Encyclopedia of Country Living (+ Giveaway!!!)
Carly Emery has been doing for decades what I’ve only become completely transfixed by in the past 5. A back-to-the-land proponent of the 1960’s and 1970’s, this wise woman has been homesteading since before it was fashionable, has been living a “country” life long before Country Living came along (which, by the way, is great lately), and is seriously the person you want beside you when the power fails, or a hurricane strikes, or when the Zombiepacalyse happens (I kid. I’m a kidder).
In all seriousness, Carla Emery invokes nothing short of profound and enduring respect from me. This mother to 7 created what is quite possibly the defining tome of DIY and homesteading skills, whether where you hang your particular hat is a brownstone or a barnyard, and you’re wearing a fedora or a 10-gallon wide brim. Her book, The Encyclopedia of Country Living, just celebrated 40 years in print. The 40th Anniversary Edition is no shrinking violet. Emery managed to pen over 1 million words in her 928 page guide to living simple while living well. Here’s a little sampling of what her book can teach you:
How to cultivate a garden, buy land, bake bread, raise farm animals, make sausage, build a barn, grown mushrooms, can peaches, plant a tree, milk a goat, churn butter, mill your own flour, grow herbs, tap for maple syrup, store food for winter, butcher animals, keep beehives, cultivate a rice patty, make 20-minute cheese, build irrigation systems, pickle vegetables, forage for wild food, build a chicken coop, catch a pig, and cook on a wood stove.
Whew. And I thought I stayed busy! I’ve had a copy of The Encyclopedia of Country Living for years. When Tami Fairweather, a publicist at Sasquatch Books, contacted me several weeks ago about receiving a review copy of the 40th Anniversary Edition, I was all over it. And thankfully for you, I asked if the possibility for a giveaway copy existed, in addition to my complimentary copy. The answer was yes.
So, for this giveaway, I’d love for you to leave a comment about the homesteading skill you’re currently in possession of that you’re the most proud of. It can be anything from sewing popped-off buttons back onto trousers, to butchering your own hogs. I’ll go first: I really love canning. It never gets old, and having all of those lovely provisions stored up in my pantry come wintertime, or gift-giving time, or, hell, any old time, makes me perennially pleased.
I’ll run the giveaway for one week, concluding next Thursday, November 22nd (Thanksgiving for us here in the U.S.!) at midnight EST. The contest is open to U.S. and Canadian residents. In your comment, please remember to leave a means of contacting you, should you be the (randomly chosen) winner. You can do that via either a link back to your own blog or website in your comment or by leaving your email address in your reply. If you’d rather comment anonymously, just send me a private email after doing so, letting me know your information. I can be reached at: ashleyadamsenglish(at)gmail(dot)com.
Even if you don’t win, you should own this book. Whether you want to know about off-grid living, or how to live (comfortably) without air-conditioning, or make your own soap, or birth babies by yourself (!!!), there’s something here for everyone. And with over 750,000 copies sold, clearly Mrs. Carla Emery was on to something good.