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I would encourage you to do something every week to help with your personal preparedness. Learn something, buy something, teach something or do something. Doing a little each week will pay off .

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Self Reliance and Gardening

It seems like people are thinking about things a lot differently in today's economy than they have in the past. Self reliance has become a hot topic all of a sudden. Instinctively people know that we can't depend on the government or any other organization to just 'take care of us'. We must take the initiative to provide for our families and be prepared to provide for them NO MATTER what happens in our communities. One of the most important ways to be self reliant is to be able to grow your own food.

Shocking was the response of a 3rd grade girl to the question her teacher asked her, 'Where do vegetables come from?' She replied, 'The store'. There are many children who don't even know the plants that vegetables and fruits come from!

Education is the first step, but there is another relevant problem: The Growing Season.

I live in Idaho which means our last frost happens about Memorial Day and our first one in the fall is about Labor Day - that gives me 3 months to garden. Depending on your climate zone, most likely you won't always be able to grow food whenever you want. So we must go to battle with Mother Nature! The solution to be able to grow food year round is simple: a greenhouse. A greenhouse is something I am adding to my supplies this summer. I am so excited about it. I am learning about "greenhouse gardening" and add this to my preparedness skills.

As I have done the research and studied I have found there are so many benefits of owning a greenhouse, here are a few:
1. Grow food year round. No matter what your zone is you can produce year round. Many greenhouse owners have extended their growing season from just July and August to March - November without any heat supplement. What a huge difference!

2. Grow in any climate conditions. In a greenhouse YOU control the environment, not Mother Nature.

3. Added benefit for your family. A family who works and plays together stays together. Teaching, working and having fun in a greenhouse provides for added stability in your children. It also teaches them that vegetables do not come from the store. This is a video about greenhouse gardener's talking about the benefits to their families HERE
4. Basic Skills. Being self reliant also means that you have the skills necessary to survive in various situations. Knowing you have a method to provide food for your family, no matter the current conditions, decreases your stress level.

5 - Decrease in stress. Let's get real, digging in the dirt while in a warm greenhouse, even if the temperatures outsid are cold, heals anyone's stress level!

So next Christmas when I get to go out to my greenhouse and pick tomatoes and lettuce for our dinner, just wave at me as you drive by - well really slide by - I live in Idaho!

For more info on the greenhouse I am using you can e-mail


This is a great list - the website is at the bottom of the article.
Electric can openerManual can opener
Manual wall mounted can opener
GI K-9 emergency can opener
Pocketknife can opener blade
Wire whisk
Martini shaker
Egg beaterKnife
Food chopper
Handcrank blender
Rechargeable portable blenderElectric mixerWire whisk for thin batters
Large wooden spoon for thicker batters
Egg beater for whipping
Hand crank mixerBread mixer or bread machineStrong arms and hands!
Hand crank mixer
Food processor
Pastry blender
Two tableknives
Wire whisk
Egg beater
Food chopper
Manual food processor
CrockpotSolar oven
Norwegian stove
Wonder Box
ropane slow cooker
Campfire or stove top toaster
Campfire forks
Egg cookerSaucepan of water
Solar oven
Add a poaching insertGrain mill
Manual grain mill
Coffee grinder (for small amounts)
Popcorn popper
Campfire popcorn popper
Stove top popcorn popper
Waffle ironCampfire waffle iron
Stove top waffle iron
Sandwich maker
Camp cooker or pie iron
Hand juicer
Citrus press
Cooler with ice
Portable thermo electric cooler
Portable gas refrigerator
Propane, natural gas or kerosene refrigerator
Solar electric refrigerator
Cool gardie safe or bamboo iceless refrigerator
Pot-in-pot refrigeratorCold streamRoot cellar
Gas stove/oven/rangeL
iquid fuel camp stove
Portable collapsible oven
Propane camp oven
Lantern cooker
Gas or charcoal grill
Dutch oven
Wood burning fireplace
Solar oven
Canned heat stove
Tin can stove
Butane, propane or kerosene stove
Chafing dish
Propane skillet
Apple Box oven
Rocket stove
Hot water and soap
Garbage disposal
Compost pile
Domesticated animals
Sad iron (heavy metal iron heated by another source)
Butane iron
Clothes washer
Washboard and tub
Washing plunger and tub
Pressure hand washer
Clothes dryer
Drying rack
Sewing machine
Needle and thread
Treadle sewing machine
Vacuum cleaner
Broom and dustpan
Dust mop
Floor sweeper
Electric razor
Safety razor
Strap razor
Electric toothbrush
ToothbrushStick with shredded endFinger
Curling iron
Butane curling iron
Hair rollersBlow dryerCordless hair dryer (still in patent approval)
Alarm clock
Battery operated clock
Wind-up clock
Door knocker
Manual door bell
Computer/word processor/printer
Pen, pencil and paper
Manual typewriter
Electric typewriter
Pen, pencil and paper
Manual typewriter
Electric pencil sharpener
Small knife
Hand held pencil sharpener
Manual schoolroom pencil sharpener
Wireless telephoneLand line telephone
Battery operated fan
Hand operated fan
Hand held fan
Wind blowing through wet sheets
Battery operated television w/car adaptor
Battery powered radio
Hand crank radio
LightsCandles and matches
Flashlight and batteries
Hand crank flashlightLantern – battery powered, oil, propane, kerosene, candle, gas
Lamp –
oil, paraffin, kerosene
Battery recharger
Solar battery rechargerCell phone chargerDisposable charger
Battery operated charger
Hand crank charger
Solar charger
Car charger
Water heater
Any stove
Portable solar shower bag
Wood burning (or other fuels) stove
Propane or kerosene room heater
Extra clothes and blankets