FAST Blog: Family Homestead

Permaculture, Preparedness, Homesteading & Survival

mobile adsense

Friday, 21 July 2017

New Additions to the FAST Family

Yesterday we bought home two new additions to the homestead in the form of 6 week old rescue puppies Astrid and Sacha who have up until now had quite a sad story to their short lives.

Rescue Puppies Astrid (left) and Sacha (right)

The vet reported the "owner" if you can call her that as she wanted them aborted, the vet refused as it was too far gone and then she was going to take them to the dog pound at a week old! The worst thing is that the rescue agency has offered to sterlilise the mother and father free of charge (it is not the first time this has happened) but the "owner" refuses!!! The mother is used as a guard dog, which in Spain generally means she is kept at an empty house with no human contact and gets fed every few days. The pups were fending for themselves and trying to feed from a malnourished mother. They had never had any interaction with people. I would certainly like to give her a piece of my mind!

Life has not been kind to these little darlings, but we will change that!


Luckily an amazing English couple stepped in and took the litter of 7 in with them and have now found homes for all but one of the other pups. We only intended to adopt one but when we went and heard the story we knew we COULD save two of them if we wanted to, and how could we say no to faces like these?
Astrid meeting her new Daddy for the first time

6 weeks old is still a little young to leave the mother but at least we can guarantee that they will lead far better lives with us. The kids are in love with them and have really become confident around them which is great as they were always wary around dogs.

Their mother is a German Shepherd and the father a Boxer dog. As you can see Astrid is most like the mother and Sacha takes after the father with their coats, colouring and face shapes. You can see from the size of their paws, particularly Astrid, that they will be large dogs when they are grown.
Sacha settling in to her new bed

They are getting used to being with their new family and settling in to their new surroundings really well. In the next few weeks I'll be starting their training and moulding them in to working dogs as they will need to live alongside our livestock on the farm. I've been researching dog psychology quite extensively and I'm looking forward to getting stuck in with their training but right now these two sleepy beauties are just coming to terms with their happily ever after, so training can wait until tomorrow

Sacha and Astrid the rescue puppies

Thanks for joining us for Five on Friday, We appreciate your support and hope that you all have the best weekend ever!



*******************************************************************

Five on Friday Weekly Linkup



Welcome to Five on Friday, a weekly opportunity for the community to link up and share 5 things with us or take 5 minutes to talk about one topic. We’d love for you to join us and add a link to your own Five on Friday blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to keep your blog updated. Every Friday we'll be sharing a Fast Five and look forward to seeing yours.

How To Join In

Your 5 things can be all on a related topic or 5 totally separate things of your choosing, it's totally flexible and up to you. You might choose 5 photos, 5 quotes or use it to recap 5 things you've done this week, you have the freedom to exercise your creativity!

All that we ask is that you link back to Five on Friday using the button below (just copy and paste the HTML code in to your blog) and try to share the love by visiting & commenting on the other participants blogs. Each week the post will go live at 6.00am GMT on Friday and will close for new link entries at 10.00PM on Sunday



Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Share:

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Article in Permaculture Magazine

Tricky Wolf -  Permaculture Magazine Article
We've had an article published on Permaculture Magazine!

It's a quick article explaining a bit of our background story, how we got to where we are and what we're hoping to achieve, if you'd like to catch up with the article follow the link below:

Click here to read the full article
Share:

Friday, 14 July 2017

TOP SECRET - Survival Tin with a Twist

This week I have a top secret thing to talk about for 5 mins for Five on Friday

Mini Survival Tin Kit

This is a little project I've been working on and I'm now fairly happy with it so if you promise not to tell anyone I'll give you a sneaky peek inside

Survival Tin Contents
There are a million different people that make a million different pocket survival kit tins but this one is different. This one is very special to me, because this one is a kit I have put together myself to give to my son on his 5th birthday in October. He absolutely loves getting all the things out of my kits and has been asking if he can borrow my kits so he can come on survival outings with me so I was over the moon to put together a basic kit suitable to his age.

