FAST Blog: Family Homestead

Permaculture, Preparedness, Homesteading & Survival

Friday, 25 August 2017

5 Things You Learn When You Get a Puppy

Happy Friday Everyone!

This is our last Five on Friday for August and since it has been somewhat of a heavy month I thought I'd do a lighthearted post this week.

As you may know, last month we brought home two puppies! So after having them as part of the family for a month now these are the things I have learned about having young puppies:

Astrid pretending that butter wouldn't melt

1. Sleep
Puppies sleep on average for 26 hours a day 8 days a week. They tend to wake up only soil or otherwise destroy something when you are not looking and then convincingly pretend to be the cutest thing in the world so that you don't get mad at them. I suspect it is a built in survival trait.


2. Poop
Puppies are able to excrete their own body mass each day and can do so at will. Sometimes it seems that they do it all at once in one place and other times they like to surprise you by hiding it in multiple locations to see if you were paying attention. I can only be thankful that we have tiled floors because I don't know how anyone can have a puppy and carpets at the same time!

Astrid can always be found exactly where you don't want her to be!

3. Obedience
Much like human children they do not listen to anything or play with anything unless you specifically do not want them to.

4. Smell
We bath our dogs once a week and they do not have access to anything dirty but nevertheless they smell. Whether it is "Dog Smell" or "Dog Fart" it seems our living room will never again smell like fresh linen!

5. Family
When puppies are this young their cons seem to vastly outweigh their pros. It seems their only redeeming quality is that they are cute and might become more useful when they grow up. But through all the accidents on the floor, sleepless nights and having to change your whole life routine to accommodate your new family members you'll find that you wouldn't change a thing because a puppy unconditionally loves it's owners and its a feeling that you cannot help being mutual!

Just look at that cute little face!
I hope you've all had a wonderful week and wish you an amazing weekend, thanks for joining us once again for Five on Friday :)

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

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, 18 August 2017

Spanish Fiestas

Thanks to everyone that messaged and commented last week with their support.

After Last Week's Post (Suicide & Mental Health) I'm glad to say this week will be on a much happier note. Last weekend from Friday right round until Tuesday the annual August Fiestas decended on our sleepy little village in the middle of nowhere. For 5 days the population of this village went from around 100 to more like 1000 as every family and friend of the residents turned up for a celebration of gigantic proportions (compared to how small the place is)

A lot of the festivities take place quite late, between 12.00 and 2.00am, mainly to avoid the scorching heat of the day. Spanish people tend to let their children stay up a lot later than we typically do in the UK, especially during fiesta times.

We had Bull running on the Friday night to start things off, we didn't go down but it was held in the dry riverbed outside our house so we could see it all anyway. I don't really agree with it but I accept that it is their traditions, their culture and heritage so I can understand why it is important to them, and I must say that they treat the animals far better in our village than they do in many of the other places I have seen.

The following morning was the annual Gachamiga contest. (If you haven't tried it before we previously posted a Gachamiga Recipe HERE) Essentially the entire village comes together to cook Gachamiga in the traditional long handled pans over open fires in the middle of the road!

Gachamiga contest 2017 Cases Del Senyor
More and more families turned up to take part and filled the entire village with the smell and sound of sizzling pans full of Gachamiga. Passing cars just had to make their way around as and when they can but nothing is more important than a fiesta in Spain so nobody seems to mind the inconvenience they just accept it as part of life. Our fiestas and all of the events and activities are paid for by the local council and fundraising done by the community in advance, so everything is free of charge to everyone that takes part and is a great way for the council to give back to the community and really bring local families together in the community spirit that we seem to have largely lost in the UK. All the ingredients were handed out to participants for free and there were cases of wine being dished out for everyone attending to drink, all completely free and when it was over every family wanted to invite us to try their gachamiga and invited me Carly and the kids to come over and drink wine with them as we ate gachamiga for breakfast. The people here are always so welcoming to us as foreigners, I'm very grateful to be able to speak enough Spanish to understand and partake in basic small talk even though it is not something I have ever had lessons in I just pick it up as I go along.

Gachamiga Contest 2017 Cases Del Senyor
When everyone was finished cooking the Gachamiga was put on plates with peoples names on the bottom so that the judges didn't know whose they were tasting until afterwards.

The important people and village elders were called to taste test and crown the winners. Apart from bragging rights for the year the winners also got expensive legs of Jamon, Wine and even a weekend away in Benidorm!
Elders judging the Gachamiga contest

After that we had a foam party in the street, you can see Logan here up to his chin in it! Foam was fired from a cannon all over the place, although it was raining quite hard on the day so they cut the party short and came back for a few hours the next day to do it all over again to make sure the kids didn't miss out.

Foam Party 2017 Cases Del Senyor

There were bouncy castles, fireworks, music processions and every night the bull running. There was also gigantic pans of paella cooked to feed the whole village, musical processions, chocolate fountains and many other things that make the fiestas an incredible experience and I can honestly say the fiestas in this area are some of the best I have ever been to. 

