7 Most Important Things On Our Homestead

7 Most Important Things On Our Homestead

Welcome to our homestead. Although you visit our homestead virtually, we want you to feel welcomed and a part of the family.

We treasure our visitors and enjoy being led to share our knowledge, inspiration and offer you encouragement on your daily walk.  We enjoy getting to know you and for many of you, your willingness to share too!

So when you visit, no matter if you are listening to a podcast, reading a post or watching a video – our prayer is that your visit here will be memorable, peaceful and that you will walk away with knowledge and encouragement.

“May the Lord bless you and keep you, and make His face shine upon you.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

Our Goal

Our goal here on our off-grid homestead is to walk a walk that causes others to ask where our hope, faith, and perseverance come from! (1 Peter 3:15)

Living With Intention

2018 became a year we began Living With Intention and in doing so we put our focus on what was the MOST important to us.

What Is Most Important To Us

The 7 most important things on our homestead are what help hold us together, strengthen our bond and enable us to walk the walk…

  1. Faith & Trust – Our home is lead by God and our focus is heavily on him for everything we do. We choose to walk in faith and be disciples for him. We are not perfect, but we strive to be the best that we can be.  We have found spending time in the Word daily and building on our Faith and Trust muscles create a stress-free and worry-free life!  I enjoy using Jesus Calling as a go-to devotional and I would be lost without my Inspire Journalling Bible.
  2. Head Of The House – The Mountain Man is the head of our house. He is our prayerful rock. I do submit to him as I am called to do, but as his helpmeet and willingly as his equal. We walk side by side and work together. This is a subject that causes heated discussions at times because of how it is taught, perceived and unfortunately because of misuse. I, as the woman, am supposed to submit to him (which means in many ways not just in the one that is usually the first to come to mind) and that does not mean abused or that somehow I am a lesser person. He as the head of the household is also supposed to treat me like the church. When these dynamics are put together properly and as they are supposed to be, an amazing relationship is formed and is able to grow! We need to nurture our men into good healthy leaders that walk with confidence, strength and a willingness to protect!  Our men are meant to be the leaders of our homes and our protectors.  We also, as a team (husband and wife), need to focus on the health of our marriages being supportive of one another and spending quality time with each other.  Communication is key!  Keeping those homestead fires burning is important!
  3. Family – Our strong family bond is important to us. We have experienced and walked through a lot of adversity and trials, but through those experiences, our bond has gotten so strong that together we are unstoppable and unbreakable!  It is important to build each other up and to help our youth to be strong, independent, faith-led individuals that know how to manage money, and have the skillsets to take care of themselves.  Our son is high functioning autistic with Asperger tendencies and he is no exception – our lifestyle has afforded him some great opportunities and we have taught him that the Sky Is The Limit.  Austin has overcome 98% of his autism and Asperger tendencies as a result of God’s grace, our persistence and devotion to seeking answers, natural remedies, and our lifestyle.
  4. Living Debt Free – As many of you know, the last three years have been extremely hard for us financially as a result of my life-saving surgery in 2016 and the healing protocol that I have been on since.  We have been fighting against filing bankruptcy all year and are prayerful that we will get out of this mess and be debt-free within the year without having to file.  Having goals and plans regarding your future and finances is important and so is doing your due diligence in keeping a working budget and being 100% devoted to not giving up.  We use EveryDollar and YNAB as our budgeting solutions and also LOVE following and learning from Dave Ramsey.  Prior to my surgery, we were heavily focusing on a debt-free life, but life through us some lemons and we now need to make some lemonade – in other words, we are NOT giving up, we are making the best of our situation and trusting God for an amazing outcome!  One of the reasons I feel that a lot of people fail at budgeting is because they have Tithing and Saving on their budget, BUT those two things, out of fear, continue to get pushed to the bottom of the budget.  Without tithing we are not honoring God the way we are supposed to – he should ALWAYS be paid FIRST and TRUST ME, he will provide!! Without saving, we don’t have anything to fall back on in emergencies and emergencies WILL happen.  So how do you get past this hang up you ask?  Great question – you start strengthening your FAITH and TRUST muscles and just DO IT!!
  5. Health & Our Food/Bounty – We choose to take good care of ourselves. Our body is a temple and we choose to treat it as such. We get enough sleep, drink plenty of water, exercise and are very conscious of not only what we put in our body, but also what we put on our body. Taking care of ourselves is an important aspect of being able to accomplish the things necessary on our homestead – when we are running like a well-oiled machine we are able to accomplish a lot!  We choose very carefully what we put in our bodies.  Today’s food is poison and it is important for us to do our due diligence and either seek out or grow the best possible food we can put in our bodies.  This goes hand in hand with our health.  Many of the sicknesses, illnesses, and diseases today are a result of our poor quality food.  I have learned first hand how drastically GMO’s can harm the body and result in illness as well as how sensitive our bodies become once we have removed all the garbage.  We grow, forage, hunt and harvest from the wild as much as we can and we purchase all non-GMO, organic raw ingredients for our from-scratch diet.
  6. Serving Others – We are all called to serve and love others.  When we take our focus off of ourselves and turn it toward others there is great growth and joy found in this!  It is also a matter of the heart when you take time to help and assist others.  We enjoy and feel led to be a light to others in whatever way we can!
  7. Enjoying The Journey – In society today, we could very easily be led to believe that it is meant to be all work and no play, but in order to be the best we can be – we need to take time away to enjoy life. To take this a step further, it wouldn’t even be that we need to step away to enjoy life – what really needs to happen is that we need to slow the pace and Live With Intention. Live life by our terms – not by societies terms. We don’t have to be running at the speed of light and keeping up with the Jones’s – we need to learn to focus on what is most important to us!  We must make our most important things in our life non-negotiables on our schedule and we need to guard and protect them. By doing so, you are more likely to enjoy the journey because you are focusing on the things that give you the most joy.