Survival Kit Contents
In the Kit from left to right we have:
The Tin
A Credit Card Fresnel Lens
A Compass
A Paracord Bracelet with Whistle Buckle
A locking Carabiner
2 Werthers Originals
Micro Tweezers
A Ferro Rod and Striker
A Mini Pry Bar
A Survival Whistle
A Miniature Mirror (plastic)
Duct Tape
A Pencil

Pocket Survival Kit with Bracelet
It all goes together with the bracelet to keep the lid from popping off. there isn't a great deal of space left inside but if you have any ideas or suggestions that would be appropriate for a 5 year old I'd love to hear them.

As a side note the reason I haven't included any first aid items, plasters etc is because I have a matching first aid tin that I plan to sort out and have as one of his stocking fillers at Christmas.




*******************************************************************

Five on Friday Weekly Linkup



Welcome to Five on Friday, a weekly opportunity for the community to link up and share 5 things with us or take 5 minutes to talk about one topic. We’d love for you to join us and add a link to your own Five on Friday blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to keep your blog updated. Every Friday we'll be sharing a Fast Five and look forward to seeing yours.

How To Join In

Your 5 things can be all on a related topic or 5 totally separate things of your choosing, it's totally flexible and up to you. You might choose 5 photos, 5 quotes or use it to recap 5 things you've done this week, you have the freedom to exercise your creativity!

All that we ask is that you link back to Five on Friday using the button below (just copy and paste the HTML code in to your blog) and try to share the love by visiting & commenting on the other participants blogs. Each week the post will go live at 6.00am GMT on Friday and will close for new link entries at 10.00PM on Sunday



Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML

















Share:

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Fire Friday

Friday night we had a bit of a scare!

There was a big thunder storm so everyone was indoors, when all of a sudden we heard a plane fly past low over the rooftops followed quickly by the sound of a helicopter.

Where we live is very rural and remote, we almost never have a helicopter out this way so the moment we heard the engines we knew something wasn't right. I pulled my boots on and headed outside to investigate and saw this:


These aren't clouds, this is smoke!

We assumed the lightning must have started a fire on the other side of the mountain and the smoke was pouring into the sky. You see the problem with living next to a pine forest is that pine trees burn like a barrel of oil and once one starts burning the flames spread like dominoes falling over and the wild fire can move so much faster than most people think it can.




I cannot commend the firefighting services enough out here, they were so quick to respond and collected tons of water to drop on the fire and keep it under control, after a couple of hours of battling the flames it started to rain quite heavily which no doubt helped to put out the fire.


From the vantage point at the end of our road I could see where the helicopter was collecting the water from and also where he was unloading it up the mountain so it was a bit close for comfort, any bigger or closer and the area would have had to be evacuated.

Before most people had figured out what was going on we were aware of the possible danger and ready to leave if necessary. It goes to show that being aware of the sounds going on outside, even when you are in your own home, could literally be the difference between life and death in some cases. This is why we are prepared, this is why we will survive. Going forward it has brought to my attention that we may need to try and incorporate fire breaks in to our designs for the land, as much for other peoples sake as our own.

Share:

Friday, 7 July 2017

Five Things You Didn't Know - Five on Friday

Happy Friday Folks!

I'm really struggling for inspiration today. Next week is my 29th birthday (on Tuesday to be precise) so I will no doubt have some goodies to show you all the following Friday :)

For this week I thought I'd do a fun Five on Friday with 5 facts you might not know.

1 Worlds Deadliest Animal


You'd be forgiven for thinking it would be something like lions, snakes or even sharks, but in fact the animal that kills the most humans worldwide is in fact the mosquito! The World Health Organisation estimates that 725,000 people are killed each year by mosquito-born diseases. A staggering 200 million people are at least temporarily incapacitated by malaria alone, of which 600,000 die.

Of course the instances of death caused by mosquito are very low in the US and UK, if we exclude the rest of the world the animal most likely to kill you is actually the bee! In a typical year bees kill an average of 100 Americans according to the CDC. Luckily, to the vast majority of people, a bee sting is not life-threatening. Experts say that the average adult can safely withstand more than 1,000 bee stings. Of course, fewer stings could prove dangerous to an infant, small child or the elderly. What makes stings deadly is generally not the toxicity of bee venom itself but an allergy developed as a result of prior stings.


