4 years. I’m humbled and grateful for your support, and can’t wait to share whatever comes next:)

#modernhomesteading #homesteading #homesteadersofinstagram
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It’s easy to romanticize homesteading, but the truth is that those homegrown vegetables, those freshly laid eggs, that loaf of bread rising on the counter, and that pantry full of home-canned food takes time, effort and dedication. It doesn’t “just happen” overnight!

But if you work on learning one new skill at a time and gain confidence in it before moving onto the next, one day you’ll be looking back and marvelling at how far you’ve come.

That’s where I’m at now. Life today looks a lot different than it did 10 years ago, when our homesteading and self-reliance journey was just beginning.

Back then we still lived in our city condo and were just beginning to dabble in all of this stuff. But my husband Ryan and I felt a sense urgency to start pursuing a more self-reliant lifestyle, and we committed to taking small steps, one day at a time to make that vision a reality.

Over the years we’ve continued to put one foot in front of the other, adding new skills and tackling new projects along the way that have helped us get to where we are today.

While there’s always more we want to learn and do, as I look around me right now, I’m so grateful that we took those first steps, especially considering what’s happened in the world over the past few years!

If you’re also feeling the urgency to take the first (or next) steps toward a more self-reliant life, this is your final reminder that today is the last day to join The Society of Self-Reliance and start levelling up your homesteading and self-sufficiency skills so that you’ve got what it takes to:

• Grow your own groceries
• Stock your pantry
• Create a natural home
• Get prepared
• Learn other important life skills like time management for homesteaders, goal setting and how to become your own handyman

And more!

If you’ve been feeling called to level up your self-reliance skills (because let’s be honest, we’re in for a wild ride these next few years with everything going on in the world), now is the time to heed that call.

Link in profile to enroll before midnight tonight, or go to thehouseandhomestead.com/society

#homesteading #selfreliance #selfsufficiency #homesteadingskills #preparedness
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There are so many reasons to grow your own food at home:

💰 Saves you money at the grocery store
🍴 Healthier than conventionally grown food
🔑 increases your overall food security
🫙 Gives you an abundance to preserve and share

But perhaps the number one reason is because it just tastes better!

Not only does food taste better when it’s freshly picked or allowed to ripen on the vine, there’s something about putting in the work to grow something from a tiny seed and then getting to see it on your dinner plate that just makes it so much more satisfying than anything you’ll ever buy from the store.

Plus, having to wait all year for fresh tomatoes or strawberries or zucchinis to be in season makes that short period when they’re available just that much more exciting!

With the world spinning out of control and food prices continuing to rise, it’s no wonder more people are taking an interest in learning to grow their own food at home. But that also means changing our relationship with food and learning to appreciate the work that goes into producing it and the natural seasonality of organically grown fruits and vegetables.

(It also means learning to preserve it so you can make the most of it and enjoy homegrown food all year long).

In my online membership program, The Society of Self-Reliance, you’ll learn how to grow your own food, from seed to harvest, as well as how to preserve it so you can enjoy the fruits (and vegetables) of your labor all year long!

You’ll also learn how to grow and craft your own herbal medicine, detox your home, become your own handyman, and so much more (because self-reliance is about more than just the food that we eat… But that’s a pretty good place to start!)

The doors to the Society are now open for a limited time only. Click the link in my profile or go to thehouseandhomestead.com/society to learn more.

#foodsecurity #homegrownfood #homesteading #selfreliance #selfsufficiency #homegrownfoodjusttastesbetter
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If you’ve been watching events unfold over the past few years and you’re feeling called to start “cutting ties” with the system and begin reclaiming your independence, The Society of Self-Reliance was made for you!

When I first launched this online membership program last year, my goal was to create a one-stop resource where members could go to learn and practice every aspect of self-reliance, as well as a space to connect with other like-minded people pursuing the same goal. And that’s exactly what you’ll get when you join!

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn inside the Society:

🌱 Food Security and Self-Sufficiency: Learn the art of growing and preserving your own food, ensuring you and your loved ones have access to nutritious meals year-round.

🌿 Natural Living and Herbal Medicine Mastery: Discover the secrets to creating a low-tox home and and to growing, making and using herbal remedies to support your family’s health, naturally.

🔨 Essential Life Skills: Learn essential life skills like time management, effective goal setting and practical DIY skills to become more self-sufficient.

As a member, you’ll enjoy:

📚 Monthly Video Lessons: Gain access to our ever-growing library of video lessons, with fresh content added each month.

📞 Live Group Coaching Calls: Participate in our monthly live group coaching calls, where we deep dive into a different self-reliance topic every month, and do live demonstrations and Q&A’s.

🏡 Private Community: Join our private community forum where you can ask questions, share your progress, and connect with like-minded individuals.

I only open the doors to The Society once or twice each year, but right now, for one week only, you can become a member for just $20/month (or $200/year).

In today’s world, self-reliance is no longer a luxury, a “cute hobby,” it’s a necessity. Join us inside The Society of Self-Reliance and empower yourself with the skills you need to thrive in the new world!

