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Sustainable Living or Lifestyle

JustAnotherNut

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I see there is a garden section and another about chickens. But I'm wondering just how far anyone here gets into it.
As for me & mine, I have a garden & try to grow as much of our own food as possible. I grow enough that I can also freeze, can or dehydrate enough to last as long as possible. I keep trying to preserve enough to get us from one season to the next. Lessening our dependence on store bought manufactured franken foods. Not that we will ever be completely independent, we do make a dent on our reliance.
We also have a small backyard flock of chickens, for both eggs & meat. Since we are on a 1/4 acre lot with neighbors I'm not able to raise cows or pigs, but I am looking into trying my hand at turkeys this year.
I also try to grow grains to sprout to feed my birds although so far only about enough for an occaisional treat.
I also make a lot of our food from scratch to stay away from boxed & processed foods. All of it takes more time & work effort, but I think the health benefits are worth it. I know where most of our food comes from & how it's produced, raised, or butchered and exactly what's in it.
We do still have boxed mac & cheese or tv dinners or hamburger helper once in a while and some things just can't be reproduced at home but we keep trying.


Anyone else here do anything along these lines?
 

DarkFury

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Go to the Enuclaw auction and buy your butcher ready beef there.
They will pick it up and slaughter it for so much a pound. You will be buying hoof weight at the auction so deduct 20% of that weight to waste.

Most of the time I was able to stock my beef at less then 1 dollar per pound. Buy a yearling for smaller size and tenderness. Should come in around 500 pounds at 50 cents a pound TOPS.

Process is another 20 to 25 cents per pound. You may want to split the beef with someone else because you are going to be talking 400 pounds of beef.

If you do the split then you go back and split a pig. And Pork runs cheaper on the hoof and sometimes they sell by the head {choice} and you can pay 35 to 45 dollars for 250 pounds of processed pork.
 
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JustAnotherNut

JustAnotherNut

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That's a good idea & will have to seriously look into it. We've thought of buying into someone else's raised beef or pork, but never thought to get an animal at auction to go straight to the butcher without our involvement.
Hubby's hunting also is a great contributor. He usually gets a deer nearly every year, and once in a great while an elk. The deer we usually butcher ourselves, but an elk is just too big for us to do & end up at the butcher. Both good eating though.
 

DarkFury

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That's a good idea & will have to seriously look into it. We've thought of buying into someone else's raised beef or pork, but never thought to get an animal at auction to go straight to the butcher without our involvement.
Hubby's hunting also is a great contributor. He usually gets a deer nearly every year, and once in a great while an elk. The deer we usually butcher ourselves, but an elk is just too big for us to do & end up at the butcher. Both good eating though.
Arizona deer suck. They weigh about 65 to 75 pounds hoof.
And our Javilinas {wild pigs} are tiny! 35 pounds hoof.
You also can stock your rabbit meat there CHEAP. 97% protein and NO fat.
 

Muhammed

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I have a garden in the back yard. Lettuce, tomatoes, bell peppers, cucumbers, celery, onions, garlic. I even grow my own mushrooms in a bed of sawdust in the crawlspace. Of course here in NW Ohio the growing season for vegetables is rather limited, but I get a head start by starting them in an indoor sunroom that faces south to catch the rising sun.

I usually have a garden salad as an appetizer before dinner. And it's really nice step out the back door and grab everything I need for a salad. You can't get it any fresher than that.
 
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JustAnotherNut

JustAnotherNut

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That's a good idea & will have to seriously look into it. We've thought of buying into someone else's raised beef or pork, but never thought to get an animal at auction to go straight to the butcher without our involvement.
Hubby's hunting also is a great contributor. He usually gets a deer nearly every year, and once in a great while an elk. The deer we usually butcher ourselves, but an elk is just too big for us to do & end up at the butcher. Both good eating though.
Arizona deer suck. They weigh about 65 to 75 pounds hoof.
And our Javilinas {wild pigs} are tiny! 35 pounds hoof.
You also can stock your rabbit meat there CHEAP. 97% protein and NO fat.