Once our attention is brought to the most important things in our lives and we start to focus on those things, life becomes much sweeter, richer, fuller, and SO rewarding!

So I ask you today, what are the things that are most important to you?

Going Through The Seasons

Going Through The Seasons

Have you ever considered all that is required Going Through The Seasons?  With each season we experience different aspects of mother nature and God’s beauty, but we also experience the unpredictable aspect of mother nature as well. The same is true of the seasons in our lives. So much beauty and blessings in our lives and with each season of life come the hills and valleys.

One of the beautiful things about seasons is they come and they go. They are not permanent and the challenges that they bring depart with them and they leave behind the sweet and sometimes not so sweet memories and lessons learned.

Each season educates us, builds and shapes us and creates warriors in each of us if we allow.

It is important to be prepared for both types of seasons. With each season of the year, we need to be prepared for what mother nature can dish out. Being prepared for these seasons requires thought, tools, labor, and energy.

Season Of The Year

Because we all live in different locations around the globe we all experience different aspects of Mother Nature.  First and foremost, it is important to recognize what threats you have from Mother Nature and be prepared for them.  Our biggest threat is wildfires.

What You Should Consider When Fire Is A Threat?

Our main necessities such as food, water, shelter and warmth come first and may require you to be proactive in having a good supply at all times.  Backup water, a full woodshed, a full food cache and pantry, seasonal clothing, and a roof over your head.

Being prepared for something as simple as a power outage is a great place to start in your preparedness efforts.  Sometimes it can be hard to get your spouse or family onboard when it comes to preparedness and a power outage could be a great place to start getting them onboard.  Having everything on hand that you need to be comfortable as well as some creature comforts such as a favorite candy bar, toiletries, a movie downloaded to a charged iPad, etc.  Once they see the benefits of thinking ahead they may be more apt to support you and join you in your efforts.

Depending on how you live and if you are homesteading with animals, each season may bring on new tasks to care for your animals.  Having all the necessary tools and the know-how is important.  We have chickens, homestead mouser cats, homestead dogs, had honey bees, meat rabbits, milk goats, and a horse.  Each had its own needs seasonally and they depend on us for their care and protection.

If you are gardening, container gardening or have a greenhouse there are things to consider in each season.  Your spring and fall planting, harvesting and preserving not to mention all the tasks in between such as planning your garden, purchasing your seeds, preparing your soil, etc.

In the vast location that we share with many predators, it is important to have homestead protection.  Each of us not only carry, but have on our person tools to assist us in our day to day chores, but also if we ended up in a pickle of sorts we are able to protect ourselves, light a fire, gain warmth, build a shelter and sustain ourselves.  We think of these things and we want you to do the same.

We keep all our homestead equipment maintenanced and ready for whatever season they are needed.  Lawn mowers, weedeaters, chainsaws and manual saws, all our manual traditional outdoor tools, etc.  Maintaining your equipment will help them to last and they will be on the ready and waiting for their next use.

Each season in our location means carrying different items in our vehicles in the event of a breakdown.  We live in a vast location so always having our vehicles well maintenanced and stocked with the appropriate seasonal items adds a great level of comfort and a lot less to think about every time we are out and about.  We know when we get in a vehicle that if something happens EVERYTHING we need is onboard.

Seasons Of Life

The seasons of our lives require us to be prepared in thought, tools, labor and energy as well only our arsenal of tools are going to look very different. For me my tools for the seasons of life are my Bible, Bible.com app on my phone, encouraging music, podcasts, inspiring books, movies, and people, strong faithful family and friends and a very deep relationship with God.

Through each season of life, other powerful tools are a deep faith and trust, perseverance and an extreme eye for gratitude. Regardless if we are walking through a valley or climbing a tall mountain, a close relationship with God and seeing daily all that we should be grateful for makes the season so much sweeter.  The biggest thing in our arsenal is knowing how to step away into the still quiet places to spend time with God.  This still quiet place is the best part of the journey – it allows us to grow closer to God, to hear him speak to us, to gain inspiration and direction and to regroup, be refilled with hope and to grow our faith muscles!

