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  • Here is a List of Homesteader Skills Good to Learn to Become More Self- Sufficient:

    Unlock the secrets of self-sufficiency and rediscover the lost art of homesteading! Our ancestors thrived on essential skills like gardening, baking, and food cultivation, knowledge that's become a rarity in our modern age. Embark on a journey to reclaim these invaluable skills that were once second nature. Whether you dream of a self-sufficient lifestyle, going off the grid, or are preparing for unforeseen emergencies, these skill suggestions offers a treasure trove of essential and fascinating abilities that are fun and rewarding. START NOW! Now is your moment to embrace a sustainable lifestyle, enhance your ecological footprint, and boost your plot's productivity whether a farmstead or a balcony edible garden. Don't wait—stat now, wherever you are, invest your time, money, and energy wisely to learn at your own pace. Consider your strengths and weaknesses with oursuggested list of self-sufficiency skills, empowering you to make informed decisions about your homesteading journey. Plus, discover skills that not only keep you engaged but could also become a source of extra creativity and income from the comfort of your home. Seize the opportunity now! Bread Making & Baking - Discover the joy of crafting your own delicious, wholesome bread. Whether you're a kitchen novice or a seasoned chef, bread making and baking is an accessible art that promises satisfaction with every loaf. Unleash your inner baker and explore the enchanting world of sourdough, a cornerstone of homemade mastery. While capturing wild yeasts for your sourdough starter is a unique and economical experience, we understand it might be daunting for beginners. Fear not! Jumpstart your bread-making odyssey with our premium dehydrated yeast, ensuring a seamless and delicious initiation into the art of baking. Indulge in the magic of crafting your own breads and baked goods, and let the aroma of freshly baked goodness fill your kitchen. Elevate your culinary skills and embrace the joy of self-sufficiency with our expertly curated bread-making essentials and recipes. Your delectable homemade creations await—start your bread-making adventure today! Cheese - Discover the Art of Cheesemaking! Unlock the secrets of artisanal cheesemaking with guide found on You-Tube & in books. If you've mastered the art of making butter, you're already on your way to creating delicious cheeses that surpass anything you'll find on supermarket shelves at a fraction of the costs. From soft and creamy to hard and flaky, craft cheeses will elevate your salads, pizzas, and sandwiches to gourmet heights. Not only is homemade cheese a culinary triumph, but it's also a smart financial choice. At approximately a quarter of the cost of store-bought alternatives, you'll savor the difference without breaking the bank. But the benefits extend beyond your wallet. Homemade cheese means you control the quality of your ingredients. Say goodbye to preservatives and artificial additives found in mass-produced options. Your health and taste buds deserve the best — and that's precisely what you'll get with your very own, preservative-free, homemade cheese. Embrace the joy of crafting delectable cheeses that redefine your culinary experience! Beekeeping "Unlock the Buzz: Elevate Your Garden and Morning Routine with Beekeeping Bliss! Discover the transformative world of beekeeping, where the humble bee becomes your garden's VIP pollinator and your breakfast's golden touch. Native bees take center stage, weaving their magic to create nature's sweetest elixir, a viscous nectar packed with essential nutrients and pure sugars, a true powerhouse for local pollination. Dive into the art of beekeeping and become a steward of these incredible creatures. Craft bespoke hives that cater to their needs and master techniques that not only guarantee a bountiful honey harvest but also unlock a host of other incredible benefits. From the versatile beeswax to the potent bee venom and the royal jelly treasure trove, your journey into beekeeping promises rewards beyond measure. Elevate your connection to nature, foster a thriving garden, and savor the fruits of your labor with the delightful symphony of bees as your companions. Join the buzz – your garden and taste buds will thank you!" Smoking Meats and Fish - Discover the Art of Culinary Alchemy Unleash your culinary potential and master the age-old craft of smoking meat and fish. Elevate your cooking game by acquiring the skills to not only preserve your favorite cuts but also infuse them with a distinctive flavor that tantalizes the taste buds like never before. Unlike ordinary methods like baking and grilling, brining and smoking imparts a unique character that's simply unmatched. But that's not all—smoking is your ticket to healthier indulgence! As the fat drips away during the smoking process, you're left with a leaner, more wholesome final product. Picture this: succulent, flavorful meats without the guilt. And let’s talk nutrition! Immerse yourself in the world of omega-3 fatty acids as you explore the secrets of smoking fish. Go on a journey where tradition meets innovation, and flavor meets nutrition. Equip yourself with the mastery of smoking, and let your kitchen adventures and experimentations begin! Preserving & Storing Food - Savor the Seasons Unlock the secret to savoring the bounty of each season, even during the chilliest winter days! Bid farewell to the limitations of storing fresh fruits and veggies, and embrace the art of preservation. Delve into the world of culinary preservation, mastering the delicate dance of water bath and pressurized canning tailored to the unique acidity of your ingredients. And fear not, fellow enthusiasts, for we stand guard against the microbial mischief that can plague the unprepared. Learn the sacred techniques to thwart bacteria while preserving the essence of your harvest. Explore the wonders of freezing, drying, canning, fermentation and pickling with recipes that promise both delectable flavors and extended shelf life. Whether you're captivated by the gentle hum of a burner, entranced by the rhythmic whirr of a dehydrator, or prefer the open-air symphony of nature and sun drying, discover the diverse realms of preserving and storing. Elevate your culinary escapades as you learn to dry and store almost anything, transforming your kitchen and cellar into a haven of flavors that defy the seasons! Experience the Joy of Home Harvesting Unleash the power of self-sufficiency right in your backyard by learning the skills of growing vegetable, herbs, fruits and nuts. Imagine the satisfaction of plucking sun-kissed tomatoes, crisp lettuce, and vibrant carrots from your own garden—the epitome of freshness that surpasses anything store-bought. While gardening has its challenges, the rewards are abundant. Say goodbye to grocery store runs as your garden becomes a haven of nutritious delights for you and your family. Picture this: a surplus of goodness that you can share with friends and neighbors, fostering a sense of community and well-being. But don't stop there. Elevate your gardening prowess with crucial skills—crop rotation and composting. In the realm of self-sufficiency, these technique are game-changers. Watering and sun exposure are also critical elements to growing good food. You-Tube, books, and Podcasts are boundless guide that can empower you to master the art of ensuring not just a bountiful harvest but also a thriving, disease-resistant garden. Don't just grow vegetables. Try fruit and nut trees. Overtime you will learn the subtle details of your land and will cultivate a lifestyle of abundance and well-being. Gardening is a sweet journey towards a healthier, self-sufficient life more connected to Nature. Cooking EVERYTHING Elevate your harvest with the art of cooking, transforming raw goodness into a symphony of flavors and nutrients. While nibbling on raw carrots is an option, our cooking expertise unveils the science behind enhancing bioavailability for maximum energy. Dive into the world of delectable and wholesome home-cooked meals that not only satisfy your taste buds but nourish your body. The joy of customization awaits – make your meals exactly how you love them, turning every bite into a celebration. Embark on a rewarding culinary adventure, mastering skills that go beyond borders. Expand your menu, savoring the richness of global cuisines. Your self-sufficiency journey just got a whole lot tastier! Design & Carpentry - 🛠️ Unlock the artistry of carpentry and planning for a self-sufficient and fulfilling homesteading journey that is also beautiful! From crafting sturdy decks and functional shelves to building cozy chicken coops and your home, workshops and barns, your planning and carpentry skills open the door to a world of possibilities on your homestead. We believe in the joy of hands-on creation, empowering you to fashion not just structures but a lifestyle of resilience. Carpentry is where the aroma of sawdust meets the thrill of learning. It is wise to get expert craftsmen guidance to learn the essentials. Each lesson can be an exciting step toward mastering this timeless skill. With more time and practice you can expand your skills to include building houses and making furniture. Planning ahead is a skill often overlooked by homesteaders, which can result