When Did Independence Become Illegal?

Over the last year, I have really started to notice a growing trend. At first, it was a news story here or there, usually talking about someplace far off. The news was disturbing, of course – people being forced to do this or that for violating some rule against what they could do on their land.

Then, I heard a story about a lady in Canada who had her sheep slaughtered by the authorities. They had to be killed to be tested for diseases. Let me repeat that: they had to be killed to be tested for diseases. None were found to be infected but all her livestock was dead. Her whole herd, wiped out. Zero compensation. In fact, she has thousands in legal fees to pay, plus all of her normal living expenses. Getting a flock of sheep back, same breed, is out of the question at this point (years later).

I wrote an article a while back about the illegal outdoor clothesline. People who live in HOAs (Home Owner Associations) know what I’m talking about. Many in the city also have laws that don’t allow clotheslines in yards, or have rules about not being able to see them from the road. Don’t even get me started on the rules against having food gardens in your front yard! I can understand why some municipalities would want to limit it: untended gardens can cause real pest problems. What I am talking about are blanket laws passed that limit what people can do on the property they own.

It’s like there’s an all out war against living independently from the grid.

I grew up in Alaska. You can still buy land here that isn’t part of any municipality and that means you truly own the land. No taxes, no restrictions (other than state safety and sanitation regulations), and no one to tell you “You can’t do that on your property!” Growing up, I thought that’s how it was. That was my normal. Imagine my horror, learning that people could get their land taken from them for not paying taxes or because the municipality decided they wanted to build a new road, right where your house is. You have no rights, no authority. You are responsible, but you have little authority against government (local or otherwise) entities.

Now I’m seeing people who are being kicked out of their homes because they live in tiny houses. I read about people who have their own grid with water, sewer, and electrical being forced to tie into the grid. I see people who are being told they have to remove a pond off their property because of some new law (never mind that the pond had been there over 100 years with fish and wildlife depending on it). Oh, and they had to pay for the removal, too.

It’s like there’s an all out war against living independently from the grid. It’s almost as if you’re a criminal because you don’t need what the government provides. You don’t need the electrical company’s power, you have your own – and you’re a criminal for it. Recently, here on my home island, the local utility company decided that everyone must pay water fees, even if there is no one living in the domicile. What that means is if you have a vacation home or a duplex, and no one is living there or using the water, you still have to pay. And there is little anyone can do about this ‘legal’ theft.


“If we aren’t being taught how to grow our own food, how to take care of ourselves and our families, and how to live without the need for huge governments, banks or corporations – as our ancestors once did – then we aren’t being educated; we are being indoctrinated to be dependent and subservient to the system~Gavin Nascimento.”


Of course, on top of all of that, there’s the requirement for licensing on everything from marriage to hunting, fishing to using the national parks set aside for our use. And though we have “the right to bear arms and defend ourselves from those who would do us harm,” we have to effectively get permission and go through hoops from the government to do so. The laws get more and more strict for the law abiding citizens, making it harder for us to exercise the right while the criminals are toodling along, bypassing all the red tape and still getting as many guns as they want. The “Gun Free Zones” are prime target areas to create victims, too. The only thing that will stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun and that is a time tested truth. To stop the bad guy, you need a good guy with the same or larger ‘stick/rock/etc.’ But I digress.

There are raids on homes for growing food and raising livestock. I recall an article about a couple who bought growing equipment for an indoor hydroponic set up and were raided by police, SWAT-style. It was believed they were growing marijuana. Charges were never filed because nothing was found. The leaves found and tested in their trash, on 3 separate occasions, were found to be tea leaves, not cannabis.

There was a time in this country when the same government not only encouraged keeping chickens and having a “victory garden,” you were considered patriotic for doing so! Homesteading was patriotic. Oh, how times have changed. Now, you have to perform feats of super human patience and paperwork-filling skills just to get the organic label to put on food you may sell from your homestead/farm to the public. The government is perfectly OK with all these chemical sprays and dusts put onto our food as it grows but you have to go through some crazy stuff to prove you aren’t using any. The system is completely backwards and I strongly believe that is a direct results of Big Agra and their lobbyers.

“We can’t let these people grow and make and do for themselves! Then we lose profit! We lose control! Our investors will suffer!”

The world is so angry now, or perhaps I am just more aware of it due to social media and instant information. In many ways, instant information has decreased the value of knowledge. It’s so easy to just look something up that committing anything to memory isn’t done the same way.