Dealing with the unexpected is stressful and can cause great anxiety which in turn can create poor health.  By learning how to be prepared for the seasons of life you will have better health and if you are already healing you will keep from interrupting your healing process by having protocols in place that work for you and your family and will make the process so much more enjoyable and healthy!

Our seasons of life do not need to be dreaded – you can enjoy the journey through the valleys if your perspective and arsenal are aligned!

It is important that we are prepared for both types of seasons.

What are some ways that you have gotten yourself prepared for both types of seasons?

Slow Starts & Peaceful Mornings

Slow Starts & Peaceful Mornings

I am sitting here in my robe by the fire, with my coffee and felt compelled to share my thoughts this morning.

There is something so precious and peaceful about a slowly started and peaceful morning. Can you relate to this? I hope so, but my fear is that the majority of the population today starts their morning with such a frenzy – the alarm blares, you quickly spring from bed, with lightning speed either dress or shower, wake the kids, remove the skin from your mouth by quickly inhaling that first cup of hot coffee, grab something quick for the road and race out the door. Oh WOW, just writing that gave me anxiety and stress – I have indeed experienced that in my life, BUT I am so thankful for the life I have created.

We are in a storm of sorts currently so just like you when traveling through the high winds it is not easy, but at the same time, I am able to realize how blessed I am that I have the ability to determine my day and even more so my life. Despite the hard and maybe even the unknown – I know by trusting and having faith there will eventually be a light at the end of the tunnel and I will be a warrior on the other side.

This feeling I am experiencing this morning is reminiscent of my summer vacations visiting my grandparents. I think they too understood the benefits I am experiencing. I just so clearly remember their routine and it puts a smile on my face. Yes, they woke to an alarm (one I never heard), but every day they woke at the same time, started the coffee pot, put the bread in the toaster and pulled out their bibles.

I would not wake to their alarm because I always slept so good in their home. I believe because It was something unfamiliar, a comfortable spot for me. I would awake to the smell of coffee and toast. To this day, that is a distinct smell to me that just gives me such joy and takes me back in time. I don’t know what it was about their coffee or their toast, but it was just such a unique alluring smell. It would allure me out of bed and as I would head downstairs I would always find them both at the kitchen table each with their bible partaking in their daily devotions.

I never really understood the value of that daily peaceful routine and even more so that deep walk with Jesus that they both enjoyed so much until we embrace our off-grid homesteading life. Why?  I think because my pace was so great that I missed the simple joys that came with the slow and simple in life and because like many Christians – aside from Sunday church I was afraid of offending someone while speaking my faith so I shared it with a few safe people and the rest of the time I stuffed it!  There is something so incredibly freeing to be in the company of people such as my Mountain Man and my son that allows me to be who I am – to be able to wear my heart, soul, and faith on my sleeve and not have to hide!  So empowering to be around safe and comfortable people for the first time in my life!

This slow pace is an acquired and evidently needs to be a learned, almost forced pace on our lives. I see so many people fight to slow down and pride themselves like a champion at the speed of light they travel – when if they resigned to the slow and peaceful, their lives would be truly something they could pride themselves with!

My grandparents were referred to by some as bible thumpers and even hypocrites (the only thing I ever really saw them do was from time to time talk about the neighbors or local people)- they made mistakes just like the rest of us, but they were such good people. I strive to not only talk the talk but walk the walk.  I am not perfect and I will make mistakes, but if I take on the title of Bible Thumper I will wear that badge proudly. And because of all the miracles I have visibly seen over the last 10 years and feeling and seeing God’s gracious hand on my life and my family, I can no longer hide my joy, my faith and all that I have to celebrate. I have learned that I will more than likely inspire many and actually offend less. I am not shoving Jesus and my faith down people’s throats, but more so sharing my excitement, my faith and the miracles that are happening around me. It is just JOY and extreme FAITH spilling out of me.

I can truly praise and thank my pap for the faith I have today!

His encouraging and wise words were stored in my heart and revisited often throughout my life.  Often during some of my greatest struggles – he was there!

So today on this quiet Friday morning – just me, the dogs and my coffee by the fire I feel that God blessed me with those simple joys and fond memories created as a child so that when I was an adult I would remember those times with great appreciation and peace.

We have been stuck on our homestead since Saturday after receiving 20” of wet snow the weekend before and this last weekend receiving another 24” of fresh powdery snow. Our backhoe is down and our backup equipment couldn’t move that volume of snow. We could have chosen to panic – we did have places to be and things that needed to get done, but when these things happen I truly believe we are right where God wants us to be. We are forced to pull into him – trusting and waiting to see what will happen next. It builds on our faith, it causes us to have a closer walk with Jesus, it makes us think about what is most important in our lives and it also causes us to re-evaluate what we are doing in life… It makes us wonder if God is putting us in this current place to show us what he desires for us rather than what we desire for ourselves. Quite profound – yet is it so? I think YES!

I truly believe that everything happens for a reason and I also believe that amazing things happen in the still, quiet, peaceful moments we allow in our lives. That small voice can be heard and direction can be found.

