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Do you have to have land to be a homesteader?


Do you have to grow a garden to provide your family with healthy food?


Can not the frugal mindset of a homesteader be used by those who don’t have a homestead?


That is what you and I are going to discuss in this blog post. Can you, a person who doesn’t grow a garden or have a homestead, still use the homesteading principles of collecting your harvest at its peak and storing it for your family for later use?


Can You Be A Homesteader Without a Homestead?

Is Not Homesteading A State of Mind?


I have heard it many times from my friends, “it must be nice to have all that land to be able to grow your family all of that healthy food, or I would love to provide healthy food for my family but I live in town and rent an apartment so I just can’t, or maybe someday when we move out into the country.”


And I am going to share with you the answer I give to my doubting friends and just maybe it might enlighten you.


Is not homesteading also a mindset or a point of view.


The principle of homesteading is to yes, grow healthy food but is it not also the mindset of using what we are given and making the best out of it?


So what, if you can’t grow your food, in the extreme that I do. So what if you only have a yard the size of a postage stamp. The main point of homesteading is to provide healthy food for your family the best you can.


And if that is only growing a few pots of lettuce and one tomato plant on your counter then that is all it is.


Homesteading is About Community


But what about the idea of community. As a homesteader, there is no way that I can grow all the food my family needs. We don’t have the space to grow our beef but I do have a neighbor down the road who can. So we purchase or sometimes trade what I have grown to acquire healthy beef for our family. And what about apples. I am trying my darndest to grow an apple orchard but we are just not getting enough from our trees to last us through the whole year. So I have another neighbor that shares part of her harvest with me and I pay her by watching her livestock now and then.


Our Homestead

Homesteading is a community. We like to say we are self-sufficient but in truth, a homestead is just resourceful when it comes to finding healthy food for our families.


So what about you?


What can you do to provide your family with healthy food year-round and who can be your community?


Well first off, just because you live in a city doesn’t mean you don’t have a community around you. There may be a local community garden or a local farm or ranch outside of town that you can glean a harvest from.


But is not your grocery store or farmers market a part of your community. It is certainly part of mine. When I want to add healthy options to our plates, like say oranges or pineapple, that don’t grow well in our area. I go to my local grocery store and purchase that item when it is at its peak and when it is in season.


Have you ever noticed that when you go to buy strawberries in the fall and you find some but there are only a few packages and they just don’t look like the strawberries you purchased that spring?


The reason why is because we have fallen into the idea that we should be able to get any food item we want anytime we want. But the truth is that even though there are strawberries on the grocery store shelves in the middle of December, those strawberries were probably grown in a greenhouse and forced to grow in less ideal conditions.


Spring is when strawberries are naturally in season. So that is why they look better and even taste better in the spring compared to the fall or winter. And that is also usually why the price of those strawberries is cheaper in the spring.


I got off on a little sidetrack but I promise this is all going to come together in a moment.


Pray, Just Plant Podcast

The Grocery Store Can Be Part Of Your Community Too


So back to you using the grocery store as means to providing your family with healthy food the best you can.


The main concept of consuming healthy food is to pick that food at the appropriate time, or when it is in season, and storing that food to be eaten when it is out of season but without losing too much of its natural nutrition and flavor.


This is my main job as a homesteader, right? So why can’t you do the same but just from your grocery store?


And the answer is you can!


You can buy fruits and vegetables that are in season and usually on sale in bulk from your grocery store.


You can then preserve those same fruits and vegetables in some way so that your family can enjoy those delicious tidbits all year round.


And thus become an honorary homesteader!!


And I want to help you out! So below is a list of eight of my favorite spring stock ups. I also share with you how you can use each of them, as well as a few recipe ideas. And be on the lookout because every season this year I am going to be sharing more stock-up ideas for Summer, Fall, and Winter!


Spring Stock Up Ideas


Apricots


Apricots are in season in May through the Summer but are at their most tender in May. They also have a long list of benefits for your family. Like they are a good source of vitamin A, rich in fiber, good for your heart and skin, and high in antioxidants. Raw they can be used to make glazes for hearty meats or chicken or can be baked in cookies or fruit bread.


My favorite way to perverse apricots is by drying them in my dehydrator.


Asparagus


Asparagus is harvested between March and June. And is tender through all of these months. Asparagus is a very healthy vegetable for your family. It has many nutrients compared to its calorie count, is a good source of antioxidants, helps lower blood pressure, and is very easy to add to your family's diet because it is so easy to cook. Grilled asparagus is delicious but so is steamed asparagus. And my favorite is using asparagus as a replacement for broccoli in stir fry, parmesan chicken pasta, broccoli and beef chow mein, and broccoli cheese soup!


The best easiest way to preserve asparagus is by freezing it!


Asparagus

New Potatoes


New Potatoes are small, freshly harvested potatoes with paper-thin skins. Potatoes are of course packed with nutrients, contain antioxidants, help with blood sugar control, and are naturally gluten-free. And cooking them is a breeze, you can roast them, bake them, braise them, or even hash them.


As for persevering, I like canning them. I don’t know what happens in the canning process but it somehow makes them taste even better and so easy to prepare for a weeknight dinner.


Peas


Peas are the best in the spring. There is nothing like sweet peas picked fresh from the garden. Peas are high in nutrients and antioxidants, are an excellent source of protein, and are great at regulating sugar levels in your blood. Like I said before I love eating them fresh by the handfuls, but you can also use them in salads, soups, and pot pies.


My favorite way to store them is frozen or canned with carrots so they are ready to be used in my kid’s favorite Chicken n Biscuit recipe.


Peas

Snow Peas


Snow Peas have all the same great benefits as peas but I like to use them in stir fry and my Honey Glazed Snow Peas Recipe!


To preserve them, it is best to freeze them.


Rhubarb


Rhubarb is only available in the Spring and early Summer. So if you miss it in the Spring you have missed it for the year. Our favorite way to eat rhubarb is in pies, bread, and crisps. Its tart-sweet taste is the iconic spring flavor.


Preserving is best done by freezing in about two cup portions for baking.


Strawberries


Strawberries are at their peak from April to June! Strawberries are the ultimate spring fruit! Strawberries are good for your heart and can also help you regulate your blood sugars. You can eat them fresh, or use them in smoothies, pies, bread, and even on a salad.


To preserve you can make strawberry jam or syrup. But my favorite way is to freeze them. There is nothing like a delicious frozen smoothie just after coming in from working in the garden on a hot summer day!


Strawberries

Spinach


I know spinach can be found all year round but it is usually at its peak in the Spring and Fall. Spinach is an amazing superfood and is high in iron and magnesium. And there are just so many different ways you can cook it, with eggs, in lasagna, and of course creamed spinach and salads.


I don’t usually preserve spinach but I do try to get it on my family's plates in the Spring and Fall when it tastes the best!


Conclusion


Now, this is just my top 8, there are many more fruits and vegetables that are in season in the Spring. The best way to find them out is to be watching the produce aisle in your favorite local grocery store.


Be on the lookout for sales!

Be on the lookout for when your favorite produce looks and tastes the best!


Have a blessed day,


Crystal



Can You Be A Homesteader Without a Homestead?

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