It is almost the end of 2017. I can’t believe we are almost ready for Christmas on the homestead.
Where did the year go?
Today, I wanted to do a year in review of our goals for this year and how we progressed on them.
Our Provident Homestead Year in Review 2017
This year’s goals:
At the beginning of the year, we planned out what we would accomplish each month throughout the year. You can read the full list here, but I am only going to include the new things in this post.
Learn how to bake bread– I love to bake bread, but I hadn’t really found a great, easy recipe that I can make often for my family. I accomplished this goal in this post and found a recipe that I love to make and my family loves to eat.
Start beekeeping– I started a new hive this year with italian bees. I show you the set up in this post and the struggles I had in this post. Unfortunately, an animal got into our hive this fall, knocked it over and the bees all went away. I hope we have better luck next year!
Start seeds indoors– We started our seeds indoors like we had done many times in the past. You can see the post here. But unfortunately, they didn’t do well. We discuss our failures in this post and we will try a different system next year.
Replace our rabbits– We replaced our rabbits we had in the past with 3 rabbits (2 does and a buck). You can read about them in this post.
Replace our chickens– We replaced the chickens we lost last year to a predator with 12 chickens (10 hens and 2 roosters). You can read about them in this post. Unfortunately, we had predator problems again this fall, and we are down to 5 hens and no roosters. So frustrating!
Increase garden size– We shared our garden plan in this post. We did not build all of the boxes on the plan, but we did plant more than the year before and used some ground space for corn and pumpkins.
Have a 3 season garden– In this post we share how the weather kept us from starting a spring garden. We did plant a summer and fall garden, so 2 out of 3 isn’t bad.
Fill in garden path with wood chips– We did this and it made the garden look so good. It also kept the weeds down from in between the rows.
Breed rabbits– We had a rabbit give birth to babies, soon after we bought them. We didn’t know she was pregnant so the babies died. We had several unsuccessful attempts to breed these rabbits and decided to wait until next spring to try again.
Harvest fruit from the orchard– We thought that this was the year that we were going to get fruit from our young trees. But a late freeze killed the blossoms and the trees never produced fruit. Better luck next year!
Plant garlic in fall– The garlic is planted and ready to go for next year. You can read about how to plant garlic in this post.
Butcher new rabbits– We didn’t have any success with new rabbits this year.
Hunt for our own meat– My husband drew an elk tag for hunting and had a buddy to go with him to show him the ropes. He was so excited to get meat for our freezer and learn the ways of a hunter. But a few days before they were to leave, he was deployed for his job to Atlanta to help with hurricane relief in Puerto Rico. He was glad to go and help, but he was bummed that he missed hunting season.
Get more out of debt– We constantly struggle with getting out of debt and not getting into more debt. We discuss our triumphs in this post.
How did we do?
Many of our goals started out well, but ended in frustration. That is typical on the homestead, so nothing new. We just need to learn from our mistakes and find better ways to do thing next year.
- Animals– Our efforts in beekeeping, raising meat chickens, keeping our hens safe and breeding our rabbits all need improvement for next year. We do have 5 hens that are laying (as of now), so hopefully we can keep them safe in the new year.
- Garden– Our garden efforts are moving forward, but they are still far from where I want them to be. We did eat fresh, organic food out of our own backyard, so that is a win in my opinion.
- Homemaking– I learned how to make bread. Of course, I did all the normal homemaking things: cooking, cleaning, taking care of everyone, etc. I learned how to use the Instant Pot and found out how much I love it. I have more skills on my list to learn next year.
- Emergency Preparedness– We put away meat and vegetables in the freezer and pantry. Also, we got a large family first aid kit and 72 hour kits together. We have some food storage and supplies that would be needed in an emergency. More to come next year.
- Health– We struggled with real food on and off this year. We worked on gaining new skills each month with our healthy living series. It is a work in progress.
We have had some triumphs and some setbacks this year. But although it is good to look back for a year in review and see what we accomplished, we don’t want to live in the past.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Help us look back on 2017 and see what we did right and wrong on the homestead. #yearinreview” quote=”Help us look back on 2017 and see what we did right and wrong on the homestead. #yearinreview”]
So we look forward to next year and all the success and failure it brings. I hope you come on the journey with us so we can all learn new things together!
What heartbreaks and breakthroughs did you have this year? Please let us know in the comments below. Thanks!