Do you create those peaceful moments in your life right now?

Do you know the amazing peace that comes from a walk with Jesus?

Well, maybe it is time you should!

 

PS – My journaling bible is the first bible that has truly made sense to me (those thee’s and thou’s lose me even though I love the authenticity of the King James Version of the Bible).  I thoroughly enjoy reading it and being guided through it!  This is my favorite Bible app.

Modern Homesteading and Mental Health

Modern Homesteading and Mental Health

Being self-reliant means many things to many people. Usually, a self-reliant lifestyle is associated with some degree of homesteading, living off the land-perhaps even off the grid and providing for yourself and your family with nothing but the skill and strength of your own two hands.

It means being prepared to survive and care for your family in any event, being financially independent and indebted to no one, and taking control of your physical health and wellbeing with natural medicine and the type of physical fitness that comes from long days of hard work.

Indeed self-reliance can be (and often is) all of these things. But there’s one other very important aspect that is rarely talked about, yet it’s the foundation upon which all other important skills are built. It’s our mental health, and it’s perhaps the most powerful weapon we have in our arsenal.

The Importance of Mental Health for Self-Reliance

As a society, we still struggle to talk openly about mental health. For some reason, it’s still a bit of a taboo subject that gets dismissed too often as being little more than new age quackery. But mental health is very real and affects us all just as much as our physical health (sometimes more).

Consider the fact that, according to the World Health Organization, more than 300 million people suffer from depression worldwide. And that’s just depression. There are many more people who live with varying types and degrees of stress, anxiety, trauma and even phobias, all of which take their toll on our mental health and our ability to function optimally in our day-to-day lives.

Now, what does this all have to do with self-reliance, you ask? A lot.

For starters, anyone pursuing a self-reliant lifestyle is probably someone who wants to take control and responsibility for their own wellbeing and not have to rely on others to care for them.

When it comes to physical health, we all know it’s important to maintain a healthy lifestyle, eat nutritious foods and stay physically fit so as to remain in good health and avoid reliance on doctors and hospitals as much as possible. It shouldn’t come as a big surprise then that this concept applies to mental health as well: In order to maintain good mental health and avoid doctors, drugs, and therapists, we must train our minds just as we do our bodies and feed our brains positive thoughts just as we feed our bodies nutritious foods.

Another reason why it’s so important for homesteaders and others striving for self-reliance to maintain good mental health, quite frankly, is because we’re too busy not to!

For the average homesteader, the to-do list is never-ending. There are gardens to be tended to, meals to be cooked from scratch, wood to be chopped, fires to be stoked, homeschool lessons to be delivered, projects to be completed and livestock to be fed, watered, birthed, harvested and cared for. We need to make sure we are mentally as well as physically fit to handle all of the pressures and demands of this lifestyle before we find we’ve bitten off more than we can chew.

I have personally battled anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, and continue to live with moderate anxiety today. I know first-hand how debilitating these types of mental health challenges can be. There have been many days when I’ve struggled to even get out of bed, let alone tackle my to-do list with enthusiasm. I’ve spent years learning techniques to help me cope with and overcome these challenges. But I know well what it’s like to have anxiety creep up and paralyze you, rendering it seemingly impossible to complete even the simplest of tasks.

Homestead life can also be emotionally taxing when dealing with unpleasant realities like slaughtering livestock, losing animals to predators, having crops wiped out by pests and disease and dealing with the many other challenges and heartbreaking losses that can make even the toughest of us question whether it’s all worth it in the end.

Now, not every homesteader is doing or dealing with all of these things (I’m certainly not), but many are, and many others are striving to do as much as possible on their own. Accomplishing all of this hard work requires focus, dedication, determination, diligence, resourcefulness, confidence, and faith, all of which can suffer when we’re in a state of poor mental health.

Finally, there is at least some degree of emergency preparedness that goes hand-in-hand with living a self-reliant lifestyle. When we talk about homesteading and self-sufficiency, we often touch on the importance of being prepared for anything by raising our own food, having a fully-stocked pantry, having a source of off-grid heat, power and water, knowing first aid and having supplies packed and ready to either bug-in or bug-out in the event of a major emergency. But again, we rarely talk about the importance of being mentally prepared.

Imagine disaster strikes and chaos ensues. Now more than ever you need to think clearly and rationally, stay focused and remain calm. It’s also the time when you’re most likely to panic or break down if you’re not prepared and you’ve never practiced how to stay calm in stressful situations.

Thankfully you can train your brain to better be able to handle stress, anxiety and negative emotions. Much like you can train your body to become stronger, so too can you train your mind.

While there are many physical things you can do to support mental wellness (such as exercise, healthy diet, natural medicines and getting enough sleep), I’d like to touch on the emotional, spiritual and mindful techniques you can use to improve your own mental health and overall wellbeing.

Please keep in mind that I am not a doctor, and I advise you to seek professional medical help if you are experiencing any sort of mental health issues that are affecting your day-to-day life.

