Friday, February 17, 2012

IDC: Week 2

By popular demand, the Independence Days Challenge is back! Every Friday from February - September we are challenged to work on our skill set. Anyone can join in!

The categories and my responses:

Plant something: A lot of us were trained to think of planting as done once a year, but if you start seeds, do season extension and succession plant, you’ll get much, much more out of your garden, so I try and plant something every day from February into September.
Plant something: 
Started more sweet potatoes and continued to nurse along 1 remaining potato from last year plus 3 vines that are ready to plant out
Harvest something: Everything counts – from the milk and eggs you get from your animals to the first dandelions from your yard to 50 bushels of tomatoes – it all counts.
Harvest something: 

Started back up on our raw cream coop. Since it's hard to get the cream off our goat's milk, I buy 1 gallon raw cream every 2 weeks to make butter, ice cream and half & half with. 
Preserve something: Again, I find preserving is most productive if I try and do a little every day that there is anything, from the first dried raspberry leaves and jarred rhubarb to the last squashes at the end of the season.
Preserve something:

Made 10# butter from cream and will be turning some into ghee for cooking.
Dehydrating cranberries left over from Thanksgiving....way past time to do this!
Waste not: Reducing food waste, composting everything or feeding it to animals, reducing your use of disposables and creation of garbage, reusing things that would otherwise go to waste, making sure your preserved and stored foods are kept in good shape – all of these count.
Waste Not: 
Fed chickens, dog and cats scraps; composted unfeedable scraps
Want Not: Adding to your food storage or stash of goods for emergencies, building up resources that will be useful in the long term.
Want Not: 
Ordered a few straggler seeds that I previously forgot: wild rice, asian rice, gindelia, sweet annie/wormwood, horehound, yerba mansa (hoping to boost the existing plants I have already), licorice, cotton (white, green and brown), peppercorn.

Purchased more food for storage (beans, dried fruit, nuts, beef jerky) from Trader Joe's, mostly for 72 hour supply

Pricing chicks, ducklings, baby turkeys and piglets.

Cooked up 2# ground beef with Taco seasoning then put 1# into the freezer for a future meal
Eat the Food: Making full and good use of what you have, making sure that you are getting everything you can from your food, trying new recipes and new cooking ideas, eating out of your storage!
Eat the Food: 
Using up cracked eggs
Build community food systems: What have you done to help other people have better food access or to make your local food system more resilient?
Build Community Food Systems: 
Let local customers know we now have fresh eggs again!
And a new one: Skill up:  What did you learn this week that will help you in the future – could be as simple as fixing the faucet or as hard as building a shed, as simple as a new way of keeping records or as complicated as making shoes.  Whatever you are learning, you get a merit badge for it – this is important stuff.
Skill Up: 
Continuing to learn about infectious and non-infectious diseases and herbal remedies for them. My notes are turning into a book and becoming quite in depth. I am fascinated by all I've learned so far. 

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