I used to have dozens of phone numbers memorized when I was a kid. Not so much anymore – just pop open your smartphone and tap the picture! Knowledge is no longer earned, therefore its value has decreased. Now, that is not to say that the internet and social media hasn’t had some positive influences – I learned to can food (both water bath and pressure styles) because of videos and articles online! I learned a great deal about gardening in my zone (7b) and would not have had the successes I did when I started if not for it.

The desire to be away from cities, work the land, and provide for yourself is under attack. Not everyone can just up and move to the country and live the life they truly want. I’m currently one of them (working on it though!).




Homesteads and Horses: What to Know

Horses bring a variety of benefits to homesteads, whether by plowing fields or by providing compost for gardens or farmland. If you’re considering a horse for your homestead, there are a few factors to think about beforehand.

Their Daily Care

Like any animal, horses require daily care. Aside from hay and water, your horse may also need grain depending on their age and dietary needs. Their stall or shed will also need to be bedded throughout the year. While there are a variety of bedding options, straw and shavings tend to be the most common choices.

Your horses, or team, will also need daily grooming to prevent skin irritation from their tack or equipment. Grooming both before and after work is the best course against chafing, so consider using a series of brushes on your horse before work and then bathing your horse after work to remove any sweat or dirt. You’ll also need to keep your tack clean to prevent future rubbing or chafing.

As with any large animal, you’ll need a suitable shelter and fencing for your horse. Common shelters include barn stalls and run-in sheds. An added benefit of run-in sheds is that they can offer both shelter and access to a pasture or a dry lot.

There are a slew of fencing options for your horse’s pasture or dry lot. As an owner, you’ll want to take into consideration upkeep, as well as your horse’s breed. For example, you’ll need tougher fencing if you have draft horses, which are a common choice for farming.

Their Healthcare

While you can manage some of your horse’s healthcare, it’s important to have an equine veterinarian and a farrier.

Your veterinarian will likely visit twice a year for wellness exams, which include checking your horse’s teeth. Because horses’ teeth continually grow, their teeth often develop rough or jagged edges, which impact their ability to eat and can lead to weight loss. Since horses generally have their teeth filed or floated once a year, it’s important to have these wellness exams, even if your horse seems fine.

While some smaller livestock animals, such as goats or donkeys, are feasible to trim by yourself, find an experienced farrier to trim and/or shoe your horse. If you have a draft horse, you’ll have a limited selection of farriers, due to the breed’s size. Typically, your horse will be trimmed every six to eight weeks, based on their toe growth.

Choosing to shoe your horse is a decision best left to you and your farrier, as well as your horse. Shoes can be a remedy for lameness or excessive foot wear, which can result from fieldwork in certain climates or landscapes. Remember to update your veterinarian on any changes though, as lameness can be a sign of other health issues.

So, what can you manage? Parasites and vaccinations.

When it comes to parasites, prevention is the best way to manage the health of your horse. Though you can deworm your horse at the first sign of parasites, it’s recommended to maintain a preventative deworming schedule. For example, you could deworm your horse during each farrier visit. To find out which dewormers to use, talk to your veterinarian.

You’ll also want to speak to your veterinarian about vaccinations. Each year, your horse will need to be vaccinated for the following:

  • Tetanus
  • Rabies
  • West Nile
  • Eastern/Western equine encephalitis

Your veterinarian may recommend other vaccines based on your area and your horse. Your vet can also suggest a vaccination schedule, as some vaccines, such as for West Nile, can be given more frequently.

Vaccines can be purchased from a variety of suppliers. Typically, vaccines are administered subcutaneous or under the skin. Keep an eye on your horse afterwards to watch for any adverse reactions, such as swelling, lack of appetite or anaphylactic shock.

Their Training

While you can train your horse yourself, you also have the option to purchase a horse with farming and/or driving experience. Various techniques and tactics are used in training a horse for farming. A key component is communication and familiarity with your horse’s disposition.

If you are new to driving horses, you’ll need to be the trainee. Search for workshops or apprenticeships with local farmers who use horse power. Get a head start by researching and learning about farm equipment and tack used in horse-powered farming. Wait until you have sufficient experience, before purchasing a horse and/or team for farming.

Their Commitment

Like any animal, horses are a commitment. It’s important to weigh the amount of care and commitment a horse requires against their expected contributions to your homestead.