These are just a few tools that have helped me to deal with some of the mental health challenges I’ve faced while eliminating my reliance on doctors and prescription drugs. I hope you’ll find them equally useful…

Just Breathe

The most effective technique I’ve learned to help deal with stress and anxiety is the practice of mindful breathing. This is a tool I can whip out anywhere, anytime to help me get through some of the most uncomfortable feelings of unease, ranging from mild anxiety to full-blown panic attacks. And you literally don’t need anything but your own body to put this into practice. Simply take a few slow, deep breaths in and out (as many as you need), and focus your attention on each inhale and exhale.

The mind can only consciously focus on one thought at a time, so focusing your attention on your breathing actually helps to replace any other negative thoughts you may be experiencing.
Also, slow, deep breathing can help to oxygenate the body, which eases nerves and calms your mind and body.

This type of mindful breathing is the first step (and one of the most highly recommended relaxation techniques) when it comes to managing stress and anxiety. This is a really great technique to practice to help you remain calm in an emergency or otherwise stressful and chaotic situation.

Be Present

I also practice mindfulness regularly by taking time to focus my attention on whatever I’m doing at the present moment. Whether I’m pulling weeds, turning compost, cutting pastry or picking strawberries, I find my mind is most at ease when I’m completely focused on the task at hand.

This practice of being present and mindful is another awesome technique that requires nothing more than your own body and can be applied anywhere at any time. By focusing on the present moment, you block out anxiety about the past and worry about the future and allow more space for positive, calming thoughts to flow. You can practice this at any moment, but I’ve found that doing regular yoga and guided meditations have really helped me to hone this skill.

You can find some great free guided meditations on Youtube or you can gain access to a huge library of resources including dozens of guided meditations, calming music and visuals, and relaxing sleep stories through my favorite new app called Calm. You can sign up for a one-week free trial here and gain access to everything that Calm has to offer. Then you can choose whether to subscribe or cancel your trial but keep access to some of the features for free. I’ve been using this app every night before bed since I discovered it a couple weeks ago and I absolutely love it!

“Keep Calm and Carry On,” and Other Affirmations

Another thing I do to help me through uncomfortable or highly emotional situations is to repeat mantras and affirmations to myself. When I find I’m getting caught up in a negative thought pattern, I try to replace the negative thoughts with positive and reaffirming ones.

One of my personal favorite mantras is “this too shall pass.” I repeat this to myself when I’m engaged in a painful or uncomfortable task, caught up in negative emotions or dealing with anxiety or panic attacks. It reminds me that the pain and discomfort I’m feeling won’t last forever, and I just have to ride the wave and keep on pushing forward until it passes.

Don’t Go It Alone!

In addition to repeating affirmations to yourself, talk to someone you love and trust. Remember, just because we are striving to become more self-reliant doesn’t mean we have to do everything alone. We are still social beings that rely on our relationships with others to survive and thrive in this world. If you are dealing with mental or emotional challenges, find someone you feel comfortable confiding in and get it off your chest.

It’s normal to want to shut yourself away or hide under your blankets alone when you’re feeling down, but it’s much healthier to talk to someone or even just be around loved ones and supportive people. Sharing with others can lessen our own burden while positive feedback and advice can help us to feel better about ourselves and get on with our lives.

Be careful about toxic relationships though! Think carefully about who you can open up to without judgment. Sometimes those closest to us can be the most critical, so talk to someone you know will lift you up instead of bringing you down.

Have Faith

Last but most certainly not least, give yourself over to God.

Knowing that we cannot control everything and relinquishing the need to be able to control every outcome is incredibly liberating; Like a huge weight of responsibility being lifted off your shoulders.

I’ve learned to trust that everything happens for a reason, even if it makes no sense at the time. There are forces beyond our comprehension at work and I believe there is a greater plan for all of us. Relinquishing the need to control that which we have no power over and putting our faith in God allows us to align with the divine path we are meant to be on, which makes us feel more joyful and at ease.

I’ve learned that making time for regular spiritual practice has helped my mental wellbeing immensely. If you are of the Christian faith, this might include attending church regularly, doing daily devotionals and/or keeping a Bible journal. If you consider yourself more spiritual than religious, you might choose to set aside time each day for meditation, yoga or simply being in nature. Basically, the same types of activities you engage in to help you become more mindful will also allow you the time and space you need to open up and connect with your own higher power.

Give Thanks, Every Day

Practicing gratitude is another amazing technique for easing anxiety and depression and filling your heart and soul with joy. We are truly so blessed in so many ways, but it’s easy to forget this and only focus on what is lacking in our lives, which inevitably brings us down.

Keeping a gratitude journal or simply making time each day to count your blessings is enough to calm your mind and lift your mood. If you have air in your lungs, food in your belly, a roof over your head and a family to love, remember that you are already more blessed than many people we share this planet with. Anything extra is truly icing on the cake.

How Self-Reliant Living Can Boost Your Mental Wellness

The best part about living a more self-reliant lifestyle is that it has allowed me the time and space to practice all of these techniques on a regular basis. Living closer to the land has allowed me to have a deeper connection to God and all things.

