Introduction To Homesteading – Episode 1 – Futuresteading For The Modern Day Homesteader

hi everyone welcome back to my channel you 
know me i'm Cathi i just want to introduce you   if you don't know to my beautiful friend anita hi 
everyone she has her own channel flower folk farm   and we're here at flower folk farm 
today now i'm going to link anita's   information below so that you can pop over and 
have a look at her channel this is the first   episode in our seven part series which is called 
future studying for the modern day homesteader   so Cathi this is a little bit different for us 
we often have a lot of fun and this is a bit more   professional than what we're used to but this is 
a really good opportunity for us to sit down and   have a coffee together and actually have a chat 
about the first topic in our series which is   an introduction to modern homesteading and would 
you like to explain a little bit to us about what   homesteading can look like yeah sure 
there's different types of homesteading   homesteading can mean different things to 
different people and you can easily get   overwhelmed by thinking that homesteading means 
a great big acreage with lots of animals and   massive gardens and all that sort of 
thing but people can start homesteading   by doing it wherever they live wherever they are 
wherever they are in life yeah and that can be   urban rural it can be in an apartment block it 
can be a single person it can be a big family   it can be someone on a lot of acres there's a 
lot of a vast array of different classifications   for being a homesteader and i think that what 
we want to do today is is explain to people to   you guys that um want to learn a bit about it that 
there are more than just the one type of homestead   okay so kathy can you explain a little bit 
to us about modern day homesteading or what   we call future studying uh and just 
maybe some of the differences between   what we do today compared to maybe what some 
of the older style of homesteading is a lot of   the homesteaders that i know including 
myself and yourself we're based mainly   around a garden a kitchen garden vegetables fruit 
that sort of thing we harvest we preserve we have   a lot more modern types of machinery and things 
that we can preserve with it's not just the old   sort of canning ways although you know that 
is quite popular too but modern homesteading   can be as easy as just having some chickens in the 
backyard um you don't have to have all the animals   um you don't even have to have all the 
equipment and i think um people are more   aware of soil degradation and a lot of people 
now these days are into regenerative farming   and wanting to do things and and look after the 
soil it's not like the old days where they used   to plow the earth within an inch of its life and 
take all the goodness out of it and they'd run   the cows over the land and you know they'd be 
around there up to their elbows in mud whereas   a lot of people now are more aware of having 
the animals on clean grass which produces   a beautiful finished product as well and just 
those sorts of things you know we've come a long   way from the olden days where people used to spray 
everything with chemicals about working with the   natural cycles yeah yeah yeah and looking after 
the land and looking after the animals and making   sure that they have a good life or the yeah olden 
day homesteading i think a lot of people probably   got put off by thinking there was so much work to 
it the animals weren't necessarily looked after   whereas people now they they want to know where 
their food comes from they want to know that   their animals have had a good life and people are 
interested in actually building the soil and yeah   all of that sort of thing and i think that's 
probably more the definition of a modern day   homesteader and future setting so we've had a 
lot of people ask us why we do what we do and   how we got into it so anita do you want to tell 
the folks a little bit about your story and how   you started out on your journey to homesteading 
yeah well it's been a a progression i guess   it's it didn't all happen overnight and i think 
that's what i want to encourage all of you   um people to understand as well is you don't have 
to have it all together to start with you just   need to start with one thing and i think that's 
probably where i grew from and that is that i   always had a passion for homesteading and wanting 
to grow my own food and i understood that that was   very rewarding i really love working in the garden 
so i'm a gardener as well as a food grower so for   me it kind of just grew out of that and i started 
to grow food on a house block and originally   and i did a lot of bread making so i love 
making breads and things like that so out   of that i think it was just a very comforting 
sort of thing for me i felt like i was doing   um a lot for my family through doing that and 
it was rewarding for me so out of that we moved   to the country about 13 years ago to the property 
we are today flower folk farm and when we brought   the property it needed quite a bit of work and we 
both on the house and the the property itself and   we when i first moved here i was pregnant so i i 
