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  • leighanalynn

HOW TO BE MORE SUSTAINABLE AND SELF SUFFICIENT



RIGHT NOW AS A PLANET WE ARE EXPERIENCING SOMETHING LIKE WE'VE NEVER EXPERIENCED, COVID-19. THERE HASN'T BEEN A PANDEMIC THIS BAD SINCE THE SPANISH INFLUENZA AND WITH HOW MUCH EASIER IT IS FOR US TO TRAVEL NOW VERSUS THEN, WE ARE SEEING HOW MUCH EASIER IT FOR VIRUSES TO TRAVEL AS WELL.


IT'S IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER NOT ALL IS LOST THOUGH. I TRULY BELIEVE WE WILL COME OUT STRONGER AND AT THE VERY LEAST, WE ARE LEARNING SOME EXTREMELY VALUABLE LESSONS. LESSONS ON WHAT AND WHO MATTER WHEN IT COMES TO KEEPING THE WORLD RUNNING. ESSENTIAL WORKERS AND ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES ARE OFTEN NOT THE ONES MAKING THE MONEY THEY NEED OR EVEN HAVE HEALTH INSURANCE, WHILE OTHERS SIT RICH AT THE TOP --- WHICH IS UNFORTUNATELY NOT SURPRISING.


ALSO NOT SURPRISING WE ARE LEARNING THAT WE RELY TOO MUCH ON THE 'SYSTEM' AND CORPORATIONS. WE NEED TO WORK TOWARDS BUILDING OUR COMMUNITY RESOURCES AND PERSONAL RESOURCES INSTEAD OF RELYING SO OFTEN BIG BOX STORES AND AMAZON FOR EVERY LITTLE THING.


INSTEAD, WE NEED A REVOLUTION, TO GO BACK TO SHOPPING SMALL, SUPPORTING LOCAL, DOING IT OURSELVES, AND USING THE BARTER SYSTEM.

THERE WILL ALWAYS BE ESSENTIALS THAT WE WILL NEED TO GO TO THE STORE FOR, BUT WE HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO BE MINDFUL WITH WHERE WE GET OUR ESSENTIALS, WHO WE ARE SUPPORTING, AND SUPPLEMENTING WHAT WE CAN OURSELVES.


STEPS YOU CAN TAKE


GROW YOUR OWN

IF YOU HAVE THE SPACE TO GROW A GARDEN THEN YOU SHOULD DEFINITELY BE TAKING ADVANTAGE OF THAT. GARDENING IS SUCH A SPECIAL AND USEFUL TOOL. YOU NOT ONLY CAN GROW FOOD TO NOURISH YOUR BODY BUT THE ACTIVITY ITSELF AND GETTING YOUR HANDS DIRTY IS A GROUNDING EXPERIENCE.


AND IF YOU DON'T HAVE A GARDEN THAT IS TOTALLY OKAY! JUST BECAUSE YOU LIVE IN AN APARTMENT OR SOMEWHERE THAT DOESN'T HAVE SPACE, DOESN'T MEAN YOU CAN'T UTILIZE WHAT YOU HAVE. IF YOU HAVE A BALCONY OR WINDOW SILL THAT GETS A GOOD AMOUNT OF LIGHT, UTILIZE IT!

IF YOU HAVE A BALCONY, OR EVEN ENTRANCE TO YOUR SPACE THAT GET'S SUN YOU CAN GROW SO MANY THINGS! SUCH AS STRAWBERRIES, TOMATOES, LEAFY GREENS, AND CULINARY HERBS. YOU CAN EVEN CREATE A LITTLE WINDOW SIL GARDEN IN A WINDOW THAT GET'S A GOOD AMOUNT OF LIGHT IF YOU DON'T HAVE A BALCONY.


FINDING ORGANIC SEEDS DURING THIS TIME IT CAN BE HARD AS MANY OF THE LARGER ORGANIC SEED SITES ARE RUNNING OUT OF STOCK, BUT DON'T FRET! ETSY IS A GREAT RESOURCE! EVERYWHERE I CHECKED WAS OUT OF ORGANIC WHITE SAGE SEEDS UNTIL I WENT ON ETSY AND FOUND SOME, AS WELL AS SOME ORGANIC ENGLISH LAVENDER SEEDS - SO JUST GIVE IT A SEARCH.


