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Recorded February 19th, 2022

[The following transcript was auto-generated using Otter.ai. If there’s a discrepancy between the audio and text, please reach out to me and I will correct it. Thank you.]

Lauren 0:00
He was considered unadoptable, because he showed aggression towards some government employees. And I have to say I’m with him there.

Matt Derosier 0:13
I was gonna be like, Do you got the right horse? I don’t know what the problem is. I think you got the perfect horse.

Lauren 0:20
I agree. Like we have the same philosophy, dude. Do you want to come home?

Matt Derosier 0:23
Is his name Waco or something? Ruby Ridge maybe?

Lauren 0:26
His name is Cortez

Matt Derosier 0:28
Ah, okay

this is the FarmHopLife Podcast. I’m Matt Derosier. today. My guest is Lauren on Twitter @LaurenInTheWild. She has a farmstead in northwest Montana. How’s it going? Lauren?

Lauren 0:53
Going well. How are you doing, Matt?

Matt Derosier 0:55
Doing good. Thank you. It’s been a long time. I mean, two months almost in the making you’ve you’re busy. You’re a very busy person, getting getting things done. So I want to, I want to introduce you, like normally I have a couple of things to say on who the person is. But you’v e had such a crazy life. I can’t like just put it down in like two sentences on who you are as a person. So you sent over some pictures for me and a couple that you’ve posted on Twitter as well. Thank you for that. So let’s, if you want let’s let’s go right into some of these pictures that you sent.

Unknown Speaker 1:34
Sure. Yeah. Sounds good.

Matt Derosier 1:36
All right, how do I maximize this. I don’t know. Close enough. You can see all my tabs open. I don’t really give a crap. Okay. So what are we? What are we looking at here?

Lauren 1:47
So I grew up and on a large working cattle ranch in the mountains in Colorado. This was at about 10,000 feet altitude a little bit lower. We ran registered Hereford cattle. And we had a grass fed grass finished beef operation before it was the cool thing to do. So this would have been back in the 80s. and into the early 90s. We direct marketed beef to a pretty solid customer base down in Denver. So this picture was my father. Looks like he’s trying to rope some young uns to do some work with them. We ran anywhere from 500 to 1500 head a year. As you can see this beautiful little lush valley, but it didn’t start out that way. This was my crucible into regenerative agricultural practices. When we started on this ranch, it was very degraded. It had been over grazed for probably decades. It was basically bedrock, in most places in that valley bottom with a creek running through it. Over the course of about 20 years of careful grazing management, we built up almost a foot of black topsoil, and turned it into this kind of green oasis. So that taught me a lot about sustainable ag about regenerative ag about grazing management that I’ve carried into what we’re doing now. And I’m sure we’ll get into that later.

Matt Derosier 3:23
Is that Now forgive, I’m just uh, I’m from the city. So I’m kind of dumb. Is was that kind of like, revolutionary for its time being like, working cattle that way instead of the conventional way.

Lauren 3:41
It was. My father is very much a revolutionary. He has never done anything the normal way. So when he took this project on, he did a ton of research. He basically decided that he wasn’t going to listen to any of the old timers, any of the ranchers around us that were telling him how to do things. He was pretty green when he took this on. Actually, he had never handled cattle before. So he dove in with both feet. And then some took on this 24/7 job for 25 years and just rocked it. You know he read some texts there was a a French cattle graze your I wish I could remember his name. I’m sure the regenerative ag folks would would be able to rattle it off. But he was introducing some of these concepts pretty early on. My dad got a hold of that book and just ran with it. And of course this was an I don’t know if you’re familiar with Allan Savory. Yeah. Yeah. So this was the progenitor to Alan savories work and the inspiration for a lot of savories work. And then savory came came along later and I believe that was also an influence. But mostly it was trial and error and Just working with the system, working with the cattle working with the land and finding out what worked and seeing that feedback happening really quickly as the land started to heal.

Matt Derosier 5:12
That’s super awesome. Do you want me to go to the next picture here?

Lauren 5:17
Sure, sure.

Matt Derosier 5:18
I just opened them in the order you sent them to me.

Lauren 5:24
Okay, so this was the same property. This was a part of the property that wasn’t very managed. We kind of would move the cattle through that to other pastures. So you can kind of see what this is what the property looked like, when when we started out.

Matt Derosier 5:40
Okay, yeah, it’s def, it’s definitely different. That’s for sure. Yeah. Your parents still own that, that space that place there?

Lauren 5:51
They don’t they never did this.

Matt Derosier 5:54

Lauren 5:55
Yeah, this was 10,000 acres that was owned by a very wealthy family. I think mostly, they used it as a tax write off. So this was my dad walked into the management position on this place, and basically was given free rein to do with it as he pleased, which was really a special situation, including being given the opportunity to raise cattle, our own way, and then sell them and profit from them. So it was it was kind of a cool deal.

Matt Derosier 6:30
That’s, that’s pretty sweet. Yeah. Cuz it’d be hard to like, do it this way, with someone’s like trying to micromanage who has no idea how to raise cattle? Like, no, you got to do it just like everybody else.

Lauren 6:49

Matt Derosier 6:51
What is this?

Lauren 6:55
it’s a bit of a leap. So this was the other strange part of my upbringing. I was I was somehow lucky enough to be born into a family that that was crazy about doing living history and historical reenactment. So this is my dad. In armor, he made all of the armor. He’s an incredible blacksmithing armor. I know. And so I, you know, I, I tell people about my childhood. And people tell me I should write a book, but I don’t know if it would be believed to be honest. So when we weren’t ranching, which, of course is a full time job. We were diving into all these historical reenactment events, and living history events. So what that means is we would completely immerse ourselves in a particular period of time, live it as people would have lived in that time period, including the clothes, the technology, the tools, and the literature, you know, the music. And we would do this for fairly extended periods of time just to really get a grasp of what it was like to live in that time period. So we spent a better part of a decade, really delving into medieval Europe. And this was a part of that. My father and I spent a lot of time on the international live action jousting circuit, which you know, is the sport where armored knights try to knock each other off horses, it’s still a thing that is done. There are these big international competitions where people come from all over the world to compete in the sport. So we judged events, we traveled to these events, and my father jousted a bit, although he started to get to the point where flying off a horse wasn’t necessarily what he wanted to do. So we didn’t do that for terribly long. But we also did a lot of archery, traditional weapons work. He hunted elk with that bow that you see there.

Matt Derosier 9:05
No way I get why am I why am I surprised?

Lauren 9:13
Yeah, you put a bull elk on the table with that very bow. So you know, it was really kind of a special thing. And I think you have some photos that I also sent in this batch of different eras that we kind of explored as a family. Yeah, so still a medieval era. His his suit of armor he made with this very small blacksmith shop. He had an armory shop. Everything you can see in that photo actually he made he made his sword. He made his armor. He even made the saddle he’s riding. I think that’s his his medieval saddle. And we would you know, we set up a course and we’d ride our horses. And we do work with swords, you know, we chop melons and squash and do horseback sword work and horseback archery.

Matt Derosier 10:10
So wild, can you still do it?

Lauren 10:13
Oh, yeah, absolutely. In fact, on our current property, we’re going to set up a horseback archery course, because that’s something I really enjoy.

Matt Derosier 10:22
You know what you could, you could honestly be on like Airbnb experiences, or whatever they call it, and like, make that a thing, like $500 a person, like for an hour. Like, be here. Here’s the waiver can’t sue us ever.

Lauren 10:41
That would be crazy how it actually,

Matt Derosier 10:43
people would absolutely pay for that type of thing. To like, just, like, weird brain thing. And I was watching like this history channel thing A while ago, and like the the Mongolians or whatever their saddles were high in the front and the back so they could turn like and still like shoot their shoot their arrows while while writing. Like made it easier, whatever. Like, that’s pretty smart.

Lauren 11:10
Yeah. And they had these little short bows that were designed for horseback work, so they didn’t poke their horses.