did a lot of work with a baby in a sling for for   many years i i was i had small children at my feet 
so i was trying to grow food and raise a family at   the same time and there was limited things that 
i could do so i knew i could just i had to just   keep it small and sustainable and of course i had 
failures along the way with that so and i just had   to cop it really it's part of learning it is and 
it sort of forced me into a place where sometimes   i'd have to back off and and just focus on family 
for a little while instead of focusing on so much   in the garden like i had areas just get away from 
me and that still happens today actually yeah it's just an ongoing thing there's always 
something to do it really is and i think over   time you get to understand that that is just part 
of the journey you can't do everything all at once   and you you really just got to do what you can 
with the time you've got um it's about priorities   like if you and it's about seasons so your 
seasons are going to dictate what you've got to do   really in terms of food and and growing food 
so and we're in the slow season at the moment   we're in slow season at the moment which is a 
great opportunity for catch up and and you know   getting beds ready and and things like that 
so but you know from there i was i really   became fascinated with soil and biodynamics 
and from there i went back to university as   a mature age student and decided to study 
more around food and food environments and   out of that you know studying for five years i 
i really came to a place where i felt that we   just have become so detached from our food and 
our food environments that it is impacting our   health and our lifestyles in such a negative way 
that i wanted to be a part of the solutions so   i finished uni and i've i worked as a food 
security project manager for quite some time and   and sort of developed a bit more skill around 
running programs that really um enable people   to access uh and understand their food systems 
better so how to access small-scale farms and   the importance of those and growing your own 
food and doing all those things where you do   understand your food system and that's what 
homesteading is all about it's understanding your   food and where it comes from and really getting 
back to the basics of it and so now as part of   flower folk farm i've shifted into a different 
area now where i work full-time from here and i   i sort of incorporate homesteading in with 
education programs that i run here from the farm   and it's all about showing people what can be done 
and how they can facilitate their own little mini   homestead wherever they are whatever you've got 
and it's about encouraging people to take control   of where their food comes from by making choices 
and you know every dollar you spend is a vote   so you know if you're spending money at the 
supermarket of course you're going to encourage   that cycle whereas if you grow a little bit of 
your own food and homestead you are encouraging   um a healthier way of living really yeah well 
anita i've had a little bit of a different   story to yours well i was born in the country 
i'm a country girl at heart and then over the   years i've moved into the city which was really 
hard i mean it was exciting at the start but   it's really hard when you've been used to living 
in the country and having all that space it's   we bought our first house and we ended up staying 
there it was only going to be a five-year plan but   we ended up staying there for i think 13 years and 
it was not great it was an undesirable area but we   built some raised beds and in the backyard and had 
a backyard that produced a whole lot of food that   was how i started my channel it was showing urban 
gardening and it was um something i did for my   happiness and my mental health because i 
didn't particularly like where we were living   and it was like creating a little oasis 
and then it was it really was an oasis   it was lovely it was pretty amazing we 
did thank you it kept me busy and then   another reason that we started with the 
food growing our own food was i too wanted   to know where my food come from because tim 
and i had serious health issues involving   diet and sickness and i needed to get on the 
right track so we started growing our own food   and then after being there and being in that space 
i realized how much that i wanted to get back to   the country and so we kept waiting and waiting 
and you know sometimes the time is never right if   you wait um so we made the steps to sell our house 
and we had two houses so we sold both of them one   first and then the other and now we are living 
in a caravan on my parents property in the bush   and it's absolutely beautiful and we have 
got plans we are still waiting for some   permits and some things to come through but then 
i will be able to share with everybody what our   next step is and what we're doing but for the time 
being we're still in the caravan and i am growing   in pots in the garden because the soil 
out there is really bad because it's had   uh pine trees and the eucalyptus trees and they 
take all the nutrients out of the soil we've got   onion weed we've got all sorts of things there 
and it's mice eating and so i'm growing in pots   and i want to show people how easy it is to grow 