PRO TIP: WHEN YOU BUY GREEN ONIONS OR 'SPRING ONIONS' FROM THE STORE, YOU CAN PUT THE ROOTS IN WATER AND LEAVE IN A WINDOW SIL THAT GET'S LIGHT AND THEY WILL CONTINUE TO GROW, ALLOWING YOU TO CUT OFF WHAT YOU NEED, WHEN YOU NEED IT.


SUPPORT LOCAL FARMERS

YOU NEVER KNOW IF YOU NEVER CHECK, BUT I HAVE HEARD OF MANY LOCAL FARMERS DOING ORDER AHEAD DROP OFFS OR SCHEDULED PICK UPS. WE OFTEN HAVE MORE LOCAL RESOURCES THAN WE REALIZE AND NOW MORE THAN EVER IS THE CHANCE TO SUPPORT THEM.


IF YOU'RE IN PORTLAND, OREGON CHECK OUT LOCAL MILK RUN


SUPPORT LOCAL BUSINESSES

SEE WHAT YOUR FAVORITE RESTAURANT IS OFFERING, IF THEY'RE OPEN. SEE WHAT YOUR LOCAL ARTISAN IS UP TOO. AGAIN IT IS SO IMPORTANT TO SUPPORT OUR LOCAL COMMUNITY AT THIS POINT IN TIME AND HELP SUSTAIN AND BUILD THE RESOURCES WE HAVE AS A COMMUNITY.


SUPPORT SMALL BUSINESS

ETSY IS A GREAT RESOURCE RIGHT NOW AND FOREVER. DURING THIS TIME THERE ARE MANY CORPORATIONS LIKE AMAZON WHO ARE MAKING THEIR EMPLOYEES WORK IN UNSAFE CONDITIONS. YET THERE ARE SO MANY SMALL BUSINESS AND ARTISANS WHO ARE SHIPPING WILLING AND HAPPILY STRAIGHT FROM HOME AFTER QUARANTINING FOR 2 WEEKS AND TAKING SAFETY PRECAUTIONS.


THE INTERNET HAS MADE SHOPPING SMALL MUCH MORE ACCESSIBLE FOR MANY. INSTEAD OF BUYING BOOKS FROM AMAZON OR ANOTHER BIG BOX STORE, YOU CAN CHECK POWELL'S BOOKSTORE AND HELP KEEP THE LARGEST INDEPENDENT BOOKSTORE IN BUSINESS! OR WHEN YOU START TO GET LOW ON COFFEE YOU CAN DECIDE TO SUPPORT YOUR FAVORITE COFFEESHOP OR MAYBE EVEN ONE FROM A DIFFERENT CITY THAT YOU'VE ALWAYS WANTED TO TRY!


DO IT YOURSELF

TODAY THE MAJORITY OF US DON'T TAKE ADVANTAGE OF CREATING OUR OWN SUPPLIES, WHATEVER THOSE MAY BE, EVEN WHEN IT CAN BE SIMPLE. WE OFTEN THINK IT CAN BE VERY EXPENSIVE AND EXTENSIVE TO CREATE OUR OWN LIP BALMS, SPRAYS, ETC. BUT THE TRUTH IS IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE HARD OR EXPENSIVE.


YES, BUYING THE INITIAL SUPPLIES NEEDED CAN COST A BIT, BUT WHEN YOU DO THE MATH TO SEE HOW FAR THOSE SUPPLIES WILL GO AND MAKE YOU VERSUS HOW MUCH YOU SPEND ON THAT PRE-MADE PRODUCT OVER AND OVER, YOU ARE ACTUALLY SAVING MONEY AND LEARNING A VERY VALUABLE SKILL. NOT MENTION HOW MUCH HEALTHIER HOMEMADE PRODUCTS ARE COMPARED TO THE TOXIC VERSIONS OFTEN FOUND IN STORES.


MAKING MY OWN PRODUCTS IS A FUN AND USEFUL TASK I HAVE BEGUN TO DO AGAIN. CREATING LIP BALMS, LIP SCRUBS, FACE MISTS, MASKS, AND ENERGY SPRAYS OR BEACH HAIR SPRAYS ARE SIMPLE AND FULFILLING. IT'S NOT JUST A FUN HOBBY THOUGH BUT A TOOL THAT BECOMES VERY USEFUL IN UNKNOWN TIMES LIKE NOW.


