Tag Archives: self sufficiency

Utah & Her Chicken: Best Friends Forever

dog & chicken

Hanging out under the wheel-coop. They’re inseparable.

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Dear city dweller,

If you have knowledge enough to be reading this, you know that we have the tools to be both self employed and self sufficient. To be self aware. There are no real opportunities for our generation in the matrix except for the chosen few with well-connected parents, but we don’t need to live in the matrix since we have chosen to awaken.

Fellow slaves of the empire, work and save and prepare for your eventual freedom. If we build simple shelters and grow food and grow love, then all we need false currency for is luxuries; long distance travel or gadgets, so there can’t really be any pressure to ‘succeed’ unless it’s invented by our minds, by our parents corrupting voices echoing in our skulls, telling us our lives somehow aren’t enough. We can silence those voices by supporting each other, together we’re louder than the voices, we’re stronger than them.

Once you’ve made your home on the land, you can collect a few paper notes here and there to pay for tools and luxuries and not live or die based on the fluctuations of the market. While the rich and working poor are miserable and filled with hate because they constantly fear waking up one day and finding they’ve lost everything they had, the self sufficient have nothing to lose but life itself, and cannot truly be unhappy or afraid.

Self sufficiency is a great thing, if you have the knowledge to take care of yourself using your natural surroundings and simple tools, and have the love and support of your found family; the true community you grow around you, for the times you’re too sick or tired to take care of yourself, you’ll never have to fear life.

With the mountains and the sea surrounding you, your hands planted in the earth, your mind floating in the clouds, all that’s left to do is to experience each beautiful day as it comes, with nothing to break your spirit because you don’t have any silly expectations of a fabricated life in the old man’s world, constructed out of dirty paper that’s just itching to catch fire.

Life isn’t complicated unless you complicate it out of fear. We have everything we’ll ever need and much more. Don’t worry about the future. You don’t need to find ‘meaning’ because we know the only meaning is the land and the sky. If you’re connected to the earth fellow gardener, the earth will reward you with prosperity. It’s been said before that what we do is god’s work, and it couldn’t be more true. Nothing is more worthy than a life spent tending the lands that give us life. We’re so well connected, the best job in the world is already ours and we don’t have to sell even a piece of our souls. We have everything. The whole universe is running through our veins.

Live, taste, wander far, observe, meet like minds to migrate with, squeeze every shape and color you can from Rome in its last days, knowing that when it’s time to break free of your chains, your true home is waiting for you, hidden in a fertile valley somewhere faraway from the city. Unlimited secrets just waiting to be unlocked from the earth, and soil spilling with delicious plants to fulfill your appetite and cure you of any ailment.

Dogs of Orninica

The print edition of my novel is out now, as well as the kindle version.

Amazon USA:
http://www.amazon.com/Dogs-Orninica-Daniel-Unedo/dp/1495301974/ref=tmm_pap_title_0

Amazon UK:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Dogs-Orninica-Daniel-Unedo/dp/1495301974/ref=tmm_pap_title_0

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Millennia ago, the humans departed Earth, leaving behind their loyal canine companions. Today, the dogs have evolved to become the dominant species on Earth. Their greatest nation, Orninica, has fully embraced the lessons left by man and built towering concrete metropolises patrolled by all-seeing drones and fueled by the military industrial complex.

Their major religion is built on the back of Batman comic books unearthed in the ruins of a human basement centuries ago, transcribed, and then lost. The world has embraced social technology with open arms and virtually everyone wears an iYglass device everywhere they go, while big-budget dreams (with commercials) are beamed to their headsets as they sleep.

The unceasing quest for profit has taken this vast empire to the brink of collapse, and now in its waning days, the leaders of the nation’s affluent corporations make a desperate effort to begin a new war, hoping to stimulate the economy and keep the wealthy elite in power for another day. Unfortunately, the only enemy they have left to wage war on is a nation of primitive nomads with no advanced weaponry. The leaders of the free world must now concoct a plan to arm the simple savages and ensure a long, profitable war.

This satirical cautionary tale is made up of a collection of correspondences from every corner of society, including a grovelling judge, an egotistical actor, an Internet revolutionary, a cunning banker, a foreign spy, a peeping police officer, a profane soldier and a professor. A humorous book for the Occupy generation and budding anarchists everywhere.

Simple Living: Pond Swirl Filter, Feeding Koi, Releasing Geckos, Using Rocks, Aquaponics

In this instalment, I work on improving the food pond by adding a DIY swirl filter made from a dustbin / trashcan and a simple gravel filter / growbed for kangkong, watercress and other plants that don’t mind being constantly flooded. There’s still room to expand with more beds in the future, as well as floating island planters. The medium for the growbed is volcanic rock gravel from my land. The swirl filter uses a modified laundry basket lid at the bottom, and although I forgot to show it in the video, there is a T connector at the end of the hose under the laundry basket lid to send the water in two diferent directions.

I also show off a quick bench I made out of a pallet, some uses for rocks including simple terracing, and I release some geckos into the house for pest control.

Reclaiming Our Earth

The best thing I can do with my time on this earth is to try to show people by example that they don’t need to cling to the ‘safety net’ of exploitative industrial civilization; that there’s a better and easier way to live a life, and all it takes is the will to step outside the ring and be a human again; instead of the single-minded machines we’ve been coaxed into believing we are.

We’ve been flimflammed into accepting that we’re all unruly beings that require constant policing and governance to act civilly, that without force and the always loaming threat of incarceration, we can’t be trusted to act morally. This is a blatant falsehood. It is human nature to co-operate for the betterment of our community. It’s human nature to do good without monetary incentive or threat of violence. Debt, taxes, serfdom, the permanent polluting of our soil, water and air in exchange for momentary convenience; all these things are absolutely not our nature, and we can’t be whole again until we’ve shook free of them.

