Enjoy the Journey

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Some days I feel really discouraged with where we are in this adventure.

We have this end goal in mind, this dream of being entirely self-sufficient, living off the grid. This goal is decades down the road. I don’t get discouraged by the fact that we aren’t there yet.

I get discouraged when I think that I still go to the grocery store for most raw foods  or that we don’t have goats or chickens or rabbits. I feel like we should be somewhere further down the road. Not where we are.

But then I look at everything I have learned to do. Canning, bread making, soap making, sewing, building furniture… and I realize we are much further than I thought.

These skills take time, time to learn and time to refine. I get discouraged when I forget this.

But I’m human and this is what we do, right?

So lately I’ve been bummed on my progress and I needed to check myself. Seriously. There’s no need to get down when we have made many steps in the right direction. So in the process of getting my head right, I realized I could make this list…something I couldn’t do a year ago!

20 Things We Don’t Buy

  1. Laundry soap
  2. Bread
  3. Canned tomatoes
  4. Bath soap
  5. Salad dressing
  6. Dog treats
  7. Pizza
  8. Canned beans
  9. Curtains
  10. Compost
  11. Tortillas
  12. Dish washer detergent
  13. Mayo
  14. Chilled teas and sodas
  15. Bread crumbs
  16. Plastic bags
  17. Medicine
  18. Bug bite creams
  19. Green onions (the only thing I am successfully producing at this point)
  20. Furniture

And with that I am happy. Where do I want to see us go in the next year?

I will try to grow all of my own tomatoes and can what we will need for the year. Since I think I’ve already destroyed my tomato plants and am considering starting over, I may need to make some adjustments, like canning tomatoes from the Farmer’s Market.

I will be making all of our own bathroom products (soaps, lotions, etc.). Since we don’t actually go through these quickly we haven’t really had an opportunity, but the time will come…

I will make all of our condiments: ketchup, mustard, pickles, and relish.

I will preserve more of our food for winter, whether from our garden or the Farmers Market.

How do you manage your long term goals?

I always find myself looking at the big picture rather than the many amazing steps we’ve made. I need to remember the journey is just as noteworthy as the destination, which is why I write this journal of sorts- to share the good and the bad on our road to self-sufficiency. Where are you on your journey?


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3 Responses to Enjoy the Journey

  1. Ginger says:

    “Focus on the journey, not the destination. Joy is found not in finishing an activity but in doing it.”

    Just a little quote I like to say to remind myself to live one day at a time and enjoy it to the fullest, and not to worry about the end goal.
    You’ve made a lot of progress and I am sure your list of things you want to learn or accomplish is long ..I know mine is. I too, like you wish we were further along in our goal to become 100% self sufficient but we’re not and I’ve become okay with that.I take each day that is given to me to make it one step closer to the goal..and we’ll get there when we get there.
    Enjoy the journey ,it’s what you’ll remember the most.
    Ginger :)

    • brookeO says:

      The journey is definitely the most exciting part. 99% of the time I am happy with learning and growing at my own pace and knowing we will get there one day. It’s just those other days that creep up every once and a while that throw me off balance. Thankfully my list making skills seem to be able to set me back on track. Thanks for the encouragement Ginger!

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