Sustainable Living Skills You Need to Survive
It might not seem so serious to the average consumer in the First World, but the future of the world as we know hangs in the balance. The media is full of bad news that can make changing things for the better seem hopeless, but there are simple and radical things you can do to reduce your impact and set an example for others. It's not just a choice, our survival depends on it.
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Now that I’ve got the scratch coat of repair lime plaster on the addition, I’m returning the earth pigmenting to its former glory. This is a fun process and not as hard as you might think considering how good it looks. Fresco is a method of applying earth pigments to still wet lime plaster. It gives a deeper color than pigmented limewash, and is a natural way to color your lime plastered house. In this video, I walk you through the process.
In this video, I continue with my mudroom addition, this time demonstrating the repair of the lime plaster around the mudroom’s connection to the existing house. To connect the mudroom framing directly into the house framing I had to chip off some of the lime plaster on that north facing wall. Fortunately, lime plaster is easy enough to work with and I was able to chip off the exact amount that I wanted to, meaning the repair is covering a fairly small area. Still, it’s probably the most complicated part of this mudroom project. I love working with lime, and this video is a good taste of what it’s like to apply it on strawbale construction.
I attended the recent Mother Earth News Fair in Kansas, did a presentation about Dancing Rabbit, and got some new inspiration to do more with season extension. I also met Wranglerstar, another youtube producer with a very popular homesteading channel, who encouraged me to be more active with posting YouTube videos.
There are a few different philosophies for changing the world, and most of them have been tried before. Which methods work depends on many different societal factors, but it’s clear that some methods just don’t work. History can tell us a lot about what we need to know, but our schools teach us a very limited history. Lost to the most recent generation is the history of the movements of the 60s and 70s and the lessons we could have learned from them.
Although my house will still be tiny by most measures, I’m adding some more square footage this fall. As much as I like the idea of a tiny house, when you are homesteading—growing your own food, preserving it, making most of your food from scratch—you inevitably are going to need a little more space. Enough of my current house is packed with food and drink storage, canned and fresh, that I don’t have enough room for storing my cheese and winemaking equipment and the fridge and freezer I use to store homegrown produce. I’m not complaining, but it would be nice to have a place to store the excess clutter in my house so that it’s a more livable space. That’s why I’m building this mudroom. My garden shed is also cluttered with all sorts of homesteading equipment and I need an overflow.
This was a pretty good year for organic grapes in my vineyard. We didn’t get a late frost and we had dry weather early in the season, which goes a long way toward ensuring there will be a good crop. That means I have enough grapes to make a significant amount of wine this season. In this video, I take you through the harvest, the fermentation, and the pressing of the grapes.