Matt Derosier 11:16
Oh, yeah, that’s a good point. See, I don’t even need to tell you. Just whoever’s listening that didn’t know that. You already know. You’re like, in a like, like a professor historian without the degree. You lived it.

Lauren 11:34
Yep. So this was another of the history eras we did. So this would be like 1880s Victorian era. And we we got stuck in this era for quite a while it was pretty cool. That’s my father in the middle. That’s me in the red dress. We would do Victorian fashion shows a lot of Victorian costume design. All of the dresses you see in this photo and the costuming were made within our family, we didn’t buy any of it. We would go to these events where people would either hire us or you know, we would go to kind of exhibit the clothing of the period and, and some of the technology of the period.

Matt Derosier 12:24
That’s so crazy. Is this still while you’re living in Colorado? Like the?

Lauren 12:31
Yeah, this was in Colorado, and I believe this photo would have been Silverton, which is kind of famous for Victorian.

Matt Derosier 12:40
Okay. That was common.

Lauren 12:43
Okay. Yeah. Yeah, it is. It’s a bit of a cultural thing. And in that particular community, they have an old steam engine train that they run, and you can go ride that train through the mountains. It’s kind of like what?

Matt Derosier 12:55

Lauren 12:56

Matt Derosier 12:57
that’s awesome. Road trip. All right. That’s cool.

Lauren 13:04
All right. So the fair trade era, this was the other historical living history era that we did a lot of, that’s my dad in the front with his black powder rifle.

Matt Derosier 13:18
Let me guess he made that

Lauren 13:20
he made some parts of that. Later, he actually did forge sharps buffalo rifle by hand, the whole thing by hand. That’s something that someday I will have in my collection. Yeah, and he hunted with his black powder rifle, you know, he was never one of those modern firearms guys, it was always the primitive technology. And it put food on our table, you know, and I think that was a big part of the point was keeping those skills alive, so that we never became too dependent on modern technology in our family. I think my dad, you know, a lot of this was just enjoying the history and learning about the history and really experiencing it on a visceral level. But it was also very practical, you know, let’s keep these skills going. Let’s make sure that we’re never becoming too dependent. Let’s play with some of these tools that that really are dying art people don’t use anymore. And some of them honestly, are are a lot better than the modern options that we have. Arguably.

Matt Derosier 14:31
Sure, yeah. I mean, like, it’s, it’s crazy how hard people had to work back then further food. Like, every day, not just once a month or once a week, every day. They had to just just go out there and just grind as hard as they can always you’re gonna starve to death. Like, like, you know, putting out Got a couple of miles or whatever, going out hunting or whatever and heading back to the truck and heading home. Like that wasn’t an option?

Lauren 15:10
No, not at all. It was a grind. And people in that era were extraordinarily tough. I mean, we don’t have any idea today. How easy we have it.

Matt Derosier 15:22
Like, oh, my hands are a little cold. I’m gonna head back

Lauren 15:30
Yeah, so this was this was kind of a fun part of our lives. We had this period of authentic camp setup, this would have been, you know, 1880s kind of settler era. So we had our wall tent, and we had this chuck wagon that we lovingly restored to perfect historical, accurate standards. And we go set up this camp, we head off into the mountains with this chuck wagon. It had his whole box and everything. And we’d pick a beautiful meadow and we’d set up a camp and cook our food over the fire spend several days there. Of course, fires were built with flint and steel, no matches or lighters allowed. Really just living it and getting our feet really deep into that era. And you know, people loved this, we would always have 40 or 50 people show up to come do this with us. That’s a lot. Well, yeah, they’d come out, they bring their kids we’d make sourdough biscuits and cook them over the over the fire and elk stew and everybody would drink beer and play bluegrass music. And it always turned into a big multi day party people just absolutely loved it. I think people in general, especially today, and this was back in the 90s. But especially today, people really crave you know, a taste of authenticity, because we’re really lacking that in our culture in so many ways. So and even back then, you know, it was it was such a special thing for people a lot of these people were working you know, city jobs in Denver, living in the suburban house, and they’d come out and do this with us and and just kind of feel really deeply human in a way that they didn’t get to otherwise.

Matt Derosier 17:27
Sure. What did if you guys had the chuck wagon, what did the suburbanites use?

Lauren 17:33
Oh, they bring their modern tents out and you know, sleeping their trucks.

Matt Derosier 17:39
Okay, okay. This is this is like another thing with the popular like popularity of 1883 people would like this would be like another Airbnb experience. You could sell them.

Lauren 17:51
Yeah, no kidding. Yeah, I hadn’t even considered it. But you know, and this was also normal to me. So looking back on it now it’s like that was kind of a strange childhood. Unique for sure. But

Matt Derosier 18:04
absolutely. Well, when you’re the daughter of like a demigod, I mean

Lauren 18:11
renaissance man, for sure.

Matt Derosier 18:14
Absolutely. Both, like almost literally and figuratively. Here we go. Oh, I’m a little too far zoomed in. There we go.

Lauren 18:31
So this is me at about 20 About 20 years old here. Learning to farm with horses. And this was one of my first times putting a horse in harness and learning how to drive.

Matt Derosier 18:49
Nice. Do you Do you still use draft horses? Or

Lauren 18:56
I don’t currently have a team. But it is on my list. I would love to get some some heating equipment and do some hanging with with a team because it’s it’s a it’s a wonderful way to do it.

Matt Derosier 19:09
Is it hard to find hanging equipment for to do it, The old way?

Lauren 19:15
Not at all. Actually, John Deere has a a modern line of horse drawn hanging equipment that they sell. Yep. Yeah, working with horses and mules in a farm setting is still quite popular. So there are whole lines of equipment being made. And then of course there are people that specialize in restoring the old tools to so there’s a lot of it. It’s easy to get and good horses are easy to get to. So it’s really a nice alternative to diesel based farming. And I think as fuel gets more expensive, more people will be leaning on this. So

Matt Derosier 19:55
might have to absolutely can’t. I mean maybe Some little like, take their old school hanging equipment and put it behind their Prius and try to do it. I don’t know. That’s funny. Is this the trapper phase?

Lauren 20:17
This was Yep. And I think this one got somewhat popular on Twitter for a while.

Matt Derosier 20:22
Yes, it did. That was that’s what this was one of the things that I was like, Who is this? Who is this person?

Lauren 20:33
Yeah, so this is my mom and dad. They lived in a teepee for several years at like, 10,000 feet in the mountains through winters and everything. Using horse and donkey is transportation, completely off the grid. I mean, completely, they didn’t own a car, they didn’t have running water, they didn’t have electricity. They literally lived like it was 1840. rode their horses into town when they needed a few basic supplies, but otherwise lived off the land. And they did really well. They had an incredible quality of life. There were some hungry times for sure. But you know, it was an experience that both of them talk about very fondly. And they were out there for like I said, several years doing this, and just thriving, please.

Matt Derosier 21:24
So what what year did you say this was or would have been?

Lauren 21:29
This would have been? Right around like eating but having between 89 and 91. Somewhere in that span.

Matt Derosier 21:39
Were you born then?

Lauren 21:41
I wasn’t. Okay. Yeah. Yep. Yeah. So this was a little bit before I was born. And in fact, they stopped living that way, because they had a child, which…

Matt Derosier 21:53
Oh, was it your fault?

Lauren 21:55
It was my fault. It’s a little unfortunate. I think I would have loved to been like that. But yeah, so this is our current property here in northern Montana.

Matt Derosier 22:09
That’s beautiful.

Lauren 22:11
Thank you.

Matt Derosier 22:12
I’m assuming because of the anonymity, you’re like, that’s as far as that’s as close as we’re gonna go.

Lauren 22:18
Yeah, it is.

Matt Derosier 22:20
That’s fair, absolutely fair.

