Wilma The Wonder Hen Podcast

Embracing Nature's Rhythm: Holi's Path to Sustainable Off-Grid Living

February 26, 2024 Melissa Season 3 Episode 53
Wilma The Wonder Hen Podcast
Embracing Nature's Rhythm: Holi's Path to Sustainable Off-Grid Living
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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Ever find yourself longing for a life less ordinary, where the buzz of technology is replaced by the hum of nature? Holli from Homesteadbunnie is here to share her incredible journey from a youngin in the forest to an emblem of off-grid living. With a history steeped in the wild and a heart filled with tales of love, loss, and livestock, Holi's narrative is a treasure trove for anyone dreaming of a sustainable lifestyle. Our conversation unravels the realities of starting small, the embrace of solar power, and the seasonal ballet of water collection – a symphony only the hardiest can conduct.

Gather 'round as Nuggets, the Toulouse goose, honks in the background, setting the stage for revelations about living off the land. Holly debunks myths about off-grid existence, proving it's not about forsaking modern conveniences but creating a life of self-reliance. From the camaraderie of neighbors in rural landscapes to the empowering journey of self-education through online platforms, this episode is a masterclass in the art of adapting and thriving amidst nature's unpredictability.

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“Where education fuels compassion.”

Holi:

Oh well, today started off. It started off glorious. I went to take a shower and the water pump died. It always dies. So we've had two now because we live off grid and so we have a pressure pump and it is what feeds the house water. And for the second time now, I go to get in the shower, middle of shower, soaped up soap in my hair, and the pressure pump dies. So the water is just at a trickle, but the pump is still like just going full bore, so you have to jump out of the shower, run and unplug it.

Mel:

So yeah, that's there's a gigantic spider looking right at me. Oh no, no. Now you continue on with your story, because I'm about to die. You're going to witness me burning this she-shed to the ground. Oh god, no, okay, anyway, run, yeah, okay. So you finish your story before I introduce you to all of our wonderful listeners.

Holi:

So, yeah, that was the highlight of the day today. So, yeah, that was about it.

Mel:

Did it get any better?

Holi:

No no.

Mel:

Okay.

Holi:

I'll just head out in the house since then.

Mel:

Hey y'all. I'm Mel and you are listening to Wilma the Wonder Hen . Are you a chicken, math, love and mama or daddy? Together we'll dive into the latest poultry keeping adventures, chat about everyday life and wear the generous mix of some hilarious stories. We're going to be giving you fascinating interviews with poultry owners from all over. You'll find tips and basic advice from your local veterinarian, along with new chicken keeping gadgets and reviews. I'm going to see what Mr Jengles and Wilma has to say about that. We're going to encourage and help you build a stronger, healthier flock. Let's go see what Mr Jengles and Wilma is up to. Let's go let these heifers out. Welcome back.

Mel:

We are so excited to have this guest with us. Her name is Holly and Holly is I'm a fan girl over Holly. I first met our Saul Holly on TikTok and her handle is Homestead Bunny. Let us welcome this goat loving container building, house builder and glam-steady beauty, holly. Welcome, holly, we are so glad to have you with us. Hi, thank you for having me.

Mel:

You have a very interesting, a very colorful account and I'll let you get into some of that, because it's really fascinating that Holly has an off-grid account. Holly is going to explain to us commoners what off-grid means, how she got started, who she is and all that stuff. When you look at her account, holly is very glamorous. I'm not saying that if you live off-grid you look like you live in the jungle. Please don't come at me. Everyone is a little different, even in the chicken keeping world. You see people that are dressed up and they have on dresses and there are pretty little boots and stuff and there's nothing wrong with that. She's also funny and she's very, very sweet. Give us a one-on-one of Holly.

Holi:

I basically grew up in the forest. My dad owned timber cells and that's what he did for a living for a lot of years. We spent pretty much the entire summer. The minute we got out of school they would pick us up in the parking lot and we would go straight to the mountain and we lived in the forest until fall. Then, yeah, we'd come down every once in a while to shower, get more food, that kind of stuff, but other than that summertime I was in the forest 24-7. I just knew that that's where I just wanted to always be. This place that we have now just fell in our lap. We had two other off-grid properties before this one and they were just complete disasters. But everything happens for a reason and we finally got our forest. Yeah, that's how I grew up. I was always the outcast kid Always I don't know how to describe it but yeah, I was just the outcast kid, didn't have a lot of friends, none of that.

Mel:

That's their loss.

Holi:

I didn't even have a real boyfriend. I didn't have pretty much anyone until I met my husband.

Mel:

Do you think that's because you lived in the forest?