2 - Today's Top Killers
I wouldn't worry too much about the Mosquitos and Bees too much (or any other animals for that matter), as you can see from the chart below:
I won't speculate too much but I truly believe that the poison we call food these days is responsible for most of the horrors that afflict us in the modern day. GMO, Herbicides, Pesticides and Processed Foods have a lot to answer for! Moving swiftly on....

3 - Ants

Ants are pretty incredible. They are found across the entire world, they are as old as the dinosaurs. The largest known ant species was 2.4inches long and the oldest recorded ant lived for 30 years! 
You probably know that Ants are in the same family as wasps and bees, but did you know that Ants are capable of holding 100 times their own body weight whilst hanging upside down from a sheet of glass? Puts the worlds strongest man to shame!


4 - Worlds Strongest Animal
Ants are strong, but their strength to weight ratio pales in comparison to a dung beetle


The half inch long dung beetles are the strongest living creatures on Earth. The male insects of this small species of insects can lift objects that are 1141 times more heavier than their own body weight. It is just like an average sized human carrying 80 tons.

5 - You are as old as the Universe


Whether you believe in the universe being created by a higher power or big bag theorist one thing we can all agree on is the fact that matter cannot be created or destroyed it can only be rearranged. This means that the atoms that make up you and I were present at the creation of the universe and have been a part of a great number of things before and will go on to be a part of a great many other things after our time on this planet passes. It's amazing to think that some of the carbon in your bones could have one been part of a dinosaur, some of the iron in your body might have come to earth in a meteor millions of years. For me it proves further the interconnectedness of all things, the infinite number of relationships between all things alive and dead past present and future.


To keep things light hearted here's a little bonus bit of trivia to make you feel warm and fuzzy: In 1991, Wayne Allwine, the voice of Mickey Mouse, married Russi Taylor—the voice of Minnie!


I hope you've enjpoyed this weeks ramblings, Thanks for joining us once again for Five on Friday, we hope you have a wonderful weekend :)







*******************************************************************

Five on Friday Weekly Linkup



Welcome to Five on Friday, a weekly opportunity for the community to link up and share 5 things with us or take 5 minutes to talk about one topic. We’d love for you to join us and add a link to your own Five on Friday blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to keep your blog updated. Every Friday we'll be sharing a Fast Five and look forward to seeing yours.

How To Join In

Your 5 things can be all on a related topic or 5 totally separate things of your choosing, it's totally flexible and up to you. You might choose 5 photos, 5 quotes or use it to recap 5 things you've done this week, you have the freedom to exercise your creativity!

All that we ask is that you link back to Five on Friday using the button below (just copy and paste the HTML code in to your blog) and try to share the love by visiting & commenting on the other participants blogs. Each week the post will go live at 6.00am GMT on Friday and will close for new link entries at 10.00PM on Sunday



Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML

















Share:

Monday, 3 July 2017

Cold Steel Bushman

I've owned this knife for well over a year now and keep forgetting to mention it! On the plus side at least you know I've really put it through it's paces before giving you my thoughts on it.

Cold Steel Bushman
The original Bushman, made by Cold Steel. I've been a fan of Cold Steel products since I was a child and this one does not disappoint. It is a pretty much indestructible knife with the blade and handle cold forged from a single piece of steel. The handle is hollow to allow you to fix it to a pole/branch to form a pretty formidable makeshift spear. Now I know what you're thinking HOLLOW HANDLE!!!! Don't worry, since there is no seam/join between the blade and handle there is no weak point and according to the manufacturer the knife has withstood testing of over 2 tons of pressure at the blade/handle transition!

So unlike the flimsy Rambo wannabe hollow handled "survival" knives of the 80's this is a serious knife that can be relied upon in the field. I've used it for carving, battoning and all round general cutting duty and it is a real work horse of a knife that has never let me down.

For the price I don't think you could beat this chopper for value, you can pick them up for £35.95 from Greenmans (no affiliation). Also mine is the older version that came with a leather sheath but the latest one is a Kydex type automatic locking sheath and also comes with a firesteel making it even better bang for your buck.