in pots how you can grow your own food and we can   um further on as we go in the series when we 
get onto the gardening one we can talk about   the things that you can grow that are really easy 
and that are pretty much a no fail so you'll see   oh sadie the photobomber she's always involved 
sandy sadie's our marima she is a house dog   but she's also a working dog she does both 
really well here she is here you can see it   sadie she hang on i'll bring 
it forward so she can see sadie   she's everywhere i am okay so kathy 
we often a lot of our values and and   stuff like that we share that a lot and 
talk about you know just how different   life is when you live this sort of lifestyle and 
how different it is from the normal worldly sort   of stuff yeah um tell me a little bit about 
what you think is the mindset for homesteading   well i know with me um i wanted to slow down i 
had worked in some really really high pressure   fast-paced jobs over the years and i thought to 
myself there's got to be more to life than this   so for me it's about slowing down about living 
a simple life i like living frugally where i can   and i'd buy my clothes secondhand as much as 
i can yeah probably it's it's rather than um   it's rather than buying foods that are just 
convenience for you we often talk about this   that you know we're trying to look at a seasonal 
sort of diet that kind of yeah and what we grow   out of the garden like i think ahead and think 
what can i make out of what's growing in the   garden today and trying to put together some 
meals just that are really simple and use as   much of the produce as i can so rather than being 
a consumer you're sort of more a producer of our yeah it's a more sustainable way of living 
perhaps it is and it it gives you a really   nice feeling too like i was saying you know about 
living in the country to me it's like coming home   yeah and i feel complete i feel my stress levels 
have gone right down my mental health is in a   really good place when you're stressed those 
sorts of things can you know when you've got   bad neighbours and you're living in a place that 
you don't want to live it can really really affect   every area of your life and just to be able to 
live in in peace and to put your hands in the soil   i think is what it's very healing yeah it's 
it's we need it yes yeah my garden has been   very healing for me and i think it's 
what we were all made to do and that's   why it creates so much interest in what we do and 
people look at me now and they know i'm happy so   that's what you know homesteading is for 
me it's about family it's about gardening   it's about fulfillment it's about friendship 
it's about being yeah with like-minded   people so i think it's i i relate to that too and 
i think it's about building a community of people   around you so one of the biggest questions 
kathy and i both get asked is around just   the cost of setting things up and you know how 
much should you sort of plan on spending and   i mean we're very frugal obviously with what we 
the way we set up our things we try and recycle   wherever possible so you can save some money 
doing that we also um have a good community of   people around us so we often share stuff or if 
someone's not using something anymore we kind of   swap or barter but really things can be done on 
your budget so it doesn't matter what your budget   is you can start homesteading on that budget we 
see a lot of bigger youtube channels who have   pretty much everything every piece of machinery 
you could want they have sheds they have um   poultry fencing they have all sorts of amazing 
fandangle things but to be perfectly honest with   you i started with none of that i've just slowly 
built up to that and now that i'm not working full   time anymore i have to really watch you know 
my pennies and when you can but you can start   on nothing we often seed safe so you can really 
save yourself a lot of money if you start your   veggie patch and then begin a seed saving program 
where you are reusing those seeds year to year   and doing seed swaps with that set some goals 
set some priorities that you want to work on   that are your immediate priority to work on for 
now and just set yourself some goals around that   and don't overwhelm yourself and don't overwhelm 
yourself so just work on one thing get that set up   and work out how you're going to do that and do it 
well so that it's it's working really well for you   and you know then move on to the next thing and 
and just progress through through your priorities   that way one thing i've learned anita is that 
there's always a never-ending list of things to do   and always yeah and you have to change your 
mindset from thinking that you have to achieve   everything now and you have to have everything 
now because slowing down and you have to   you have to just work out what needs doing first 
and that's where you put your time and your energy   and your money especially if you don't have a lot 
of money it's just about doing it that way isn't   it and look i guess for us a really good example 
of that is how we set up our chickens so the   chickens i have now are part of my income stream 
as part of our farm but that took a few years to   get set up i originally just had house chickens 