Holi:

possibly, Probably probably, but teenage years, all that fun stuff. I was a bit rebellious, but other than that, yeah, I had no idea I would ever be here. I grew up in a kind of suburb neighborhood area. We lived in a cul-de-sac subdivision and, yeah, we didn't have any. We had cats. We weren't even allowed to have dogs.

Mel:

Did you learn a lot of the skills from your parents or your dad or your mom I mean either one of them. Did you learn those skills that you have now?

Holi:

Yeah, because my parents were both avid hunters. Between the timber cells and hunting season and stuff. I learned a lot about animal husbandry and stuff like that. My mom there towards the end did get into rabbits and then by the time I was old enough to leave the house was when she finally started getting into chickens and turkeys and all that stuff. I'm like that would have been awesome if you would have done that when I was younger. She's still is super smart and she's still teaching me more stuff because she's way more advanced in all that stuff. She learned everything really quick because she didn't. My great grandparents they had a farm but we only visited there maybe once or twice when we were growing up and stuff. I guess my mom was around it a lot more than I was.

Mel:

When you met your husband, did you meet as teenagers? Did you meet later in life for you?

Holi:

We met in a bar. He was a pipeline welder. He came to town because the town I grew up in I grew up in Vernal, utah. It's a very oil-filled driven town and it was boom town. He came to town and was running pipelines in town, welding on pipelines in town. He got convinced to go to the bar one night and then I got convinced to go to the bar that same night. We seen each other.

Holi:

It was rather hilarious because the guy he was sitting with is like my arch nemesis. He is like so horrible. He was my high school bully and so when I walk in the door I look at him and I look at the bully and I'm like oh no, and I just knew that they were instantly talking crap about me. But they weren't talking crap about me. He was actually like my husband was all like that's the one I want. And I was like aw. So he kept hitting on me and I kept shutting him down and he kept hitting on me. I'm like just leave me alone. I don't know if you got a bet going or what your deal is. I don't know what you could do with you. And then he finally came up to me and he just walks by me and he's like I'll make you famous. And I was like what? I was like, okay, I'll find I'll talk to you. And then that was it. 18 years later. Oh my gosh.

Mel:

So you met your husband in a bar. How exciting. From that day did y'all start dating.

Holi:

Yes, we dated for six months, just ghosted me, just disappeared in the middle of the night, packed his camp trailer up. He was just gone in the middle of the night. After six months he just called me out of the blue and was like I can't do this anymore because she was a very, very toxic, very bad person. And he's like I just can't live with her anymore. And he's like, and I just can't stop thinking about you, so like, will you, you know, come live with me. And I was like, sure, so I did. And from there on we traveled the country. We went pretty much everywhere, from Utah to New York, working on pipelines.

Mel:

Oh, wow.

Holi:

Yeah.

Mel:

Oh, wow. So when did you finally settle like, decide you didn't want to have that travel life anymore and you found, like your permanent homestead? We?

Holi:

right after we got married in 2011, we rented a house and while we were renting that house, he had a job in town and that was kind of. The deal was just to stay in one spot and we thought we had it made. But he bought me my first horse there. She was a half Clyde's Dail and he bought me three sheep. This is how it started.

Mel:

And that's, fellas, is how you win a lady over animals, exactly.

Holi:

And then we had a couple chickens and then, as it always happens in a boomtown, it dried up, so there was no more work there. So we had to. We got rid of the sheep, got rid of the chickens, packed everything up, we boarded our horses in up north Greeley, colorado. We went there for work and then we went to Wyoming for work and we just kind of bounced around and then we knew that this was the life we wanted. We wanted to build our own house, we wanted animals, we wanted to grow our own food. When was it? We went to Texas, we were working in Texas and we saved up a big chunk of money and we called the realtor and we're like you know, this is what we're looking for. And they're like, okay, perfect, we have it here you go, just sign on the dotted line. So we did. We didn't see the property at all. Oh no, yes, we get out Ding, ding.

Mel:

Yeah, we get out there.

Holi:

Do not do this yeah no, we get out there and it is just desert land in the middle of the mountains. The wind blows 24, seven. It was so horrible. And then come to find out because we were both really young I was like 23 or 24 at the time and my husband's pretty young we didn't read the paperwork, we just signed it. It was in an HOA so we couldn't even plant a rose bush without their approval.

Mel:

That's death of all deaths is an HOA it is, and so the land.

Holi:

We paid for it in cash. It was like five acres for 10 grand, so it was super cheap. Oh, you can't do that now, yeah, no, not at all.

Mel:

No, you can't get a closet for 10 grand.