Lauren 22:22
I think people who know Montana can probably identify it from photos, but

Matt Derosier 22:28
I don’t know. I’ve only been up that way a handful of times. So maybe not. Maybe I’m not sure. But yeah, well, we’ll just reverse image search it and we’ll find you.

Lauren 22:40
That’s right. So this is, this was one of the first days we had our herd of cattle on the property. We bought this property a couple of years ago, but we’ve only been living on it for about six months. And we’re very much in the early stages of setting up our regenerative ag systems here. Of course, the cows are an integral part of that. You can’t you can’t really have regenerative ag without the grazers. So this was I think the first or second day that we brought the cows here. It was a very special day for us.

Matt Derosier 23:21
That’s awesome. I do that reminds me I’m gonna make a note somewhere. I don’t know where since I’m sharing my screen. It break the flow, but we almost need to talk about the documentary Cowspiracy let’s put a pin in that if you’ve seen it.

Lauren 23:39
I haven’t. I have not seen it.

Matt Derosier 23:41

Lauren 23:43
I’ve had a couple of

Matt Derosier 23:44
your bloods would boil probably.

Lauren 23:47
I had a couple of ex vegan friends told me about it, but

Matt Derosier 23:51
okay. Okay, so you get the gist of it. Okay, yeah.

Lauren 23:58
This is a couple of our milk cows. This is Amazon and Flossie.

Matt Derosier 24:08
Why Flossie?

Lauren 24:09
I did not name her. She came with that name. I’m not sure.

Matt Derosier 24:14
Okay. I guess I’m thinking to like, rationally like, sometimes names are just the name and doesn’t have to mean anything. Yeah,

Lauren 24:25
these cows came out of a very large herd of Brown Swiss dairy cows and I think they just kind of got assigned some random names when they were born a whole lot of meaning. So

Matt Derosier 24:38
although the name Amazon makes me think like, what if you could actually buy a milk cow from Amazon? Like, wouldn’t that be something?

Lauren 24:47
Shipping might be a problem.

Matt Derosier 24:50
Two day free shipping if you’re a prime member. Nice. That’s gorgeous.

Lauren 25:00
This was about a month ago, our first significant snow here. And this cow is very special to me. She is a Normandy cow. And the Normandy cows are going to form the nucleus of our dairy program here. They are a French breed, obviously, if you if you know about the Normandy region, they were imported into this country as a beef and dairy breed. So they’re dual purpose. And there, we have an extraordinary ability to produce really well on nothing but grass. I don’t know if you’re very familiar with dairy cows, but most dairy cows in America are very grain dependent. So these cows are going to be our grass based dairy pioneer pioneers, we could say, the Brown Swiss cows that we have, like you saw in the last photo, wonderful cows, I really love having them on the milk line. But I mean, they take 10 to 15 pounds of grain a day to keep their production going. Which to me is it’s a significant dependency that I would like to not have for our farm. So these Norman decals are, are renowned for their ability to produce incredible quality and quantity of milk without the green inputs just on grass. So we’re really leaning into these cows. They’re hard to find they’re still pretty rare in this country. There are some breeders starting to pop up. But they are this is the feedstock for our breeding program here for these.

Matt Derosier 26:45
Okay, are you so you’re you’re trying to breed them on your property or you’re like you’re just bringing in like artificial insemination type.

Lauren 26:58
Yeah, so we brought this cow in and a heifer, and they will, they will both be AI and we’re going to import some Normandy semen from France and get get a herd started. We’re also looking at doing some embryo transfer transfer in the future. And also crossing the Brown Swiss on some Normandy bowls to try to bring some of the hybrid vigor and reduce their dependency on grain and see how that goes.

Matt Derosier 27:26
That’ll be interesting. That’ll be an interesting cross. Okay, so this is the other thing that you sent me today. And I was like, here’s another like, what, how do I introduce this person?

Lauren 27:45
So this was a special period in my life. This was when I was about 24. 23. 24. I was given an opportunity to go live on the Blackfoot reservation here in Montana to volunteer for a program. That was it was a an equine based program where we, we had a herd of old Blackfoot native horses, that this man that that had this property was working to preserve. They were called buffalo runners. They were the horses that the Blackfoot used to hunt buffalo wings. He had some original bloodlines, he was breeding and preserving them. And he invited me to come and stay on the property and to help out with this program. A big part of what he was doing was was bringing the horses and at risk youth together and using the horses as kind of a conduit for the culture to bring kids back into the traditional Blackfoot ways. So it was it was a pretty amazing thing he was doing. We had tribal elders that would come and teach the Blackfoot language. We would teach the traditional skills like hide tanning, butchering, hunting, working with horses of course writing in my part of this was was the horsemanship aspect. So I live in this teepee by the tribe to live in while I was there. It was called Ponoko Mita Ohtani, which was the horse Lodge. And I would work with the horses and work with the kids teach the kids how to ride teach the kids horsemanship, and train horses to be safe for the kids to work with. It was about 16 hours a day of work every single day. But it was an amazing adventure and

Matt Derosier 29:44
sounds amazing. Yeah. Yeah,

Lauren 29:46
it was and I feel like some some really cool connections were made both with the horses and the tribe and the kids who found routes that they didn’t know they were missing.

Matt Derosier 30:01
So we’ll go through a couple of these photos. And I got some questions about this experience.

Lauren 30:08
Sure. Um, so this was one of the the young fellows that came into our program. And some of the horses, he was, he was going down some some wrong roads, let’s say I don’t want to share too many details. But, you know, a lot of the kids that came in to this program to work with us were at the end of, of the road, it was, it was like, if they didn’t turn things around, they were going into the system. You know, we had a lot of drug users, we had violent offenders, we had kids that were getting into all kinds of trouble. And they were kind of given a choice, go into this program and reform and work through this, or, you know, go into the system. So we had several several kids a week, come through and work with us. And some of them were residential, some actually lived on the property. And we found that the horses were the major conduit for helping these kids get their lives together. We didn’t really do a lot of work with the kids, the horses did the work with the kids. And it was incredible. So

Matt Derosier 31:25
that’s interesting that you say that I just interviewed a woman in New York, who has an autistic son, and she’s using it. She’s using goats to help bridge the gap of like her, her nonverbal autistic son, to have a connection with like, living things and like the progress has been amazing. And so there’s what we briefly talked about, there’s like there is something about working with animals that they’re i It’s like, maybe it’s a mystery. Maybe it’s not, I don’t know, what do you think it is?

Lauren 32:11
I think it’s many things. I’ve done a lot of work with autistic kiddos to and in equine programs. And, you know, I don’t know if you’ve read Temple Grandin’s work.

Matt Derosier 32:26
Sounds familiar.

Lauren 32:27
Okay, she’s University of Colorado, she teaches humane animal handling. But she is herself autistic. She was told early in life and her parents were told that she would never read, she would never probably be verbal, she’d always have severe difficulties. Now she’s a professor at Colorado State. So she writes in her books about how a lot of kids especially kids who are atypical, or have learning disabilities, or are autistic. Think more like animals think than like the rest of us think. She wrote the book Thinking in pictures, which is a spectacular read, where she talks about how, as an autistic child and as an autistic woman, she tends to have a more nonverbal thinking pattern where she she thinks in images and pictures and almost like archetypes, more than she thinks in words, like a lot of us will will have a monologue in her mind. But apparently, according to her, she has never had that experience. She thinks in a more kind of visceral and image based way archetypal way. And she believes that animals also think and experience the world in a similar way. So that when you take an animal and like an autistic kid and put them together, the the, the child can often relate better to the horse than he can to, you know, the neurotypical people around him. And it makes a lot of sense, because I’ve seen this I’ve seen horses and kids connect and even even kids who are who are neurotypical, but just having difficulty in life, they connect in a way that’s really powerful. I think, in the case of these Blackfoot kids that we were working with, it was probably the relationship with the horse was probably in a lot of ways. One of the more functional relationships in their lives. You know, the horses don’t come judgment. They don’t come with manipulation, they don’t come with abuse. They approach you very directly, very honestly. And they they seek a connection and it’s a really authentic connection that doesn’t have strings attached. So I think this that is really potent for kids who maybe have never had that experience. You know, I mean, like that’s, that would be the ideal human relationship human to human right. But most devices don’t get to experience that very often. But with the animals, it’s a given. So as long as you know, their safety and no one’s getting hurt, then real connections can can be forged with kids and animals that maybe aren’t safe to have at home or with their peers.