It is humbling to watch the miracles of nature all around us or to look up at a sky of stars on a summer night and remember how tiny and insignificant we are in the grand scheme of things. It can really put our perceived problems into perspective.

For me, living more rurally has also helped me to escape a lot of my anxiety that stemmed from living in a big city. The traffic, the faceless crowds of people, the rush and business and hurry of running the rat race every day, going nowhere… I left all of that behind when I moved to the outskirts of a smaller town and started living my homestead dream.

I have more time to be with my family, to do the things I love like cooking and gardening and creating, and to enjoy life’s little miracles, like watching a seed grow into a plant and harvesting the fruits of that plant to feed my family. I’m living a lifestyle I love and living true to myself, my morals and my own higher power. If that isn’t good for the mind, body, and soul then I don’t know what is!

Many people pursue a homesteading lifestyle for the health benefits of eating good, organic food and making healthy, natural products from scratch. But the mental and emotional benefits can be just as rewarding. Take full advantage of them and remember to give thanks every day that you are able to choose this beautiful lifestyle, no matter where you are on your journey.

So remain focused, dedicated, determined, diligent, resourceful and confident. But above all else have faith: Faith in God, faith in yourself, and faith in this incredibly rewarding lifestyle you’ve chosen. The simple life may not always be easy, but I promise it is worth every ounce of energy you put into it. You’ve got this.

Homemade Bath Salt Recipe

Homemade Bath Salt Recipe

I have done more soaking over the last two years than I have my entire life!  Mind you, I am not complaining, even though my soaks were part of my healing regimen, what a relaxing addition to my life!

It is important that we take time for ourselves, nurture our bodies and be good to ourselves!

Soaking is a therapeutic way to take care of all three at one time!

Homemade Bath Salt Recipe

1 1/2 cup coarse sea salt
3/4 cup Epsom salt
1/4 cup baking soda
3 to 6 drops of essential oils of choice

Place in a pint jar and close with flat and ring.

This is a great recipe to gift to a friend!  Place a ribbon around the outside of the jar around the ring or just add a piece of cloth or festive holiday cloth between the flat and ring of your jar to create that special gift!

You can also add coconut oil to your bath to soften your skin while you soak and counteract the drying effects of the salt.

My favorite essential oils for my soaks are Lavender and Lemongrass.  Lemongrass is a great oil to help the body detox, but as with any essential oil – less is more.  Even though the essential oils do get diluted in the water, very little is necessary to get the full effects of the aromatherapy that you will receive.

NOTE:  It is important that you do NOT soak in Epsom salt daily, for weeks on end.  Magnesium Sulfate can have ill effects on the body, mainly the mind.  As with anything, always use in moderation.  Also, so as not to scare anyone from using Epsom salt, I personally soak in Epsom salt roughly once a week or twice a month in addition to my other soaks using different products.

Epsom salt is extremely useful in removing inflammation and pain and I would have been LOST without this recipe for the last two years.  It was an essential for me to soak weekly after my deep muscle therapy to help my body relax and to allow it to remove all the toxins.

Enjoy and remember to be good to yourself!

What is your favorite essential oil for soaking?

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My Healing Protocol

My Healing Protocol

My Health ProtocolAs I sit here by my wood stove on this crisp 25 degree September morning (Winter is coming fast) I am doing a little bit of celebrating. After 5 days of nearly no sleep, I was finally able to rest!

I am currently a little over 8 months out from my surgery and I feel it is extremely necessary to continue to share my journey. Unlike other illnesses, this illness is harsh and is often rearing it’s ugly head.

You would think that after surgery, you can progress with a fairly normal life, but this illness is so very toxic. The body is ridden with so much garbage and it is essential that the toxins are removed slowly and strategically. I am looking at another year of detoxing and may be on certain supplements for years to come to reverse the nasty effects of these nasty devices and toxins.

If you are new to our website and have not read about or watched our video, I highly encourage you to do so. I am being very open about my personal health journey in an extreme effort to help others. The word needs to be spread and quickly!

I have been very lucky through this process really. Many women experiencing this evil illness have lost many if not all of their teeth and hair while others have been in health facilities for months on end due to the extreme level of bacteria in their bodies. My head of dark hair is rapidly turning white and I have my days, but I feel extremely blessed to be alive and to be able to share this with you today.  Really, in thinking about things today, the first 4 to 5 months was spent sleeping and in a lot of odd pain – either in my head or in my gut along with total body inflammation causing all kinds of skin and joint aches and pains and my vision was declining and today I experience rough days from time to time, but really I am feeling so much better.  As you will hear me say over and over again – this is an up and down process of removing things from the body.

My body was very heavily ridden internally with fungus, mold, bacteria, heavy metals such as platinum and tin and silicone.