RELYING TOO MUCH ON THE GOVERNMENT, CORPORATIONS, AND SOCIETY AS IT IS NOW CAN BE DANGEROUS AS WE HAVE AND ARE LEARNING DURING THIS PANDEMIC. BEYOND BEAUTY AND HOUSE PRODUCTS, WE SHOULD BE THINKING ABOUT LEARNING TO BAKE OUR OWN BREADS, MAKE OUR OWN JAMS, PICKLE AND FERMENT FOODS AND EVEN CAN FRUITS AND VEGGIES FROM OUR GARDENS.


BEING RESOURCEFUL AND LEARNING HOW TO DO WHAT YOU CAN YOURSELF IS A HIGHLY COVETED SKILL AND ONE YOU SHOULD SHARE WITH OTHERS IF YOU KNOW HOW. I WOULD LOVE TO HEAR OTHER ITEMS YOU MAKE FROM HOME, SO PLEASE SHARE!


BARTERING

THIS PASTIME IS SOMETHING SO VALUABLE AND THAT I BELIEVE WE WILL BE USING MORE OF. BARTERING IS THE ACT OF TRADING SOMETHING YOU HAVE TO OFFER WITH SOMETHING OTHERS HAVE. THAT CAN LOOK LIKE FOOD, WEED, AND EVEN SERVICES! I HAVE BARTERED MY SEO SERVICES WITH FRIENDS WHO CAN HELP DESIGN, ETC.


BARTERING REQUIRES A LEVEL OF STRENGTH, YOU HAVE TO KNOW THE VALUE OF WHAT YOU'RE OFFERING AND BE STERN IN THAT. OFTEN WHEN BARTERING WITH FRIENDS IT CAN BE EASY, BUT IF OTHER TIMES PEOPLE CAN BE PUSHY, SO HOLD YOUR GROUND AND KNOW YOUR WORTH. YOU CAN ALWAYS SAY NO AND WALK AWAY [ESPECIALLY WHEN BARTERING OVER SEAS]!



MORE RESOURCES


IMPERFECT PRODUCE

IMPERFECT PRODUCE SELLS WELL, IMPERFECT PRODUCE. MORE THAN WE KNOW, FRUITS AND VEGETABLES THAT DON'T HAVE THE "RIGHT SHAPE" ARE BE DISCARDED AND WASTED. WHICH IS WHERE IMPERFECT PRODUCE COMES IN! INSTEAD OF WASTING PERFECTLY DELICIOUS AND HEALTHY FRUITS AND VEGETABLES, IMPERFECT PRODUCE BUYS THEM OFF FARMERS LOCAL TO YOUR AREA AND CREATES A MARKET PLACE ONLINE FOR YOU TO PLACE AN ORDER. ONCE YOU PICK WHAT YOU WANT, THE FOOD IS DELIVERED RIGHT TO YOUR DOOR!


IT IS AS EASY AS THAT AND HONESTLY NOT MUCH PRICE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE STORE, MEANING YOU CAN SUPPORT ORGANIC FARMERS AND BUY FOOD THAT WOULD OTHERWISE BE WASTED FOR NO EXTRA COST! CHECK OUT IMPERFECT PRODUCE TODAY TO SEE IF THEY SERVE YOUR COMMUNITY.


THRIVE MARKET

ONLINE MARKET PLACES FOR ORGANIC AND SUSTAINABLE CONSUMERS ARE BECOMING MORE POPULAR AND SOMETHING I TRULY LOVE! ONE OF MY FAVORITE ONLINE MARKET PLACES I USE IS THRIVE MARKET. THRIVE MARKET HAS EVERYTHING FROM CANNED AND DRY FOODS, TO HERBAL SUPPLEMENTS LIKE GAIA [THE BEST], MOONJUICE, AND OTHER AMAZING BRANDS ALL THE WAY TO FEMININE CARE PRODUCTS, PET STUFF AND HOUSEWARES.


ESPECIALLY DURING THESE CRAZY TIMES, HAVING THE OPTION TO HAVE FOOD AND NECESSARY ITEMS DELIVERED STRAIGHT TO YOUR HOUSE CAN BE VERY IMPORTANT. ESPECIALLY FOR ELDERS AND THOSE WITH COMPROMISED IMMUNE SYSTEMS. THRIVE MARKET IS MY FAVORITE PLACE TO SEND PEOPLE INTERESTED IN LIVING A MORE SUSTAINABLE AND HOLISTIC LIFE, IT'S THE PERFECT PLACE TO START! JUST BE AWARE THAT THEY ARE HAVING DELAYED SHIP TIMES AT THIS MOMENT, DUE TO AN OVERWHELMING AMOUNT OF ORDERS - STILL HIGHLY RECOMMEND THOUGH.



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