Matt Derosier 35:22
Hmm, that’s, that’s very interesting.

I guess it makes sense that animals would would see in pictures because I haven’t seen a horse ever write its name, but like, so they just don’t have like, the the language like it’s a well, it’s a language, it’s just different, not how we think about language. So.

Lauren 35:50
Right. Yeah, I mean, they can communicate with body language and energy, right? I mean, it’s a little Yeah, that’s true, maybe Oh, to talk about but, you know, if you if you spend any time in a herd of horses, or even a herd of goats, as prey animals, they’re very attuned to their environment, and to the intentions of the animals around them, right? If there’s something that’s going to want to eat them, they’re going to, they’re going to notice that. So they’re, they’re sensitive, they’re nonverbal. They’re very tuned into the environment, and they’re very present, you know, they’re not sitting there worrying about like, well, you know, what, am I gonna get that promotion next week or, you know, three years from now, they’re in the moment they’re present. And I think that is also really beneficial to all of us, when we relate to them, we can we can become present and come back to the moment and, and kind of let go of some of the, the neuroses that we all kind of have to carry around to get along in life.

Matt Derosier 36:57
Yeah, I don’t think it’s really that Woo. I mean, people that are disconnected will probably think that it’s very woowoo. But like, the more it’s like, people are like, the more you experience it, the more you have to believe that it’s true that there is there is some sort of like connection, I remember as I was working around some cattle one day, so just some milk cows or whatever. And I was like, in like a bad bad mood for some reason. Not sure why early 20s Garbage probably and like this, this one cow or whatever was kind of like the the Alpha like, milk cow, I guess. And like, she like, she must have sense that I was just like, Oh, just a few like, picked up her head and her horn got me right beneath the eye. And thankfully there it was tipped so like it barely broke the skin. But I’m surprised it didn’t break my cheekbone to be honest. I was like, Oh, I better better direct my attitude or this thing is gonna kick me right in the chest.

Lauren 38:06
Yeah, they will. They know they’re they’re so aware of us sometimes more than we’re aware of ourselves.

Matt Derosier 38:14
Yeah, yeah, that’s true.

Lauren 38:21
Hmm. So this was on the property where the the, on the Blackfoot reservation. And so this would be like East Glacier, Montana, Browning, Montana, if anyone’s familiar with the area. And this was just a couple of stud horses having it out and just happened to be in the right place at the right time.

Matt Derosier 38:42
That’s very cool. That’s cool to see. Especially with like the backdrop and everything that’s great.

Lauren 39:03
This was also a couple of stallions couple of different stallions. We had multiple herds on this property, and we kept them very much like wild horses would organize themselves. It was a very large deal. It was about 600 acres. And so we allowed the horses to kind of sort out their pecking orders, choose their mates, you know, set out their family groups the way that they wanted, and create kind of a natural family group system as wild horses would which was interesting to watch. You know, I have never had the opportunity to observe wild horses. So it was it was special to see that and just I would sit out sometimes for hours and just watch them and how they interacted and learned a lot about horse psychology and about human psychology to be honest. Watching them You know, in a kind of an managed situation?

Matt Derosier 40:06
Sure. Does this When horses do this? What does? What does it mean? What are they doing?

Lauren 40:16
So this was to intact male horses to stud horses. The two family groups had kind of come together. So in in Horse Society, there is one alpha male who runs the herd and then a bunch of females that connect to him and all their babies. So this was to two alpha males coming together and kind of squaring off. First thing they always do is sniff each other’s noses and share breath. And then from there, it usually pops into a fight. So about 10 seconds

Matt Derosier 40:48
after they start. Okay.

Lauren 40:53
Yeah, yeah. Kicking, biting, you know, trying to figure out who’s the head honcho? So yeah, about 10 seconds after I took this photo. This erupted into a screaming squealing kicking fight.

Matt Derosier 41:05
I was gonna say, because this looks like a very nice, peaceful moment. And then you’re saying 10 seconds later, it just gets violent. Like just

Lauren 41:14
did, like extremely violent. I think blood was drawn in this if I remember correctly.

Matt Derosier 41:21
People like, oh, wow, that’s so beautiful. And like, just wait.

Last one here.

Lauren 41:33
So this was just the view from the teepee site where I lived.

Matt Derosier 41:38
But that didn’t get old.

Lauren 41:41
No, never was a work of art every day.

Matt Derosier 41:45
So you said this was Browning area, you must be looking west, obviously, the sun setting and so then we’re looking towards Glacier National Park, I’m assuming.

Lauren 41:56
Exactly. Yep. Okay, Rockies and glacier.

Matt Derosier 42:00
Cool. Very cool. Well, that about does it for the episode. I’m kidding.

Wow, that was cool.

Now to actually get into the questions that I wrote down. So when did you So you grew up in Colorado? When did you actually move to Montana then and like get started, like where you are now?

Lauren 42:36
So we moved to Montana in the late 90s. US fleeing the crowds that that we’re consuming Colorado. And but it took a long time to get where I am now. I had a small homestead in the big fork area of the Flathead Valley for about a decade. I bought that place in my early 20s and farmed it for 10 Loving years. And learned a lot. I that’s kind of when I discovered permaculture practices, started learning and teaching in that sphere a bit, playing with things, seeing what worked and then I got to a point where I’d outgrown that property. So my husband and I met around that time and decided to just jump in both feet to a bigger piece of property. And that’s how we landed here.

Matt Derosier 43:33
Nice. That’s cool. What I noticed about what about Colorado is that people that grew up there like they’ll retire like Colorado and I guess will retire in Montana. Like we’ve got new construction and we’ve got clients right now that bought like a $1.5 million property near my place that been in Colorado most of their lives and now they’re in like their 60s Like we it needs to be a little quiet so if anybody in Colorado you’re in Colorado now we’re thinking about Colorado just skip Colorado but don’t move here we’re full Montana’s full so many resources. love to have you but

Lauren 44:26
you’re in Montana, then?

Matt Derosier 44:28
I am I’m in the Bitterroot Valley.

Lauren 44:31
Oh okay. That’s gorgeous.

Matt Derosier 44:34
Yeah, where it used to be poverty with a view but now it’s just the view and no poverty. so there’s there’s pockets of poverty. Let me tell you there’s absolutely pockets of poverty. But anyways, so the place that you’re you’re at now how what was the acreage of your last place and then what do you What do you have for acreage now and size your herd and everything?

Lauren 45:04
Yeah. So my my first homestead that I bought my 20s was two acres. And I farmed it really intensively, including livestock and everything. And then I moved with my husband to his homestead property, which was 11 acres in the Flathead. And we did that for a couple of years. And then this property that we have now is 120 acres.

Matt Derosier 45:33
Nice. That’s that’s a big chunk. So, yes. So you said you started permaculture in your two acre? homestead? Are you PDC certified?

Lauren 45:51
I am not. I think I would like to do at some point.

Matt Derosier 45:57
Like where you got your training and everything.

Lauren 46:00
Lots of reading. And actually, I was, I was lucky enough to work with Ben Falk. early on. to design my two acre property. He lent me a ton of his time, and helped me design out that thing. And it was incredible. And of course, now he’s, he’s a much bigger deal in permaculture he was he was pretty young at that point. But he did an amazing job. So sure, I bet.

Matt Derosier 46:28
Complete side question. So like you selling that that property? That, you know, everything’s got a purpose, right? Everything has a place and how it was done and everything do when people buy something like that? Do they know what they’re buying? Or they’re just like, looks nice. And just like don’t care?