For example, consider the following:

  • Your interest and knowledge of horses and driving.
  • Your potential source of hay, bedding and feed.
  • Your possible location for shelter and pasture.
  • Your selection of equine veterinarians and farriers.
  • Your available time and work commitments.
  • Your current and estimated costs in adopting horse-powered farming.

Take the time to consider the above. Do the research. It’ll help you determine if horses are a good fit for your homestead — and that’s what you really need to know.


 Bobbi Peterson loves writing and regularly posts on her blog Living Life Green. She’s also a freelance writer, green living advocate and environmentalist. You can find more from Bobbi on Twitter.




What Preppers Are REALLY Getting Ready For

No matter what your ‘disaster’ is, we are all truly just getting ready for the same basic thing. Some would say survival, others would say catastrophe or crisis. At the end of the day, we are all just preparing for an interruption in the day-to-day life we’re used to.

The media always seems to show that all ‘preppers’ are getting ready for some huge event. Some end-of-times, biblical, end-of-the-world chaos. While there are those out there who focus on one type of disaster, this is far from the norm. Very far.

Most preppers are people who don’t even realize they are preppers! It’s not prepping, it’s life! They’re just people who live in areas where things can get a little crazy – usually from Mother Nature. Those who label themselves as preppers tend to plan for general chaos instead of assuming that, out of all the possibilities for disasters out there, theirs is the one that is most likely to happen. Now, I’m not judging these people but I do feel it’s a bit short sighted to focus on only one type of scenario. Part of preparedness is flexibility and the ability to adapt. Focusing on only one situation doesn’t make much sense unless you are mastering something and then moving on.

So, if we are all preparing for is a disruption to our normal day-to-day, what can we do to help smooth it out? What are we really getting ready for? We are preparing to make sure that if the water stops working, we have back up. If a wildfire or bug infestation wipes out our entire garden, we have backup food stored and ready to be eaten. If the main bread winner loses their income, we have supplies and food stored up so we don’t have to spend money on it – letting the limited funds go to other things instead. If we lose heat, we have alternative ways to stay warm. The list goes on and on. It’s also not the same list for everyone. In fact, there really is only one “One Size Fits All” prepping plan. All humans need the same basic things to survive. The difference comes in how those needs are prepared for and that is, again, different for everyone.

We are prepping for an interruption of the norm so that we can get through it with less stress and worry.

For us, we fish, hunt, and forage to help supplement our food. I also garden as much as I am able and will be expanding to a larger garden so we can provide more for ourselves. I take comfort and pride in having more control over my food – where it comes from, how it was grown/hunted, how it was handled, and how it was preserved. I have retaken control over my food from Big Agra and the USDA. I don’t need a sticker telling me it’s organic, I know it is because I grew it!

The Bottom Line

No matter whether you consider yourself a “prepper” or not, you do prepare for things on a daily basis. Paying your insurance, for example, is a way to be prepared for the unforeseen. Making sure your smoke alarm batteries are charged is another example. Buying food staples in bulk, when on sale, and storing it would definitely fall into the category of ‘prepping’ because the majority of the population doesn’t do that anymore. The average American household only has about a week’s worth of food, especially in the city.

Toss the media hype out the window. Honestly. Just do it and start thinking for yourself again. What is so wrong or “over the top” about having some supplies set back in case you need them? You don’t need a huge pantry, underground bunker, or arsenal of firearms to survive. What you do need though, is a plan. Starting with enough food and water for a week for everyone in your home (don’t forget Fido and Whiskers!) is a fantastic and achievable goal. There’s some great comfort in knowing that you have an “ace in the hole” that you put there for your family. It doesn’t have to break the bank and it doesn’t have to be extreme. We are prepping for an interruption of the norm so that we can get through it with less stress and worry.

Wouldn’t it be better to rely on yourself instead of waiting for the government or other authority to come and give you what you need?




How To Kickstart Your Homesteading Skills

I know many of you are where I was a few years ago. You have this drive, this desire to be more self sufficient. You want to provide more for yourself, have more control over your life. You want to spend your hours working for yourself, not working for someone else to get the money to buy what you need. Your soul howls each day you are stuck in the city or urban area, wanting to be free. You dream of the day you can move ‘away from it all’ and take charge of your path.

OH yes, I know exactly where you’re at. The question is, are you sure you want that life? The media has largely romanticized homesteading and doesn’t give you so much as a realistic hint of how much work it will really be. Do you have the skills you need already for that life? If you only dream and do nothing to learn and practice the skills you need before you move to your utopia, you are setting yourself up for failure. You will get overwhelmed and give up, moving right back to the city or urban area you came from.

