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Survey Results

May 20, 2011

Sorry for the long delay with the survey results. I really wanted to put Excel graphs in and just didn’t have the wherewithal to figure it out until today. Thank you to everyone who participated in the survey. I am both personally interested in your views/life as well as interested in making this blog as relevant as possible for readers.

Q1:  When did you first become interested in being more self-sufficient?


Q2: What inspired you to become more self-sufficient? 

Q3: Please share a short story or reason explaining why you were inspired to become more self sufficient. 

These answers ranged from “a hippy” to “survivalist at heart.” I thought this answer was especially interesting:

“Everyone was getting “back to the garden” when i was about 15. I wanted to go too. I dreamed of living off the land communal style. There a few other friends wanting to do the same but most went off to college or did what their parents dreamed up for them. I was never a rebellious teenager, and if my parents had any dreams for me I never knew about them. My father would jokingly ask what I would do for money. I had all kinds of ambitious answers, but in the end I decided what was best then was to do what they did…get a job. I don’t even know if it was really a decision or rather an easy way out. I didn’t think about my original idea for many years. Life gets in the way. I still like thinking about that dream and live vicariously through other people or memoirs. i’m not handy, I don’t like reading directions, and when I do I don’t believe them and do it my way which is usually the wrong way.”

Q4: Where do you get most of your information about new homesteading/self-sufficiency skills or techniques? 

I thought it was interesting that no one got information from their community or TV/movies. I am lucky to live in a town with an active homesteading/farming community. We have Missoula Urban Demonstration Project (MUD) that offers a variety of classes in sustainable living, extension and short university classes on beekeeping, community gardens, and friendly farmers. Mr. B and I look to movies for a variety of information. We usually butcher pigs and deer with a TV on the table with a butchering video on, and last Friday we watched YouTube videos on how to milk and inseminate cows (fun times).

Q5: What are you doing to be more self-sufficient? 

One person also said that they are self-employed. Food swaps were not a way that people were more self-sufficient. Mr. B and I hosted our first food swap this fall and it was a great event. We invited friends to bring surplus food or canned goods and then we had an evening of snacks, drinks and bartering. Food swaps are a great way to enjoy things that you can’t grow or would like to try (peach salsa, someone else’s recipe for apple butter, etc.).

Q6: What new skills do you want to learn?

Beekeeping was the skill that most survey takers wanted to learn. People were also interested in home brewing, sewing, and cheese making. Several people also wanted to learn wood and metal working.

Q7: What does “self-sufficiency” mean to you?

In case you are counting, when I formated this graph it cut off “self-sustaining community” and “other” from the categories.

Q8: Are you:

Thanks again, survey takers!

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. May 20, 2011 7:45 am

    nicely done alexis!

    • May 20, 2011 7:49 am

      p.s. someone just gave me two amish paste tomato plants they started from seed and i thought of you!

  2. May 20, 2011 7:47 am

    p.s. someone just gave me two amish paste tomato starts they grew from seed. weird coincidence!

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