but what will your neighbors think?

A lot of the time when I tell people about the chickens I have or my dreams of expanding the gardens and adding goats, I get a lot of “what will your neighbors think” or “you might get complaints” or “this will decrease your property value” and this makes me sad… And MAD! 

I think we need to change our mindsets here. I’m not saying I want to cause a ruckus in my neighborhood and get everyone upset, I’m not saying I have horrible neighbors (they’re actually all very kind from what I’ve met!) I’m saying in general, as people we need to change our way of thinking about our properties. We need to stop thinking this beautiful lush green grass is this end goal! It’s so wasteful. Here in southern Ontario my grass has died for the last 5 or so years because I’m not wasting money and water on that! It’s not beneficial for humans in any way to have a lush property! My backyard could be lush and green and wasted space, I choose for it to be dead and yellow and crunchy! But this is where I want us to change our thinking… What if everyone who owned or rent that had even the smallest patch of grass, turned that grass into a garden. Now providing food for you and pollen for bees, that wasted space is now beautiful! How is this bad? 

On the topic of livestock. This is one that I can see could become an issue, with irresponsible owners, but this will happen with dogs, cats, houses, cars, just about anything. All our belongings need to be properly taken care of. So the responsible goat, chicken or rabbit owner obviously keeps it clean, free of mass amounts of poop, animals well kept and well fed, there should be no issues. I don’t see how this effects or bothers neighbors at all! People should be able to respect the fact that I am trying to provide my family with fresh food and the experience of hands on learning. 

We need to change our thoughts on homesteading. Why is it so uncommon, especially IN THE CITY? Even on the small scale say for people in apartments or small yards. We should be inspired to work with what we have to take less from the world and give back more. 

So I’m not worried about what you think, or what anyone thinks, it doesn’t devalue my property, it adds to it. And I’m proud of it. Maybe you’ll catch my fire and turn that patch of grass into a tomato haven! 

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