To answer the first and most important question, “Are you sure you want to live that kind of life?” there are things you can do that will help you decide if you really want the whole package or just parts of it. The best part? You’ll be kick starting your skills for homesteading at the same time! First, we need to identify the skills you are lacking in, and then choose 2 or 3 to start learning about. Then, you start to actually practice the skills.

Which Skills Should I Focus On?

There is no one “right” answer to this question, only the right answer for you. When you think of homesteading, what comes to mind? Gardening, preserving the harvest, chopping wood for the stove, cooking from scratch? Maybe your big thing is raising some livestock.

Once you’ve identified some of the things you most want to do, pick two or three of them to start. Look at them individually – do you know how to grow a food garden? Sure, everyone understands the basic concepts of putting seeds into soil, watering it, and watching it grow. Just because you get sprouts doesn’t mean you’ve successfully gardened. It means you can sprout seeds. A successful food garden happens when you’re harvesting, and preserving, the bounty for your family to eat over winter.

How Do I Learn About The Skills I am Lacking?

Hooray for the information age! Being a homesteader doesn’t mean you toss out modern technology; that would be silly! You don’t toss out a good resource just because it wasn’t traditionally available before! Thanks to the internet and YouTube videos, I have personally learned many skills that I will need for the homestead (and use in my everyday life now of course) that I couldn’t imagine how difficult it would be for someone just starting out without it. Imagine you manage to grow a garden but then have to scramble to learn how to preserve it! Do you even know all the food preservation methods, let alone how to do them?

Hooray, once again, for the internet! Not only can you read all about whatever it is you’re studying, you can also watch videos of people, just like you, who are new and trying to learn. I find that many times, I learn tips and tricks from these videos and avoid a lot of newbie mistakes. I’ve even gone so far as to email the creators and ask questions. We homesteading folk are a friendly bunch and generally very happy to help people however we can. If you think about it, the smarter and stronger your neighbors are, the better off the overall community is, too!

To summarize, your resources to learn skills for homesteading include:

Not Sure Where to Start? Consider this:

Homesteading is about self reliance, providing as much for you and your family on your own and within reason. If you’re just not sure where to start, consider the things that every human needs to survive: water, food, shelter, warmth, comfort. Well, and oxygen but you get the idea. 🙂 Learn the skills that will meet those needs and practice them now. For example, I learned how to make a water filter with charcoal and sand. I learned about distilling saltwater to get both the salt and water out of the deal. I learned about water catch systems and different emergency water filtering options.

It All Starts With One Skill

Many people are desperate to homestead – their souls cry out for it! I imagine people stuck in the city, feeling like they live in an area where no possible “homesteading” can be done. WRONG! There are many people out there who have a fully functioning homestead on 1/10th of an acre! There are people who grow all of their greens, year round, in their apartments! Homesteading is more than chickens and canning. It’s an attitude and outlook on life. Instead of giving up because there’s a roadblock, homesteaders look around at what they have to work with and then adjust and adapt to get what they want~YOU CAN TOO!




Diapering During An Emergency (Or the SHTF)

When you first become a parent, one of the decisions you have to make is the type of diapers you use for your little bundle of joy. Cloth or disposables? A lot of people will already have an answer in mind. When the SHTF, will your choice still be the same?

In the current state of our world, we are relatively free to make decisions about how we will raise our children. There may be many factors that may contribute to our decision making process, including:

  • Is the environment important to me?
  • Do I have the time to commit to cleaning them?
  • Do I need an option that is convenient?
  • How much money am I willing to spend?

Cloth Diapers

I always knew that I wanted to use cloth diapers. When you consider the impact on the environment, cloth diapers certainly win the question of what is going to cause less waste.

They tend to win the cost factor as well. You can expect to pay anything from $200 for a second hand diaper stash up to thousands if you’re buying them brand new. However, this still works out cheaper than buying a pack of disposables every week. Even if you are buying the disposables in bulk, you would have to get a really good deal to be able to beat the savings to be made with cloth.

Disposable Diapers

The convenience of disposables is undeniable. As much as it hurts the earth loving mama in me to admit, being able to roll up that ball of destruction and throw it in the bin is certainly convenient. No rinsing, pre-washing or stain removing. Washing, let alone the time spent hanging them out, bring them back in and folding them, certainly adds up.