Lauren 46:54
I did not sell it. I still have it.

Matt Derosier 46:57
Oh, what are you doing with it? I’m just curious.

Lauren 47:01
Yeah, so a good friend of mine stepped in and took over the place. And I was happy to hand it off. He’s maintaining it well, and he’s covering mortgage on it. So it’s a win win. And so he’s kind of taken taken the torch, he doesn’t farm as intensively as I did. But he definitely loves to garden. And he’s he’s reaping the benefits of all the design there.

Matt Derosier 47:28
Oh, yeah. Because that’s the startups the hard part. But as it grows, it gets easier. So he should I think you’d be paying more than whatever he’s paying you now.

Lauren 47:42
Well, hey, you know, knowing knowing that somebody understands what has gone into that place, and is willing to maintain that, that that to me is payment enough.

Matt Derosier 47:53
That’s fair. Like, yeah, I don’t really like these things. So I’m just gonna start ripping them out like, don’t you? Yeah, no idea what it took to get that there. And, you know, if this one’s get taken out all these other ones that you know, this guild is just going to totally collapse. And

Lauren 48:12
that’s right. Don’t do it.

Matt Derosier 48:14
Yeah, don’t do it. You don’t touch it. So. So your current place? What’s that look like?

Lauren 48:23
So it’s, it’s got a lot of good stuff going for it. We bought this from an old rancher who use this as kind of a summer pasture holding space for his cattle periodically. There’s no house here. There’s nothing here and I wasn’t even a well here. So we’re building everything from the ground up. And it’s been a heck of a lot of work. We’ve been here six months now. But it’s coming along. And it’s, it’s got some amazing, it’s got some amazing aspects. So it’s got a lot of pasture. It’s got a lot of kind of different microclimates around the property, warm spots, cool spots, deep valleys, high high plateaus. It has a creek running straight down the middle of it, which is just fantastic. And it has at least one artesian spring on it that’s quite productive. We haven’t done anything with it. That’s that’s like one of those things that you you tread extremely carefully before you make any changes. So at this point, we just kind of look at it and enjoy that it’s there. But at some point, I think we’ll probably maybe try to design a springfed pond around that that feature and see how it does. But at this point, it’s it’s all about putting in our infrastructure and getting ourselves a house. We are living in our fifth wheel camper. So that’s had its challenges through northern Montana winter, but we’re getting there We’re building our house for DIY and basically everything here. We just put our greenhouse up. Houses coming along. We’re, we’re building our house from the ground up. We’ve got a sawmill, we’re cutting our own timbers making our own lumber. So we’ve we’ve definitely bitten off a large project here, but we’re loving every step of it.

Matt Derosier 50:23
That’s awesome. Are you? So with having a sawmill and everything? Are you just doing conventional stick frame house? Or you go on like, some some different?

Lauren 50:35
Are you kidding? Conventional stick frame man? No.

Matt Derosier 50:41
That’s why. That’s why I ask because I figured you wouldn’t have done that.

Lauren 50:47
No, no. So we have, we’ve created this really insane design. It’s never been done before. As far as we know. We have a designer that we’ve worked with who who’s an architect and an engineer all in one package with timber frame experience. So what we’re doing is is a hybrid timber frame. And it’s not quite a netzero home, but it’s going to be awfully close. So there’s this product called nexam. That comes out of Canada. It’s an ICF that doesn’t have Styrofoam. So insulated concrete forms. And what it is, is it’s 55 pound blocks that are about 16 inches thick, they create a 16 inch thick wall, you pour concrete down in them, they’re insulated on the outside, but thermal mass on the inside. And they also create this beautiful monolithic concrete wall. So we’re using that as our wall system and timber frame for all of the the traditional, you know, framing aspects for the roof and all of that. So it’s it’s a, it hasn’t been done before.

Matt Derosier 52:04
Yes, I did was this made out of

Lauren 52:07
soy, they take wood pulp from like wood, wood, sawmill, you know, Duff, I guess. And they, they have a process a proprietary process where they remove the starches and the sugars from the wood. And then they replace that with a mineral complex and mix it all with a Portland cement. So it looks like a big cement block, but it’s actually concretized wood pulp. It’s kind of like hempcrete, right, if you’re familiar with that product. Yeah, yeah, you can cut these things with a circular saw right on the job site. They’re really cool to handle, they’re, they kind of fit together like big Legos. So it creates a really stable wall. And as you can see, like in that, yeah, in that photo, it’s got a rock wool insulation toward the outside of the wall. There’s that kind of yellowy looking tan stuff. And then where the rebar sticking up, that’s where you pour your concrete. And so that creates like a heavy pool or the cool so it creates like this honeycomb of concrete that ties all the blocks together and creates this monolithic concrete structure. These things are incredible, they are fireproof, they’re pest proof they’re waterproof. They’ve taken these blocks and sunk them in a lake for two years and then pulled them out and built with them and they had no structural changes whatsoever at all that water exposure so they’re they’re really cool and it kind of creates like this castle effect when you build with them you can kind of see in a couple of these pictures and and then you know you have this like 16 inch thick wall that just collects all the heat from inside keeps the elements out pretty amazing and has stopped bullets in tests too which is kind of a cool feature

Matt Derosier 54:02
might need that

you might make some enemies on on Twitter and they’ll be common for ya

Lauren 54:13
should probably stop trolling people

Matt Derosier 54:17
but we might get to that a little later because I find it really funny. That’s that’s so cool. So So you I’m a huge huge fan of alternative building methods despite being in construction and being only in like stick frame houses I did one sip house structurally insulated panel that that thing was garbage that is trash that is a true building method. But But anyways, so seeing things like this absolutely cool. This I did not so when I asked the question I had no idea You were doing this, I don’t think you’ve shared this. But that’s amazing. Your little nuggets of like, what? Anyways,

Lauren 55:12
you know, you so go ahead. I was just gonna say when we started this process we and I have to give a shout out to a couple of accounts on Twitter that are hardcore traditional architecture geeks for kind of turning us in this direction, but when we started this process trying to figure out how we wanted to build this thing. One of the guiding principles was that we wanted a house that would be there for 500 years and these fit the bill

Matt Derosier 55:41
Yeah, absolutely. Last question before we move on. When do you so foundation poured about going to be poured this this spring? Nope. Is poured. Okay, so when you guys start built using your Legos, the spring?

Lauren 56:02
We have started we’ve got our walls about seven feet high.

Matt Derosier 56:07
That’s cool. That’s amazing. I’m the summer I might take the family and take a road trip just to see your place because I this is fascinating studies. You’re

Lauren 56:21
welcome. Come on up.

Matt Derosier 56:23
That’d be so cool. So I remember not too long ago, you you you had a tweet about the size of your your current herd something like off the top of my head because I’m a good note taker. Like 25 head of cattle 150 chickens, and something else. Yeah, there’s something Yes.

Lauren 56:53
Yeah, we’ve got we’ve got a few pigs and we’ve got dairy goats and some horses floating around.

Matt Derosier 57:00
Do you want to talk about how how all those work together in in your system?

