Sharon's bringing it back!
For several years (I lost count), I participated in a challenge meant to celebrate the steps we take to bring independence from the system. What system? You may ask. Most of them is the best I can reply.
There are so many issues to bring us down: unemployment (or, my favorite, underemployment); eco-troubles, political problems, societal clashes, rising inflation, rising costs, poisons in our food...Yea, it's depressing. Personally, I've mentioned my struggles: away from my children during the week, away from my farm, stuck in a job that is quickly turning my dark hair grey.
Independence Days Challenge challenges us to rise above the issues and be aware that we are capable of survival by performing small steps towards self-sufficiency. In the early days of IDC, someone once called it a Camp TEOTWAWKI event (The End of The World As We Know It). Sounds much happier that way, doesn't it? Seriously, it does seem to me the world has crossed a boundary that can never be recrossed again. Adjustment is all we can do. In this case, focus on the positive. You do amazing things everyday!
So, check it out! The best part is learning from others walking a similar path. You will be amazed by what folks accomplish in the course of a week! Me? I will (try really, really hard) to post my updates on Fridays. Um, maybe Saturdays. Either way, I am really looking forward to participating in this challenge again.
Here are the categories in a nutshell:
1. Plant Something: Just as it sounds. Plant a garden. Plant a seed. Plant a forest. Plant a thought.
2. Harvest Something: Well, if you do something in #1, you will harvest food. However, this can also mean Farmer's Markets, CSAs, foraging, gleaning, eggs, honey etc.
3. Preserve Something: Can, freeze, dry...store the food you harvest.
4. Waste Not: Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Compost. Time.
5. Want Not: This is the stockpiling part of the challenge. Find ways to store items that could be essential to survival off the Merry-go-round we are used to riding. In the past I have placed vintage blankets, farming/gardening equipment, extra wool sweaters (thrifted, of course!), canning supplies, alcohol. It can also mean repairing or building something (home, chicken coops, shelves), gathering reference materials (library, thrifted books, new books), or just "...wanting what you got" to badly quote Sheryl Crow.
6. Eat the Food: This one ties into "Waste Not". Never, ever, ever, never waste what you preserve, harvest, or store. This is the place to tell everyone what you are eating. And, everyone loves food porn. I'm just saying...
7. Build Community Food Systems: Being Independent is not the same as being alone. Build a community. Find a way to make all this shit better. Really. Be creative.
8. Skill Up: And speaking of creativity, learn something. Read, join a class, observe, find information. It may be the most important step you can take at this moment in world that needs improvement one teeny step at a time.