Link in profile or visit thehouseandhomestead.com/society to learn more.

#selfreliance #selfreliant #selfsufficiency #selfsufficientliving #sustainableliving #modernhomesteading #homesteadingskills #preparedness
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Got out for an early morning harvest today. Been up since 3am, contemplating life, the future and the past, the order of things…

There is a rumbling right now, not just in North America, but around the world. Many of us can feel it, and know we are on the precipice of something big.

I’d been hearing about this new song that’s become an overnight viral sensation, written by an (until now) unknown singer named Oliver Anthony. His new song Rich Men North of Richmond has had 14 million views on YouTube in the past week alone, so I decided to check it out.

I also saw a clip of him playing a Farmers Market last week, and anything that has to do with Farmers Markets always has my attention;)

I can’t tell you how many tears I’ve already cried listening to that song. If you’ve heard it already, you probably know what I’m talking about, and if you haven’t, I highly recommend giving it a listen. All I can say is it’s been a while since a song resonated so deeply with me, and in this strange new world, I know I’m not the only one.

One of the lines in Anthony’s song is “Livin’ in the new world, with an old soul,” and that’s something I think so many of us in the homesteading community can relate to.

Trying to cling to better days; To a simpler time; To the old ways, all while doing our best to get by in the new world.

The world has changed drastically in the last few years especially, and it’s set to change in immense ways over the next few years. Today I’m feeling thankful for people like @oliver_anthony_music_ who give a voice to what so many are feeling right now.

Know that if you’re feeling it too, you’re far from alone. And while the future may feel uncertain and even a little scary, remember that if we stand united, we the people are a force to be reckoned with.

(Continued in comments…)
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Another garlic harvest in the books!

Garlic is easily one of my favourite crops to grow. It’s pretty much a “set if and forget it” crop. We plant in the fall and leave it to overwinter, fertilize a couple times in the spring, start watering only once the ground starts to dry out, and then harvest in the summer. We can even plant a fall succession crop after our garlic if we want so it really makes great use of garden space all year round.

Over the years we’ve managed to become completely self-sufficient with garlic. We now grow enough to eat all year (and then some!), plus we save our own seed garlic and usually have extra to sell or give away. And around here fresh, organic garlic ain’t cheap, so it’s a good cash crop for anyone who’s serious about selling it.

It took me a few years to really get the hang of garlic, but it’s one crop I’m now very confident with (knock on wood, because it’s always when we make statements like this that next year’s crop fails! Lol.)

A while back I compiled a comprehensive guide to growing, harvesting and using garlic both as an edible and medicinal crop. This is usually only available as part of a paid bundle (or in the fall 2022 issue of Modern Homesteading Magazine if you’re a subscriber;), but for a limited time I’m offering it for free, no strings attached!

Plus you’ll also get access to my step-by-step video lesson on planting garlic so you can set yourself up for success with your garlic crop this year.

Comment “Garlic” below or head to thehouseandhomestead.com/garlic-guide to get your free copy!
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#garlic #garlicharvest #homesteading #selfsufficient #selfsufficiency #selfsufficientliving #selfreliance #homegrown #groworganic #growfoodnotlawns #gardenersofinstagram #homesteadersofinstagram
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Going through photos and videos from our trip to the @modernhomesteadingconference and the vast majority are of our daughter having the time of her life!

Even if I personally got nothing else out of this gathering (which I most certainly did), watching her discover her own love of this lifestyle outside of what we do at home made my heart grow three sizes!

Homesteading is about so much more than homegrown food and self-reliance. It’s about passing on invaluable skills and an understanding of and respect for our connection to the land that provides for us to the next generation.

Being around so many other kids and families who are also pursuing a homesteading lifestyle helped show our little one that this is a movement that is so much bigger and greater than what our own family does on our little plot of land. This is a lifestyle worth pursuing, with a community unlike any other.

Glad to be back home and more excited than ever to involve my kids in everything we’re doing. But also, I think I speak for my whole family when I say we can’t wait to go back someday!
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#homesteading #modernhomesteading #raisinglittles
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If you’re simply looking for ways to save a little extra cash this summer and live well for less, here are 12 tried and tested frugal living tips for summer that you can use to save money this season without sacrificing a thing.
Head over using the link in my bio!
https://thehouseandhomestead.com/12-frugal-living-tips-summer/
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#houseandhomestead
#momentsofcalm
#pursuejoy
#simplepleasuresoflife
#thatauthenticfeeling
#findhappiness
#artofslowliving
#simplelifepleasures
#lifesimplepleasure
#simplepleasuresinlife
#thatauthenticlife
#authenticlifestyle
#liveanauthenticlife
#livinginspired
#savouringhappiness
#livemoment
#localgoodness
#simplelive
#lifeouthere
#enjoywhatyouhave
#frugallifestyle
#homesteadingmama
#offgridhomestead
#modernfarmhousekitchen
#crunchymama
#rusticfarmhouse
#farmhouseinspo
#farmhouselife
#modernhomesteading
#backyardfarmer
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