in a hodge hodge of unrelated structures and projects that are not as attractive as they could have been. We strongly recommend developing a master plan that communicates the overall vision of your homestead property. Then it is easier to decide where to start first and how to create a wholesome beautiful result as your homestead grows. Beyond repairs, carpentry and planning becomes a language you can begin speaking fluently, creating a bond between you and your homestead. Equip yourself with top-tier tools and a well thought out design with dimensioned plan. Consider water, power, storage, security and all the other requirement need to design and build your homestead. We recommend starting with battery operated tools like DeWalt power screwdrivers, saws, and drills. A table saw, planner, drill press, nail and staple guns and rotor also make carpentry projects more precise. Proper planning, good tools and practice can eventually turn each project into a masterpiece. Unleash your potential, embrace craftsmanship and fine design with Nature, and let your homestead thrive with the magic of carpentry and planning! Masonry - Build Your Foundation: Learn the essentials of working with stone, concrete, brick, and mortar—the fundamental elements of the masons' trade. Whether you're dreaming of a quaint garden wall or a robust foundation for your home, learning masonry is a useful skill. Hands-On Learning is best: No more theory overload! We encourages hands-on practice from day one for masonry. You'll be amazed at how quickly you can turn raw materials into functional structures with the right guidance. There are online resources to grasp the basics at your own pace. You can also benefit from a mason mentors years of wisdom and get personalized insights that textbooks can't offer when you can find them. Arm yourself with the right knowledge before you lay that first brick. Researching recommended readings and watching videos ensures you're better-prepared for the hands-on experience. Beyond the satisfaction of crafting with your hands, masonry skills are invaluable for property maintenance and long-term repairs. Ready to build your legacy? Embark on a journey where every brick or stone laid is a step toward self-sufficiency and creativity. The world of masonry awaits—let's build it together! Master the Craft of Metalwork for a Thriving Homestead Unlock the secrets of metalwork and elevate your homesteading journey with an essential skill set that transcends time. Metalworking isn't just a skill; it's a gateway to a self-sufficient lifestyle, allowing you to craft tools and structures that stand the test of time. Explore the three fundamental pillars of metalworking: Forming, Cutting, and Joining. Whether you're shaping a structural masterpiece or creating functional tools, these techniques empower you to turn raw metal into practical solutions. Dive into the world of casting, welding, forging, flashing, and metal roofing — tried-and-true methods that have stood at the forefront of innovation. Discover how these techniques not only enhance the durability of your creations but can also be a source of additional income. But it doesn't stop there. Elevate your homestead structures by considering the economy and fire resistance of metal roofing. Unleash the potential of insulation, ensuring that your spaces remain comfortable for both you and your animals, regardless of the weather.Embark on a journey of creativity and functionality. Mastering the art of metalwork is where tradition meets innovation, and your homestead transforms into a haven of resilience and resourcefulness. Oil pressing - Discover the Art of Oil Crafting! Elevate your culinary experience by mastering the ancient skill of oil pressing. In the realm of homesteading, where each meal is a celebration of freshness, learning to craft your own oils becomes very  rewarding. Unlock a symphony of flavors with oils extracted from premium sources such as coconuts (in limited quantities), avocados, olives, walnuts, sesame, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, grape seeds, and sunflowers. Be wary of commercial alternatives laden with cheap, unhealthy additives – the secret to authenticity lies in the DIY approach. Explore the world of oil pressing through high-pressure extraction methods, transforming raw materials like seeds, algae, nuts, and vegetables into a liquid masterpiece. Delve into the art of heating and processing, as your kitchen becomes a canvas for culinary creativity. With your homemade oils, revel in a richer, more robust taste, free from the uncertainties of store-bought alternatives. By taking control of your oil production, you not only savor the pure essence of each drop but also ensure a healthier, additive-free indulgence. Unleash your inner chef, reduce your oil consumption, and embark on a journey where every dish is a testament to the purity of your craft. Check out the plethora of tutorials on YouTube, guiding you through the fascinating process of creating your own liquid gold. Craft, cook, and conquer – because true flavor begins with your hands. While homesteading, you will want to cook your favorite meals and every day dishes using fresh oil. However, you need to learn the skill of pressing quality oil. Fresh oil is richer, flavorsome, and more fuller tasting. Textiles- Discover the Art of Textiles- Knitting, Sewing, Weaving… Unleash your creativity with a selection of premium threads! Whether you're a seasoned pro or just starting out, elevate your textiles and knitting, quilting, sewing, etc. projects with your handpicked collection of textiles. Say goodbye to the ordinary and embrace the extraordinary – from the vibrant hues of local farmer’s markets to the convenience of online shopping and even thrift shops, you've got your textile dreams and applications covered. Elevate your skills and create bespoke, handmade treasures. Dive into the world of self-sufficiency by crafting cozy bedding, clothing, stylish scarves, and winter essentials. Make your collection a story of passion, warmth, and style. Start small with a hat or scarf and watch your creations evolve into intricate masterpieces like quilts, sofa slipcovers and sweaters. Craft your world of textiles to embellish your home and wardrobe– where every thread tells a tale, and every creation is a masterpiece in the making. Experience the joy of knitting and sewing with the finest threads and fabrics, and let your imagination run wild! Basket Making Consider delving into the craft of creating your own functional and eco-friendly baskets using materials sourced directly from your surroundings. Say goodbye to plastic and embrace the natural, resourceful world of basketry. Whether you're looking to enrich your homesteading experience or seeking a fulfilling hobby, learning how to make baskets offers you the skills to weave not just beautiful baskets, but a greener, more connected lifestyle. Unleash your creativity, contribute to a healthier environment, and who knows, you might even turn your passion into a lucrative venture for your family homestead! Mushroom growing - Discover the Art of Mushroom Cultivation! 🍄 Learning the skill of growing mushrooms for self-sufficiency adds flavor and nutrition to your dining table. Producing your own mushrooms is way cheaper compared to buying mushrooms from grocery stores. Elevate your dining experience by cultivating your own flavorful and nutrition-packed mushrooms. Not only does it tantalize your taste buds, but it also saves you a bundle compared to store-bought varieties. LEARN to get your fungi to flourish and sustain themselves effortlessly. No need for constant replanting or preparing new mycelium — once you set it up right, it becomes a self-sustaining marvel. Imagine a continuous harvest from a compact space, even in the shadiest corners of your home. Unleash your green thumb as you learn to cultivate mushrooms on logs and various waste materials. Elevate your culinary adventures with homegrown goodness — it's not just a skill; it's a lifestyle. Discover the Art of Tree Tapping: A Journey to Sustainably Sweet Rewards! Embark on a fascinating adventure into the world of tree tapping—a captivating skill that transforms your homesteading experience. Unleash your self-sufficiency as you learn the centuries-old technique of drawing sap from a variety of trees, including maples, boxelder, walnut, black walnut, sycamore, paper birch, and Hagbark hickory. Elevate your culinary creations with homemade syrup, all while fostering a connection with nature. March marks the tree tapping season across the upper Midwest, New England, and southern Canada. As the northern cardinals serenade the return of spring, the dormant trees respond to the awakening season. Be part of this seasonal rhythm, seizing a limited window to extract sap before trees bud out, ensuring the sweetest and purest flavors for your syrup. The tree tapping process unfolds over 4 to 6 weeks, offering a unique opportunity to witness the natural flow of sap. Beyond the culinary delights, delve into the healing properties of sap—nature's gift with anti-inflammatory, astringent, and antiseptic qualities. Imagine not only producing your own syrup but also crafting natural remedies from the very essence of trees. Embrace the versatility of tree sap, from enhancing your culinary repertoire to soothing sore throats or colds by chewing the softer sap like gum. Join the ranks of