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The Self-sufficient Simple Life: Let's discuss how to prepare...

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  • The Self-sufficient Simple Life: Let's discuss how to prepare...

    There's a warm thought floating 'round 'tween my ears, and it's this:

    A life with a woman away from Bustle and Hustle on a small plot of fertile, fenced-in land.

    There's a hand-made hut, and a plain vegetable garden and a crowd of Chickens and Cows roaming free on lush grass.

    What I'd like to discuss is what essential knowledge and tools will be needed to achieve the budding dream. What work is there for me to do to attain the simple life in order to survive away from it all?

  • #2
    learn to butcher your animals, learn to can your food. depending on how off the grid you want to go, candle and soap making, composting your feces, using your urine as fertilizer

    some simple sewing skills are always handy, how to do hut and equipment repairs

    that's all i can think of off the top of my head i'd like my own little farm one day
    yeah you are

    Baby if you time travel back far enough you can avoid that work because the dust won't be there. You're too pretty to be working that hard.


    • #3
      I understand the sentiment but keep in mind that living alone in the woods really isn't primal. People have always lived in groups. We had to. As a species our best attributes were brains and cooperation.


      • #4
        Originally posted by Rojo View Post
        I understand the sentiment but keep in mind that living alone in the woods really isn't primal. People have always lived in groups. We had to. As a species our best attributes were brains and cooperation.
        Being around other people is important. Yes, I would seek out companionship.


        • #5
          Can we get like 100 acres and me and my family come join you? There, now its a group and primal. Maybe 200 acres...

          learn how to butcher and use every part of the animal, including cutting up the meat, making sausage, jerky, tanning the hide, etc.
          learn to garden for that specific area
          learn what natural foods will be available and how to harvest them
          learn how to store all types of food (canning, drying, etc. I know canning isn't exactly primal but...)
          learn some advanced types of medicine and CPR, the more advanced the farther you are from modern medicine.
          speaking of that, how are you getting around? if someone hacks off a foot while chopping wood are you dragging them on a sled or harnessing up one of the cows? think up contingency plans for if things go wrong and be prepared (ie how are you training that cow to pull a wagon)
          learn how to sew/knit/weave/cobble/carve
          study the weather patterns for that area. are you going to need a lot of firewood in winter just to stay warm? will it provide enough lumber to do so? if not how are you cooking/staying warm?
          learn how to cook without an oven, microwave, toaster etc and learn how to replace the gadgets

          More to come...once upon a time a group of friends and I decided we were going to buy a bunch of land and "return to nature" aka hippie style without the beads, religion, and drugs. We had this whole plan worked out, will try and find some of those emails, we had a really well-fleshed out plan going that I think would have worked.

          work you could do to get away from it all:
          fire watcher for the forest service (I think they live out in the middle of nowhere and keep watch for fires in some areas...there is some job with the forest service that's hermit-like, can't remember for sure if this is it...will dig)
          can't think of any others...
          See what I'm up to: The Primal Gardener


          • #6
            yeah, that ^ *grin*
            yeah you are

            Baby if you time travel back far enough you can avoid that work because the dust won't be there. You're too pretty to be working that hard.


            • #7
              Read "Little House in the Big Woods" by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Their life was pretty self sufficient.

              A joyful heart is good medicine

              He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. - Jim Elliot

              Mmmmm. Real food is good.

              My Journal:


              • #8
                Learn how to tie an umbilical cord?
                In all of the universe there is only one person with your exact charateristics. Just like there is only one person with everybody else's characteristics. Effectively, your uniqueness makes you pretty average.


                • #9
                  I always wanted to buy 500 acres and build a nice place for my family and I to be self-sufficient and away from the hustle-and-bustle of city life. For most that is impossible, so I say start small, and learn as much as you can. We're doing what follows right now though, which is just awesome.

                  First thing I would do would be to by land. Enough so that you and your family can live off of comfortably. If there's already a house on it then you can slowly make it self-sufficient, there are lots of "modern" ways to do this. Check out the book Building Green. Personally I wouldn't want to live in a hut, in Canada winters are COLD. We bought a repo house and land and demolished and rebuild the way we wanted it to be. We've got the woodstove for heating, and are looking into a windmill for electricity. We've got our own well and a water source on the property. After securing a shelter/house/living quarters (also check out Yurts, amazing), build a barn/chicken coop, fenced in area for cows, pigs, goats for milk and meat, chickens, turkeys...and then plant your garden. Make it big enough to plan enough for a yr's worth of fruit and veggies, and harvest your own seeds from that first yr. Can, store, freeze, whatever floats your boat, but have enough so that you don't run out in February . For heating supply, make sure you can find and cut your own wood, either on your property or you can trade with a neighbour or friend if they have land and want it cleared of deadfall. Speaking of trading, learn a craft and trade with others for what you need. You won't be able to do everything yourself if you are not living within a group like Grok did, so trading is the best (and most rewarding) way to go.

                  And do what Kaylee99 suggested, good ideas there! We've been planning this for 8 yrs, and are slowly realizing our dream. It takes time, money, and knowledge. Time we have, money we do not, and we are learning as we go.
                  Start weight - 193lbs March 21st
                  Current weight - 181lbs June 1st
                  Goal weight - 145lbs

                  "The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off." Gloria Steinem

                  My Primal Journey BLOG


                  • #10
                    Just about anything you need to know on that subject can be found here: The Survival Podcast Forum - Index


                    • #11
                      And you'll be amazed at the people you run into
             - preparing for life's worst while living for the best


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by tamo42 View Post
                        And you'll be amazed at the people you run into
                        True that. Apparently we've got a good bit of cross-pollination between Jack's crew and Mark's.


                        • #13
                          Another item to consider: Property Tax. Either find a place where you don't have to pay it or you will need a way to get legal tender on a regular basis.


                          • #14
                            Consider getting the Foxfire series of books. Books started back in the 60s when a bunch of students started interviewing elders in the Southern Appalachian community to document the old ways from that area. While some of the books are folklore, there is a wealth of information in them on everything from butchering hogs to making moonshine. Well worth the investment. Once you get the books, start practicing what they teach where practical.

                            Also learn as much as you can about medicine. The Hesperian Foundation has a series of books, "Where there is no doctor", "Where there is no dentist", books about midwifery, etc that can be downloaded for free from their site: Hesperian Foundation or you can buy hard copies.

                            I'm having serious thoughts about this myself.
                            AKA: Texas Grok

                            Originally posted by texas.grok
                            Facebook is to intelligence what a black hole is to light


                            • #15
                              I know canning isn't exactly primal but...
                              But fermenting is. Canning destroys nutrients; fermenting increases them and is a heck of a lot easier. Fewer materials, no boiling water, less equipment. Just throw some veggies, salt and water (in appropriate ratios) in a jar and let it sit on the counter. Canning came about, as I recall, b/c fermenting is hard to keep consistent, so they used heat to sterilize and vinegar to preserve and replicate the tart taste (that comes from the probiotic lactobacilli) in industrial applications. My guess is that housewives starting doing it to keep up with the increasingly popular industrial foods.

                              Imogen here lives pretty close to what you're describing, and in the YUKON of all places! Color me very impressed!

                              No need to cut umbilical cords, btw.
                              5'4" 39yo mother to five sweeties & married to their AMAZING DaddyGrok
                              Current Weight: 175lb__________________________________Goal: 135lb
                              Deadlift: 240lb________________________________________Back Squat: 165lb
                              Bench: 130lb__________________________________________Pre ss: 85lb
                              ***Winning a 20-year war against binge eating disorder***