Hubby usually goes for younger deer that aren't full grown (not Bambi's either) because of the 'wild' taste to the meat. So we usually only get about that weight out of them 50 to 75lbs edible cuts. Being younger, they don't develop that strong of a taste. Elk on the other hand, taste most like beef without as much fat and have 250-400lbs of meat.
I don't think we have wild pigs here, or I should say on the West side, maybe in eastern WA. As for rabbit, I've eaten it before (many years ago) and I'm not against it, but it's not near the top of my list for meats. The thing is, I'd have to do the butchering of any rabbits & well, I'm not there yet. I'm still working on getting used to butchering my chickens.
Rabbits aren't completely off my list tho. They would be much easier to raise & the poop for compost is good too. A few years ago, the boys managed to catch a wild-ish rabbit just a few blocks from where we live. Over there are tons of them. We did keep it for a while, and found why the boys managed to catch it....SHE was pregnant & later gave birth. Since we didn't know what we were doing at the time I didn't realize the sign of her pulling out her fur was to prepare a nest. I thought it was because it was stressed for being locked in a cage. None of the babies survived unfortunately, it was too cold at the time & because we didn't know any better, hadn't provided proper conditions. After a few months, I couldn't stand the idea of keeping the rabbit in a small cage & took it back & let it go free. Now that I know more about rabbits habits, if I did get anymore I would be better prepared.
 

Spinster

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I see there is a garden section and another about chickens. But I'm wondering just how far anyone here gets into it.
As for me & mine, I have a garden & try to grow as much of our own food as possible. I grow enough that I can also freeze, can or dehydrate enough to last as long as possible. I keep trying to preserve enough to get us from one season to the next. Lessening our dependence on store bought manufactured franken foods. Not that we will ever be completely independent, we do make a dent on our reliance.
We also have a small backyard flock of chickens, for both eggs & meat. Since we are on a 1/4 acre lot with neighbors I'm not able to raise cows or pigs, but I am looking into trying my hand at turkeys this year.
I also try to grow grains to sprout to feed my birds although so far only about enough for an occaisional treat.
I also make a lot of our food from scratch to stay away from boxed & processed foods. All of it takes more time & work effort, but I think the health benefits are worth it. I know where most of our food comes from & how it's produced, raised, or butchered and exactly what's in it.
We do still have boxed mac & cheese or tv dinners or hamburger helper once in a while and some things just can't be reproduced at home but we keep trying.


Anyone else here do anything along these lines?

Don't do chickens, but do raise our own organic non-GMO vegetables every year. We pick tons of berries, and freeze the veggies and berries. We supplement with purchased organic veggies and fruits, make mega batches of main dish recipes and freeze those. Cooking huge lots and having ready made meals to warm up allows one to make better choices at meal time, and it really doesn't take much time. We sprout seeds to add to salads, sandwiches, and meals. Like you we try to be as self sufficient as possible. These methods get us from season to season without resorting to processed foods. Our health has improved as a result making the payback more than worthwhile.
 
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JustAnotherNut

JustAnotherNut

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I have a garden in the back yard. Lettuce, tomatoes, bell peppers, cucumbers, celery, onions, garlic. I even grow my own mushrooms in a bed of sawdust in the crawlspace. Of course here in NW Ohio the growing season for vegetables is rather limited, but I get a head start by starting them in an indoor sunroom that faces south to catch the rising sun.

I usually have a garden salad as an appetizer before dinner. And it's really nice step out the back door and grab everything I need for a salad. You can't get it any fresher than that.
I agree. Also you know your food is safe, when big AG has recalls for contamination. Remember a few years ago when fresh spinach was recalled for e-coli??? You couldn't find any in the stores, but I was able to pick my own from the garden.
 