those who turn the bounty of the forest into a source of sustenance and well-being. Unlock the secrets of tree tapping and savor the sweet rewards of a healthier, more self-sufficient lifestyle. Enroll now in our tree tapping experience and let nature's bounty flow into your hands! Beer & Winemaking Learning various methods of producing wine and beer are enjoyable homesteading skills for self-sufficiency. Embrace self-sufficiency as you master various methods of transforming fruits and grains into exquisite wines and beer. Discover the simplicity of the process - from selecting the finest fruits to the joy of bottling the finished product. Not only does wine and beer making allow you to preserve your harvest effectively, but it also opens the door to extended shelf life. Plus, let's not forget the delightful side effect: enjoying the fruits of your labor in the form of your very own, expertly crafted wines. Over time you can perfect your process to make the flavors you like most. Cheers to a healthier, more fulfilling hobby! Shoemaking - Discover the Art of Shoemaking Excellence! Step into the world of bespoke footwear with our premium shoemaking courses. Unleash your creativity with quality leather and masterful shoe-making techniques. Equipped with essential tools like a precision utility knife, gluing brush, and expert hole punch, you can craft exceptional, personalized shoes for yourself and  loved ones—all at an incredibly affordable cost. Find courses online tailored for beginners seeking professional training. Dive into detailed, hands-on instructions that cover every nuance of shoemaking, starting from the fundamentals. Quality meets affordability as you embark on a journey to acquire the skills and knowledge needed to create stunning, custom footwear often using recycled materials. From sandals to boots, you can enjoy this satisfying hobby and even turn it into an income producer if it something you enjoy and are especially good at. Leatherworking - Explore the Artistry of Leather Crafting! Embark on a journey into the world of leather working, an essential skill for resourceful homesteaders. Elevate simple hides into masterpieces through shaping and coloring techniques, transforming your creations into both functional and artistic wonders. This craft not only enriches your homesteading experience but also opens avenues for economic empowerment. Trade or sell your bespoke leather goods, providing both for your family and fostering a thriving community of artisans. From foundational techniques like precise cutting, saddle stitching, and expert edge finishing to advanced skills such as knife sharpening, skiving, and specialized stitching, our leather working guide equips you with the proficiency to tackle diverse projects. Unleash your creativity and practicality with the timeless art of leather crafting! Pottery- Unleash Your Creativity with Pottery! Embark on a journey of self-expression through the captivating art of pottery. Transform humble lumps of earth into beautiful, functional pieces that reflect your unique style. While it may seem challenging initially, the joy and satisfaction you'll experience as you hone your skills will make it an incredibly rewarding endeavor. As you progress, discover the thrill of pushing the boundaries of your imagination. Explore innovative techniques that elevate your creations to new heights. Imagine harvesting clay right from your own homestead, connecting your art to the very ground beneath your feet. From intricate pottery to even crafting a backyard bread oven, the possibilities are boundless. Join us in the fascinating world of pottery, where the journey is as delightful as the creations themselves. Animal Husbandry- You can elevate your self-sufficiency homestead journey by mastering the art of raising dairy cows, chickens, ducks, geese, goats, pigs, beef cows and sheep. Homesteading often requires raising these animals for milk, eggs, as well as a meat supply. For better production throughout your homesteading journey, it can be important to learn and practice animal husbandry or buy and trade these with a neighbor who is good at raising and butchering animals. Animal Husbandry involves the constant day-to-day care of these animals, good nutrition, selective breeding, and raising with high hygiene standards. There are daily rituals and expertise required for wholesome animal care. Whether you enjoy being a natural breeder or prefer nurturing your neighborly connections, find the path that suits your priorities best. Depending on your disposition and time available, some people are good at this and others prefer to have others do it for them. Consider what works best for you. Homesteading livestock isn't just a lifestyle; it's a time and attention commitment. Regular scheduled milking times are required and it is easy to have an excess of milk, cream, butter, farm-fresh eggs, and succulent meat beyond your family’s needs. So, you will likely need to find ways to share your surplus with your local community. Raising Fish and Crawfish - You can elevate your self-sufficiency skills by mastering the craft of fish farming. Unlike conventional methods, our recommended approach involves nurturing fish in controlled environments, ensuring minimal impact on the environment.  Unlock the secrets to easy and convenient fish farming, transforming a modest space into a thriving aquatic haven. Not only does this practice provide your family with a constant supply of homegrown, healthy fish and fresh water shrimp, but the surplus can also become a lucrative source of income. You can experience the joy of cultivating fish and discover the perfect balance of nature and nurture. You can start your journey with a compact circular culture tank, spanning 12 to 30 feet in diameter, and witness the bountiful results of responsible aquaculture. Providing quality food  and fresh filtered water to the fish is key to producing a good tasting product. Before starting this project do your research so you can provide the optimal conditions for growing healthy tasty fish. Forestry management and coppicing Unlock the secrets of woodland management and coppicing for a greener, self-sufficient future.This practice goes beyond just timber supply; it's about nurturing the land. Research and learn the technique of selective tree felling and watch as your forest thrives, with minimal soil impact and enhanced biodiversity. Not only does coppicing support the growth of diverse tree species, but it's also a game-changer for maintaining soil fertility. When you have a woods to manage you can dive into a world where your actions contribute to nitrogen fixation and carbon capture, ensuring a sustainable legacy for generations to come. Learning woodland management skills for self-sufficiency comes with a wide range of benefits. The repeatedly felling of trees at the base and allowing them to regrow (coppicing) not only provides a sustainable timber supply but also offers the benefit of minimal soil damage during harvest. It also helps increase the diversity of trees by allowing certain species to reach maturity. Foraging- Embark on a Gastronomic Adventure! Some homesteaders enjoy the art of foraging with a sustainable twist. Nestled in the heart of nature, your foraging experiences can unlock a bounty of wild delights without harm to any creature. If you're homesteading in woodlands and crave a feast straight from the forest floor, use expert-led adventures to ensures a safe and delectable journey. You can immerse yourself in the thrill of identifying edible plants, yet best to be guided by seasoned experts first. Equip yourself with the knowledge found in comprehensive guidebooks, ensuring every bite is a step towards culinary exploration and not uncertainty or death. For those hesitant moments, trust your instincts—when in doubt, take a pass. When you are sure of your forage finds it can ransform your meals into a celebration of nature's generosity. Use foraging, when you want every dish to tell a story, as the forest becomes your sustainable pantry. Making charcoal 🔥 Discover the art and science behind this indispensable homesteading skill that goes beyond burning wood—it's about unlocking the pure power of charcoal. By carefully managing oxygen levels, this step-by-step process efficiently extracts water and volatile elements like hydrogen, tar, and methane, resulting in premium-grade charcoal. Why settle for average when you can produce charcoal that burns at soaring temperatures while emitting minimal smoke? Expertly curated techniques ensure a swift yet thorough process, turning a few days' effort into a lifetime of high-performance, eco-friendly fuel. It can also become an income earner when you have access to an abundance of wood. Embark on your journey to self-reliance and healthier living today. Master the craft of charcoal making—it's more than just a skill; it's a sustainable lifestyle choice. 🔥Charcoal making is an extremely useful homesteading skill for self-sufficiency. It involves burning wood and other organic matter in an environment with a low oxygen supply. The process can take a few days. In a world where independence is key, many are seeking to regain control over their lives and finances. These comprehensive homesteading skills will empower you to not just survive but thrive. It all begins with knowledge — the gateway to complete freedom. Join us in embracing the path to self-sufficiency!