When our family moved interstate, we were staying in temporary accommodation and didn’t have regular access to a washing machine. This means that when it comes to diapers, we had to either go to the laundry mat or use disposables. Yes, we took the convenient option. To make myself feel a bit better about this decision, we chose to go with compostable disposables. This bumped the price up.

I never thought that we would be in a position to want to use disposables. Overnight and outings are often times where even people using cloth may consider using an alternative. We were still happy using cloth. Our experience taught me one thing.

Don’t Forget to Visit Mama Zed’s Homestead Site!

Cloth diapering is completely and utterly impractical if the SHTF.

When you’re considering the items for your bug out bag, you will not be reaching for the bulky cloth parcels that would take up the majority of the space. You won’t be more than doubling your drinking water stash to make sure that you have enough to be able to wash them.

You’ll be packing disposables.

Cheap, easy to stock up on, disposables.

Of course, there is an exception to this. If you were in a long term situation where you had constant access to clean water and could wash cloth diapers, it may be more achievable and could even be more practical. Rather than trying to find a constant supply of disposables, you could try and make cloth diapers work.

If you need to pack diapers in your bug out bag:

  • Do a test run with your baby first – You don’t want to find out later on that the brand leaks or that your baby has an adverse reaction to them.
  • Keep an eye on your stockpile –  As with your other emergency supplies, they will need to be rotated. Good luck trying to diaper a toddler with newborn sized diapers because you forgot to do this.
  • Don’t forget the other accessories – As a parent, you already know that diapers aren’t the only part of the baby cleaning process. You’ll need to make sure you have a solution for wipes and creams as well.

There is always one more option. Hope that toilet training becomes easy and that your baby miraculously picks it up really fast!

Dreams are free right?


You can find more from MamaZed on Facebook, Pinterest, and www.mamazedshomestead.com.




How To Be A Successful Homesteader

Success is defined in a thousand different ways, regardless of what it is you’re trying to be successful with. Homesteading is no different and everyone’s definition of a “successful homesteader” will be different. I asked several people what they thought and though each answer was indeed different, there were some common themes that made me think, “More people need to hear this!”

I myself go through phases, feeling like I’m a total failure as a homesteader. We moved to our own land and I don’t even have a garden to speak of anymore, let alone a ton of land (we live on 1/3rd acre) for livestock. “What a joke I am, what a poser” is something I’ve said to myself often over the years. “I don’t have <insert item or skill or possession here> so I’m not a ‘real’ homesteader, even by modern definitions!”

Sound familiar?

Here’s the flip side of things: another view point. It’s something that I have to remind myself of, sometimes often. I am a successful homesteader because I have the following:

Can-Do Attitude: Anyone who has been in the work force knows how important your attitude is. It plays, in my opinion, the largest role to your success. If you go into a project with a bad attitude, of course things are going to go to crap! All you will see is the negative and not the solution staring you in the face.

Adaptation: To be a successful homesteader, you absolutely must have the ability to adapt and overcome. It’s not something we are usually born with so much as a learned perspective. Unless you have a ton of money to buy whatever you could possibly need (I don’t know many rich homesteaders, do you?), you have to adapt and overcome the challenges that come with the lifestyle.

Adapting includes needing an imagination to find creative and sustainable solutions. You don’t want to slap a fix on something over and over again – you want it to be fixed and good to go! Generally speaking, homesteaders don’t go buy new, they look around their own property and community first.

Working With What You Have: Success comes from resources and some of the best resources you can get are already on your property! The leftover scrap wood is not garbage…you can make planter boxes for flowers to pretty and brighten the place up a bit. The perfectly usable gutter that your neighbor is just going to throw out after getting them replaced can be used to plant a vertical strawberry patch. Free supplies and strawberries for years: seems like a win-win to me!

There is the old saying “Use It Up, Wear It Out, Make It Do, or Do Without.” Sometimes, that means getting very creative – particularly the “wear it out” part. We all want stuff to look nice, but when you homestead, it’s function versus form. I would rather have a hideously looking water pump that worked than a shiny pump that failed me 90% of the time.

If you’re caught up on the looks of everything, maaaaybe homesteading isn’t for you.

Being Reasonable and Realistic: We all have talents and limits. Some people can plot out a new field and have it all ready to be used in a couple weeks. Others can make a database from scratch. NO ONE can do it all on their own and that’s especially true when it comes to living a homestead life.