Holi:

No, and so we just walked away from it. And then they eventually foreclosed on the property or took it back or put a lien on it or something like that because of the unpaid HOA dues. And I was like, oh my God, I don't even care. Oh what? Yeah, ruin my credit, I don't care, oh, that's awful, it was super awful yeah.

Holi:

Then we went back on the road again, worked a couple more jobs, saved up some more money, and then we were coming through town, which is Cripple Creek, colorado, and we found this little property just south of town, and so we seen the sign for sale and I told my husband his name's Nick, by the way. I told Nick, I was like, just call on it, and I was like I bet the guy will own or finance it. As luck would have it, he did. He owner financed it for us, and so we bought it and we were setting it all up, but he still had to work in Greeley and so it's about a four hour drive and so I was basically homesteading by myself while he would stay up in Greeley.

Mel:

Oh yeah, that's a lot.

Holi:

Yeah, and so we were going to stay in the city during the week and then come home on the weekends, and it was. We didn't have the internet, we were just barely learning things, and so we're trying to survive in a single wide off of a tiny propane tank and a generator, and it was. It was a disaster, it was a big disaster.

Mel:

That you admit, though you know that things didn't work out, and there were things you didn't do that you probably should have done, you know. So looking back at that puts you kind of where you are now right.

Holi:

Yes, yeah it. It taught us a lot and it put us leaps and bounds ahead of where we are now. Like or it, it made us prepared for where we are now.

Mel:

Right, yeah, cause I mean, I know a lot of us don't like to admit. You know we failed at something. But honestly, you know, like I tell my kids, you don't, you, you don't, you're not going to learn anything. Sometimes, if you don't, if you don't fail at least once or twice or something, Exactly, exactly.

Holi:

And so, yeah, that property just didn't end up working out for us and we sold it to a friend. And then we moved to Utah and we bought the I call it the princess house because it was huge. I could fit my entire house now in the great room of that house.

Mel:

Oh, wow.

Holi:

Yeah, and it was. It was almost 11 acres and eight of it was under alfalfa. So my husband got to be a farmer, which was his big dream, and that's where I got into goats. We started a horse breeding program, chickens, so many chickens, turkeys. We had the whole thing going on there. But we were a hundred percent on grid and it had what did? It had a fake one of those gas propane fireplaces in it and that was it, and central air, central heating, all that stuff. But in the middle of winter the power went out one time and I was like this is horrible. I was like we couldn't survive in this house if we had to, if something happened.

Holi:

I was like we, we couldn't live here we would die, we would freeze to death.

Mel:

That's a good thing to think about. Yeah, I like that. That makes me ponder on some things too. Okay, sorry, go ahead.

Holi:

So I just got out Once again. Work dried up and we decided that we needed to re-evaluate things, completely start over, so we sold all the animals. I had so many goats I probably had close to 60 goats, Wow yeah.

Holi:

That's a lot of goats. They were all papered and registered and I just gave them away. I could have made a lot of money, but just gave everything away. We sold all the farm equipment and then we moved back over here and was just renting in townhouses and we decided that we needed to look before the Colorado market took off. We needed to try and find another piece of land and we just fell into this place. We just found it. By the grace of God, the guy that had owner financed the property before was actually friends with the realtor who sold us this place and somehow he conned the owners of this place into owner financing for us again. Because we don't have credit, we don't have credit cards, we refuse to build our credit, and they said yes and they owner financed it. And that's five years ago.

Mel:

Basically grew up in the forest and you had a very good background of those types of things. But what was the reason why that you went off grid? Why did you want to go off grid? You could have done a little bit of off grid right of where you were, so what was pushing you to go totally off grid?

Holi:

We're selfish and we don't like having bills and we just want to spend our money on us. I'm not going to lie. I'm not going to lie to you.

Mel:

I mean, okay, that's great, I love that I love that it is.

Holi:

We don't have everything is completely paid for. We don't buy anything unless we use cash, but that's we didn't want. The big thing was my husband, nick. He didn't want to have to weld until he was 65 or 70 years old. Oh, yeah, and with how things are now. He just basically knew that he was never going to have a retirement, and if he did have a retirement, we wouldn't be able to live on it.

Mel:

So that's yeah that that I completely understand. Yes, definitely, definitely no.

Holi:

we were just so. We bought the land and we were paying on it and we started clearing the land. We were living in a camp trailer and we just started coming up with all these different ideas. You know that we first thought about the whole shed house thing with like the home depot sheds and stuff, and we we mold everything over. And then one day it just hit him. He's like I'm a welder, he's like we should just build it out of shipping containers. He's like I can weld it all together and then we can frame it in and be done with it. And I was like let's do it then. And at the time they were really cheap. Our first one, our first shipping container, we paid 2,204. And the second one, we paid like 2,504. And then the third one, I think, was almost three grand.