  • START PLANNING YOUR RESILIENCE - Consider How You Want To Become More Self Sufficient

    This Custom Earth Sheltered team is here to help you achieve your eco-friendly goals with our expertise in sustainable architecture, engineering, interior design, farming and construction. Let's work together to create your dream home and property, underground and above, that not only benefits you, but also the environment. This team helps you create all the features that you want, using many building system and material choices, that will save you time and money. Farmsteads, whether an edible yard or an off grid acreage, helps us embark on a journey towards a healthier and sustainable future! Is a more sustainable and secure home and business choice right for you and your family? While our human progress has brought us incredible achievements, it's time to address the negative impacts on our well-being and the environment. The key lies in rediscovering the wisdom of our ancestors. Reconnecting with a balanced lifestyle through sustainable farming is an option many are considering. Before the era of sky-high buildings and bustling cities, our ancestors thrived in landscapes that were not just sustainable but also bio diverse and productive. It's time to adopt a lifestyle that not only nourishes us, but also nurtures the planet. As we face the depletion of fossil fuels, the path forward involves harnessing the power of sunlight and embracing a more self-sufficient homesteading lifestyle. Let's break free from the shackles of wealth inequality, obesity, homelessness, and addiction. By turning to the land for sustenance, and growing at least some of our own food, we can create vibrant local communities and live more in harmony with nature. Discover a new existence where every action contributes to beating climate change for good. Join us on this transformative journey towards self-sufficiency and homesteading — a life integrated with habitats, gardens, greenhouses, forests, organic food, resilience, and local communities. It's time to make choices that not only preserve our planet but also enrich our lives. The future is in our hands, and it starts with more sustainable living. Integrate Edible Food Into Your Habitat Our team of innovative architects, engineers, interior designers and builders are passionate about creating innovative, eco-friendly spaces that are both functional, beautiful and allows you to live how and where you want. Let us help you build a more sustainable home that not only looks great, and feels good, but protects you better, too. Our expert team is dedicated to creating energy-efficient, low-maintenance dwellings that embrace the beauty and practicality of sustainable design. With a focus on natural building materials, fire and disaster protection, renewable energy, healthy non-toxic interiors and low environmental impact, we offer a unique and rewarding way to live that combines comfort, style, security and environmental responsibility. Modern economies often thrive at the expense of our environment, leading to deforestation, biodiversity loss, and the reliance on fossil fuels. It's time to rethink our impact and take steps toward a healthier planet. Cities, the heartbeat of our economies, contribute significantly to climate change. Mass habitat restoration and sustainable farming are crucial, but they need integration. Our current systems, saturated with oil and waste, disconnect us from nature and contribute to issues like air pollution, poor food security and even mental health problems. Modern agriculture, a major player in climate change, relies heavily on chemical fertilizers derived from fossil fuels and heavy water use. The solution? Embrace self-sufficient homesteading and ecological food forests. Let's break free from the shackles of a failing economic system and recognize the value of natural ecosystems. It's not just about planting trees; it's about understanding the intricate links between our actions, the environment, and our well-being. Join us in building a sustainable, healthier future—one where economic growth aligns with environmental preservation. Together, let's sow the seeds of change by building more resilient homes and businesses! Discover Sustainable Living with Your Custom Eco Homes! Say goodbye to unsustainable housing! It's time for a revolutionary approach to housing that is both ecological and socially conscious. Our vision goes beyond the cramped high-density living of the past. We present to you high-quality, low-density eco homes with earth integrations that require less energy and grows more food. Forming new communities that are not only sustainable but also less isolating and reduces our ecological footprint. In a world grappling with soaring fossil fuel prices, our communities must become self-sufficient in energy production, food production and water conservation. This is the future of sustainable living. To truly combat climate change, we need to understand our impact on the environment. Don't let the idea of a carbon footprint overwhelm you; think of it as your ecological footprint. Picture yourself as a self-sufficient farmer—how much land would you need for food, fuel, and water? Your lifestyle choices dictate your ecological footprint, and understanding this simplifies sustainable living. Ecosystems are the key to our survival, harvesting the sun's energy for consumption will helping us reduce consumption. To halt climate change, we must prioritize ecological health and sustainability. It's time to stop burning carbon and cutting down forests. Embrace a sustainable lifestyle by working the land to provide sustenance. And when you do not have the space yet to grow all your food, consider shopping at the local farmers' market and storing your food reserves with healthy food preservation methods. Seize the Opportunity: Design & Build All the Food & Water Storage You Need Within Your Home: Join us in creating a world where communities thrive, individuals are self-sufficient, and ecological balance is at the core of our existence. Welcome to a future of eco-friendly, socially responsible living. Be the leading designer on your eco- friendly projects supported by a team of sustainability professionals. This Eco Design/Build team offers eco-friendly architecture, permitting, engineering, and sustainable construction management services across all 50 states. Including grey water systems, greenhouse setups, irrigation & gardening systems, etc. They are committed to making a positive impact on the environment, making it possible to live in harmony with nature while enjoying the comfort & security of a beautiful home. This team is committed to shaping a sustainable future, one home and edible garden at a time. Let's build not just houses, but legacies that stand as beacons of responsible living. Especially in these challenging times when protection and self sufficiency are important. Contact them today to schedule a free consultation. Start making a positive difference in the world. Join the movement towards sustainable and disaster-resistant living with Custom Earth Sheltered and Fire Resistant Construction! This team is here to help you create your dream home and illustrate your vision, whether it's underground, above ground, modern, rustic, or traditional. A man cave to a family compound build into a hillside or a wine tasting room, or a cheese production facility, etc. Don't wait months to start your project - contact us today. Contact us for a free consult at: A Changed Sense of Social Mobility Let’s embark on a journey to true well-being and fulfillment by redefining our concept of success. In a world often dominated by the pursuit of material wealth, we invite you to discover a richer and more meaningful path to happiness and security. At the heart of our philosophy is the shift from a money-centric mindset to the embrace of ethical living. Imagine a lifestyle where self-sufficiency and community thrive, where the focus is on fresh food, clean water, invigorating exercise, and immersion in nature. This is not just a dream; it's the essence of self-sufficient homesteading. Join us in a movement that transcends the superficial trappings of wealth. Beyond the facade of high-rise living, find a spacious connection to the land, promoting mental well-being and resilience. In a world where isolation and mental health challenges abound, self-sufficient homesteading offers a transformative solution. Take a stand against the norm; escape the concrete streets and embrace a lifestyle that sings across the landscape. With approximately a square acre of land or less needed for every human to produce their food, why confine ourselves to tiny urban spaces all the time? Break free, connect with nature, and activate a healthier, more fulfilling way of life. When you must live in the city, why not have an edible garden on your roof and in your yard? Surround yourself with an abundance of food and water to feel more secure. This is not just a change in residence; it's a revolution for your mind, body, and soul. Make the shift today and be part of the movement that's not just beating climate change but redefining what it means to truly live. Discover a life of true abundance—one where your assets extend beyond mere wealth. Embrace the essence of a secure garden home, a loving family, and a healthy environment through the transformative concept of self-sufficient homesteading. In a world clamoring for change, self-sufficient living emerges as a beacon of hope, offering not just a solution to the wealth gap but a decisive stand against climate change. The path to a sustainable future lies in the courage to break free from conventional norms. Contrary to misconceptions, self-sufficiency doesn't regress us to the past; it propels us toward a more balanced future where our economy can thrive in harmony with nature and each other. Imagine affordable housing seamlessly integrated with ecological principles—a positive stride towards a collective ecological balance. It's a paradigm shift, urging us to shift our focus from personal net worth to the equilibrium of our ecological footprint. I firmly believe that each of us can revel in spacious, eco-friendly dwellings with self-sustaining lands. Now is the time to invest in this vision, a chance to reshape our destinies while avoiding the potential fallout of an unprepared future. The synergy of ingenuity, investment, and technology is paving the way for self-sufficient homesteading to become a reality. Beyond arresting climate change, this lifestyle promises enhanced well-being, happiness, security and a legacy of a healthier world for generations to come. Seize the opportunity to redefine your life—invest in a future where our prosperity harmonizes with the planet. A harmonious place where generations of your family can survive and thrive! Build Your Sustainable Home and Business with this Team: Contact us for a free consult:

  • How Nature Enhances Your Health

    The Need for Nature Inside and Outside Your Home and Business Nature has a soothing effect on us. We humans are genetically conditioned to find nature soothing. 95% of the people interviewed while conducting a study on the impact of nature on humans claimed that spending more time in nature shifted their depression, stress, anxiety into a state of balance, peacefulness, and calm. This even happens when just looking at scenes of nature. Nature puts people in a positive mood and is associated with overall wellbeing and liveliness. Walks in Nature eases stress. Natural interior design brings nature into our homes and work places. It is a good solution for heightening people’s wellbeing and health. Having plants in our spaces can increase concentration levels and help people focus better. Methods for bringing nature into our dwellings: Use Natural Elements & Materials Using natural elements in the home and workplace like wooden flooring, natural stone, natural textiles, wicker elements and art featuring nature will blend natural elements into your space to create a soothing and healing environment. House Plants - One of the easiest ways to add more natural elements into your homes is houseplants. They add freshness to the space and uplifts the room. Herb gardens can spread aroma and create a pleasant environment while flavoring your food. Rooms with plants have less dust and molds because they trap allergens. Having a plant in the room purifies the environment because plants absorb carbon dioxide and give out oxygen. Keeping them around you is always of benefit, especially in the bedroom, as it makes a person sleep better. Certain plants like gerbera daisies give out oxygen even at night. Plants like lavender relieve stress and anxiety because of their aroma. Water- According to Vastu Shastra, human beings are connected to all five natural elements fire, water, earth, air, and space. Out of all the elements, water is the most powerful. Water has a cooling effect on humans. Water keeps the energy flowing. The metaphorical meaning of water is ‘flow of life.’ Having a water feature makes you feel peaceful. A water fountain or lily pond in our homes or even something as small as a bowl of water with a lotus flower in it will give a feel of ‘nature inspired interior design’ to anyone walking into your space. Stone and Wood - Treating a wall with exposed stonework or wood immediately adds character to a room. It is easy to clean and acts as a focal point in the room. Natural stones can be incorporated into the house with the use of pathways in gardens as a form of hardscape. Rocks and pebbles of different colors, textures, and sizes can be mixed and placed in small bowls, pots and vases. These can add a dynamic vibe to a room. Wood is a common natural material used from minimalistic to rustic interiors. Wood finish has a variety of colors that can change the feel of your design. It is durable and long-lasting and can be used for a variety of elements, including walls, beams, columns, and furniture. Paneling, cladding, molding, partitions, flooring are some examples of the how to use wood in your home. Light - The sun brings positivity into your rooms. Sunlight is also important to the physical, mental, and emotional health of all of us. It makes the room appear livelier. Any corners or rooms of the house where sunlight isn’t naturally available should be well lit by artificial lighting and reflected in mirrors. Flowers - The presence of flowers kept in vases, pots or bouquets can be kept on side tables, desks, dining tables, and coffee tables. One can also have a garden of flowering plants. Green walls of ivy and other plants can be installed in the garden or at the entrance. What kind of natural elements in your house or business do you want? Adding Natural Elements in Bathrooms is especially soothing: Imagine sitting in a steaming bathtub with hot water and aromas of essential oils. Water, relaxes our body physically and mentally. Adding natural elements to your bathrooms will increase tranquility and will aid in good health and helps to destress us. Humans are inherently programmed to respond positively to nature so think about how your bathroom can feel more natural. Add flowers, plants, candles, scents, natural materials and other elements of nature in your bathroom. This team knows how to design spaces with nature. Start now! SAVE by planning now and building your forever home & business! CONTACT US. Nature Themes - Creating a theme is a good way to add more nature to your environments. Having a forest, mountain, lake or ocean theme with plants, wood, water, shells, stones, etc. in your interior and exterior design plans provides the right balance for soothing through nature. Hanging art with a landscape or nature wallpaper or graphics would also be a good option to remind people of outdoor spaces through visuals. However, you decide to design your space and whichever theme you decide to use, make sure that the space is ‘uniquely yours” and try to create a harmonious balance. Best to keep a tranquil blend of elements. Your house’s architecture and design should reflect your personality. Adding nature will increase your comfort level and can benefit your health. When building your sustainable and regenerative dream project, this design/build team couches you on the best site locations, best natural material sources, plans and reducing building costs as well. Their focus is designing and drawing your custom plans and preparing your building permit applications so you can build what you want where you want. Including, when needed, required engineer seals, energy reviews and whatever else your county requires to build your new custom project integrated with nature. Contact our Experienced Design + Permit + Build Team to start your more SUSTAINABLE and FIRE/DISASTER RESISTANT projects. It can take up to a year to plan and permit new construction projects so START NOW! Contact us for a free consult at Simple to Luxury Homes and homesteads and compounds - we are here for You. We listen to what you want and deliver what you need to build your project.