Lauren 57:08
Yeah, absolutely. So you know the cattle are the foundation always in you know, regenerative ag setting

Matt Derosier 57:17
That’ll trigger somebody

Lauren 57:21
Good, good. Come at me, bro. So you know, and we have shamelessly ripped off a lot of great techniques from people who are just beyond experienced in this stuff. With with more knowledge than I’ll ever have. So, you know, we have taken a lot of inspiration from Joel Salatin in our cattle and chicken processes, we have our rotational grazing, we definitely rotate harder and do harder impact than I think he does with his cattle. But we’re in a very different climate. And we’re trying to repair some seriously overgrazed ground. So we’re using some methods that he probably does not use, because his place is so much further ahead. But the cows are the foundation of that. And then we follow the cows with the chickens, the chickens kind of act as our heroine harrowing team and our property clean up, they go through and scratch through all the cow pies, keep the fly eggs down, eat all the bugs and kind of create a nice, top layer of fertility there. We also have our geese that helped guard the chickens and guineas, which helped with the the insects as well. The pigs we use as a giant tilling machine, so we run them anywhere that we want to really disturb the ground. And you know, like if we want to plant if we want to seed. If we want to remove the vegetation completely from an area, strip it down, so that we can get it ready cultivated. That’s where the pigs come in. And then beyond that, the goats also kind of fulfill the role like the cows do, but they’re much harder on the land. So we have to be a little bit careful about how we manage them. They tend to eat more thoroughly than the cows do they graze down harder, which can be a benefit if you wield it right. But we rotate them as well. So everybody’s in portable electric pens, everybody gets moved frequently. And we just kind of let the land dictate what it needs. You know, we watch it very closely. See how quickly the the forage is being eaten down. See how quickly the recovery is happening. Take good notes, pay attention, take that feedback. Observe, observe, observe, that’s always the key. And then you know act carefully from their

Matt Derosier 59:58
specific breed of pig that you use

Lauren 1:00:02
they’re mangalistas. They’re

Matt Derosier 1:00:05
very popular. I think. Between kunekune and mangalistas you got a 5050 shot at guessing right.

Lauren 1:00:17
Yeah, the kunekunes are cool, they graze and I hear they they don’t root as hard. As some other pigs do, the mangalistas are, they’re nice in this climate because they have hair, you know, they have a lot of wool on them. So they don’t require as much shelter and as much feed to keep warm. We’ve been really happy with them. And the pork is just out of this world. It’s it’s the best pork I’ve ever had.

Matt Derosier 1:00:41
I’ve heard I bought one. I don’t remember what the cut is. It doesn’t matter that it was amazing for for like, like a Christmas ham type of thing. And it was really, really good. Whatever the glaze I put on it paired with, it was like eating candy. I think I ate it for breakfast, like three days in a row. And then it was gone. So really, really good. So in addition to your livestock, you have horses, you adopted a wild horse from the Bureau of Land Management. How take me through that process, like what is what is that like?

Lauren 1:01:28
So that’s an interesting process. There’s a lot of argument happening right now about the BLM methods of managing the wild horses. Basically, they manage them as a feral species. So they have almost carte blanche to remove them. There are people that will argue, and I tend to be more in this camp, that horses are native to North America, we know they are they they evolved here. They originated here, they very possibly never disappeared from here. So that’s that’s the crux of the issue there. The BLM claims that the horses, although they originated in North America, they did disappear. They went extinct. And then they were reintroduced by the Spaniards which is what enables them to manage them as a feral species. There’s some good evidence that they never really disappeared here. There have been some findings up in Canada and the permafrost of horses they’re quite quite a bit more recent than the the date of they’re supposed to extinction. So this is a bit of a legal tangle that’s starting to come out. It’s very possible that the BLM will end up at some point having to manage them as a native species just like they do deer and elk, which is a whole new can of worms. But for now, the round them up, they use helicopters to round up whole herds of horses off the prairie. They run them into pins, they castrate them, vaccinate them, deworming them, brand them and bring them into civilization and attempt to adopt them out. They do their best they can’t adopt all of them out there are 1000s upon 1000s of horses standing in government holding pens right now being fed on the taxpayer dollar which, you know, is also a can of worms, but they do try to adopt as many as possible and that’s where this guy that we have came from. He was actually a BLM reject. He was considered unadoptable because he showed aggression towards some government employees and I have to say I’m with him there

Matt Derosier 1:03:54
I was gonna be like, Do you got the right horse? I don’t know what the problem is. I think you got the perfect horse.

Lauren 1:04:01
I agree. Like we have the same philosophy, dude. Do you want to come home?

Matt Derosier 1:04:04
Is his name Waco or something? Ruby Ridge maybe?

Lauren 1:04:08
His name is Cortes

Matt Derosier 1:04:09
Ah, okay.

Lauren 1:04:14
But, so he was sent to a secondary kind of reform program for troubled horses.

Matt Derosier 1:04:22
That sounds ridiculous. No,

Lauren 1:04:25
I know. So there are these dog Yeah, yeah, exactly. There. There are these these people who volunteer they’re called tip trainers tip and they take the the troubled horses from the BLM and try to work with them, training them, reform them and make them more adoptable. So he went through that process and came out the other side doing really well. He’s never shown any sign of aggression toward me. cuz I’m not a government employee. So and now he’s home and he’s doing really well. We we work together a lot. And I think he’s gonna be a fantastic horse. He’s smart as the whip. He’s, he’s incredible. So I’m excited to see how he turns out.

Matt Derosier 1:05:19
Nice, very cool. Why do we need to get rid of wild horses? Do we need to get rid of wild horses? Are they problem?

Lauren 1:05:33
Some would say they are. What do you? Well, I think I think there are a problem for people who are leasing BLM land for grazing, they are competing with the cattle and the sheep that are out on BLM land. There are a cattleman who, who thinks that the horses shouldn’t be there. They’re quite a powerful lobby, they put a lot of money into Imagine that. Right? They put a lot of money into getting the horses removed, they don’t want the competition. Right now the BLM has some kind of what I think are crazy requirements or restrictions, we should say around the horses and the number of horses that are allowed to be out there. You know, it’s something like one horse for every 5000 acres. I mean, don’t quote me on that, but it’s, it’s really minimal. They’ve worked really hard on removing the horses, they they bring them in through the roundups, which are quite violent. They often lose horses, horses die in that process. And then they also have a contraception program, they bring the horses in, they inject them with birth control drugs that last several years, implants, and then they cut them loose. So it is it is very much a concerted effort to remove them. sounds so ridiculous. That’s your tax dollars.

Matt Derosier 1:07:02
That’s the solution. Yep. Oh, what? Whatever. Whatever.

Lauren 1:07:13
Yeah. Oh, yeah. It’s like a whole political thing. There are people on both sides of that debate that are quite passionate about it. So for better or worse,

Matt Derosier 1:07:23
I guess. It’s just best to be stuck in the middle and just be like, just laugh, there’s like, it’s like, what are you going to do? Okay, so you might have mentioned this, what so what didn’t, I didn’t think we were going to be talking about your wild horse for so long. But I didn’t realize it was this is like a can of worms. For me. This is like a whole world. I have no idea. Why did you adopt this horse?

Lauren 1:07:53
Um, I don’t know, actually. Okay. Um, so I had some connections to the tip trainer that was taking these these horses that are, you know, needing to be reformed. And she shares pictures of them and their progress and how they’re doing under her care. And his pictures popped up. And I just, I don’t know what it was, it was like this gut heart sudden connection, like, oh, I have to I have to meet this horse. I don’t know what it what it came from. I was not looking for a horse at the time at all. I have two others that are, you know, totally sufficient for what I need. But there was something about him. So I went and met him completely fell in love, and decided to bring him home went through the adoption process, which is a bit of an ordeal with the BLM. And they approved me and I brought him home. And I’ve been very happy with the decision.

Matt Derosier 1:08:54
Good. I’m surprised. So is it expensive?

Lauren 1:08:59
It’s $125 to adopt a horse.

Matt Derosier 1:09:02
That’s not bad. Because they were even playing like radio ads down here. Like, hey, come get I don’t know what they call a wild wild like a BLM horse. I forgot what they call it, but they’re like, come get it plus $1,000 to take care of it. And I was like, I don’t know. Can you get it and turn it either. It’s like turn it into dog food. I don’t know, like down here in the Bitterroot someone could do that. I don’t know.

Lauren 1:09:34
That does happen. Unfortunately. Yeah. There have been many cases where people were getting truckloads, these horses, shipping them to Mexico or to Canada for slaughter. Rock loads truckloads. Yeah. And in fact, years ago, I had a bit of a tangle with Conrad Burns, who was our electric representative here in Montana. He

Matt Derosier 1:09:59
did Sounds just like a bad name like this guy.