Mel:

Yeah, cause you see, you see a lot more now. I mean, maybe they were around and I just didn't notice them, but you do see more presence of the container house online.

Holi:

Yes, yeah, like when we started building. It started building our house. It was like I don't know if it had caught wind or what I don't know, but it started to spread like wildfire and everyone started using containers for homes and stuff. And then that's when the prices really started to go up.

Mel:

Even here in Tennessee, like I live in East Tennessee so I live kind of close to the North Carolina line. I live in the Cherokee National Forest, but if you go into town you used to see like where they have, where they haul dirt and stuff and rocks. Now they have shipping containers on the same property that they're kind of marketing as potential tiny homes and stuff, because the market obviously the market is should be illegal for the cost of things nowadays. I mean you can just up the road. They have this house that was probably built in 1980. A half an acre of land and they want half a million dollars for it. Yep, I mean they they out of their minds.

Holi:

Yeah, they are completely out of their minds and I am, oh, I couldn't. I feel so bad for everyone trying to buy a house right now and all that fun stuff, because it's it's impossible. I don't know how people are doing it. I really don't.

Mel:

My daughter, my oldest daughter, she's 33, she'll be 34 this year, and her and her husband. She has one little girl, my grandbaby, and they have looked and looked and I mean they both work and they they get a half a million dollar house. I mean you would have to.

Holi:

Your income would have to be ginormous to even afford that and it's when we had that big house, the princess house, it was three I think. We paid 350 for it and it was 20,. $2,500 a month is how much it was, and between I mean Nick makes really really good money but between the mortgage and insurance and the animal feed and the water and the garbage and everything we. Payday came and we had like maybe a hundred bucks, I was like I know it's oh my gosh.

Mel:

Can you tell our listeners if someone wanted to go that way? You know they wanted to have the opportunity to have a place. You know, like a lot of these new tiny homes that they're getting and unfortunately, a lot of times after you get all that finished out you know my husband's electrician, so after you get all that finished out and stuff, I mean it's still outrageously expensive. So how did you kind of get off grid where you are right now? What were some of the steps that you took to get there?

Holi:

Well, number one buy land, try and find a cheap owner, finance it and then try to pay it off as quick as possible. We lived in a camp trailer for the whole time we built this place. We lived in a camp trailer and we just bought. He had bought it used from a friend and I think he only paid like five grand for it. So, yeah, find a cheap camp trailer, live in the camp trailer, work on your land and that's what a lot of us have done. A pistol pack and rancher she also. She just barely sold her camper because she did the same thing. She built a barn to Minium house, but it's, I think it's the most feasible way to go about it. But yeah, so start out in a camp trailer, start out in some small and then build the house that you want. Pay for it with cash. Don't go into debt trying to build an off grid home, because that defeats the purpose.

Mel:

Yeah, it does. So how are you getting electricity and water and stuff? So how is that working out?

Holi:

So we bought we watch equipment auctions and we bought our solar setup, which is a DC solar trailer, and we got it for seven grand and it comes on a trailer. So it comes with the panels, the batteries and a generator, the brain, which is your inverter, and then another inverter thing. I still don't know all about the solar, I'm still learning, but it all came out on an awesome little trailer and so we dismantled it and hooked it up to the house and it has been glorious ever since. And then for water in the summertime we collect rainwater. The wintertime, like tomorrow, sucks.

Mel:

Oh, no, you collect rainwater.

Holi:

That's against the law, oh my gosh, oh no, I get that so much the first time I hear that, I literally cry.

Mel:

I literally just bust out laughing. I'm like yeah, Okay, you keep doing that and I'll keep collecting rainwater.

Holi:

You can worry about it. I'm not going to worry about it. Yeah, I got to worry In the wintertime, like now. So we have a big 500 gallon tank I put in the back of my truck and I go to the city and I fill it up for $40 every week. So I'm just like come on spring, because I am so over it being cold.

Mel:

Yeah, I mean I don't know what normally like your water bill would normally be or whatever, but and how that would last like a week.

Holi:

Yeah, because we have three horses now and the horses are just burning through water. They drink so much water when it's cold out and so, yeah, we're half into it, so how?

Mel:

many animals do you have? I know you got animals over there.

Holi:

I got three horses, six goats, like 20 chickens, 10 ducks, five dogs, four cats. I think that's it.

Mel:

Three French hands and two turtle does.

Holi:

I think that's it. Oh, I have one fish. I have one fish.