  • DEFINITIONS: Regenerative, Biomimetic, Sustainable, Permaculture, etc. Design:

    Biomimetic (sometimes called Biomimicry); an emerging design discipline that looks to Nature for sustainable design Solutions. Cradle-to cradle: framework for designing manufacturing process "powered by renewable energy, in which flow in safe, regenerative, closed loop cycles", an which "identifies three key design principles in the intelligence of natural systems, which can inform human design: Waste equals Food: Use CurrentSolar income; Celebrate Diversity Ecoliteracy: the ability to understand the natural systems that make life on earth possible, including understanding the principles of organization of ecological communities (i.e. ecosystems) and using those principles for creating sustainable human communities. Ecological sustainability: a biocentric school of sustainability thinking that, based on ecology and living systems principles, focuses on the capacity of ecosystems to maintain their essential functions and processes, and retain their biodiversity in full measure over the long-term " ; contrasts with technological sustainability based on technical and engineering approaches to sustainability. Ecology: the interdisciplinary scientific study of the living conditions of organisms in interaction with each other and with the surroundings, organic as well as inorganic. Eco System Concepts: Ecosystem concept “a coherent framework for redesigning our landscapes, buildings, cities, and systems of energy, water, food, manufacturing and waste” through “the effective adaptation to and integration with nature’s processes.” It has been used more to shape an approach than as a scientific theory. Living systems thinking: a thinking technology, using systemic frameworks and developmental processes, for consciously improving the capacity to apply systems thinking to the evolution of human or social living systems. Permaculture: a contraction of permanent agriculture or permanent culture, permaculture was developed as a system for designing ecological human habitats and food production systems based on the relationships and processes found in natural ecological communities, and the relationships and adaptations of indigenous peoples to their ecosystems. Regenerative Design: a system of technologies and strategies, based on an understanding of the inner working of ecosystems that generates designs to regenerate rather than deplete underlying life support systems and resources within socio-ecological wholes. Regenerative Development: a system of technologies and strategies for generating the patterned whole system understanding of a place, and developing the strategic systemic thinking capacities, and the stakeholder engagement/commitment required to ensure regenerative design processes to achieve maximum systemic leverage and support, that is self-organizing and self- evolving. Restorative Design: sometimes called restorative environmental design; a design system that combines returning “polluted, degraded or damaged sites back to a state of acceptable health through human intervention” ] with biophiliac designs that reconnect people to nature. Locational Patterns: The patterns that depict the distinctive character and potential of a place and provide a dynamic mapping for designing human structures and systems that align with the living systems of a place. Place: the unique, multi-layered network of ecosystems within a geographic region that results from the complex interactions through time of the natural ecology (climate, mineral and other deposits, soil, vegetation, water and wildlife, etc.) and culture (distinctive customs, expressions of values, economic activities, forms of association, ideas for education, traditions, etc.). Pattern literacy: being able to read, understand and generate (“write”) appropriate patterns. Regenerative: a.To give new life or energy to; revitalize; to bring or come into renewed existence; impart new and more vigorous life. b.; To form, construct, or create anew, especially in an improved state; to restore to a better, higher or more worthy state; refreshed or renewed; c.To reform spiritually or morally; to improve moral condition; to invest with a new and higher spiritual nature; d. To improve a place or system, especially by making it more active or successful

  • Plan Your Next Sustainable Project

    Find free, open sources and hard to find and reasonably priced custom sustainable planning and permitting services for starting your better living and working options... Low-impact projects are what we consider more SUSTAINABLE LIVING because it is more cost effective, lasts longer, uses less energy, grows food and is built from resources that are often readily available. We are apart of a sustainability think tank that demonstrates, plans and builds different sustainable living examples and prototypes for self-sufficient projects around the world. Each of these village and house models represent different eco-build methodologies designed as affordable and eco-friendly living with the additional option to be combined with sustainable food and energy systems. Contact us for more information on these sustainable projects to learn more on how you can build your projects with SUSTAINABILITY, EMERGENCY PREPARATION, PERMACULTURE, BIODIVERSITY, ETC. There are many reasons we offer planning, permitting and building, including free services and resources to get you started wherever you are now. These models and plans are designed with 5 Goals in mind... Goal #1 - Our open source and custom plans services demonstrates cost effective eco-building choices. Goal #2 - Showcasing the broad diversity, benefits, and differences of all the various eco-project options Whether you are interested in building a Yurt, Straw Bale, Underground or Above House, or a whole Eco-Village or Sustainable Farm Compound, this team has years of experience assisting clients in bringing their dreams into reality. From Planning and Permitting and Building to Details like off-grid construction, septic systems, water filtering and storage systems, grey water, power storage, structural engineering and all details and specifications required for building your more eco-projects. "The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.” – Robert Swan" Goal #3 - Demonstrate eco-housing as artistic, innovative, and beautiful ways of living These are plans presently in development for Eco-Villages with Share Farms, Residences, Permaculture School, Design Lab, Art Studios, Galleries, Cafes... Goal #4 - Maximized functionality while contributing something unique to the fulfilled living environment. Who does not want to save earth's resources while living healthier and in more comfortable and dynamic environments? Goal #5 - Get started NOW. Make a plan and DO IT! Even if the beginning is small. We are here to support your dream project and help you plan, permit & build it. Build Your More Beautiful, Healthy and Sustainable Life... Traditional & Rustic to Modern Styles... Build your STYLE! Be the principle designer on your project. We are here to help. Contact us for free preliminary consults and $320 credit towards planning and estimating your project ideas. Our vision is to usher in a new age of cooperation, collaboration, and sustainability. We do this by demonstrating what’s possible, open sourcing and developing and sharing new plans as they develop. As well as planning, permitting and building your custom sustainable projects whether new construction or renovating and underground or above. Making whatever you are building more sustainable and energy efficient. Making it affordable enough, and attractive enough so that positive and sustainable projects will grow around the world. START NOW!