My immune system along with my liver, adrenals, lymphatic system, thyroid, digestive tract, skin, hair, eyes, muscles and joints were heavily affected by this illness and needed special catering to. On a side note, had I not been completely in tune with my body over the last 3 years and not been self diagnosing and naturally caring for these parts of my body, I would not be here to share my journey. It truly pays to learn about our bodies and to learn how natural health,  can in essence,  save our lives and be an asset to our day to day lives.

Some Of My Struggles

Many have expressed their concerns about what I am doing to heal and how I am going about things so I thought I would share this today. It is quite extensive and I don’t think people realize just how drastic and ugly this illness is.

Diet

First of all, I do feel that a whole foods and very natural diet is the most essential part of this process, BUT I would also like to share with you what I have experienced when it comes to eating. My entire mid-section of my body was swelled up for over 8 months to the point that I could not sit straight for more than 15 minutes at a time without pain and discomfort. My body was working so hard to stay alive and everything takes place in the gut really. So my digestive system was working overtime and even after surgery – it was immediately given a break, but it also now had to take on adjusting and processing all the toxins that were now being processed. Eating has been something that I have been saying is quite OVERRATED!! Pretty much no matter what I was eating, all that food that is wonderful for the body, did not taste good nor did it digest well and I still struggle with this.

In addition to focusing greatly on probiotic health, I have learned to juice and do a liquid diet when my digestive tract is struggling more than usual and I have learned to ONLY eat what my body is craving because it knows best. I eat like a bird at best, but I am very cautious as to what I am intaking. I have almost a phobia towards GMO’s and processed foods because my body instantly flares and I get violently ill. Some people say – ah GMO’s are not that bad and if you are hungry enough you will eat anything – I can honestly tell you that the repercussions are SO not worth it to the point that I would much rather starve than put myself through that.

I LOVE fermented foods and it would be so helpful for my digestive system, but I am unable to enjoy my kombucha, kefir, and all my fermented fruits and veggies right now do to the biotoxins in my system.

So being that we need to eat daily – this has been for the most part one of my biggest struggles. Additionally, I had a lot of head pain as the toxins worked their way out of my head and my organs all started working once again like they were supposed to. Head pain for someone that uses their head and hands for 99.9% of everything she does was debilitating. The head pain and facial pain prior to surgery was so bad that I could do nothing, but lay and pray it would go away. I am thankful to say that at 8 months post surgery I do not experience a lot of the head pain any longer and for this I am SO thankful and grateful. This healing process is just that, a process.

Sleep

For the first 5+ months, my body was craving sleep. I seriously could not wake without GREAT effort before 10 or 10:30am so my productive hours were cut back considerably especially since I would try to eat, get my walk in and then need to rest again. Sleep is when we heal and is one of the most important aspects to my protocol. I could do nothing more than resign to it! I struggled at first, but I knew the importance of it!  That was why I requested prayer on day 4 of no sleep and I am thankful after 5 days that my sleep has returned!

Current Struggles

As I mentioned above I just went 5 days with next to no sleep. This has come and gone, but has thankfully not been a norm. My system was flared with a red hot face which has always been my indicator that toxins were a stirrin’! My lymphatics and adrenals were struggling and clogged as a result. I struggle a lot lately with the functionality of my hands and fingers as they lock up on me a lot and I am unable to lift heavy things. This is a hard thing for a Mountain Woman who is used to just doing what she needs to do to get it all done. I am forced to ask for help which is something I have never really had to do much in the past prior to this illness. It has been humbling and I know God has me right where he wants me so I am doing my best to REST in this place and allow him to work in me.

My Protocol

Initially, my protocol started out with anti fungals. I was so overridden with bacteria, fungus and mold and this needed to be dealt with first. I am putting a dent in this phase, but I still continue to work with these uglies.

In addition, to the anti fungals, I am taking supplements that help me rebuild my immune system, liver, thyroid, adrenals, digestive system, lymphatic system, muscles, joints, eyes, lungs, etc. So as you can see in the image above it is quite substantial. I am also replenishing a lot of vitamins and minerals that my body became very deficient in and even working on things at a molecular level.

Additionally, I visit with a deep muscle therapist weekly that helps me keep my organs and body running as optimally as we can while it works so hard to pass all the toxins. Moving toxins is really quite the process. You have to move them slowly because if you move them too fast, for one you get extremely ill and two they get stirred up in your system, but there are too many for the body to process at one time, therefore they settle back into the body and cause you additional struggles so it is essential that you do not overdue it.

I do Epsom salt foot soaks, ionic foot soaks and I use a high-frequency machine to help kill the Lyme and cancer viruses in my body.

I soak in an Epsom salt tub at least twice a week especially after my deep muscle therapy to eliminate my body being extremely sore from the process and I soak twice a week in a needle soak to help rid my body of the silicone.

I also exercise as much as I possibly can – mainly walking and riding bike and occasionally lifting on my weight bench. I do a lot of stretching to help my muscles to expel the toxins and I work in strengthening my hands and arms.  Unfortunately, I am unable to work my abs because when my body was so swollen I ended up with a hiatal hernia due to the swelling so I am trying to heal that naturally and will then continue with my ab workouts to which I love.