Mel:

Oh, one fish, that's great. At least you got self-control with the fish, right. That's what counts. Oh my gosh, so you ended it, did you have? I think you added ducks though, didn't you like? That wasn't like when I found your account first, did you always have ducks? I couldn't remember.

Holi:

No. So we had chickens first and then I started looking into ducks and I was like I want to get ducks because I heard that they're hardier and all that fun stuff. So I got ducks. Sadly, most of them perished to a bobcat or a coyote, Yep. So the ones that are remaining are the OGs. They've been here. They're just little call ducks. They're like ruins or something like that. I can't remember what they're called. They look like mallards, but they are cute though.

Holi:

Yeah, they are super cute. But we had a. I went and bought more chickens because I was like I'm going to sell eggs and all that fun stuff. So I went and bought a whole bunch more chicks and took care of them and everything. And then I made the fatal mistake of going to a backyard breeder and getting six Easter acres and they had Merrick's disease and it gave everyone else Merrick's disease. So now my chicken plunk is just slowly, slowly dwindling away.

Mel:

So I'm so sorry. That has happened a couple of with a couple of good friends of mine here recently and it's heartbreaking to watch. So I'm very sorry for that.

Holi:

It is. It's horrible, but it's just. It's pushed me further into the duck direction. I'm like duck, still you need some geese.

Mel:

I really want some, but I have geese and they are amazing they are.

Holi:

I'm terrified because I've heard the stories about them being so bonded to each other that if something happens to one of them, that the other one will try and kill themselves to unalive themselves.

Mel:

Well, I don't know if it's that dramatic like Romeo and Juliet kind of thing, but they do become bonded to each other. Yes, mine are bonded to me and they're bonded to each other, so it is a pretty strong bond. I mean, my geese are like bulldogs, you know, like if someone comes in the yard you better run. But they love me, so that's all that matters.

Holi:

Yeah, I definitely really want some.

Mel:

Yeah, they are, they're. They're pretty, they're very fascinating and you get a bond with them. I find it is similar to like I love my chickens and I had quail and all those. I kind of dabbled in a lot of that. But my geese I liken that to owning like a dog or a cat or um, yeah, I mean it's really like a different bond.

Mel:

Like I said, no dissing to chickens, I love my chickens, I love my girls, but it's it's. It's a different relationship. It really is. It's kind of I don't know how to explain it, but it's definitely different.

Holi:

Well, yeah, I'm going to try and put it on the list and see if I can sneak some in with the ducks this year.

Mel:

You just got to be careful, you know, because of the drakes. You know you don't want them around your. They don't have the right equipment. They have a different equipment.

Holi:

So yeah, we don't need none of that, but yeah.

Mel:

And then now you have Nigerian dwarf goats. Is that the goats that you had way back when, like, you've always had that type Yep, yeah, or?

Holi:

that breed. Yep, I started out with that breed and then I also, um, had started my boar goat line for meat, because that was our goal was to have all of our own dairy taken care of and then all of our own meat taken care of. Okay, I've got you, but I haven't started back up with the boar goats yet. Right now I'm just starting with the Nigerian dwarfs and I want to get like a really good breeding program with them established and develop some really good milk lines with them.

Mel:

But do you milk your goats?

Holi:

Yes, yeah, but that is the.

Mel:

Do you have videos of that online on your tiktok?

Holi:

No, not yet.

Mel:

No, not yet. I only reason to ask is I'm getting a Jersey, a mini Jersey calf. Yeah, I mean, obviously you won't milk her for till she's bred or whatever, but that'd be a long time. But it's just super fascinating and I didn't remember seeing those on your page. You know, out there you little milk maid. Yeah, so you got to do that for a tiktok. We'd love to see that.

Holi:

June, june, all all the girls are due in June. Oh how exciting. Yep, I'm very excited.

Mel:

My brain went dead for a minute and uh, Nuggets, Nuggets is right outside. I'm in my she shed. So right outside my door is where Nuggets is goose pin is. Nuggets is my to lose goose and he doesn't have a partner. He's he. He's a long story. He's an orphan. I hatched him in my incubator. He was the only one that hatched out of that whole clutch of that particular breed. So Nuggets, we don't know if it's a girl or boy yet, so, but anyway, when Nuggets hears my voice, Nuggets goes crazy and you can hear him screaming in the background. That's Nuggets, and it's not a child, I promise it is. It is a goose that is having a meltdown. Oh, my goodness.

Holi:

That is so funny, poor thing.

Mel:

Poor little thing. I know that you get a lot of flack on your TikToks and it is quite funny to watch. It's probably not funny for you, but we find it amusing that there's a lot of people that really don't understand what off grid you know. They all have their own description of what off grid should mean. So how would you describe off grid? And is there really a limit or a perimeter that you could box off grid into and say, well, you don't, you don't, you're not off grid kind of thing?