DarkFury

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That's a good idea & will have to seriously look into it. We've thought of buying into someone else's raised beef or pork, but never thought to get an animal at auction to go straight to the butcher without our involvement.
Hubby's hunting also is a great contributor. He usually gets a deer nearly every year, and once in a great while an elk. The deer we usually butcher ourselves, but an elk is just too big for us to do & end up at the butcher. Both good eating though.
Arizona deer suck. They weigh about 65 to 75 pounds hoof.
And our Javilinas {wild pigs} are tiny! 35 pounds hoof.
You also can stock your rabbit meat there CHEAP. 97% protein and NO fat.

Hubby usually goes for younger deer that aren't full grown (not Bambi's either) because of the 'wild' taste to the meat. So we usually only get about that weight out of them 50 to 75lbs edible cuts. Being younger, they don't develop that strong of a taste. Elk on the other hand, taste most like beef without as much fat and have 250-400lbs of meat.
I don't think we have wild pigs here, or I should say on the West side, maybe in eastern WA. As for rabbit, I've eaten it before (many years ago) and I'm not against it, but it's not near the top of my list for meats. The thing is, I'd have to do the butchering of any rabbits & well, I'm not there yet. I'm still working on getting used to butchering my chickens.
Rabbits aren't completely off my list tho. They would be much easier to raise & the poop for compost is good too. A few years ago, the boys managed to catch a wild-ish rabbit just a few blocks from where we live. Over there are tons of them. We did keep it for a while, and found why the boys managed to catch it....SHE was pregnant & later gave birth. Since we didn't know what we were doing at the time I didn't realize the sign of her pulling out her fur was to prepare a nest. I thought it was because it was stressed for being locked in a cage. None of the babies survived unfortunately, it was too cold at the time & because we didn't know any better, hadn't provided proper conditions. After a few months, I couldn't stand the idea of keeping the rabbit in a small cage & took it back & let it go free. Now that I know more about rabbits habits, if I did get anymore I would be better prepared.
A five cage set up. 1 buck 2 does and two cages to divide male/female. That will produce about 30 pounds of meat per year.
Rabbits are much easier to butcher then chickens and they can be fed lawn clippings and veggie ends like carrots or celery. They LOVE potato peelings as well.
 

DarkFury

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You can ALSO can meats. Here is an LDS canning station in Kent.
WA-Kent
253-850-6392
1412 W Morton St
Kent, WA 98035
 
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JustAnotherNut

JustAnotherNut

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[/QUOTE] Don't do chickens, but do raise our own organic non-GMO vegetables every year. We pick tons of berries, and freeze the veggies and berries. We supplement with purchased organic veggies and fruits, make mega batches of main dish recipes and freeze those. Cooking huge lots and having ready made meals to warm up allows one to make better choices at meal time, and it really doesn't take much time. We sprout seeds to add to salads, sandwiches, and meals. Like you we try to be as self sufficient as possible. These methods get us from season to season without resorting to processed foods. Our health has improved as a result making the payback more than worthwhile.[/QUOTE]

Anything you can do yourself is definitely a better choice.
 
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JustAnotherNut

JustAnotherNut

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You can ALSO can meats. Here is an LDS canning station in Kent.
WA-Kent
253-850-6392
1412 W Morton St
Kent, WA 98035

My canning techniques are not FDA approved ;) as in I use water bath, for everything and wouldn't trust it enough for many meats. I have done spaghetti sauce with meat and I did try some cooked chicken in homemade broth. It looked good, but I was too afraid to eat it. Dogs loved it though:rolleyes-41:
 
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JustAnotherNut

JustAnotherNut

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That's a good idea & will have to seriously look into it. We've thought of buying into someone else's raised beef or pork, but never thought to get an animal at auction to go straight to the butcher without our involvement.
Hubby's hunting also is a great contributor. He usually gets a deer nearly every year, and once in a great while an elk. The deer we usually butcher ourselves, but an elk is just too big for us to do & end up at the butcher. Both good eating though.
Arizona deer suck. They weigh about 65 to 75 pounds hoof.
And our Javilinas {wild pigs} are tiny! 35 pounds hoof.
You also can stock your rabbit meat there CHEAP. 97% protein and NO fat.