So there you have it, the Cold Steel Bushman. They also do a bowie shaped version but I must say I prefer the original shaped one that I have, far more practical for bushcraft.















Share:

Friday, 30 June 2017

Five on Friday

Welcome back for another Five on Friday!
Happy 59th Birthday to Cindy The bee lady from hilltop farm! We hope you have the best day :)

Thank you to all the amazing people that have posted such beautiful and positive comments in the last couple of weeks. We are so blessed to have such a fantastic family of supportive people around us through this blog.

Speaking of blessings lets get stuck in with this weeks Five. As many of you know I am a biker through and through, I've been riding motorcycles since I left school and nothing short of death could stop me continuing to ride them for as long as I am physically able to. This week I got the chance to snap a photo of my bike parked up at the front of our land when I visited to check in on the people doing the geotechnical survey for us

Our Land
I've owned this old girl longer than any other bike I've had, when I am on her she is an extension of my body and I can move her in and out of traffic as easily as breathing. The land behind is ours as far as the eye can see (obviously excluding the mountains but that would be far too much even for us!) The plot is narrow and long, making up a total of 5 acres of mostly almonds with a couple of olive trees. One of the first things we'll be doing is adding in more diversity so that there is always something to do and more importantly always something to eat!

Nasturtium flower
This is a photo of one of the nasturtiums we're growing. Apart from being beautiful you can eat the flowers, leaves and seeds of nasturtiums and they are also a great natural parasite remover when fed to chickens etc
They came from seeds given to us by my mother which she had saved from my grandmothers garden, who in turn had saved them from my great grandmothers nasturtiums! So this strain has been saved and kept every year by my family for at least the last 4 generations, I'd hate to break a tradition like that so have to grow them myself and in time I'll be teaching my children all about this amazing flower and the fierce women of our family that have grown it for well over the last hundred years.

Home Made Falafel
This week we've also cooked home made falafel, in fact we had it twice this week because they were just so good! They're easy to make too and great for vegetarians or even vegans. Perhaps I'll do a post with the recipe etc if it's something that would interest you then let me know in the comments.

Figgy Goodness!
Last week I showed you how well the almond trees were coming along and I clean forgot about the figs! as you can see from the photo it's fig season in our area now so we'll be collecting a daily handful of natural goodness for as long as the trees allow :)

Badass Dad Clan Sticker and Badges
I've mentioned the Badass Dad Clan previously but didn't go n to much detail. The Badass Dad Clan is a Facebook Group I've created for all the Badass Dads to get together. This group is about Celebrating each others achievements as fathers, supporting each other through the hard times and building each other up. This group is for the modern Badass Dads that give a shit about their kids, support their family and take care of business. It is a place that dads can share stories, support each other and continue to be their awesome selves. If you know anyone worthy of joining please spread the word whether it's your father, partner, a friend or even your children that have kids of their own. It is growing in to a truly amazing group full of inspirational fathers.


Thank you all once again for joining in with us for Fie on Friday, we hope you have an amazing weekend

*******************************************************************

Five on Friday Weekly Linkup



Welcome to Five on Friday, a weekly opportunity for the community to link up and share 5 things with us or take 5 minutes to talk about one topic. We’d love for you to join us and add a link to your own Five on Friday blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to keep your blog updated. Every Friday we'll be sharing a Fast Five and look forward to seeing yours.

How To Join In

Your 5 things can be all on a related topic or 5 totally separate things of your choosing, it's totally flexible and up to you. You might choose 5 photos, 5 quotes or use it to recap 5 things you've done this week, you have the freedom to exercise your creativity!

All that we ask is that you link back to Five on Friday using the button below (just copy and paste the HTML code in to your blog) and try to share the love by visiting & commenting on the other participants blogs. Each week the post will go live at 6.00am GMT on Friday and will close for new link entries at 10.00PM on Sunday



Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML






























Share:

Friday, 23 June 2017

Thank You!

First of all I'd like to say thank you to all of the people that have kept coming back for Five on Friday every week despite me being a terrible host recently. I love everyone that gets involved every week and I'm going to find the time somehow to get around and visit and comment on everyones blogs if it kills me!

