Welcome TSP Listeners!
I am anticipating some new visitors to the blog, as my recent interview with Jack Spirko will air over at his website today. Jack is the host of The Survival Podcast, a wonderful online radio show about modern survivalism, and everything it entails. I talked with Jack about the my new book, the farm, horses, and falconry but also just to be a part of the community I have come to care so very much for. The listeners, interviewers, and Jack have done so much for this farm without even realizing it. Because of some poignant shows I've heard over the years (and some powerful ones more recently) I've had a fire in the belly to get out of debt, be more financially and socially responsible, be prepared for any inconvenience or hardship, and live a better life all around. While I don't agree everything on the show, the heart of it is awareness and responsibilty. I appreciate it.
So if you are coming to this blog for the first time, let me introduce myself:
Hi, I'm Jenna.
I'm a 31-year-old single gal on a mountainside farmstead. It's my land, and here I raise sheep, dairy goats, chickens, geese, ducks, hogs, rabbits, vegetables, honey bees and a couple thousand composting worms. I'm a lover of the Old Ways. I observe the Celtic Calendar, farm in a kilt, and work with a bow and quiver of arrows by my side. My business partner is a three-year old Border Collie named Gibson (named for my dream guitar, the Gibson J-45). My other car is a horse cart. I'm an author, farmer, prepper, sheep herder, equestrian, musician, cart driver, medieval historian, martial artist, trail rider, gamer, archer, and apprentice falconer. I garden, bake, sew, play the fiddle and make pies. I hunt, butcher my own game, and do not mind worms on hooks. That sounds dreamy, but I'm also a regular gal, deeply flawed and more stubborn than my draft horse and that is saying something. I make a living with this website, teaching workshops, raising livestock, and praying a whole lot. A WHOLE lot.
I run Cold Antler as my dream come true, But it's a dream I need to fight for every day. Lately it's been a real struggle, to be perfectly honest. But this is the place I write about all my victories and mistakes here. Read seven years of daily posts showing the whole evolution of this place (and me!) spanning three states and an abandoned "normal" career. There are also four books out there for you to grab if you so desire, about the journey I have been on over the years going from corporate graphic designer to homesteader. For more of a taste you can watch this:
Anyway! Back to that term: Survivalist I know people here it and cringe, specially people new to that term. It is so loaded with stereotypes, specially with shows like Doomsday Preppers making headlines and Post-Apocalyptic Fiction being America's New Darling. But thinking real survivalists are like television show tropes is like thinking everyone married in Atlanta is a "Real Housewife" so to speak. No, real survivalists are not wearing tin hats, watching the sky for helicopters, and planning their underground bunkers - they are people buying an extra can of soup at the grocery store on payday. They are people with some savings, a plan to get out of debt, and aspiring entrepreneurs. And listening to his show has taught me so much about gardening, livestock, permaculture, debt, emergency preparedness and living a life truly in regards to what we used to call The American Dream.
No Survivalists are whack jobs, at least not many of them. What they are is people like me, some of which may be nervous to use the term "survivalist" but only because of that perceived stereotype. But I am certainly a Survivalist and what I am doing on my 6.5 acres is what they are as well. They prefer a life very much akin to what you read about here: independence, liberty, freedom from debt, ability to produce food, and the ability to overcome any personal or social crisis - be it losing a job or loved one, or a 3-week power outage. That's what modern survivalism is. And I suggest checking out his Shows For New Listener's Page. It's free, simple to download via iTunes or his page.
So I hope you new readers stick around, read a bit, or check back over the next few weeks as I get and train my first ever red tail hawk! The story never slows down here, and there's a lot of healing the land and healing myself in store, too. I thank you for your time, and your support of Jack and his Wondership. And if you ever have any questions, need a warm cloak, want to come to the farm for a workshop, or just want a signed copy of one of my books - email me for details: firstname.lastname@example.org