Hubby usually goes for younger deer that aren't full grown (not Bambi's either) because of the 'wild' taste to the meat. So we usually only get about that weight out of them 50 to 75lbs edible cuts. Being younger, they don't develop that strong of a taste. Elk on the other hand, taste most like beef without as much fat and have 250-400lbs of meat.
I don't think we have wild pigs here, or I should say on the West side, maybe in eastern WA. As for rabbit, I've eaten it before (many years ago) and I'm not against it, but it's not near the top of my list for meats. The thing is, I'd have to do the butchering of any rabbits & well, I'm not there yet. I'm still working on getting used to butchering my chickens.
Rabbits aren't completely off my list tho. They would be much easier to raise & the poop for compost is good too. A few years ago, the boys managed to catch a wild-ish rabbit just a few blocks from where we live. Over there are tons of them. We did keep it for a while, and found why the boys managed to catch it....SHE was pregnant & later gave birth. Since we didn't know what we were doing at the time I didn't realize the sign of her pulling out her fur was to prepare a nest. I thought it was because it was stressed for being locked in a cage. None of the babies survived unfortunately, it was too cold at the time & because we didn't know any better, hadn't provided proper conditions. After a few months, I couldn't stand the idea of keeping the rabbit in a small cage & took it back & let it go free. Now that I know more about rabbits habits, if I did get anymore I would be better prepared.
A five cage set up. 1 buck 2 does and two cages to divide male/female. That will produce about 30 pounds of meat per year.
Rabbits are much easier to butcher then chickens and they can be fed lawn clippings and veggie ends like carrots or celery. They LOVE potato peelings as well.

RAW tater peelings??? I've always been told most animals can't eat them raw. Not sure of the reasons, probably due to the raw starches
 

DarkFury

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You can ALSO can meats. Here is an LDS canning station in Kent.
WA-Kent
253-850-6392
1412 W Morton St
Kent, WA 98035

My canning techniques are not FDA approved ;) as in I use water bath, for everything and wouldn't trust it enough for many meats. I have done spaghetti sauce with meat and I did try some cooked chicken in homemade broth. It looked good, but I was too afraid to eat it. Dogs loved it though:rolleyes-41:
They give glasses there FREE. And they teach "dry canning" like say Dinte More.
 

DarkFury

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That's a good idea & will have to seriously look into it. We've thought of buying into someone else's raised beef or pork, but never thought to get an animal at auction to go straight to the butcher without our involvement.
Hubby's hunting also is a great contributor. He usually gets a deer nearly every year, and once in a great while an elk. The deer we usually butcher ourselves, but an elk is just too big for us to do & end up at the butcher. Both good eating though.
Arizona deer suck. They weigh about 65 to 75 pounds hoof.
And our Javilinas {wild pigs} are tiny! 35 pounds hoof.
You also can stock your rabbit meat there CHEAP. 97% protein and NO fat.