  • 21 Ideas For Building a Sustainable Home:

    What we build matters, and so does how we build it. Building with sustainability in mind should be standard for any new home. Here are 21 tips for a sustainable house design. Building sustainable homes not only saves you money in the long run, but also reduces your impact on the environment. Now, let’s go over some ideas on how to build a sustainable house! 21 Ideas For Building a Sustainable Home: Location Size Orientation Layout Local Materials Recycled Materials Insulation Air Sealing Windows & Doors Selection Sustainable Materials Energy Star Appliances LED Lighting Water Conserving Fixtures Efficient HVAC Recycle Your Energy Rain Water Collection Renewable Energy Solar Hot Water Intelligent Planting Build To Last Build Something You Love BUILD MORE SUSTAINABLY with better connections to NATURE Instead of living the life we want, most of us live the life we are given. BUT, don't you want more? Discover how you can build better protection and satisfaction in the buildings you live and work in while reducing your carbon footprint and being more connected to Nature. Have you ever honestly asked yourself, "What kind of space do I really want?" What do you want your home & business building to look and feel like? Where and how do you want to live? What kind of priorities do you want your buildings to express? Who do you want to spend time with in your home and business? What features will attract family & friends to spend time with you? Can your building projects make our world a better place? Figuring this out. It’s critical. This experienced team is here to assist you in defining your priorities and preferences and then supports you in getting your projects actually built on your budget and schedule. They develop your plan layout and then provide estimates on your construction costs. This team offers both earth integrated and more conventional planning and building systems and services that remain super insulated and fire resistant — including your DIY projects with planning and construction consulting support. Schedule a free phone consult whenever you wish via email and go to our website to learn more. BUILD IN YOUR STYLE When your ideas include building projects that support your more sustainable life choices contact our Design + Permit + Build Team whatever your preferred style. Start your ECO-FRIENDLY, FIRE RESISTANT SUSTAINABLE projects NOW! This team has years of experience supporting clients who seek energy efficient buildings and then builds their fire resistant sustainable projects on their land - basic to luxury. It can take up to a year to plan and permit new construction projects so best to START NOW! Bonus Sustainability Tip: Passive House - You should also consider looking into Passive House Design for sustainability and energy efficiency. The diagram below illustrates some basic concepts of Passive House. It can also be applications to earth sheltered designs. This team has years of experience with passive solar, homestead and sustainable building. Hire this Design+Permit+Build team to get your best sustainable results. It can take up to a year to plan, permit and start building your sustainable project. START NOW > Contact for free SUSTAINABLE BUILDING consult -

  • Underground Building Inventor Now Living in Belize

    Gayle Scafe, the inventor of the concrete forming system which we often still use on current construction projects, is retired now and lives on his island in Belize in a unique house and private island compound he built of conch shells with his wife, Dona. After many years in earth sheltered and masonry construction in the United States, our parents moved to Belize to save two battered islands by planting for more biodiversity and building with local found and recycled materials. They also assist Maya children in their community by doing fund raising events to help pay their school tuitions. Dona paints murals inspired by the island views. Now as, their children, grandchildren and extended family, we carry on the traditions of building as many generations before us. We have long been a family of makers, planners, artists, architects and designers building projects in USA & abroad. We continue designing and building the most beautiful and sustainable projects that we can imagine for our clients. Here is our Father & Mother's crazy Conch Shell House on their private island in Belize: . This three story domed conch shell home on Owen’s Caye has expansive views of the Caribbean Sea near the coral Barrier Reef in Belize. Scuba diving, snorkeling & fishing are steps from this paradise island getaway. Our retired parents sculpted this private island with their conch shell house & diving outpost over the past 15 years, while living there & improving these islands' biosphere. Originally, the two islands were covered in trash & few trees. No buildings. They’ve now created an island retreat with internet, handmade furniture & wall paintings. Work continues as this Paradise Island Project grows and evolves. An amazing family retreat with rooms offering expansive views... A paradise on a remote edge of the civilized world.


    People Homestead for Many Reasons The Best Place to Start a Homestead While there are different types of homesteads, there are also different reasons for homesteading. The challenge of survivalism may draw you to this lifestyle, or the desire to seek an alternative to our current times. This unconventional and inconvenient way of living is gaining traction because people recognize the ease of life today may leave us disconnected from what matters most. Underground construction compliments farms and kitchen gardens compliment earth-sheltered homestead housing and farming projects. Many homestead farmers strive to live off their land as much as possible with minimal costs. A “farmstead” is another word used to describe farm production and may include selling goods to others in the community. Homesteading is not defined by where, but how. The lifestyle choices that are made are far more important than where you decide to homestead. In fact, the best place to start may be right where you are!Even if you are in a temporary living situation, or renting a piece of property, there are many things you can do to practice and develop homesteading skills. If you're looking to move and choosing a new location, it’s important to evaluate the strengths, limitations, and possibilities of your potential property. Consider size, restrictions, and layout. Be sure to take sun, wind, seasonal climate, water access, and soil health into account if you plan to grow food, or establish renewable energy systems. Spend time observing the land patterns, and visualizing how you could build a coexisting habitat. The Best Place to Start a Homestead What is your reason for considering homesteading? Adopting more sustainable living methods can be done anywhere. Urban homesteading may take place on a quarter acre or even in a small apartment. Let your creativity and green thumb guide the possibilities. Here are some homesteading practices even city dwellers can take on: Container gardens Community gardens Balcony greenhouse Food preservation Windowsill herb cultivation Small flock of chickens Compost system DIY cleaners and self-care potions Scratch cooking from farmers market Homemade kombucha and beverages Sewing, knitting, weaving, quilting, etc. Small project carpentry and building Utilizing alternative energy. Starting a homestead Starting a homestead begins with a positive attitude — a desire for lifelong learning, and the fulfillment felt from being hands on. Before your list of things to do grows too long, consider what you can do to simplify your existing life. With that in mind, here are a few tips to get you going and thinking about the best path for your own homesteading adventure. The steps you take to start homesteading will depend largely on your goals and priorities. Make a list of possibilities and then prioritize those possibilities with your personal reasons for homesteading in mind. Be realistic about the capacity and limitations of: The property Your budget Your skills Your time The climate The resources you have access to Read, study, and learn from those who are homesteading under similar conditions, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Homesteading is a gradual process, requiring life-long learning, practice and patience. It’s a challenge that (if committed to) should be embraced with an open mind. Read, study, and learn from those who are homesteading under similar conditions, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. There’s nothing like hands-on learning and being willing to make plenty of mistakes to help you acquire the knowledge and skills to thrive. Contact our team when you're ready for homesteading planning support. First consultation is free. Learn More