I'm also sorry if anyone was offended by the confederate flag in my last post, to be honest I didn't even notice it was there until people pointed it out in the comments as it has no real significance in modern British culture so I didn't even think about it. Although it is meaningless to me I can understand why it would upset certain people so I'll be sure to be a bit more mindful of it in the future.

I'm totally out of my routine at the moment but that should settle down by next week, we've got some exciting things to share with you about the land but I'll keep it under wraps, for now its pretty late on Thursday night as I type this so I'll share the last 5 photos from my camera and tell you what they're all about:

1 - Almonds
Almond Tree
 The Almond trees on our land are absolutely LADEN with almonds right now so I guess we will be inundated with almonds when it comes to harvest time. Not a bad position to be in I guess! I estimate we have around 250-300 almond trees so it will certainly take some effort to collect all of the nuts, I'm not sure how many we will yield but it is sure to be far more than we could need so I may throw a work party and people can come and help out and take away a generous bag of almonds for their trouble.

2 - EDC Pouch

Maxpedition EDC Pouch
 As many of you know I am a survivalist or as some people call themselves these days Prepper. I took this shot of my EDC (Every Day Carry) setup and thought you guys and gals my be interested in what is actually crammed in there. If anyone has any questions about it I'd be more than happy to talk about it. I use a Maxpedition pouch to keep it all in and from left to right it contains:
Lansky Blade Medic, Vintage Style Compass. Pen Torch, TacPen, Cable Ties, Ferro rod, Striker, Lighter, Scarab Multitool, CRKT Eat'n'Tool, Field Notebook, CRKT Edgie, Plasters, Mosquito & Insect Repellent, Glowstick, Afterbite and of course the bandana that it is resting on.

You'd be amazed at the amount of things a kit like this comes in handy for, I think everyone should carry one.

3 - Me'N'You Vs The World

Me N You Vs The World Tshirt
 This Tshirt was one of my Father's Day gifts from the kids, I absolutely love the biker vibe of the print (and their whole brand to be honest) so of course I had to get Carly to take a snap of me on my bike wearing it. The maker is a friend of ours and I can't recommend them highly enough if you want something epic, you can find them here: ME 'N' YOU VS THE WORLD


4 - Shirtless Selfie

Shirtless Selfie 
I took this photo first thing in the morning as I went to let the chickens out, which is why I still look asleep!
Until now you have never seen me without a top on. Most people that have known me all my life have never seen me without a shirt on.  All my life I've had issues with my body. When I was a teenager I was real chubby. When I was 13 I was at my heaviest and weighed 16 stone and absolutely hated the way my body looked. Since then I have been an unhealthily thin 10.5 stone, one way or the other I've always thought I was too fat or too thin.Now my weight is somewhere inbetween, the sixpack is firmly buried within the DadBod and I've stopped worrying about it. Truth is we all need to learn to love ourselves and others just the way they are, we don't need to be what the magazines tell us to be! 

5 - Viking Badges
Vegvisir, Valknut & Mjolnir

This last pic is sort of in the wrong place, I saved it to my phone so I could reshare it on the Thor's Threads Instagram but I've included it because I love the meanings behind the symbols

The black and white badge is Vegvisir, the norse compass, it is said that a person bearing this symbol will always find their way, and in this day and age I think there are more than a few people that have lost their way and could do with a magic compass to help get them back on track.

The red and black badge portrays the Valknut, the knot of the slain warrior, it is regarded as a symbol of Odin and the afterlife and is said to represent the 9 worlds and be an aid for reincarnation, cyclical relationships and in talismans to ward against evil. To me it represents the connectivity of everything, infinity and immortality.

The last one is a simple but bold image of Mjolnir, the mighty hammer wielded by Thor, God of Thunder. It is a symbol of strength, courage and protection and is widely used in modern Paganism due to Thor being the "God of the People" as he is the protector of Humankind.


