Stuff about guns…and other ramblings

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Let’s face it; part of being self sufficient is being able to defend yourself. No one likes to think about the possibilities of someone doing them harm but the fact is none of us are exempt from danger and the world is full of misguided souls. My personal choice for protection is a good old fashioned pistol. Sure it’s a good idea to know some martial arts or other fighting techniques. And sure, there are plenty of other weapons one can use for self-defense but nothing beats the power and easy use of a semiautomatic handgun.

I wasn’t raised around firearms and self-defense was never really talked about in our house. I guess, like many families, we just assumed nothing bad would ever happen to us because we’re good people. Or maybe we never really thought about it at all. At any rate, it wasn’t until my late twenties that I ever held a gun. Guns were scary to me and I never imagined that one day, not only would I own a gun, but I would also enjoy target shooting and learn how to take apart my pistol and clean it.

My first experience shooting was a project for a Women’s Study course I was taking in college. The goal of the project was to engage in an un-lady-like activity. Well, this was right up my alley!  I was so excited that I was having a hard time deciding which un-lady-like thing to report on first. But then I thought back to earlier in the semester when my professor told us how she had been assaulted once in a parking lot and that got me to thinkin’ about how the heck I would defend myself if, God forbid, some misguided soul tried to hurt me. Bingo! I knew exactly what I was gonna to do for that project. Get a gun and learn to shoot it. And so I did. And I got an A.

Now that I know how to safely handle a gun, there’s no doubt in my mind it’s the most effective means of self-defense available. And it’s a great feeling to know I don’t have to rely on someone else to come to my rescue.

The thing is though, nobody’s ever truly self sufficient. We need each other if we’re gonna make a go of this republic. So go ahead and learn to shoot if you haven’t already but don’t forget to introduce yourself to the neighbors, lean on a truck or two and share a few minutes face to face with the folks most likely to save your ass when the shit hits the fan.

Five Good Reasons to Raise Rabbits

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Five Reasons to Raise Rabbits:

  1. Low Cost
  2. Great Manure
  3. Easy to Breed
  4. Taste Good
  5. It’s Legal!

If you ask me rabbits are second only to chickens in terms of the best livestock to raise. They are small and quiet and very inexpensive to house and feed. They only eat a ¼ cup of food each day. Another bonus is that rabbit manure is what you call cold which means it’s ready to go right into the garden with no composting time required. It’ll really boost the nitrogen level in your soil too without burning your plants.

Rabbits are relatively easy to breed. You will want to house your does separate from your buck. When you’re ready for them to breed, you just put a doe in with the buck and let them do their thing. Don’t put him into her cage though because does are territorial and she might try to attack. When the buck is finished breeding, he’ll squeal and fall off of the doe’s back.

After breeding, if all goes well, your doe will kindle in 5 weeks. Four days before she’s due, put some bedding in her nest box. She should begin to nest and you’ll know the kits are on the way when she pulls out the fur on her belly for them. This makes the nest nice and soft and makes it easy for the kits to find their momma’s milk.

Rabbits are a great source of lean protein. They should be prepared at about 5-6 weeks old. At this age you can expect them to weigh somewhere around 3 lbs, maybe more depending on the breed. Rabbit tastes wonderful when cooked in the crock pot, stewed with homegrown veggies or pan fried with a mustard wine sauce. I have a great rabbit recipe posted on my Real Food Recipes page.

So if you can’t raise chickens for some silly reason like its against the law or what have you, give rabbits a try. Just tell your neighbors they are your pets. Lord knows no one wants to live next door to a farmer!

This post is linked to Homestead Barn Hop

TRUTH ACTION and sexy lingerie

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Part 2 of Habit Busting: Early to rise makes my thighs less flabby.

For the month of January, I developed a positive outlook by avoiding the main trigger of negativity in my life, procrastination, which I found to occur primarily in my comfort zone aka while lounging on the living room sofa. Therefore while I despise rules of any kind, I adopted one for my own good…NO STIITNG ON THE COUCH (until after 4:00 pm).

Having mastered the no couch zone I am ready to move onto a second challenge. For the month of February my goal is to get out of bed an hour earlier which for me will be 5am. And since there’s no couch time allowed I’ve decided to take an even bigger step…I am going to exercise for at least 30 minutes every morning.

If I succeed I am going to treat myself to a new outfit from my new favorite shop, Philanthropy.

This is a HUGE challenge for me people so any words of encouragement would be greatly appreciated.

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I’ve come to realize with my recent experiment in habit busting that the term comfort zone is very misleading. A comfort zone is anything but comfortable. It’s more like a trap, a quagmire of excuses and the perfect breeding ground for procrastination and guilt. Comfort zones create mental barriers beyond which we hesitate to go or GROW.

We use our comfort zone as a retreat from the TRUTH and ACTION of living. It is a place of unfulfilled dreams and meritocracy. Its where we wear our sweat pants instead of our sexy lingerie or what have you…

I’m calling it quits on my comfort zone. To hell with it! Here’s to TRUTH, ACTION and sexy lingerie (or whatever our hearts desire).

Squash Every One!

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Happy New Year yall!

Hope you started 2012 out with a bowl of black eyed peas and collards. If not, try throwing a pinch or two in some scrambled eggs with a bit of cheddar cheese. It’s the best!

Well today is day 3 of guilt busting and I think its going pretty well. I am following the methods described on zenhabits.net mainly because Leo has used them to transform his own life. He got out of debt, quit smoking, lost 70 pounds, and created a career, all in just a few years! I’ve come a long way myself but I’m not finished yet. There is so much more growing and learning to do. That’s why I am dedicating this entire month to getting rid of negative thoughts.

