Our primary goal here, aside from raising a family, is to build a working farm.
We could do it where the bugs aren't bad.
But we won't.
Population expands and consumes while production yields are kept aloft by unsustainable means. That means that we must boost food production in a way that doesn't compromise the health of the eco-system. Current methods may sustain us in the short-term but at a cost to our future as a viable species.
Most likely, if you are visiting this blog, then you are well aware of the issues.
Compounding the resource management issue is a movement of distraction. That is, the disposition to focus our attention on self-gratification and affluence. In doing so, we have compromised our ability to adapt. An ability upon which we have depended in order to thrive.
There is an underlying movement of people everywhere who are aware of the threat.
Threatened is our health, the well-being of the biosphere, and the future of all species.
Everyone has a different perspective of the same problems. Many contend that the planet will be better off without us. That may be true.
I, however, am a humanist. My concern is for the species. We depend on a vibrant and biodiverse environment in order to thrive. Therefore, my concerns are also for the welfare of our environment.
So, problems beg for solutions.
Our solution is the help carry the inertia of the contemporary homesteading movement. Those souls who, for so many good reasons, have gone back to the land. To farm organically, to live off-the-grid, to live self-sufficiently, to reduce impact, and so on.
Our contribution is the record of skills and knowledge,
applied to the task at hand.
With arable land being destroyed in the south, there still lies countless hectares of wild lands beyond the edge of the Canadian shield. The soil has been largely scraped to the south by glaciers, yet soil is something that of itself may be cultivated. The forces that create soil are still at work. Where soil is abundant, it has been pillaged and abused. Like any renewable resource, soil is finite only when improperly managed. Where soil is sparse, we must give it care and allow it to grow while participating in symbiosis; understanding that soil is an organism and not simply a substrate. If we use the knowledge that we possess and apply altruistic principles, then we may help create arable land where little has been since the last ice age.
Our task here is to bring a small farm into production starting with a woodlot on the edge of the shield. It has been done here in the past, but with only short-term success. We will not remove all of the timber and roughland to accommodate our needs. We will learn the land. We will find our niche within it. Using the best knowledge and technology, we will learn to produce food and livelihood in a way in which it may be carried on indefinitely.
The purpose of this challenge is different from the goal. Although we may not succeed, we will develop our skills and experience and share them with those who may be willing to go back to the land. We will provide our children with the tools that they need to adapt and survive.
If you are at all considering this way of life, know that it is all the self-gratification that you will ever need.
I intend to shuffle my posts around a bit; just to keep it fresh. I will explore different facets of our project through themed posts. The homestead has a lot of variety and lots to learn.
Look for these topics:
What is this? The blog itself as subject matter.
Backstory Stories from the past and how we got here from there.
Skills Tutorials on 'how to' and 'how not to'.
The Kids Our greatest love.
The Animals Care and stories about the other creatures here.
The Farm Buildings and other infrastructure.
Woodlot Source of far more than just firewood.
Equipment Lessons and learnings about the tools and machines.
Fuel and Energy Maybe the most difficult topic to address let alone solve.
The Garden If you don't believe in miracles, just watch it grow!
In the Kitchen The glorious culmination.
Experiences There is always a good story to tell or an outing to share.
Kira My greatest love. She will fill in the blanks that I leave.
The Long Term The projects that are least likely to come to fruition.
The Truth When we show ourselves to the public we tend to censor
I will let ours show through.
I will let ours show through.