The only way I can see to stop the cycle of destruction is to create a better society without violence (government), wealth (exploitation) and hunger (wealth) and hope that people are inspired by it, and choose to leave their credit cards, microwave dinners and designer handbags behind to join a better world where human feet know the texture of soil again.

Destroying the old society with violence cannot work because the next civilization that rises from the ashes will just fall into the same traps we did and repeat the global destruction of natural, indigenous culture in seek of profit and power for the few at the top. People need to abandon the broken civilization willingly to break the loop and free Earth forever. They need to willingly step away from the broken material matrix and return to the earth that sustained their forefathers for millennia.

I saw an old lady complaining that some kids were playing too loud, and it was giving her a headache. I want to show her she can be happy too; that play and joy aren’t going to break the world. She needs to see with her own eyes, a better system in action; see it actually working. Only then can she let go of her fear and join us in the daylight.

Simple Living: Food Pond Permaculture, Talking to a Tree Rat & Homemade Beehive

Putting my new camera to use around the homestead. My new pond should give me greens all year round, and when I have enough fish I’ll expand further into outdoor aquaponics & grow all kinds of fruit and veg in the water on floating foam rafts. If this experiment is a success, I plan to put more ponds between the trees in the orchard.

I made a path (hand-mixed concrete poured over a hacksawed rebar frame joined with wire) and new raised beds to go with it. Hopefully some of the visiting bees will take up residence in the very basic beehive I put together. It doesn’t have trays so harvesting of honey is a no-go, but bees need the honey they make to feed their young, so that’s just fine.

Mosquito fish are likely the best fish for hot climate aquaponics systems, especially if you’re not interested in eating the fish (tho they are edible if you’re so inclined). They can survive all kinds of calamities unfazed, don’t need a pump, breed like flies (they’re one of the few live-bearing fish), and even survive in a few cm of wet mud when the waterways here dry up in the summer. The ideal permaculture fish. Tho I’m trying other fish in the pond, I’ve kept mosquito fish most of my life and doubt anything can top them.

I sunk holed bricks and cages filled with stones in the pond to allow fry to hide. I also added some driftwood.

Simple Living: Hare Droppings, Papayas in Raised Beds & Wild Olive Tree Adventures

It’s December 25th. The tomatoes have completely overgrown their beds and are almost ready to be pulled, the celery is loving all the rain, and the sweet winter fruits are ripening. I find a surprising new source of free fertilizer right under my nose. Papayas I planted from seed just a few months ago are growing and flowering in their raised bed (compost over gravel).

I then venture into the wild looking for olive trees, and find plenty. Avoiding the ardent mushroom pickers down below, I also stumble onto an old abandoned olive grove on the mountainside.

Please excuse the poor video quality, the new phone I’ve been using is really not cutting it – Had to leave a lot of great stuff out because the video was too dark/grainy/motion blurred, making this a personally disappointing instalment. I’ll try to get another video device before continuing.

This is the companion video to the ‘making quick water cured olives’ vid I posted earlier today. I decided to separate them since most people looking for olive curing guides aren’t interested in the other stuff.

Simple Living: Water-Curing Olives Quickly (By Cutting Them)

I demonstrate another water curing method with olives I foraged for. This method is harder work than the previous method I demonstrated, but the olives will be ready to eat much sooner.

A lot of people don’t eat salt, so this is a healthier alternative to eating traditional olives.

The more you change the water, the quicker they’ll cure. If you only change it once a week, it’ll take at least 4 weeks. If you’re changing it twice a day, they’ll be ready much sooner. You’ll notice the water will change colour to purple very quickly.

When the water begins to remain clear for a couple of days, taste an olive and see if they’re ready. It’s up to you how much to leech them. I personally leech until all the bitterness is gone, but some people like them slightly bitter.

Different sizes and varieties might have varying results. The shelf life of olives made using this method will be much shorter than with other methods, so refrigerate.

Update: 6 months later, and the olives are still good to eat, stored out of the fridge in a dark place.

Simple Living: Building a Low Cost Panel Home (Structural Insulated Panels / SIP)

Using painted galvanized steel structural insulated foam panels (SIPs), my awesome brother (the one wearing the hat) put together my 96 square meter (including the large verandah) house in 4 weekends. That’s 1033 square feet. The building materials are all readily available and cheap, with the big expense being the concrete foundation that’s needed to bolt the panels to.

The panels are highly insulated and make for comfortable temperatures inside year round, saving up to 50% on energy costs compared to other building styles. I also chose a cool and breezy mountain-foot site to build. I have 3 solar photovoltaic panels and 2 wind generators for power, connected to a sinewave inverter.

I was initially going to make a much smaller house, but quickly realised that the panels were so cheap that adding another room and a large verandah wouldn’t increase the cost much at all. If I need more space in the future, I can close the verandah and turn it into another room.

Because we didn’t use a skeleton frame, the house has to be a bungalow. For multi-storey buildings, a steel skeleton frame is needed.

Panels: €11,000
Foundation: €12,000

More information about SIPs here: http://www.eco-panels.com/
(I didn’t use this US company as I’m European, but their website is informative)

Simple Living: Making Lettuce Wraps

Tomato-avocado-cucumber-lettuce wraps, with figs and grapes on the side. I make wraps like these everyday, varying the ingredients depending on what fruit and greens I have available. For super large wraps, you can use collard greens or chard.

My trusty camera phone met with an accident, and the one I’m using now isn’t really cutting it. Sorry about that.

Cherokee Purple, Super Marmande and Black Cherry are 3 of the heirloom tomatoes featured in this instalment.

A video I started before this one is coming soon, I got set back by the loss of my camera.