Holi:

I think I get. Yeah, it is constant, because nails, eyelashes, hair, all that fun stuff and then having a phone and being on TikTok, I'm not really off grid. The definition of off grid is you are not tied to public utilities, so that means water, power, sewer, garbage, public utilities. So far as long, as far as I know, your cell phone and TikTok is not a public utility. So that is my definition of off grid.

Mel:

But if you took away your phone and your access to the internet, then you wouldn't be able to teach others. What about all these people that are off grid and you see them on YouTube making videos to help someone else, you know, build a well or build a campfire, build a stove or you know whatever? All those different things that they do online? So you know, I mean a phone is a necessity, because what if you're out there and something happens like you need? Are you that far out, though? Like how far are you from regular town?

Holi:

The closest town is like five minutes away. I'm literally like I'm like minutes from the pavement, but from where it looks, it looks like I am like in the back country. It's very. Once you turn off the pavement and go just a little ways up the dirt road, it's like boom forest and then right behind me is national forest.

Mel:

Oh, I love that. That's kind of how we live. We live on a seven acre, just seven acres here, though, but 10 minutes from any city type city, but we live in part of the national force, so yeah. I just think it's really comical that people do people in your area like close to you, do you have neighbors?

Holi:

We actually do so. There's two other places, two other houses up here One's right below us and one's right above us and they're just off grid cabins for like summer people. One guy rents his out as like an Airbnb and stuff. But across the valley, the poor neighbors. We've kind of started doing our own homestead rescue with them, because they bought the house, which is just a mobile home on 40 acres, and they paid $450,000 for it. When they bought it, everything was a wreck so they had to buy new solar. They paid $60,000 for solar. Yeah, I was like no, I was like you guys should have reached out. They're like we didn't know, we were scared. So now we're friends. They're having trouble with the propane company, so we are trying to get a wood burner put in their house as fast as possible so that way they don't have to rely on the propane anymore and they can tell the propane company to stick it or the clun don't shine.

Mel:

Oh yeah, Well, I can get costly too propane for sure.

Holi:

Yeah, they've been getting stuck in the snow so we've had to plow them out and we've just been really trying to help them and it's they've been having a rough go of it. I'm like I'm so sorry guys. Like if you need anything, just let us know and we'll help you the best we can.

Mel:

So what do you think are some resources, like places that you would point someone to learn a lot of these different skills, you know you can say, oh, I don't, I can't live off grid because I honestly don't know anything about gardening or don't know how to, you know, set up a structure to live in or any of those things. So where would you point someone to kind of help them with tangible ideas?

Holi:

Well, of course, youtube. Youtube is number one. It is the biggest information super highway that there is for off-grid and everything. The other one I would and this is just me, I don't know, my brain is built differently, but I just say, just go for it, just go for it. I still. This is gonna be my fourth year trying to grow a garden and I'm still. I'm still learning, still trying new things.

Mel:

I do love me some garden. Yeah, I went to the master gardener program last year, so I got certified as a master gardener and not to like to mown horn. But I don't. I'm not tuned my own horn because I still don't know squat. I mean, you can only learn so much you know before, like you said, you actually just have to kind of try out methods like yes, is this gonna work? And especially in whatever microclimate you happen to be in, it may not work. So you just got to keep trying. But I like that. I like that you said that you know, just a Just dive right in. Don't be afraid, you know, obviously you don't want to be stuck somewhere, no place to nothing to eat, and you call, yeah, sometimes that motivates you a little bit more. Exactly, you got no place to go. You really may amp up your motivation to fix something.

Holi:

Yeah yep, for sure, and you know, for if you're looking for actual like Survival, survival stuff for when you know crap hits the fan, kind of situation stuff. The Fox fire books are amazing, boy Scouts of America amazing like Build a fire, learn sign language.

Mel:

I always say that I have a Heelbilly Rob. That's my husband. I call him Rob the Heelbilly engineer because he is a electrician but he also has a remodeling company, so he does like framing work and you know all of the things and Literally I tell people if something happens and like the stuff's going down in the world, me and Rob I'm when I'm getting out of here because of Rob, because when he grew up poor, I mean like dirt, dirt poor and I mean I was like poor too, but I mean he was like dirt, dirt poor and that's how he learned how to do. You know all of the things that he does now because he Literally had no choice to learn them. So, yeah, yeah.