It’s unrealistic to think that your new homestead will have everything all at once. If you expect you’re going to start year one with a huge garden, chickens, goats, bees, and pigs…you better have a serious backup plan because chances are very likely you will fail. That is simply too much! You’re already changing your entire lifestyle, schedule, and redefining what’s important to you. Even if you have some experience with a hobby food garden and a few chickens, the whole game is changed when you go full time.

Sometimes, you really should call a professional instead of going the DIY route. The money saved DIY’ing your plumbing, for example, may end up costing you a lot more than you saved if you did it wrong. Electrical is even worse of a risk! Being frugal isn’t a competition. Leading a simple life doesn’t mean you don’t spend money. Using the money you have wisely is a good balance.

 

Did you notice? All of the things listed above isn’t something you buy. It’s something you learn and live everyday. Homesteading is a lifestyle that takes commitment!




Featured Contributor: Dana of Mama Zed Homestead

There are only 3 regular guest contributors here at Homestead Dreamer, by choice. I have high standards (ok, so there’s typos 😉 ) for the information shared with people. It’s important to me that people can rely on what they read here as factual, useful, and without any fear mongering. A considerably amount of research is put into what’s written on the things I don’t have personal experience with and sources always given.

I want to give special recognition to these three hardworking people and bring to your attention who they are! We conclude the 3 part series with Dana of MamaZedsHomestead.com. She is the newest contributor to Homestead Dreamer and had added to the team immensely! Her “You CAN do it” attitude and message is something that is near to my own heart. An avid DIY’r, Mama Zed brings perspective from just about as far away from Alaska as you can get: Australia! I hope you enjoy getting to know her as I have.

I highly encourage you to check their site and follow them on social media – I do!


Tell us a little about yourself

I LOVE to DIY. If there is a project, something that we need or an item that needs fixing, I will usually try and do it myself. This has led to learning how to make our soap, brewing cider and mead and building our kitchen to name a few projects! My family means the world to me and my motivation in life is to see them living the best life possible. This is what made me the frugal, DIY, earth loving mama that I am today.

What is your dream?

To own our homestead debt free! Right now, we own 2 and 1/4 acres debt free and are currently saving to build our straw bale house on it so we can move in and start our debt free, self-sufficient life!

What got you into homesteading?

I grew up on 5 acres in New Zealand, so I was exposed to homesteading and prepping from a young age. I remember pouring over books like “The New Complete Book of Self Sufficiency” by John Seymour and numerous herbal encyclopedias as a child and plotting my dream homestead.

Were you raised in the lifestyle or did you choose it?

I would say both. While my mother’s dream was to become a homesteader and this was something we were raised with, I do think I chose it. I moved out at 16, have lived in the city, and I still came back to homesteading as being a core aspect of my identity.

What skill was the hardest one to learn that paid off the most?

For some, it may not be considered a “homesteading” skill, but for me, money management is essential to a successful homestead. I am 25 and had accumulated a nice chunk of student and credit card debt over the years. Learning about how to manage money has been a hard road. However, we’re now debt free and in the next few years will own our home without a mortgage – it has definitely been worth it.

What are you really passionate about in your genre?

I am really passionate about sewing and yarn crafts such as knitting, crocheting and spinning.

What goals do you have for this year to progress your overall dream?

This year we hope to save enough to start building our straw bale cottage! Between having two children under two and running a business, it will certainly be a challenge.

What skill do you think all humans should know?

I think all humans should know how to build and maintain shelter for themselves. I know far too many people who struggle when the air conditioner breaks down (though in Australia, this can be a valid struggle!) or when the power goes out. I would be mortified to see these same people trying to cope if it was something they had to deal with on a long term basis. Knowing how to do without or make do with what you have, having back up plans or alternative options is knowledge that I believe everyone should have.

What message would you like to get out to people?

Don’t rely on others to provide for you. Whether it’s the government, your family or a friend, there is no guarantee that they will always be there to help you out. Learn how to do things for yourself so you put yourself in control. It is a very empowering and rewarding state to be in.

Is there anything else you’d like to share or say?

Never stop learning! There are a million blogs, books, podcasts and videos out there for you to watch to access an enormous amount of information. Pick a skill you’re interested in, research the crap out of it, practice it, and then do it again! “I wish I could do xyz but I don’t know how,” is the WORST excuse. Don’t let yourself fall into the trap of thinking you can’t do something just because you don’t know how to. Yet.

You can find (and follow!) Mama Zed on her main websiteFacebook, Twitter, and Pinterest!