How Long Does it Take to Build a Chicken Coop?

So last week we finally got around to building the new chicken run. We really should have done it sooner, but it’s so easy to put off jobs you know will be a bit of a faff, and probably take ages. We are expert procrastinators if the sun is shining and we could be enjoying what might be the last day of summer (in Britain you just never know when it will end and simply must make the most of every warm day). But how long does it really take to build a chicken coop? For us, in all honestly […]

A New Beginning

It’s been a while (um years!) since A Self Sufficient Life was updated and a lot has changed for the Dirty Boots Gang. The big news (well for us at least) is that we’re no longer residing on a Spanish mountain. Instead we’re enjoying the rolling hills of the English countryside. Self sufficiency is no longer quite so obvious or indeed imperative, as life is mostly “on grid”. We are however, still very much self reliant. Working from home to pay our way and ensure we enjoy life to the fullest without relying on the whim of bosses in suits. […]

Don’t You Just Love Freebies – Great Water Butt from Idealo

water butt with downpipe connection kit

The world of the web is a peculiar place at times. Often we get unsolicited emails from folks. Usually they want to let us advertise their dubious products we’ve never heard of and have no interest in finding out about. Other times they simply want us to turn the site into a spam fest sending links to folks for cash. But once in a while an email is a pleasant surprise. In May Tommy at Idealo got in touch to ask if we’d like a water butt. Yes indeedy I replied, expecting not to hear back from him. But low […]

Enjoyable Emergency Food Survival – Grow Your Own

Unusual Heirloom Vegetables

If you want to feed your family yourself, why not simply grow your own? Mr DB’s recent look at emergency survival food supplies got me thinking (dangerous obviously). I cannot imagine having a bucket of dried prepared meals handy should zombies attack, but I do have a stash of home grown vegetables to munch on. Of course there would be plenty of potential emergencies that might actually put an end to the vegetable plot, but hopefully not in the long term. If you grow from viable seed and then collect some of those seeds produced by those plants each season, […]

Kindle Reader – The Green Way to Read?

green kindle

Who hasn’t heard about the Kindle Reader yet? It seems you cannot get away from talk that electronic books are the future, and indeed their sales are soaring so fast Amazon has already said that US ebook sales are doing better than sales of real paper books.  People love gadgets, and something that is even smaller, lighter and perhaps more convenient than a paperback is certainly a popular choice for fans of reading. I admit I have on occasion lusted after a Kindle myself.  The convenience of having several books (or thousands if you want) all stored in one little […]

At Last New Homemade Compost Bins

Aah, we love our garden compost here at Casa Dirty Boots.  But, the one thing we don’t – well didn’t love was our compost bins.  Oh they were fine and dandy when first created.  In fact we were rather smug that we’d used scraps of wood from the house that were good for little else to make them. Five years on though and what once was merely wood-wormed was starting to dissolve a little.  The whole bin arrangement needed reinforcements to keep it all dog proof (essential when you are composting humanure).    I shuffled some spare blocks that had […]

Green Energy from Insects – The Carnivorous Clock

Okay so killing insects is somewhat of an odd “green” thing.  But the other night we just wanted to zonk out in front of the TV.  An episode of “Wallace & Gromit’s World of Invention” was on.  I have to admit I was pretty skeptical about stop motion animation trying to be educational. But I was wrong. We were shown an insect powered clock.  Now obviously clocks don’t use that much power.  But still seeing a very large fly paper feeding insects into something that is supposedly a battery was a little on the mind blowing side.  Not because we […]