It is extremely important for me to drink a LOT of water as this illness has a tendency to keep the body dehydrated and for about 4 months water did not settle well with my body – I felt sick when drinking so it was quite the challenge. Lemon water and bit of stevia was a huge help to me. Lemon water is actually a wonderful tool to help the body to detox.

The body does the majority of it’s healing while we rest. As I mentioned above sleep is another one of my most valuable tools and I honestly have a nap on my daily calendar. Napping initially made me feel lazy and as though I was not doing my part here on the homestead, but I quickly came to realize what even a 30 minute siesta could offer me!  Such a relief to my body and a boost to my mind really and for that reason my nap is a non-negotiable on my calendar these days.

There are SO many supplements going into my body and although there are many other things I could do to detox, it is essential that I stick to this plan for right now. One thing you have to consider at all times is how one supplement may interact with another. If you end up combining too many things without the proper knowledge your insides become nothing more than a toxic science project gone bad.

I thank all those people that have offered me advice and suggestions, I do my due diligence and look them up if I am not already taking them and may consult with one of my three doctors or in some cases, all three of them because again at a chemical level I need to be very careful.

What you see pictured is just a third of my protocol. There is still an equal amount of tinctures and just the same in essential oils that I am diffusing!

Disclaimer

Because I am not a doctor or medical professional, in this case, I would be doing you a terrible injustice if I shared my specific protocol with you. We are all made up differently and have different variables pertaining to our healing and all the toxins, everyone dealing with this illness needs to seek the specific protocol that is right for them.  You may gladly email me anytime at survive@trayerwilderness.com and I can recommend a path to take if you are not currently detoxing and guide you to the right people to help you on your journey.

I will share this… For others on this journey dealing with getting extremely ill from odors (I never had to deal with this before, but I am SO bothered by strong odors), you can open a bottle of lemongrass essential oil and just breath it in. By doing this, you are coating your sinus membranes and the odors are nit as much of a bother. Note, this is also useful for special needs children with the same struggle or those of you that can’t shop in the candle or perfume stores.

Continuing On This Journey

As I am progressing, it will get to a point that my diet alone will be the ultimate detoxing tool, but first I must rid my body of all these pollutants.

The process of this protocol is to work in removing the biotoxicity first, then chemical and silicone and finally heavy metal toxicity.  I am still working on the biotoxicity which is the fungus, mold and bacteria.   Part of the metal chelation process will be having all my metal fillings removed which is currently scheduled for October 18th. There is a good chance this process is going to make me very sick, but it is another step in this journey to better health.

This detoxing protocol is something that could exceed 18 months post surgery and during this entire process, I will hit plateaus, deal with body flares, insomnia and varied struggles as my body fights and progresses in removing all this garbage.  It is very costly and I would like to mention to those of you following behind me or currently learning that your silicone device is causing you struggles – Christian Healthcare Ministries (CHMinistries.org) DOES NOT cover a penny of the surgery or treatments (even after we called to get confirmation of coverage prior to doing anything).  We have found out the hard way and have battled for over 8 months with no results other than an extensive medical bill looming over our heads.

Your prayers are always appreciated! I am a very positive natured person and I feel truly blessed that God used me as a vessel to help others. Do I have down days? Sure!! There is SO much more to healing than just the physical side of things and more often than not my biggest challenges are mental challenges in my need to rest in my current situation and handle my inability to do things. I am not one to complain, but I may request prayers here and there as I know the ultimate power of prayer and to me prayer is the best gift anyone could offer!

I am a fighter and a strong-willed woman – I have been forced in many situations in my life to hold my own and that is my mindset so when I am unable to do things it is probably the hardest thing for me, but I am truly learning to rest in it and learning how to REST and be better to myself instead of feeling the need to keep pushing on. Rest will be my catalyst and my healer right now.

So for those of you that are on this journey with me and may be following behind me, do not be intimidated by what I have shared today. Each person is different and you and your body will handle things differently. Rest in the fact that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and stick to your protocol no matter what other people may say, don’t take everything that everyone suggests because it is just an accident waiting to happen and rest in God as he heals you.

My Biggest Words Of Advice To You…

Be strong and focus on enjoying the journey.   Something that helps me greatly is spending a LOT of time with God and focusing on him and the blessings he is constantly providing.  Celebrate the wins like I am today – sleep was an incredible gift to me and now as I end this post today, I am off to walk the wilds with my furry children and take further care of myself!

God bless you all and for those of you on this journey with me feel free to leave your questions and your celebrations below!! I would love to hear from you!

I know many of you also struggle with other health issues and I want you to know that I pray daily for our audience and always LOVE hearing from you ALL!!

I’d like to ask EVERYONE to PLEASE PLEASE spread the word on how silicone products in the body are a disaster and death waiting to happen.   Share these links with EVERYONE you know:  http://trayerwilderness.com/ourhealthjourneyvideo and http://trayerwilderness.com/destructive-silent-killer-silicone-poisoning/

Love you all! ♥

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