    25 ECO-FRIENDLY HOME IDEAS FOR LIVING IN YOUR GREENER SAFER HOUSE One big lesson is that living in an eco-friendly home needs to be a priority. The Earth is a precious resource that keeps us all alive and nourished, but it is also something we take for granted. Many people believe that they cannot make a difference, and that simply is not the case. With small changes, big impacts are made. The best part is that you will reap rewards for doing so, such as saving money, living a better quality of life, and learning valuable skills that we are important. The fun part about making these changes is that you’ll see shifts in other areas of your life, too! So you aren’t just benefiting the Earth, but also other areas of you and your family’s lives. 25 Eco-Friendly Home Improvement Ideas Start with the changes you can make, get comfortable with them, then ask yourself what else you can change. 1 // Swap single use items for better options Paper towels for cloth napkins Cotton pads/balls for cotton rounds Plastic straws for stainless/metal straws Water bottles for reusable bottles Reusable Glass & Aluminum jars with lids instead of plastic containers Use Baskets & Paper & Wood Boxes instead of plastic storage Each of these swaps save you money & reduce the waste you send to the landfill 2 // More Your Spaces Energy Efficient Swap out thin curtains for thicker, quilted or even room darkening curtains when warmth & darkness Orr cooling in hot weather is desired Replace old glass windows with energy-efficient windows in cold & Hot climates. If there is no budget to replace things seal gaps and insulate windows during very cold and hot weather. Replace air filters regularly Be purposeful with laundry. Wash loads once in cold water & add vinegar to improve ph in water Hang clothes to dry, instead of using your dryer. By hanging your clothes out to dry, you’re decreasing the use of your dryer, which pulls a lot of energy. Line drying your clothes also increase their lifespan, so you are really multiplying the savings with this eco-friendly idea. If you can’t dry your clothes outside, hang them in a well ventilated, sunny area inside to dry. 3 // Insulate your home If your home isn’t insulated properly, you could be losing a lot of money and wasting a lot of energy. With proper insulation, the energy-efficiency of your home increases significantly. You save energy and money. This does come with an upfront investment, but it pays for itself rather quickly and costs much less than building new. 4 // Renew and mend before replacing Mend clothes with holes or buttons missing Repair broken pieces of furniture Freshen something old and tired with a new coat of paint Find a new use for something that no longer works in its current state What if a simple fix is all it needs? What if a new coat of paint will give it a new purpose and life? For things that you cannot mend or repair, such as holy shirts that you do not want your husband going out in public wearing, cut them up into rags to use for cleaning or to rub stain on a piece of furniture. 5 // Swap conventional products for environmentally friendly products Swap harmful cleaning products with non-toxic cleaners Use vinegar and water for cleaning Swap your laundry detergent for a plant-based one Use wool dryer balls in lieu of dryer sheets Use baking soda for the hard to clean jobs in lieu of harmful chemical products Find furniture that uses natural fibers to limit your family’s contact with harmful VOCs (volatile organic compounds) Do some research, because there are a TON of products that seem all-natural that really are not. 6 // Unplug unused appliances and keep most on serge switches that can be turned off when appliances are not in use. When you don’t need your appliances, they still need electricity. Besides maybe refrigerators and freezers, Turn them off or unplug them. To ensure you are only pulling energy you need, use serge strips that can turn off when you don’t need the things plugged into it. Unplug anything you’re not using. Whether you have a blow dryer, hair straightener, curling iron, etc., be sure they are unplugged when not in use. Not only can heating tools be dangerous to keep plugged in, they also pull a lot of energy. Other things like a room heater, diffuser, etc. that you may keep plugged in should be unplugged when not in use as well. They pull energy regardless if they are turned on or not. Turn off lights when not in the bathroom and other rooms. This may seem like a no brainer, but I turning off the lights when you aren’t in there isn’t a habit develop this habit. Turning off lights when you leave rooms saves electricity in a major way, as well as extends the life of your lightbulbs, which is also another way to save money. Get tankless hot water or heat pump heaters - Increase your home’s sustainability by installing a tankless hot water heater that provides unlimited hot water.I t only heats up water instantly when needed and doesn’t constantly keep water hot when you don’t need it. Plus, it is smaller, so it takes up far less space! A tankless hot water heater can reduce your water heating costs by up to 50%. 7 // Purchase things that are not packaged in plastic, when possible When it comes to things like produce, opt for plastic-free packaging. Bring your reusable bags. 7 // Recycle and compost. Reducing the trash you send to the landfill is a great way to live more eco-friendly. There are so many things you can recycle and compost, like paper, cardboard, certain plastics, food scraps, etc.Be sure to check with your local recycling centers to see which plastics they collect and other materials you can recycle. For things like paper, cardboard, and food scraps, you can compost them yourself or provide them for a local farmer. COMPOST & make soil. We need it because our rich soils are disappearing. Organic materials do not decompose in a landfill, so reduce how much of it you’re sending to the landfill. 8// Cooking & Preserving & Storing Food- Use a Pressure Cooker for faster cooking and canning- The shorter amount of time you spend cooking means less electricity being used, which saves you money and is better for the environment. This also means that you don’t heat your house up as much, so the air conditioner is running less, too! Use a food dehydrator & smoker to dry and preserve your food - when plentiful food is available in season preserve your favors by drying, canning, smoking and pickling. Have a plentiful pantry organized by categories in a dark room featuring all your favorite foods and drinks and emergency supplies. Especially you homemade preserves & dry goods. It is wise to work up to having at least 3 months of food in reserve in case emergencies might arise. Example List of Emergency Supplies: Store emergency water- Packages of bottled water, gallon jugs of water, or even 55-gallon drums of water (45 gallons of drinking water per adult for 3 months is recommended): See our Water Storage Calculator. Check out our article How to Store Large Amounts of Water: Long Term Water Storage Helpful ideas to add to your 3 month food supply list: Starting with a 2 week food supply and working up to a full 3 month supply of foods and meals that you regularly eat brings a wonderful, relieving peace of mind. A kind of life insurance policy that will keep your family alive and happy. Flour yeast, and baking powder Potatoes Rice Pinto, Black, Garbonzo &r other types of Beans Sugars (Sugar, Brown Sugar, Honey, Powdered Drink Mixes, beer, achohol, etc Canned Fruit and Vegetables (These make great sides to regularly eaten meals) Salt, Soya, Hot Sauces and favorite seasonings and spices Peanut, sesame Butter, etc Soup or broth Pastas & Raman noodles Butters & Oils, especially Olive Pickles & Olives Nuts Jams Vinegars Crackers Tomato sauce & diced canned tomatoes Floor, yeast, and baking powder Dehydrated carrots, corn, beans, peas and other favorite fruits & vegetables Oatmeal Canned & smoked Meats (Tuna, Sardines, Chicken, Beef, etc.) Canned Vegetables (Green beans, peas, corn, tomatoes, etc.) Canned Fruit (Peaches, Apples, Pineapple, Pears, etc.) Powdered & boxed milk Snacks & other foods used (Granola bars, brownie mix, Whatever your family likes!) Include non-food items in your 3 month food storage plan Get a 3 month supply of NECESSITIES such as Water Filters, Laundry & Dish soap medications and pain killers, Basic First Aid Kit, toilet paper, toiletries, cleaning/sanitation supplies, a space heater and firewood an alternative power source, Flashlight, Extra Batteries Candles Duct Tape, Extra Blankets, Extra Warm Clothing, Matches/Lighter/Lighter Fluid, Portable Gas Stove and extra propane canisters, Cooking Pots, etc. Alternative / Emergency Power Sources Solar Panels Propane Generators, etc 9 // Take shorter showers and less often. According to a study done by Boston University, you can save 10 gallons of water just by shorting your shower time by 2 minutes! [source] That means you save water, electricity, and money! This is an easy change that you can do to have a more eco-friendly home. Other studies show its is not necessary and can be unhealthy to bathe every day or more. 10 // Shop secondhand When you choose secondhand shopping over buying new, you are saving resources to make the items. Furniture Vehicles Tools Textiles & Clothing You save all of these resources when you choose a secondhand item. This includes saving on the following resources: water Electricity Transportation [fuel] textiles You save all of these resources when you choose a secondhand item, because the resources have already been used. 11 // Shop locally While this isn’t directly related to inside your home, it is better for a sustainable lifestyle. Supporting local businesses keeps money in the local community. Shopping locally also reduces the amount of resources needed to ship products to the store for you to purchase. Who would you rather support? local small business owner corporations Prefer a local small business owner. That isn’t to say don’t buy bananas from South America, but I do your best to source locally first. 12 // Choose recycled products over new Going back to the point of purchasing secondhand products, you should also choose recycled products over new. Yes, recycled products do use resources to be recreated. However, it is far less than sourcing for new products. 13// Use natural beauty products Beauty products are some of the most toxic things you can have in your home. Switching to natural beauty products needs to be higher up on your list, so that you aren’t poisoning your body or loosing your hair. Example: Your skin absorbs everything you put on it, so make sure you only use natural products that are actually healthy for your skin. 14 // Use natural cleaning products & personal care products One of the best eco-friendly home swaps you can do is replace conventional cleaners with natural cleaning products. Conventional products are toxic for you to breathe and cleaning with them can do more harm to your health than good. Educate yourself on contents to avoid. Use vinegar and soda as much as possible. Use loofas and cotton wash cloths and natural bristle brushes whenever possible. EXAMPLE PRODUCT SOURCE: 15 // Decorate with houseplants & open doors & windows during good weather -Depending on which houseplants you choose, you can purify the quality of air within your home. This means you are living healthier and have beautiful plants to care for and admire. 16 // Have an edible landscape You can plant anything with available space, which means that the only resources needed to grow food is if you need to water the plant. Did you know that certain flowers are edible? Choose edible flowers like lavender, hibiscus, nasturtiums, pansies, or roses. How fun would it be to create an edible landscape that you can forage as you work in it like a vegetable garden? Enjoy a pretty vine plant? Cucumbers, peas, and pole beans are all great options. Where you can, grow food & change your lawn to an edible garden. 17 // Install solar panels, wind & other alternative independent energies Want to go off the grid? Create your own energy with solar panels! This is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint, because you pull energy from the sun versus the grid. Read this post by Energy Sage about the ten benefits of solar energy. 18 // Use natural air fresheners, soaps, shampoos & other skin care products In an eco-friendly home, it is very important to use natural air fresheners. Conventional candles, and stove top simmer recipes are great, but aren’t the best for creating a greener house. Opt for essential oils to diffuse, coconut wax candles with essential oils, and DIY mason jar lamps [to replace stove top simmer recipes]. Aerosol sprays and conventional candles aren’t healthy. Artificial fragrances often contain harmful chemicals and companies are not required to state ingredients within the fragrance due to trademark secrets. By opting for an oil lamp, you still receive the benefits of a simmer recipe without using those resources. EXAMPLES: 19 // Opt for organic fabric bedding and all natural fibers in your home When you choose organic fabric for your bedding and decor, you are giving your bedding and decor another use once it is no longer useful by reusing it in some capacity, then you can recycle or compost it. PLUS, it is much nicer to sleep and live in. Synthetic bedding can only be reused then tossed in the trash and taken to the landfill and often peel and age quickly. 20 // Choose a non-toxic mattress Conventional mattresses are very toxic. They can contain petroleum-based foam and synthetic latex, chemical flame retardants, and vinyl. Instead, you should opt for a non-toxic mattress. Example: Brentwood Home mattress, specifically the Oceano Luxury Hybrid Mattress. The materials used in it include Checkout my favorite mattress by Brentwood Home now!: CertiPUR-US® certified cooling, gel-infused memory foam milk fibers LOTS organic certified cotton and wool sustainably-sourced plant-based Tencel fibers from eucalyptus trees. It is made without chemical or synthetic fiber flame retardants. 21 // Install energy-efficient windows & doors Similar to insulating your home, especially in extreme climates, windows keep your home running efficiently. If you have old, single pane windows, consider replacing them with double pane, energy-efficient windows to prevent inside air getting out and vice versa. 22 // Use VOC-free paint VOC [Volatile Organic Compound] paint is toxic to breathe. It can cause several side effects including headaches and nausea. Opt for VOC-free paint. It is friendlier for the environment and your health.To dive deeper into why you should steer clear of VOC paint, read this article by the EPA. 23 // Buy recycled toilet paper or install a bidet When shopping for recycled toilet paper is to also look for plastic-free wrapped toilet paper. Here is an option from Amazon that is popular and does ship plastic free. 24 // Get a Kindle and purchase digital books and read news online Physical books use a lot of resources to create and store. By opting for ebooks, you can have a library full of books without using the resources physical books need to be created. Many are a fan of physical books, but we can also enjoy the minimalistic options a Kindle provides. If you read a lot of books, you can take advantage of Kindle Unlimited, which actually saves you money compared to purchasing each book in a physical format. Also there are many audio books when having time to read yourself is difficult. 25 // Add ART and personal things that bring meaning to your unique home It’s FUN & REWARDING Choosing a sustainable lifestyle is a commitment, but it doesn’t have to be a burden when you approach it one change at a time. To successfully create an eco-friendly home, you have to be diligent and intentional. The good news is that you get to start with simple swaps and can choose how to navigate a greener house from there. In the end you have a much more delightful and healthy space. It isn’t about doing all the things at once to create an eco-friendly home, but rather doing what you can and continuing to implement changes when you’re ready. Created your space to live more simply and sustainably and consciously. It’s more SATISFYING & MEANINGFUL

