As homesteaders, the hubby and I share the goal of becoming more and more self-sufficient. The less we have to rely on the grocery store and the barge system bringing things from the Lower 48, the better. Over the past three years, our grocery store list has shrunk. Check out these 10 things I stopped buying from the store.
Between fishing, hunting, and local farmers, we haven’t bought meat from the grocery store in over a year, and the freezers are still pretty full. The hubby got a moose last year. We shared half of it with my parents as thanks for helping us break it down and get it home. (Breaking down an entire moose is no small job!) We still have a couple roasts in the freezer. (Check out the hubby’s moose summer sausage recipe!) We have a few jars of salmon from last year, but we just stocked the freezers with fresh Alaskan salmon a couple weeks ago, so we’re set for fish. We started buying a pig from a local farmer every year a couple years ago and love it! I’ve never been a fan of pork chops, but these fresh chops are AMAZING. We raised meat chickens last year for the first time and are again this year. There are currently 40 meat chickens in a chicken tractor in the backyard and 5 turkeys in the coop. We raised 2 turkeys last year and I swear that was the BEST Thanksgiving turkey I’ve ever had. If you aren’t in a position to raise your own, find a local farmer. Believe me- it is well worth it.
Along with those meat chickens, there are currently 2 roosters and 16 egg laying hens in two coops in the backyard. My girls give us a wonderful supply of delicious, extra healthy, organic eggs every day. I can’t remember the last time I bought eggs. Not only are they providing enough eggs for the hubby and me, but I am also selling eggs locally, which covers the cost of chicken feed.
I wish I could share the recipe with you, but the hubby says I’m not allowed. He has perfected his mustard based barbecue sauce and it’s delicious. He’s still working on honing in his red barbecue sauce recipe, but I’m enjoying his trials. I made an Apricot BBQ Sauce recently, which is going to be so good with chicken… I made a Spicy Peach BBQ Sauce last year.
Pizza and Pizza Sauce
I admit, we used to keep frozen pizza stocked in the freezer. But once I found this recipe for the most amazing pizza crust, and I promptly stopped. The hubby used most of our harvest of tomatoes last year to make pizza sauce. He didn’t write down the recipe, so I don’t have it, but I’m thinking we need to do that again, so I’ll be sure to let you know what our recipe will be. No more store-bought frozen pizzas for us!
The hubby has spoiled me. I can’t eat canned pasta sauce anymore. He makes the best pasta sauce. He made this basic pasta sauce with fresh basil and I love it! No more jars for me! I occasionally make homemade pasta to go with it, but I admit, we still buy it most of the time.
I quit wearing make-up a couple years ago. My skin has been so much healthier ever since I did. My morning routine is much faster now too. I much prefer to keep my pores open and able to breathe. I’m quite thankful that the hubby prefers me without it anyways. No chemicals leaching into my skin now too!
I’m still working on finding an organic shampoo I like, but I’ve found my conditioner! I now use one of two things; either a tablespoon or so of lemon juice mixed with about 8 ounces of hot water, or the same ratio of apple cider vinegar and water. I love the effect on my hair. Between organic shampoo and my homemade “conditioner,” I’ve gone from having to wash my hair every other day, to twice a week. My hair is so much healthier and I love it!
It took a while, but we finally got rid of all the old, nasty carpet and now we have beautiful hardwood floors throughout. I love it. I used to have a Bona floor mop with a built in sprayer. Once the Bona spray ran out, I made my own. I soaked orange peels in vinegar for a couple weeks, strained the peels and such out, and now use the vinegar to clean my floors. It does make the house smell like vinegar for a while, but once it dries, the smell is gone and my floors are shiny clean.
I LOVE making my own laundry soap. As opposed to spending $10-14 on a gallon or two of laundry soap, I make mine for less than $1 per batch. Not only is it cheap, but it works great too! Get my recipe HERE.
Is there anything you make from scratch that you used to buy from the store? Share in the comments below!