Lauren 1:10:04
He was troubled. He was on the Appropriations Committee, I think it was agriculture. And he slipped this little writer into a funding bill, which was really sneaky. Nobody saw it to basically allow the slaughter of wild horses in this country for human consumption. And he didn’t, there was no debate, there was no vote, there was no none of that, you know, nobody. Nobody knew about this until it was through on this bill. It created this massive firestorm of argument and politics and protests, and it was several years of fighting to get that removed, and a lot of people involved.

Matt Derosier 1:10:53
Wow, so it’s, it’s gone. It’s it’s gone. It’s done.

Lauren 1:10:57
It’s gone. Horse slaughter is now illegal in this country. And that was the beginning of that fight.

Matt Derosier 1:11:04
Hmm. I was gonna my follow up question was like, How long for like, empty shelves until people just like, start eating their? Their their horses, especially the ones that are like lawn ornaments that nobody actually uses? Or rides?

Lauren 1:11:23
Well, if Venezuela is any indication, it’s not long.

Matt Derosier 1:11:28
Before the end of the year, or maybe next year, what’s your 2022 Bingo card look like eating horses?

Lauren 1:11:36
I wouldn’t be surprised I did not have the uprising of Canada on my bingo cards. So I’m gonna withhold judgment.

Matt Derosier 1:11:43
That’s true. Just like we were almost into month three. And we got to start over just clear, the clear the board, I want a new one. I want a new card. So you’re big into livestock? In it all integrates together. So you’ve got you talked about your greenhouse. So you want to tell me more about that?

Lauren 1:12:09
Sure, yeah. We just finished building our 120 foot long greenhouse, it’s a high tunnel.

Matt Derosier 1:12:17
Pictures of that. Yeah.

Lauren 1:12:21
That is, it’s going to be an integral part of our food production here, obviously. I mean, that’s a that’s a lot of space to create food. We’ve ended up in kind of an interesting situation here in this community, we’re in a food desert. You wouldn’t expect that in like northern Montana, you would think people would be pretty self sufficient. But up here, there’s not a whole lot of fresh food. There are a lot of ranches but they are they’re all in the commodity system. So they ship their cattle to feedlot and they don’t direct market. So up here, there’s, there’s really not a lot of local food available. And we realized this very quickly, when we got here, in our community made a huge point to accost us at every opportunity and make sure that we were going to be creating food here. It was like, Oh, you have cows, eggs, you have greenhouse, like you’re gonna be feeding us right? We we’ve scaled much faster than we expected here. And that’s new. So, you know, we we came into this kind of looking at it like, well, we’re going to build this house, and we’re going to build our farm and it’s going to be a bit of a process, we’re not going to get a whole lot done, and we’re not going to try to mark it for a while. Before we even had a house. Like we’re living in a camper, and people were showing up at our door to buy milk and eggs, and demanding it’s like we need food. And you guys are doing some stuff here and we want to be involved. And we actually had at one point like 15 neighbors packed into our camper, holding this community meeting going Hey, what are you guys gonna be growing? What can we count on? So love that

Matt Derosier 1:14:04
that’s amazing.

Lauren 1:14:06
So we’re crazy enough to be building a house and a farm at the same time and trying to feed the community and so far, you know, we’re we’re we’re doing a decent job I think with the with the milk and the eggs at least and this year, the produce will come online with this greenhouse so it’s been a bit of a project but well worth doing.

Matt Derosier 1:14:25
That’s awesome. I did not expect that answer. When you said that they accosted you. I was like given the surrounding area, like get out of here or like I’m gonna smash your tomatoes or something. I don’t know. Like, like, that’s, I mean, that’s cool. Was that intentional when you move there? Like did you know? Like, this is a food desert and I’m gonna capitalize on that.

Lauren 1:14:52
Um, you know, we had noticed going to the grocery store that there was a lack of good produce. Um, We didn’t know coming into it that there were so few farms here marketing to the public though. That was, that was a surprise, to be honest, I thought we were coming to this vibrant little community where a lot of people had, you know, gardens and farms and, you know, meat and things like that. And it’s, it just was not that way I was kind of shocked. So it’s, it’s, it’s a little bit of pressure, to be honest, you know, coming into a community like this, we’re where people are kind of looking at us, like, Hey, you’re our hedge, things are getting weird, are you going to be able to feed us it’s like, Man, this, this is, uh, you know, we’re, we’ve got some, we’ve, it’s gonna take some time to, to do that. And we’re not going to feed the whole community. So a big part of what I’m doing at this point is, is trying to help people set up their homesteads here and encouraging people to set up gardens and greenhouses and, you know, anything I can do to support you, you know, I’ll have a happily show up and help you learn and, but, you know, we can’t do this ourselves. So y’all need to, you know, have some food autonomy too, and sovereignty here. So that’s, that’s also becoming part of our life here that I didn’t really anticipate.

Matt Derosier 1:16:17
Amazing though that’s really great. That, I mean, that’s a great way to like, get to know your neighbors, like, I like that. Like, I like that guy. He’s pretty nice. This guy’s kind of a dick, though, I’m still gonna help him with his garden, because I don’t want dicks knocking on my door, asking for whatever, like for me to feed them. Right? I mean, the deal, like we need more decentralization in our food system. And like, you move into that area and producing food, like, you’re the centralization point. But now you’re trying to like, Okay, you all need to grow, you’re on. Put it on us. You can grow a tomato, or whatever it is, you eat, like, it’ll be fine. Like, just so that’s, that’s awesome. That’s awesome, that you’re doing that I didn’t know you’re doing that. That’s pretty cool.

Lauren 1:17:14
Yeah, we, we were actually thinking now that we need to formalize it a little bit and create some workshops and some classes moving forward. We are also building a farm store on our property. That’s, that’s a big part of our build here. So I’m trying to get the word out that you know, along with that farm store comes an opportunity for our neighbors to market some of their goods and maybe get a little bit more income independent as well and create a little side income for themselves. The you know, the outpouring of support for the farm store has been just incredible from this community. So people want it, they just didn’t know how to organize it. And they didn’t know how to get started. And there’s, there’s a lot of young people flooding into this community, and a lot of them are our urban refugees, and suburban refugees from cities. So you know, they know that the system is destabilizing, they know that it’s not dependable, they know that it’s probably going to get worse. But they don’t know what to do about it except run to the countryside. Right. But that’s, that’s the first step that’s not you can run to the countryside and still starve, just like you can in a city. So there’s, there’s this huge learning curve. And I think helping people through that learning curve is going to end up being an integral part of what we’re trying to do here. Beyond just directly feeding people, because like I said, we, you know, we can only feed so many with our own labor. But if we can decentralize, like you’re saying and convince people that this is worth doing, and it’s not that difficult. And you can learn these skills, you get your hands on the dirt, and you can make food come out of the dirt. With just a little bit of effort and a little bit of knowledge, then we might be, you know, in a much better position the next few years to write out like whatever is coming, which, you know, it could be inflation could be who knows?