  • Mid-Century Modern & Eco-Friendly Increase in Popularity

    According to resent studies, trending aesthetics in Mid- Century modern has increased by 576% on Google searches since last year. Eco-Friendly has increased. Most home owners are increasingly becoming familiar with the benefits of building in a more sustainable manner. The rising costs of energy, construction materials, and everyday maintenance on homes, has motivated us to change the way we build our homes. Earth-Sheltered and natural materials are healthier when integrated into the design of you projects. This design, permit, build team specializes in showing you how to build your more Eco-Friendly project in your preferred style. Benefits of building green: Lower operating costs - Homeowners can receive less expensive utility bills because of energy and water efficiency measures. Up to 70% or more. Increased comfort - Green homes have relatively even temperatures throughout the home, with less outdoor sound penetrations. Improved indoor environmental quality- When designing a green home, designers create construction details to control moisture, select materials that contain fewer chemicals, and design air exchange/filtration systems that can contribute to a healthier indoor environment. Enhanced durability and less maintenance— Green homes incorporate materials and methods that strive to increase the life of the whole house. Longer lasting materials not only require fewer resources for replacement but also reduce maintenance and repair costs. Green homes have landscaping that require less watering, building elements that require less maintenance, and more durable building components that reduce the time needed for upkeep. Increases your property's re-sale value. This Teams Green Building Consultant Services: Sustainable design assessment & recommendations Solar and passive orientation analysis: designing with the sun Green materials, fixtures, and equipment selection Selection of natural and non-toxic materials Coordinate renewable energy systems Designing and detailing for high performance Sustainable Design Assessment & Recommendations: Below are some initial observations and suggestions to enhance the performance of the home. Once I understand the client’s level of commitment to “greening” the home, I can provide more detailed solutions. Initial comments If the home is to be used year round, consider orienting it on an East-West axis to maximize passive solar strategies. The arroyo will create moisture below the floor and will be subject to frost. The floor should be insulated and vapor resistant. The overhang on the west side should be designed to allow winter sun to penetrate into the house while blocking summer sun. Consider operable transom windows at the highest point of the exterior walls to vent hot air during the summer. Large expanse of windows on East side will need to resist cold and wet winter winds. Green Strategies Building layout can be designed to maximize efficiency and minimize material cuts. Design using the material dimensions. Minimize the impact on the arroyo during construction. Consider utilizing prefabricated wall panels which can be transported to the site to reduce construction time on site. Roof can be designed to harvest water for use in toilets and irrigation. Develop strategies to minimize impact upon site during construction. Create landscape design using low maintenance native plants. Constructing a new building requires a lot of materials and resources. How your project is built sustainably and the choices you make in how your project uses and saves energy, water, waste and other resources over time has a large impact on your carbon footprint. This Habitat Design Lab, is the team that assists in planning and permitting and building your projects with years of experience building more sustainable architecture, interiors and landscapes. We make you aware of your sustainable choices and you decide what works best on your project. Contact us when adding sustainable features to your environment and lifestyle is a priority.

  • Magical Dwellings Inspired by Middle-Earth

    With all the magic of Middle-Earth, these innovative hobbit houses appear to be plucked from the pages of The Lord of the Rings. Whether buried beneath the earth, or above, these fascinating homes are far from fictional. Grab your hooded cloak and let's explore the real-life hobbit holes located around the world... #1 - Halfling Hideaway, British Columbia, Canada Surrounded by rolling hills and mountain views, this whimsical home sits in the town of Bridesville in British Columbia. Known as Halfling Hideaway, the home is surrounded by 400 acres of pristine countryside in the Okanagan Highlands, which is ideal for hiking and skiing in the winter months. #2 Many visit The Hobbit House movie set in Matamata, New Zealand: You can opt to take a trip to the place where it all began. Located near Matamata, on New Zealand's North Island, this beautiful landscape is the most famous of all the hobbit holes. This movie set was built for The Lord of the Rings trilogy and covers 14 acres with 44 hobbit homes. The set also has a dedicated gardening team who have planted almost 3,000 native seedlings on the surrounding farmland to maintain biodiversity in and around the area. #4 Earth House Estate - Peter Vetsch / Vetsch Architektur - Dietkon, Switzerland Vetsch is known for his sustainable homes that are sympathetic to nature. The aim of his earth homes is to allow residents to live within the ground, rather than simply on it. The hobbit-worthy housing estate sits in the city of Dietikon and has nine cosy earth-covered homes grouped around an artificial lake. These magical homes could be straight out of the movies with their grass-covered roof, giant arched and round doors. Inside, an abundance of wood, cosy interiors and fireplaces, and ornate decorative elements inspired by Tolkien's world creates an enchanting, yet light modern atmosphere. What Magical Middle-Earth features do you want in your next project? This team has been building Earth-Integrated features into clients' projects for 20 years. We're ready to share all our resources and experience with you to create your ideas more connected to Nature. Contact us when you are ready to begin at I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. Henry David Thoreau The true secret to happiness and meaning lies in taking a genuine interest in all the details of our daily lives and building environments around us that nurture our imagination and well-being. We all have a responsibility to build the most beautiful and resilient spaces around us, so we and the generations after us are inspired and supported by what we make. Imagine your best creations and then GO FOR IT!

  • Hobbit Underground Home Examples

    The Lord of The Rings movie series rocked the film industry in the early 2000s, grossing nearly $3 billion at the box office and winning a total of 17 Oscars – a record the trilogy still holds to this day! Because of these movies popularity we get many requests to plan & build Hobbit inspired dwellings. Our team has advised many on this style, especially vacation rentals. Here are a few examples we like to inspire your project: Examples - Images from the Movie Many of the images for the movie were modeled, but not actually built, though some spaces are open to the public to visit in Matamata, New Zealand. Example #2 - Hobbit's Dream, Virginia, USA Stepping inside, this vacation rental's main living room features a framed map of the Middle-earth and a cosy fireplace. Through the rounded door frame sits the double bedroom and bathroom. Randy ~ Linda / Airbnb “There’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo… and it’s worth fighting for.”– Sam Example # 3 - Several architects have creates Hobbit inspired projects: These are but a few of the Hobbit architecture we like. We'll share a few more and then share additional examples on future blogs. When you wish to start your project contact us and share your ideas. First consultations are free. Example #4 - A DIY Hobbit project in Simondale, Wales: A true DIY! These owners built with salvaged materials & their own labor. Spent only about $4000 in cash. Humble, unique and rustic, yet quite comfortable. Example #5 - Sketching & Modeling Hobbit Projects Our team of architects, designers, 3D modelers, drafters, interior designers, engineers and builders help you create your ideas, then we develop the construction documents and permitting application packages needed so you can permit and build your ideas. Contact us when ready to build your earth-sheltered, underground and above projects. DREAM BIG! How do you want to live? Start Now. It takes a year or more to plan & permit most custom builds, so best to start your planning soon. Contact us at

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