I hope you've enjoyed this weeks post, Thanks for stopping by and continuing to support Five on Friday, we hope you have a wonderful weekend :)

*******************************************************************

Five on Friday Weekly Linkup



Welcome to Five on Friday, a weekly opportunity for the community to link up and share 5 things with us or take 5 minutes to talk about one topic. We’d love for you to join us and add a link to your own Five on Friday blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to keep your blog updated. Every Friday we'll be sharing a Fast Five and look forward to seeing yours.

How To Join In

Your 5 things can be all on a related topic or 5 totally separate things of your choosing, it's totally flexible and up to you. You might choose 5 photos, 5 quotes or use it to recap 5 things you've done this week, you have the freedom to exercise your creativity!

All that we ask is that you link back to Five on Friday using the button below (just copy and paste the HTML code in to your blog) and try to share the love by visiting & commenting on the other participants blogs. Each week the post will go live at 6.00am GMT on Friday and will close for new link entries at 10.00PM on Sunday



Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML

















Share:

Friday, 16 June 2017

Five Photos - Five on Friday

Happy Friday Everyone!

So as I mentioned last week I went back to the UK for the weekend to party with the Badass Dad Clan at the clubhouse with my brothers in the White Wolf Brotherhood Motorcycle Club. What a fantastic thing to be a part of! One of the best parties I've ever had, great atmosphere and full of genuine good people

Badass Dad Clan Meets White Wolf Brotherhood
It was amazing to be back in the UK for a few days and see my brothers, one of the hardest things to deal with for me since we moved is being away from the club.  I don't very often post things about my association with the club but here is a picture of me at the clubhouse bar. In the UK the club became my life, I was one of the founding members and was voted in as President when the last President stepped down. Every week we were out and about, going on rides, visiting other clubs and partying at our own clubhouse and the brotherhood side of the club is second to none, being away from it all kills me. A few of us have started the Alicante chapter now but I loved being around my Essex chapter brothers and having a laugh like we used to.

Wolfpack Forever, Forever Wolfpack!
You can see a bit of it in the photo above, but whilst I was in the UK I picked up another bit of ink from my favourite tattoo studio. This time I opted for a realistic compass, it took 4.5 hours and I am so happy with it! I guess now I will always know the direction that life is taking me in :)

My Moral Compass


When I got back there was something else very new and very purple that had materialised outside our chickens corral, a gigantic thistle. I guess I didn't notice it growing up being lost in a sea of green but it is so beautiful now that it has flowered, a giant thistle about 1.5m tall with a flower head the size of a fist

Purple and Proud - Thistle

On a totally unrelated note I have just released a new patch and for the very first time a pin badge too. I LOVED the Addams Family growing up and thought they were the ultimate in cool, so I suppose it was inevitable that I would pay homage to them sooner or later.

"They're Creepy and They're Kooky, Mysterious and Spooky...." (try getting that theme tune out of your head!)

Addams Family Pin Badge and Patch
And as if they didn't look cool enough like that, they really stand out when the sun goes down....

Glow in the Dark Pin and Patch
Boom! What? Glow in the Dark? I must dash now, I think I'm going to surround myself with them and turn off the lights to bask in the spookiness hahaha

Hope everyone has had a fantastic week and wish you all a wonderful weekend :)



*******************************************************************

Five on Friday Weekly Linkup



Welcome to Five on Friday, a weekly opportunity for the community to link up and share 5 things with us or take 5 minutes to talk about one topic. We’d love for you to join us and add a link to your own Five on Friday blog post! It’s a great way to make new friends from around the world and gain some motivation to keep your blog updated. Every Friday we'll be sharing a Fast Five and look forward to seeing yours.

How To Join In

Your 5 things can be all on a related topic or 5 totally separate things of your choosing, it's totally flexible and up to you. You might choose 5 photos, 5 quotes or use it to recap 5 things you've done this week, you have the freedom to exercise your creativity!

All that we ask is that you link back to Five on Friday using the button below (just copy and paste the HTML code in to your blog) and try to share the love by visiting & commenting on the other participants blogs. Each week the post will go live at 6.00am GMT on Friday and will close for new link entries at 10.00PM on Sunday



Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


Share:

Etsy

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Blog Design Created by pipdig