Holi:

I totally, totally agree and totally understand. That's. One thing I will always tip my hat to my mom is she made sure that, you know, we learned how to hunt, we learned how to field dress, we learned how to fish, we learned how to track animals, how to do all that stuff. She and I don't even know I maybe it's because her dad taught her that and so she felt that it was important to pass it on to me and my sister, but it's. It's definitely helped me, you know, be able to, you know, build a fire in the middle of the woods, in the middle of the snow, and build a shelter and all that kind of stuff. My mom really did instill all of that into me and my sister.

Mel:

No, I bet she just wanted you to be able to take care of yourself.

Holi:

Yeah.

Mel:

Yeah, I, as a mama, I would see that that. That's why she would, you know, want to make sure that you wouldn't have to put up with nothing. You wouldn't have to, you know, like you know, could you get in a situation Sometimes, if you can't take care of yourself, you just kind of allow whatever goes on, goes on. So now you can just say, hey, you know, dude, I can take care of myself. I saw my own fire get on out of here. Yeah, exactly.

Holi:

Exactly.

Mel:

So where do you see your plans like for your future, like I definitely want to be?

Holi:

I want to be more self sustainable because right now, we still buy a lot of food. We still, yeah, depend on grocery stores for a lot of stuff, and so I want to make sure that we are able to provide our own meat, provide our own dairy. I'm really looking in to Trying to find ways to grow my own flower. We're actually building a greenhouse, a real professional greenhouse, this spring. Oh, I'm jealous. I'm like can we grow our own flower in the pasture? I don't know, should be millet ourselves. I'm kind of I'm starting to learn more that way, yeah you, you definitely can.

Mel:

We do a lot of mowing. We have curse of hay that we mow Every year. So yeah, anything is possible, yeah, definitely.

Holi:

So yeah, that's that's where I'm looking at. Long term is just Not having to go to the store for anything except for toilet paper, and I know that's my dream too.

Mel:

I really, I think that's all of our dreams. I mean for sure, definitely, when I go to the grocery store, I think, cuz I mean we have a huge garden every year, like a big, a fairly big garden. That would be a typical, you know in the country kind of garden. And I do can a lot of stuff, but it's still not. I Mean I guess you could eat that stuff every single day. But yeah, I Get, I get a little spoiled and I want, you know, like fresh fruits.

Mel:

Yeah which I grow fruit, but it's only during the summer and you can can it, but then you're gonna. It's not like fresh, fresh food you know, yeah, but that's how people used to eat, by the seasons, you know, depending on what season it was is what you would eat. But exactly that's Americans. We are a tad bit spoiled, so we are a small little brat.

Holi:

Yes, we are. So is there anything you do miss about being on grid, like what are some things that you miss or no, you don't have to miss anything, well um, the water thing I made a tick tock on this is water, just having an abundance of water, being able to turn on a hose, being able to. You know, oh, whoops, I forgot and overfilled the horse trough and flooded out the pasture Like I'm. Like. That is like an insane luxury, because I've done.

Mel:

I've done that a couple times.

Holi:

Because, yeah, we have, like I said, right now, in wintertime we have to haul in our water, so we have 500 gallons and that lasts between all the animals and us. That lasts us a week. So it's like I can't just do laundry, I can't take an hour long shower, I can't, you know, swim around in a tub every day Like that's. That's the only luxury that I miss is just the abundance of water.

Mel:

Can I ask you what you like to do, like for hobbies? It doesn't have to do with anything with off-grid, but just you as Holly.

Holi:

I like to paint. I I'm a bit of a painter, like to paint and and I love fishing. I'm obsessed with fishing and I haven't been fishing in so many years. I'm so sad, mad about it. So Painting, fishing, arts and crafts, stuff I do you like to design.

Mel:

I know you do a lot of designing inside your, your Container house.

Holi:

Oh, it is fun. It definitely gets my gears going and I enjoy it, but I don't think I could do it All the time. It's just a win-the-mood strikes kind of thing.

Mel:

Do you think your mama is proud of you for all that you've done?

Holi:

she better be. I think she is she. She tells me quite often that she's pretty proud of me, so no, that's sweet, Does your sister?

Mel:

is your sister off-grid?

Holi:

No, she lives actually just a couple blocks away from my mom.

Mel:

Oh, okay. Okay, I'm not being nosy, I just have to hear how mommas and daughters and like CCs are doing, you know, because it makes a lot of difference in the world when you have, you know your family does support you and to, even if it's not like resource supporting is just emotional support, means a lot and goes a long way.

Holi:

Yes, yes, it does. Now I keep trying to get my mom. She joined TikTok but she won't make any TikToks and I'm like you really need to, or you need to make YouTube is because she has an orchard. She lives in town but I think she's on an acre or two acres but she grows an insane garden. She has an orchard and she has chickens and she's thinking about getting goats and ducks and turkeys and all that fun stuff. But when it comes to gardening and stuff, that woman is a pure genius Like her. They live in the middle of the desert and her backyard is like the most beautiful oasis there is. It is amazing.

