My Rules

In 2009, the rules of my experiment were:

Finish eating what we have in the cupboards.

New purchases must meet the local, seasonal, organic, sustainably farmed criteria.

Fish must be wild and caught in a sustainable manner and as local as possible.

Eggs must be cage free, with an organic diet.

Poultry must be pastured, fed an organic diet and local.

Milk, cheese and cream must come from local dairies (not dairy pools).

Honey must be organic or close as possible and local.

Fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains must be local and organic from small, mostly self-sustaining farms.

Anything not on this list must be made by me from the above ingredients or by local farmers or food artisans.

Coffee, chocolate, coconut oil and sugar are exempt but must be fair trade and shade grown (except sugar which must still be organic and fair trade.)

Any other purchases must be from US sources.

Update: By 2010 all produce and most fruits, plus eggs and some meat were coming from my yard. By 2011 most meat and dairy were coming from my yard. In 2013 I hope to have honey and mushrooms, as well as all meat coming from my yard. My final frontier in 2014 will be all animal forage coming from my yard. Will I make it?

5 Responses to My Rules

  1. Honey here, bees still buzzing, increasing bee supportive growth. Innoculated logs for mushrooms should bloom with the spring rains, and a turkey tail volunteered (good against breast cancer). Having friends for rabbit dinner soon and the chickens and ducks are on patrol in a garden still green with brassicus and fava beans. Rabbits are in with the chickens now. Made my first homemade eggnog and discovered how good Organic Valley milk is. Best wishes. See you at the Flower and Garden Show in Seattle. Chris

    • Annette Cottrell

      Chris you are so amazing – I can’t wait to get into the mushroom logs! Thank you so much for all your help at the Country Living Expo. Can’t wait to see you at the Flower and Garden Show next weekend (yikes, I’d better get my slideshows going!)

  2. I love the rules you came up with! I’m working toward doing much of what you are, except for raising my own beef. I just don’t have enough land. I’ve gotten a lot of great info from your site, and am so glad I found it. Keep up the great work.

  3. It is April 2012 and I too have been on this path for the last 10years with a very wide but exciting learning curve. My issue is that I have been shopping at the grocery store and not happy with my purchases I bake my own bread and cakes, can, buy sustainable local fish, house bees, garden 8 months of the year, have rabbits for the garden not us and finally in the process of building a chicken coup.Fruit trees, and freezing. NO car 6 months bus or walk 6 months bike or walk. I guess until I saw this blog I did not think it could be done but of curse it can it is a time management issue and desire to reduce my carbon footprint while eating a healthy diet. I never thought of committing to not shopping at a grocery store- Great idea!! Now how do I convince my 2 beautiful teenagers that this is the way to go I have to admit their friends think I am crazy and it is all too much work I guess in time they will see the benefits. One day I may mention the difference between their skin and body shape.I laughed when my daughters friend came for dinner and said ” great meal!!! “I was worried because I do not eat anything that grows in the garden” I laughed and thought where does she think the meal came from”. !!!! I commit to the challenge !!!!

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