According to Leo I need to write down my plan, have a mantra, identify my triggers and make it public. So here I am doing just that. My guilt busting mantra is “Squash every one!” I am going to squash every negative thought and replace it with a positive one. I have identified the things that trigger me to have negative thoughts. My two biggest triggers are procrastinating and getting ready in the morning.

Procrastination is a habit in and of itself. I’m not sure if I can tackle that one just yet so I have decided to eliminate one component of my morning routine that makes procrastinating really easy, SITTING MY BUTT ON THE COUCH.

I’ve also invested some time in figuring out why I hate getting ready in the morning. What I realized came as surprise to me. I don’t feel confident about my appearance anymore and I actually CARE how I look to other people. I want to be pretty (er). So I have taken a few steps to remedy this problem which will hopefully eliminate the morning blues. After a few hours on the internet, I now know what hairstyles flatter a round face, what colors look best on a winter complexion and what types of outfits flatter a pear shaped body. Armed with these helpful tips I will have a MUCH easier time squashing those negative thoughts and replacing them with positive ones!

Avoiding the couch and knowing how to choose my clothes and makeup are the baby steps I am taking for week one of this project. I hope these two things will have a dramatic effect on my daily routine.

What is it that triggers your negative thinking? Any of yall super positive already? I’d love to know your good habits and your challenges too.

Digging Deep (Again)

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America’s story is just beginning. Our destiny has yet to unfold and in our future are infinite possibilities for greatness. In each one of us those possibilities are born. Sacrifices are and will be made at every turn. We need no reminder of that. Life has her way of letting us know these things. So when you hear our country’s “leadership” speaking of “shared sacrifices” stop and think about what they could be saying instead.

A great leader inspires and uplifts and directs the heart and mind of each individual to discover greatness within herself, not to dwell on disadvantages or handicaps.

How are we to carry freedom to other nations when we do not protect it in our own land? How are we to inspire and uplift the oppressed when we ourselves are subjects of oppression? We need to turn our vision inward, to heal and rejuvenate our spirit; to reform and rebuild and regain our credibility as a free and prosperous nation.

The challenge is to dig deep. Take advantage of each and every opportunity afforded us by the men and women who have gone before us to preserve freedom in this great country. Harness our talents; meditate on the positive and create peace and love in our homes. Give thanks. Give to those in need and accept love from others. Prepare for the rocky road ahead so that when hard times are upon us, we will remain strong against those who wish to oppress us. Beyond these troubled times lies America’s destiny. There are no limits to what we can achieve as individuals and thus as a nation.

American Blues

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I began calling myself the Outlaw Farmer because I wanted to make the statement that at this point in time, growing and eating real food is an act of civil disobedience in America. But over the brief course of my blogging career, I’ve realized there’re more layers to this story. Namely that I am somewhat uncomfortable being outspoken about my love for America and my patriotism.

This uneasiness stems from prevailing negative attitudes toward America among my peers and in the media. What has happened here? When did we get so down on ourselves? When did our flag come to represent domination, greed, racism, and other such evils? When did we give up on the American Dream?

The flag and America Herself are symbols not of imperialism and capitalism but of freedom, opportunity, and the individual. The flag represents humankind’s God given rights to worship and speak freely, to protect ourselves and to pursue happiness.

I have concerns about many things politically speaking. But it all boils down to one final question; will we trade our freedom for false security? Will Americans willingly exchange personal sovereignty for short term creature comforts? I fear many will and thus seal our future fate. So many are ignorant. So many are helpless. So many are dependent. So many are unhealthy. This is not the recipe for freedom.

And we carry on with our bottled water, our ipods, our cell phones, our cable TV and our prescription medications. We carry on with diets that are killing us. We carry on with credit card debt. We carry on with domestic violence and brat dolls and disposable vacuum cleaners.

Those of us who are desperately trying to salvage America from the hands of global oppressors, those of us who are going to great lengths to be healthy productive members of society; those of us who still believe in the American Dream… we’re vilified, portrayed as a bunch of  extremist haters. Our resources are plucked away one at a time by illegal taxes, restrictions, regulations, road blocks…by any means possible to usurp our power over our own destinies.

Thus the Outlaw Farmer is born an outcast in her own beloved country because she believes in the freedom on which her country itself was founded. A tad ironic wouldn’t ya say?

This is my Soap Box Saturday post on Bleustockings

Sometimes Less is More, Right?

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Last night I put this ad on craigslist:

“I have a small registered nubian herd for sale. These goats would make a perfect starter herd for a home dairy…Will sell any 5 for $1000.”

What the hell am I thinking? This is 2/3’s of my herd! I am advertising does with the fullest utters I’ve ever seen.

But the thing is, sometimes in farming, as with any other aspect of life you’ve just got to rethink the whole situation. On the one hand I could keep everybody, pick up a few milk customers (which is completely illegal), fence off smaller paddocks and build another barn (which would cost more than I can recoup in farm sales this year unless I got a grant and that would put my name on a list, something I am loathe to do). On the other hand, I could downsize, keep only a few does and a buck or two. This option would actually put some extra cash in my pocket and keep me off those lists for the time being.

So yeah, the big decision’s been made. And I’m feeling pretty good about it. The main drawback so far has been all the phone calls. I actually have to interact with people, not one of my favorite things but good medicine none the less. They’ve all been nice enough so far.

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