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Cabin Fever

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Odd thing “Cabin fever”, Webster’s defines it as:

“extreme irritability and restlessness from living in isolation or a confined indoor area for a prolonged time”

Normally this is a problem in Northern climes, however as we have been having a great deal of rain (I am sooooo tired of rain).  We here at Wolf Woods have been getting a mite bit touchy.  I have a garden bed to dig for peppers, small melons (I have to re-plant thanks to rain); and the kids are (the dreaded “b” word) board, and Silver has the expansion to at least mark out.  there is only so many movies you can watch, and living in a small space tends to get you on each other’s nerves.

The other issue is we still have to add some window’s to this building, which (fingers crossed) will happen today.  We get it done we will have 1 window, not many but it’s a start.  once the clouds clear out in about an hour or two I’m going out to the garden (unless I am helping with window insulation) and try to dig up a new garden bed.  This one will be totally new so it will be the heavy clay soil we have here, but I do have almost a full bag of peat moss left from filling my tomato box that I will be using to amend the soil for now.  I do hope to add to it some more later.

I have been discussing with a number of people on other sites about a “sub-set” in society called “freegans“, they have some interesting ideas on how to make the world better by not contributing to corporations; by only obtaining  what they need (if possible) totally free.  Check them out here:

Now the -BIG– thing I disagree with them on is “dumpster diving” for food.  First, yes stores and the like toss out things that are still kinda good.  Notice I said kinda.  I’ve worked over the years in a few different places, a couple fast food places and a few grocery stores in different departments.  Now stores, restaurants, offices, etc are responsible if someone gets sick off of something they took from their dumpster.  My one boss back when I worked bakery in a store I worked had at one time donated all the day old bakery to a food bank.  that was until someone got ill and sued him for making him sick by giving them bad food.  I worked in a meat department once, and shudders my ‘boss’ who was the department head.  When the item’s date was past he’d open it (this was things we’d package ourselves) and smell it.  If it did not smell bad to him, he’d repack it and put a 2 day date on it.  So if that after it finally smelled off to him and wound up in the dumpster and someone picked it up and it looked OK the freegan would take it home to eat.  I guarantee you it would not be edible at this point.

I guess it’s just that I’ve see these things and so I know what can happen if someone took those items.  I also shop at a discount grocery store it’s called Sheatler’s, it has things that for one reason or another cannot be sold in the regular store.  These items need to be watched as some are close to going bad.  We have a deep freeze, in which any meat item goes into; and we save any chicken bones for souping.  Which reduces waste,  leftovers from soups go into dog food.

Now my other issue with freegans is this one statement they make:

“Squatters are people who occupy and rehabilitate abandoned, decrepit buildings.

Now, it might just be me; but I have never seen a squatter (and I have been around a few squatters in my life) rehabilitate any building(s).  Now that does not mean they don’t, but I have never EVER seen it.  I have lived in some nasty places over the last 13 years of my life, these are areas that could benefit from having a community garden.  Those gardens would need people who know how to garden properly and show these people who live in these areas how to use the items.  As they have no experience in using such food.  Spend some time looking in stores in low income areas (and BTW, low income happens in white areas too); and see what is sold in those stores.  Most of the items are really not good for you, and a “token” attempt at fresh fruits and veggies.  Most meats in those stores are also the “fattier” cuts that most people walk right buy as a waste of money.  How can people living in such areas be healthy if all they have available is junk to eat?

Yes, they could spend money (that they can’t afford) and go to a better store in a better place; but with the cost of gas how can they?  Unless necessary we only use our car about 2-5 times a month, we fill it up once a month.  The rest of the time we remain at home, doing things with our family and around our home.  The funny thing is, it’s easier to do this in the city as everything is designed to be close together; to make your life simpler.

My husband’s family went grocery shopping daily, yes daily.  They’d buy tons of food daily which they froze and then wouldn’t eat.  Most people do not know how to properly use a deep freeze and full size refrigerator.  I don’t even have a full size refrigerator right now, we have a little mini one.  It holds some milks a few flats of eggs and the few condiments we use.  Everything else is frozen until we need it, which is the point of having a deep freeze.  Freezing your food so it lasts longer, if you had a deep freeze in your home and you used it correctly you’d only need to shop maybe once a month.  That’s what we do, and it works (remember I have 3 kids).

Reduce your dependency buy saving bones and making your own soup stocks, if done correctly you don’t even need bullion.  I don’t, I cannot use it anyway as I have a mushroom allergy; and MSG is derived from mushrooms.  Got some veggies going bad?  Toss them in your freezer until you are ready to make soup stock and then toss them into the stock pot.  We picked up a case (yes case) of almost bad mini carrots from one of the discount grocer’s, they are mini bags; single serving sized.  When making stock I take a few bags open them and dump them into the pot.  As stock is strained it is not there in the end and you can add veggies in better shape to the “finished” soup.  By making your own soup stocks you are reducing waste and processing, and it’s not hard.

All you need is a large pot the ingredients and a couple of day (yes days), the longer it cooks the better the flavor.  Then you strain it and then add what you want into it for the final soup.  Last night we had a 2 day old chicken broth with just some onion and noodles in it.  It had very good flavor to it as it had 2 whole heads of garlic in it.  When I say whole heads I mean I took a chef’s knife and just cut the head in half and dropped it into the stock as it simmered away.  It added lots of good flavor to it, the other big plus here is if you need to be on a low sodium diet unless you add it in there really is no salt unless it’s on the chicken bones from previous preparation.

Well that’s about it for now I need to get up and get outside and do some work outside, and hope for sun.  I hope your day is a good one and I hope you don’t have to worry about cabin fever if you are stuck with the rains that just left us.

Be Well and Blessed Be


About rivenfae

A homesteading mom with 2 teens,12 cats, 4 dogs, a flock of chickens. small goat flock and a piggie. Also a dream of a sustainable homestead out in the woods of Missouri.

One response

  1. I was a squatter and I could care less about fixing up the place. I was a little busy protecting myself, and finding food. Warmth was a big thing as well.

    Enjoying the new place


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