Mel:

The world definitely needs more people. You know giving examples and especially giving you know like good advice, because the internet is full of we like to call that special advance or arm, or you know like insta experts.

Holi:

You know those kind of people. Yeah, where she knows so much about gardening and companion planting and all that stuff. I'm like you would blow up instantly if you just got on there and just started doing like educational gardening. You know, tiktok or something. No, I can't do it. Come on, mom, pull it together.

Mel:

Well, you gotta be really you gotta be pretty tough for the internet.

Holi:

Yeah, yeah. I think that's why I'm so mean now is because TikTok made me that mean.

Mel:

You like really just have to have no feelings. I mean because if you've got any type of feelings, oh my gosh, it makes you wonder and ponder, like why did I even get into this and what am I doing here? But it's all worth it because we get to meet interesting people. You know I'm sitting here in Tennessee. You're way out there. I get to see your face, I get to talk to you. I mean, what an honor to speak to you. You know so many people with these great life experiences and such a unique story, you know, so we definitely appreciate all of that.

Holi:

Yeah, I appreciate you. I appreciate, yeah, meeting you and meeting all the other people on TikTok. I have formed some amazing friendships that I am, like, so thankful for.

Mel:

Yeah, it is true though. Yeah, I know we've met, I mean I have people that we've built a relationship with that. I mean we just text nearly every day. Yeah, it's pretty great how, the opportunity to share whatever you want to share. I'm going to ask you like three random questions. If you want to answer those, okay. So if you could put anything on a build board, what would it be and why?

Holi:

Oh goodness, I don't even.

Mel:

I come up with them, really tough ones. Yeah, you did. Oh, my goodness, you don't have to answer it. If you don't want to, you just say pass.

Holi:

Okay, I'm passing on that one, because I don't even. My brain just instantly died.

Mel:

Okay, if you could go back and tell your 18 year old self something, what would you tell her?

Holi:

Oh, my goodness, that's a good one. I would tell her to suck it up and stop crying and don't be stupid. Don't waste your time on dumb friends, because Prince Charming is coming.

Mel:

So I like that. Yeah, tell her to get it together. That's right. Quick crying get your head out of your butthole. Okay, so what would be your favorite movie and a little bit about why.

Holi:

That is real. That's a hard one, okay. So, right off the top, my most favorite. I have a bunch of them, but my most favorite movie is Legend, with Tom Cruise with his original teeth and Tim.

Mel:

Curry, okay yeah.

Holi:

And because unicorns, horses, fairies. When I found out later on as an adult that they used over 20 tons of glitter for that set, it made my heart so happy. Because I am like the life known tinkerbell. My mom calls me tinkerbell because I leave glitter wherever I go. It doesn't even matter if I put glitter on. If I stay in their house there will be glitter somewhere.

Mel:

You brighten a spot, though, like you bring light in a place that typically maybe not that it's dark, as in lights, but you know, like the forest and things like that. So, yeah, you bring a light to a lot of people. You bring a light to people on your account and we love your clap backs for sure. Sometimes you just got to put people in their place.

Holi:

Okay.

Mel:

You can say whatever you want to say, and we love it. We live vicariously through y'all.

Holi:

Definitely.

Mel:

Oh, that's great. So where do you, where can our listeners find you? You know, if you want people to find you online, where would they find your accounts?

Holi:

Um, TikTok, I have a homestead bunny Facebook account, but it's kind of 50 50. I post a lot of memes on there. I do post some like personal what's going on in my life, stuff on there, and also homestead bunny on Instagram. I post pictures and stuff on there and reels and what have you. But for the most part, um, I do want to make more YouTube videos, but that's mainly more around my husband fixing equipment kind of stuff. But I do have the homestead bunny YouTube channel too, but I haven't posted on there forever.

Mel:

Oh, that's good. That's another resource that somebody else maybe you know. Maybe they need that resource so, and you can also follow her on TikTok If you enjoy the glam studying and she is quite funny. So we definitely love her. But anyway, we just want to say thank you. We're so grateful for you and we appreciate you taking the time to come on Wilma the Wonder Hands podcast and it means a lot to us. So I'll see you next time. Bye now, we'll see you. Bye. I'm Mel and you are listening to Wilma the Wonder Hands.

Off-Grid Living Adventures With Holli
Journey to Off-Grid Living
Off-Grid Living and Homesteading
Living Off Grid
Off-Grid Living and Personal Hobbies
Thank You for Being a Resource