How does one go about establishing an acre homestead and why would you want to do that?
Well, if you’ve spent any time viewing society it’s no secret laziness is real and we’re way too dependent on others and technology. But what’s most alarming is the idea things should be fair and free.
I’m not sure where this began because when I was growing up if you didn’t work you didn’t eat and nothing was ever fair.
We called it life!
Blessed was an Under Statement
Back then I didn’t even realize how self-reliant we were. My dad was a commercial fisherman who also enjoyed duck hunting so we rarely had to purchase meat. Gardens were established in the backyard loaded with fresh vegetables and fruit trees were incorporated with landscaping.
To say we were blessed was an understatement but we worked for those blessings. Gathering fruit was a family outing, the vegetables didn’t plant themselves and harvesting was ongoing.
When canning season arrived I wanted to hide because preserving never ended. We ate good with healthy options year-round and we were thankful.
I often wonder if folks today are truly thankful after they finish a meal? When you gather or raise the majority of your own food you can’t help but feel blessed.
Focused on Self Reliance
For Robert and I homesteading is a matter of getting focused and establishing self-reliance. I guess with Quail Grove our Tiny Homestead project we’ve taken the idea of working the land to the extreme?
Almost two years ago we signed papers; that first year we struggled with the idea of subdividing because we enjoyed everything this place had to offer. Not only could we raise our own food but it was quiet and we could also hunt.
It was perfect so why would we sub-divide?
Deep down keeping this land was never an option, it was chosen and when you’re called by a greater power to do something it’s not a matter of turning back.
It’s a matter of submitting which takes faith and courage to move forward. Even if you plan everything perfectly, things can change and setbacks can occur.
We also call this life…
Trying to Get an Acre Established
Trying to get an acre established for homesteading hasn’t been easy because the property we live on is wooded, so that first year we started clearing. It wasn’t until after our survey we were able to figure out where things would go.
With years of farming under our belt we had experience to bring forward and we both wanted to focus on activity we enjoyed.
- Gardening herbs, berries, veggies and cut flowers for healthier living and enjoyment.
- Raising a few chickens for egg, bug removal, and fertilizer.
- Raising Quail for meat, repopulating and helping remove garden bugs.
- Raising a few guineas for bug removal like ticks and meat.
- Smaller animals like sheep or goats to help clear land and meat. (we’ll probably end up with goats, sigh…)
That looks like a lot for one acre but when a large home doesn’t occupy the majority of space there’s more land to work. It’s also important not to waste space and never over populate pasture with too many animals.
Where are we at with those ideas?
The gardens are active, some are in the process of being moved and others may expand.
We recently brought home five Araucana chicks and egg production will begin by early winter. Quail arrive towards the end of September and next Spring we’ll add guineas and more quail.
As for the smaller animals we have additional trees to thin out, pasture fencing to mark off and divide for rotational grazing. Once that is complete we can safely bring in those goats even though I prefer sheep…
But let’s not forget while this space is taking shape we’ll also be establishing Quail Grove.
Starting from scratch is a lot of work, but it offers a sense of purpose. The desire to be lazy surely doesn’t exist and when struggles surface we face them head on. It may not seem fair at times but we learn through these experiences so we can do better on the next project.
Right now, there are days when everything feels overwhelming but if I’ve learned anything about homesteading it’s this….It welcomes a thankful heart and strengthens the soul to where you see life deeper than most could ever imagine.
A homestead can be established anywhere, stop following the crowd, be a leader and be the example of God’s blessings.
1 Thessaloians 4:11-12
And to aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you,
so that you may walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one.