Independence Days Challenge - Mid-July Edition

As some of you know, I'm participating in the Independence Days Challenge. For new readers, the ID Challenge is about learning and doing things that will help make your household more self-sufficient, as well as help educate neighbors and friends. If there's hard times coming, like many of us believe, the more we can feed ourselves and help each other, the better!

There's a weekly check in on Mondays, at Sharon's blog. It's been a few weeks since I last updated on this project, and I'm a day late for this one as well. Regardless, here's a refresher on the weekly goals:
  1. Plant something
  2. Harvest something
  3. Preserve something
  4. Reduce waste
  5. Preparation and Storage
  6. Build Community Food Systems
  7. Eat the Food
Plant something: Sorta... purchased 20 yards of soil for raised beds and orchard tree installation. Gotta have decent soil in order to plant, eh? Coming up: ordering seeds for the Fall/Winter planting.

Harvest something: We finally get to start eating our hen eggs again. The de-worming process completed a few weeks ago, and all the chemicals should have run their course. Now to go and find the eggs... the girls are hiding them again. Free-ranging chickens, such fun!

Preserve something: Again, sorta... ordered a 30-quart pressure canner. Once it comes in, my first project will be to cook and can chicken broth. Then perhaps some home-made sauerkraut.

Reduce waste: Continuing to set aside cardboard, paper, glass & plastic for recycling. Saving glass juice containers and lids to use for upcoming kombucha brewing project (Joy, I hope to meet up with you either this week or next for a scoby!). Will be using damaged kiddie pools (geese and dogs are hard on them) for additional raised vegetable beds - cut holes in bottom for drainage and use for lettuces.

Preparation & Storage: Am making room in a closet for additional storage shelves. Buying soy milk by the case now. Also purchased a trailer for the car, so we have more room for animals & household goods if we have to leave the property due to encroaching wildfires or other such emergencies. Recently used the trailer to haul eight bales of bedding hay for the animals.

Build Community Food Systems: As soon as I can get the girls all to start laying in the coop again, will sell eggs once more to the local co-op. Am awaiting news from the local CSA with regards to their plans for a Fall/Winter farm-goods subscription.

Eat the Food: Eating our own eggs and the CSA produce.

[pic: yin yang eggs]


  1. We bought a pressure canner this spring and the first thing I canned with it was chicken broth. I'll never go back to store bought.

    Since then, we've canned french cut green beans and whole kernel corn with plans for soups and stews. So it's opened up a whole world of canning that wasn't possible using a water bath canner.

    I was a little nervous at first using the pressure canner because of all the horror stories one hears, but it's really not a lot different than canning with a water bath canner, except that you have to babysit it more to keep a watch on the pressure and adjust the temperature as needed.

  2. @supermomnocape: good to know that it won't take too much more work than a water bath canner!


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