Train!
On the last day there was a train ride that took the kids to the next village and back, playing music,  everyone clapping and singing along it was a great end to the fiestas for us, the kids absolutely loved it and seeing them so happy and getting involved with Spanish culture did my heart the world of good.

As great as the fiestas are it is also nice to return once more to the sleepy little village that we are used to, but we are already looking forward to the fiestas next year!


Hope you all have an amazing weekend, thanks for stopping by for Five on Friday


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

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, 11 August 2017

Suicide and Mental Health


Did you know that the suicide rate for men is 350% higher than women?
And why is there such a stigma attached to male depression and mental health? Why are we conditioned to think that a man must be infallible? That he cannot have emotions, that he must be carved from stone and be forever the strong sentinel?

If you have me on Facebook then it is no secret that I intended to take my own life this week. Everything became too much, life almost got the better of me and I made the decision to opt out. Luckily Carly found me in the mountains tying the last knot and about to put the noose around my neck. Today is a day I might never have seen if things had been different.

My entire life I have held myself to societies standards, I have been ruthless, a strong leader and have never backed down from a challenge or a fight. By my early twenties I was the president of a motorcycle club, the youngest president in Essex, I took no shit and commanded respect. I have lived an intense Alpha male life and you know what? It's bullshit. No man is an island. It it's OK to not be OK. There is no shame in being vulnerable. I will not hide it, brush it under the rug nor apologise. I cannot thank enough the people that contacted me to support me, it makes me realise how much of an impact one bad day could have made.

If you cannot understand how someone can get to the point where they cannot bear it any more you are one of the lucky ones. But if you ever find yourself in that situation speak up and help will be there, I have been there myself and I will never be too busy to talk someone else out of making the ultimate mistake.
Stay strong, we are all beautifully imperfect humans and we are all in this together. Love you all x


I had wanted to sit and write something about mental health issues and the weeks events but this post is a copy of what I wrote on facebook, I am sure everyone undestands that at the moment I need to focus my time and energy elsewhere.

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

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:

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Handmade Ferro Rod

I forgot to show you this awesome ferro rod I got from Rhode Knives

Rhode Knives Ferro Rod Fire Lighter
Yet another beautifully hand crafted item from Rhode Knives that is hand made in the UK. These type of Ferro rod fire starters are good for many thousands of strikes, work in all weathers and never let you down. Why settle for the cheap crap from china when you could have something as gorgeous as this that really earns it's place in you kit for form and function? And knowing that you are helping a small family business rather than a faceless company always wins hands down in my book.

If you want to check out Rhode Knives you can find them at their Etsy store on Facebook and also on Instagram.

Disclaimer: As always I have not been paid of incentivised for this post, you cannot buy kind words here you just have to cut the mustard and impress us!
Share:

Friday, 4 August 2017

Polymath Products

Happy Friday Folks!

I received a package with a few different Polymath Products items for my birthday that I am keen to share with you all!

A Selection of Polymath Products Items
I got a MEDC keyring First Aid Kit, a UCSK Ultra Compact Survival Kit, a pack of Atom Light micro LED torches and the Nav Bead, a glow in the dark compass, personal marker and pace counter.

The items all arrived in record time and I love that they put in some free kendal mint cakes with their orders!  As soon as I've been able to properly test out the items in the field I'll do a proper review on each one. If you haven't come across Polymath Products before you can find them on their website here



According to their site:
"Polymath Products is a UK-based business that specialises in innovative outdoor products, launched in September 2013 with the highly popular Ultra Compact Survival Kit (UCSK). Since then, Polymath Products has become a leading brand in the compact survival kit and EDC markets, with our unique products now being sold internationally.

Fuelled by our own enthusiasm for the Great Outdoors and gadgets, we strive to offer the most practical, well thought-out and exciting products to our customers, while also providing great value for money and exemplary customer service throughout."

Although I haven't fully tested my gear yet they are highly rated by many of my friends and high profile members of the survival community so I am confident enough in the quality of their items to recommend them as a company regardless.


Disclaimer: I have not been paid or incentivised for this post, you cannot buy kind words on this blog you just have to cut the mustard and impress us







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

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, 1 August 2017

Rhode Knives Whittling Knife

My amazing mother has always enabled my passions so it is no surprise really that she got me the most thoughtful gift for my birthday:


Rhode Knives Custom Walnut Whittling Knife

I was treated to this GORGEOUS handmade custom whittling knife so I can hone my wood carving skills. As you may know my main go-to knife is also a Rhode knives custom and coincidentally was also a gift from my mother (I know right, best mom in the world or what?). That knife is called Thorn and is the most amazing quality knife, this one is no different!

It has a stainless blade and English walnut handle with brass and green accents in the hilt that are complemented by the green stitching on the thick, quality leather sheath. It is incredibly comfortable to hold and use and I can't wait to get back into carving, it's been at least a decade since I carved anything at all so no doubt I'll be a bit rusty but that's all part of the fun.

If you want to check out Rhode Knives you can find them at their Etsy store on Facebook and also on Instagram.

Disclaimer: As always I have not been paid of incentivised for this post, you cannot buy kind words here you just have to cut the mustard and impress us!
Share:

Etsy

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