Hubby usually goes for younger deer that aren't full grown (not Bambi's either) because of the 'wild' taste to the meat. So we usually only get about that weight out of them 50 to 75lbs edible cuts. Being younger, they don't develop that strong of a taste. Elk on the other hand, taste most like beef without as much fat and have 250-400lbs of meat.
I don't think we have wild pigs here, or I should say on the West side, maybe in eastern WA. As for rabbit, I've eaten it before (many years ago) and I'm not against it, but it's not near the top of my list for meats. The thing is, I'd have to do the butchering of any rabbits & well, I'm not there yet. I'm still working on getting used to butchering my chickens.
Rabbits aren't completely off my list tho. They would be much easier to raise & the poop for compost is good too. A few years ago, the boys managed to catch a wild-ish rabbit just a few blocks from where we live. Over there are tons of them. We did keep it for a while, and found why the boys managed to catch it....SHE was pregnant & later gave birth. Since we didn't know what we were doing at the time I didn't realize the sign of her pulling out her fur was to prepare a nest. I thought it was because it was stressed for being locked in a cage. None of the babies survived unfortunately, it was too cold at the time & because we didn't know any better, hadn't provided proper conditions. After a few months, I couldn't stand the idea of keeping the rabbit in a small cage & took it back & let it go free. Now that I know more about rabbits habits, if I did get anymore I would be better prepared.
A five cage set up. 1 buck 2 does and two cages to divide male/female. That will produce about 30 pounds of meat per year.
Rabbits are much easier to butcher then chickens and they can be fed lawn clippings and veggie ends like carrots or celery. They LOVE potato peelings as well.

RAW tater peelings??? I've always been told most animals can't eat them raw. Not sure of the reasons, probably due to the raw starches
Water content. If its got it they love it.
 
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JustAnotherNut

JustAnotherNut

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You can ALSO can meats. Here is an LDS canning station in Kent.
WA-Kent
253-850-6392
1412 W Morton St
Kent, WA 98035

My canning techniques are not FDA approved ;) as in I use water bath, for everything and wouldn't trust it enough for many meats. I have done spaghetti sauce with meat and I did try some cooked chicken in homemade broth. It looked good, but I was too afraid to eat it. Dogs loved it though:rolleyes-41:
They give glasses there FREE. And they teach "dry canning" like say Dinte More.


Pardon my French, but WTF is 'dry canning'???
 

DarkFury

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You can ALSO can meats. Here is an LDS canning station in Kent.
WA-Kent
253-850-6392
1412 W Morton St
Kent, WA 98035

My canning techniques are not FDA approved ;) as in I use water bath, for everything and wouldn't trust it enough for many meats. I have done spaghetti sauce with meat and I did try some cooked chicken in homemade broth. It looked good, but I was too afraid to eat it. Dogs loved it though:rolleyes-41:
They give glasses there FREE. And they teach "dry canning" like say Dinte More.


Pardon my French, but WTF is 'dry canning'???
No water bath canning but right from the stove to the can. Not say glass but tin.
Washington Preppers Network: January 2010

Just like off a store shelf. Meats are good for five years. Pre made stews/soups and such.
 
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JustAnotherNut

JustAnotherNut

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OH, using the tins. I'm not so sure I'd be interested in doing that. Maybe, just MAYBE I might be willing to learn about pressure canning. I had tried it several years ago. Went & bought a brand new canner and went by the instruction booklet to the letter. I don't know what happened, but it took FOREVER to get it up to proper temperature, then it just kept getting hotter. Once it started 'red-lining' I shut off the stove & left, just in case it blew up :laugh: I then tried again & still had trouble getting it to temp & then keeping it at temp, so I finally gave up & went back to the water bath. I knew what I was doing with it & didn't have any problems.
I think it probably was the seal, but I couldn't figure out why since it was brand new.

You guys can your foods too?
 

DarkFury

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OH, using the tins. I'm not so sure I'd be interested in doing that. Maybe, just MAYBE I might be willing to learn about pressure canning. I had tried it several years ago. Went & bought a brand new canner and went by the instruction booklet to the letter. I don't know what happened, but it took FOREVER to get it up to proper temperature, then it just kept getting hotter. Once it started 'red-lining' I shut off the stove & left, just in case it blew up :laugh: I then tried again & still had trouble getting it to temp & then keeping it at temp, so I finally gave up & went back to the water bath. I knew what I was doing with it & didn't have any problems.
I think it probably was the seal, but I couldn't figure out why since it was brand new.

You guys can your foods too?
I have but just moved so I gave away 100 plus cans of food. Need to start over. Got caught in a flash flood so new home a little more away from the river.
 

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