Independence Days Challenge 2012 – Week 13 (The Last Week??)

Producing more food for my family and becoming generally more self-sufficient has been one of my long time goals now, so I was excited to see the Independence Days Challenge is back on Sharon Astyk’s excellent blog The Chatelaine’s Keys. So each week on Thursdays I’m going to post what I’ve done in each category in the past week.  I’m hoping that this will be the additional motivation I need to reach real food independence!

Sweet potatoes in my future??

So I’ve done the Independence Days Challenge faithfully for the past few months, but I’m kind of wondering whether I should continue.  The host blog for the challenge rarely posts an update, and I’m worried that I’m starting to bore everyone!  So I need your feedback – do you want me to keep doing the challenge, or move on to something else on Thursdays?  I’m totally cool with either!  Please speak up or “like” the post if you want it to stay – thanks!

On with this week’s update…

Plant Something:  Potted up the tomato cutting I sprouted, as well as planting a little more spinach.  The carrots didn’t come up so well, so I’m wondering whether it’s too late to plant some more or not (Zone 7b/8).

Harvest Something: Herbs, lots of radishes, snow peas, green beans

Preserve Something: I’m making another batch of pickled radishes today.  Definitely adding more sweetness.

Waste Not:  We’ve done pretty well with this – I just ate some bacon this morning that almost got lost in the fridge (why wasn’t it in the Eat Me bin??).  I’m having trouble getting my chickens to eat food scraps though – does anyone else have this problem?  They are fairly young though, so maybe they just don’t know any better yet…

Want Not:  We’ve got a new Aldi opening in our neighborhood (today actually!), so I’m planning on going over there and checking out some of their brands to see what we like.

Eat the Food:  Holy moly we ate some delicious pork last night.  We got what can only be described as a comically oversized ham steak in our meat CSA, so last night we cooked it up like Cook’s Illustrated’s fresh roast ham.  I’m telling you, if you haven’t ever had heritage pork then you don’t know what you’re missing!  This steak will probably last us three dinners!

Build Community Food Systems:  There’s some chatter about a group seed order this fall – I’ve got several friends who garden, but of course sometimes you don’t need the entire seed packet so we might be sharing!

Skill Up: Hmmm…don’t think I did anything in this department – I was so close to a complete week!

What are you doing to build your independence?

Previous Weeks:  Week 12 | Week 11 | Week 10 | Week 9 | Week 8 | Week 7 | Week 6 | Week 5 | Week 4 | Week 3 | Week 2 | Week 1

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5 Responses to Independence Days Challenge 2012 – Week 13 (The Last Week??)

  1. That’s so cool! I’ve got to try this. We are having a warm spell here in Chicago right now so we were thinking about putting our garden in this weekend. We have a new dog, though, a 100 lb lab/rottweiler mix, so the challenge will be keeping him from trampling everything. Any suggestions?

    • Jessie says:

      We only have a beagle so even if he walks through the garden, it’s no big deal. But we do have some friends with two large dogs that garden, and they actually built mesh panels to make “walls” for the outside of their beds. The walls are removable so they can get in and work in the garden.

  2. I love your Eat Me bin! We have an Eat Me shelf 🙂

    Onto your question…I personally enjoy reading everyone’s IDC updates and have found that I am incredibly encouraged by looking at what we’ve accomplished each week. I can really get bogged down by what I didn’t do, so looking at what I did do always helps 😉 So, I am not bored even though some weeks I find I’m a bit repetitive. Though I do wish Sharon would post a bit more…really just for inspiration’s sake…as I find what she’s doing to be quite amazing. Anyhow, you will make whatever decision is best for you, but please know that every little thing you do is inspiring 🙂 Cheers!

  3. Pingback: Independence Days Challenge 2012 – Week 14 | Jessie : Improved

  4. Pingback: June Garden and Independence Days Update | Jessie : Improved

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