We’re nobody special – just a family of five six seven living in a semi-rural area of central Pennsylvania (or “Pennsyltucky” as we like to call it).
Like many others, we became increasingly aware of how the life we’d been living was, at times, very complicated and conditional on lots of time and resources and complicated and often, fragile systems
Could this be sustained indefinitely? Did we want to continue to rely upon everyone else to ensure our sense of health, well being, and happiness?
Our life was complicated in the wrong ways. It was not simple enough to allow us to live a healthy, peaceful, and plentiful life despite political, social, environmental changes that cause disruption to our community.
We realized that we’d taken much for granted, assuming that life would always be at least as good as it is was at that moment and that everything we had available to us right now would always be available.
We assumed that our fundamentals in life were constant – jobs, vehicles, homes, food, peace, water, etc.
This was before world events like COVID-19 taught us that this is not the case.
While we lived with a much milder level of day-to-day unrest here in North America than other parts of the world, that isn’t something we felt we should rely upn. We’re not saying “the sky is falling”, we’re not survivalists, we’re not expecting the apocalypse to start tomorrow.
Ultimately, ours has been a journey of becoming responsible for ourselves and self-reliant.
So since 2005, we’ve been on a journey of deeply examining our own life.
- How do we live?
- Is it sustainable – Are we replacing what we’re consuming?
- How do our daily decisions impact the ecosystem in which we live? This “ecosystem” is not just the environment, but our neighborhood, community, etc.
- Who do we depend on for our basic needs like food, shelter, water, heat, etc.?
- Is it really natural to eat food that on average travels 1500 miles from field to fork?
- Is it healthiest to eat food that is prepared in factories rather than kitchens?
- Is it wise to rely on a few large monolithic corporations for the bulk of our food supply?
- Is it good to eat food that has been modified by scientists?
- Are we prepared for “the long emergency” – any natural, civil, political, or other event that disrupts the normal flow of life as we know it.
- Can the government really be depended on to meet our basic needs?
- Is it the government’s job to meet our needs?
- Is individualism always a healthy characteristic?
- What does it mean to be a neighbor?
- What does it mean to love our neighbors as we love ourselves?
- What does it mean to live in a community?
As we thought through these things, we realized that we had taken the source of many of our basic necessities for granted and that they could disappear at a moment’s notice.
Now, we’re not survivalists and we swear, there’s no bomb shelter being built in the back yard! However, we merely saw the wisdom in learning some new ways to take more ownership and responsibility in managing some of our basic needs and with those around us.
We don’t believe that it’s the responsibility of “someone else” to meet our needs. These needs should be met by ourselves in cooperation with our community – people living in such a way that they look out for the needs and interests of one another. This is what drew us to homesteading and this is what, Lord willing, we trust will keep us homesteading.
All of this has lead us to this. We want to live a non-complicated, sustainable life – preferably one of interdependence on others rather than independence.
To be honest, we’re not entirely sure what that looks like yet, but we’re journeying toward it!
We hope that as we do, the information we consider and stumble upon will help others on similar journeys.
~ Sven, Zelda & the kids
4 thoughts on “About Us”
I love this site, and I love what you’re doing, and I love you guys. I don’t want to bother you, but I do have one question that’s been on my mind since I was in college – (true story!). Do farm animals get cold in the winter? I’ve always wondered and worried about that. Now that you have your own chickens, you will be my expert on matters such as this! Thanks.
With love, Ann
Sorry for the delay in replying. I cannot say for certain if different animals get cold because they don’t tell us! Certainly, some animals do get cold, but the fact that they live through it every year indicates that perhaps they’re designed to endure those conditions. Chickens in particular have lots of down on their bodies so they seem to stay warm even when it’s really cold. They huddle together when really cold. They actually need to have quite a bit of ventilation because of how their respiratory systems work. I am sure there are some farm animals that need heat or are accustomed enough to being warm that it becomes necessary, but we don’t have any of them!
I just stumbled upon your blog and am thrilled! My partner and I are just starting out in a similar way. And when I say just starting out, I mean it.
We live in the Adelaide Hills in South Australia so whilst I don’t expect the climate to be similar I’m hoping to learn a lot from your work.
Anyway – just wanted to say hi. And hope you don’t ind if I ask you guys questions along the way. I’ve had a few successes (let’s say mini successes) but a lot of failures, or ‘learning experiences’. We are a long way off yet, but determined to get there. one step at a time…
Cheers and all the best!
Greetings from Queensland, Australia!!!! “where the sun-always shines!”.)
Hello Anne! I love your blog!
My family and I have been learning many things over the years regarding the above facts in your introduction. I would love to take it to the next step… actually have a vegie patch, chickens, fruit trees…emergency energy sources and water…ect.
At the moment our priority has been to find another source of water…or a purifier which takes out the ‘fluoride’ from our main water supply! It looks like we’ll be purchasing bottled spring water for a while until other cheaper ideas pop up.
I was just in the process of making fresh dandelion tea, which I dug up this morning and baked in my oven….when I found your picture and info on your dandelion tea experience! ( I was looking up info on how to cut the roots easier…they were extremely difficult due to their hardness! did you find this also?)
Anyways, It is such a blessing when I stumble upon others who love The LORD Jesus! WE are all in his hands, and I often find others’ of like-mindedness where ever I go! God is good!
Your mention of ‘love your neighbours as yourselves..’, really hit home for me today as my actual neighbours are moving today and I really feel like I should have reached out to them more! But, I guess I get ‘too busy’ or pre-ocupied with lessor important things…(like being on the internet 🙂 theres always tomorrow I guess 😉
All the best on your journey!
I look forward to reading more of your blogs and commenting from time to time…(if that okay! 🙂