and they sustained us and then i decided that   to have a bit of an income stream i would be doing 
the chickens a bit more seriously but to do that i   have foxes so i've lost quite a few chickens to 
foxes here and it can be quite devastating and   frustrating at the same time and so i decided that 
really my priority was that i needed to make sure   that i could keep those chickens safe secure and 
have a really good system going where if i've got   a lot of chooks out running around free-ranging 
because that's what i want is free range then i   need a maremma and so that started my journey on 
saving for sadie al-marima livestock guardian dog   and that was a two-year project really where 
i had to uh train her wait for her to be   at the right age where she was ready to to 
be able to do her job as a guardian and then   i had to build a free-range movable infrastructure 
for the chickens which was a bit of an outlay   but you can do that in whatever budget you are 
at you can do it quite budget if you need to   that's one of the things that has taken me 
time and i had to look ahead and plan that well   and you know that there is a little bit of cost 
involved and another aspect of homesteading or   future studying is being prepared for emergencies 
and anything that's happening there's a lot of   things that have been happening in the world over 
the last couple of years it's made people a little   bit more aware that they perhaps need to keep a 
bit more food they need to preserve things because   being reliant on the supermarkets and all of 
those places for your food isn't necessarily   a reliable source and the price of things 
are going up immensely so we'll cover we'll   be talking about that about skills to sustain 
your family and things that can be taught to   your children and passed down and will skills 
that are sort of being slowly lost yeah lost   but there's a lot of interest in in the old ways 
again and we love all the old ways and as we know   a lot of those old ways are a lot better than the 
things that we've come up with over the years and   people are finding that and turning back 
to the old ways as well yeah and i think   being inspired a lot of the um things that 
inspired me were watching other youtube   channels but before that i used to watch things 
on tv and i came across river cottage and that   was a big influence i watched every series of 
that and it just really struck a chord with me   and you know some other cooking shows 
here in australia we've got gourmet farmer   who was it was the story well it is the story of 
matthew evans he was a food critic and he moved   to from mainland australia to tasmania and set 
up a farm and a restaurant and we're at scratch   and we actually went and met him didn't we we went 
and met here and he's an amazing guy he's so good   yeah he's really committed and he's just released 
another book as well on soil which is i can't wait   to get hold of that it's gonna be awesome yeah so 
what influenced you i have to tell you you guys   you guys may have seen that kathy and i a couple 
of years ago we went up and did a workshop   with this guy joel salatin and it was the most 
amazing experience was it was crappy it was just   bad girls we may have squealed a little bit just 
a bit just a little bit it was pretty awesome um   and so joel salatin of course if you don't know is 
from polyface farms in the states has an amazing   setup where he utilizes regenerative agriculture 
to improve soil on his farm but also to keep   his his livestock free-ranging constantly 
so it's like he utilizes a system a natural   cycle of producing meat and it's incredible 
and he's doing things very differently to   mainstream livestock production in the states had 
an incredible influence on my journey and kathy's   as well and we can't wait for him to come back 
to australia again one day hopefully there's a   lot of other books that i've read out there around 
growing your own food that are fantastic as well   so it's pretty amazing really the the array of 
people that that have influenced us it's just a   has today has just been a bit of an introduction 
to what we're going to be doing over the series   and really hope that you guys will enjoy it and 
that you'll get value out of it please ask us   any questions we really want to empower you to be 
able to walk away today and start it no matter how   basic it is it might just be one plant it might 
just be baking a loaf of bread every few days it   might be whatever but just just we want to help 
you on your journey and encourage you to start   and over the next few weeks we're going to 
be covering a number of different topics   we've talked about that in a previous video about 
what we'll be covering but next time we're going   to be looking at getting started in the garden 
which is one of our passions yeah um and all   about seed saving compost setting up your beds 
and seasonal plantings so it's going to be really   awesome gonna be great yeah it's gonna be good and 
we look forward to seeing all of you there and uh   i think we'll wrap this up now and if you've 
got questions we're available so just uh get   in touch okay guys thanks very much and we'll see 
you on the next one bye thank you joining us bye

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