Matt Derosier 1:19:10
Yeah, absolutely. I was just at a farm store this morning. And they open at nine, I got there a little bit after 10 they had already ran out of raw milk, but like had just gotten some sometime between whenever they ran out and whenever I showed up so it’s like, I’ll take a gallon and a half. Like that’s Yeah, cool. Like, I guess it’s lucky that I showed up when I did. Because I was like, I don’t they don’t run out and they did but they got more. So that just goes to show you like how how popular that type thing is. Like I’m sure we’re way of like, like, the population here is more dense. Where I’m at than where you are. So there’s something to be said for that. But so yeah,

Lauren 1:20:09
I think a lot of this is is somewhat new as well. You know, I, I’ve been homesteading for the better part of a decade and a half now. And, you know, five, eight years ago, there was not this kind of demand that we’re seeing now. You know, I sold goat milk, black market for a lot of years and produce, is there any other way? Right? Well, now, it’s legal. That’s good. It took us took Montana a while but sure, we know. But, you know, I, I always kind of had to market things. You know, I had to put effort into marketing. And now it’s not like that. I think. I think there’s been a sea change in the way people are experiencing the world. I think COVID and the lockdowns and the supply chain issues are, you know, of course driving that. But it’s been it’s been really interesting to see how people’s psychology has changed around food, food production and food buying. I didn’t expect that it would be such a rapid change in buying habits like I’ve seen. It’s been very, very rapid from Hey, you know, that’s great that you have milk and produce but you know, it’s cheaper at the store. And you know, it’s it’s, I can go to the farmers market, and that’s fine, too. Oh, my goodness, I need to know local producers. Like I want to have this relationship now. Because I don’t trust the store anymore.

Matt Derosier 1:21:39
So that’s really what do you you? You said you had 150 laying hands? Right? Yeah. What do you sell a dozen eggs for up there

Lauren 1:21:54
$5 a dozen

Matt Derosier 1:21:56
Okay. Okay.That’s not bad. I got a buddy down here who’s got like 350, 450 Somewhere in there is a lot and he goes for $6 a dozen down here and he will sell to restaurants for a little bit of a better price. Maybe 550 for a dozen depending? I don’t know but so that he he sells a whole lot of eggs. So So I guess we kind of already talked about implementing live

wheel of death thing. Okay, there we go. So what do you what are you trying to? What is your plan look like? With your animals? And you’re in your grazing pasture and maybe your garden? Are you going to bring in like chickens into like your, your garden or your high tunnel? And to like, you know, kind of prep the garden area that way at all?

Lauren 1:23:25
Yeah, we we’ve played with that idea. For sure. This this winter, we thought we would put the chickens in the high tunnel, but they did so well in their portable coop that we didn’t feel the need to. In right, right now we have our meat rabbits in the high tunnel, they’re doing really well in there and we have some quail. So once we have vegetables growing in there, I wouldn’t put chickens in because chickens are damaging. But the quail are kind of filling that niche. So they they will take the bugs right off the plants, they produce a lot of eggs, they’re good to eat. So they might end up just being the birds that live in there. We we don’t know, we’re gonna have to play with that a little bit. Of course, if we had a really harsh winter like 30 Below, the chickens would probably need to go into the high tunnel. So far, that hasn’t been the case. So, you know, at this point, our plan is to experiment this is I see I see this property as a giant laboratory. You know, this is a climate I haven’t worked with before. This is a piece of property I haven’t worked with before the soil is very different than what I’m used to the rainfall you know, the seasons are longer here. So that’s that’s kind of cool. So it’s just gonna take a lot of experimentation and seeing what works and you know, playing with it. But already in six months, you know, we started pretty late in the season. We brought our cattle here in like September and they immediately improved the land with was just like two cycles, one or two cycles of rotational grazing before the grass went dormant. We were seeing better growth, we were seeing greener pasture. So I’m, I’m really excited to see what happens this coming year. And to just keep working with it. I mean, that’s always the key, right is to make small changes, observe, see, see what happens. I mean, things, you know, you start changing things in ecosystem, you’re gonna have second and third order effects that maybe you don’t anticipate. So for me, it’s always about, you know, making changes slowly and working with all these moving parts and seeing, you know, seeing what works and what doesn’t, because what works here isn’t gonna work for somebody five miles down the road, and vice versa. So we really just have to play with it and see how things go.

Matt Derosier 1:25:50
Very nice. Question about the high tunnel. Was there a grant program for the high tunnel that you got in on or? Because I’ve heard about that, that you can get? It’s like NRCS, or something like that? Does grants for high tunnels?

Lauren 1:26:06
You know, I just heard about that program for the first time today from one of my customers.

Matt Derosier 1:26:12

Lauren 1:26:14
So no, is the short answer.

Matt Derosier 1:26:17
But that made you mad,

Lauren 1:26:19
little bit a little bit, although I think they have like an $8,000 limit on that grant. And ours was a bit more expensive than that. So it wouldn’t have been a whole lot of help anyway.

Matt Derosier 1:26:31
Sure. I did. I did hear like, sometimes they pay like half or a third or something it depends on depends on the thing. And it might not even be the one you want that the one that they make you get or something I don’t I don’t know how the program works.

Lauren 1:26:45
Well, maybe we’ll put up a second one.

Matt Derosier 1:26:48
There you go. Yeah, just inside the one you already built.

Lauren 1:26:53
That’s right. Double microclimate might work. Yeah.

Matt Derosier 1:26:57
So sounds like you’re helping others get prepared by helping them grow their own food. That’s a pretty good start. I mean, that’s a big start for a lot of people. But how else are you helping other people get prepared?

Lauren 1:27:16
screaming from the rooftops that they need to get prepared is is a big part of it. You know, I think I think a lot of people have kind of a gut feeling that things are not as they used to be, and they need to do something about it. But there are still a lot of people that I think are deeply dependent and don’t see a way out of that or don’t see a reason to get out of that. So I have a lot of conversations with people like, hey, you know, are you aware that we’re, we’re seeing a fertilizer shortage this coming year, that’s really going to impact agriculture? Are you aware that we’re we’re seeing like record inflation, that is going to make it difficult to buy food, as your food dollar is not going to stretch as far we’ve got, you know, the bird flu issue getting ready to hit. And that’s something that local poultry producers are already really concerned about. So you know, there are all these things kind of stacking up that maybe people who are outside of the farm and ranch sphere aren’t as aware of. So having those conversations is a big part of it. And then providing, you know, the positive aspect of hey, you know, okay, this is what’s what’s potentially coming down the pipe. But that doesn’t mean that it’s all doom and gloom, you know, you can be optimistic as is the Doom or optimism thing.

Matt Derosier 1:28:40
Okay, yeah.

Lauren 1:28:41
And you can take steps now that are gonna make this a lot smoother for your family to ride through. And it can be as simple as you know, some some tomatoes on the patio, in containers, or a few chickens in the backyard, start small, you know, don’t get in over your head. And, and also develop relationships with local producers, right, that’s a big part of this, like, we were just one farm, but there are farms everywhere. I mean, this is Montana, there’s farms and ranches, all over the state. Lots of amazing people doing really amazing work and producing a ton of food, and you need to support them. So they can continue to produce food and grow and scale their operations. And it’s gonna make it a lot easier for all of us to ride out whatever comes down the line. And even if nothing happens, even if things carry on as they always have, and you can go to the grocery store and get everything you need there. This is worth doing because the food quality is better. You’re gonna have better health over time, you’re gonna be more connected with your food, you’re gonna learn better cooking skills, you’re gonna have better flavors of your kitchen. You know, there are all these reasons so I kind of tried to have conversations with people on their level, and approach it from whatever angle they’re most comfortable. With whether it’s just culinary delights, or oh my goodness, the ship is burning and you need to do something about it. There’s a lot of room in between, in between those two extremes, to have these conversations so, and that kick starts the education process and then people go, Okay, well, what do I need to do? Okay, that’s an important question. Now we can start looking for answers and exploring what’s going to work for you and your situation.

Matt Derosier 1:30:28
Sure. I mean, when you talk to people like that, you have to have a lot of restraint, because like, You can’t scare them off, because then they’ll just like, No, nevermind, I’m just going to do whatever I was doing and hope it keeps working, like grocery store, Costco, Sam’s Club, Walmart, all that. I gotta have my like, put it all on my target red card. Like, I’m just going to keep hoping that works. Because, you know, so they talk about, I think a really easy one is food to start with storing food. And then you know, the gardening like, plant a couple tomatoes, have some chickens or whatever. Like, that’s easy. But like where you could really scare people off. It’s like, what if your well stopped working? What would you do? What if you couldn’t get gas? What would you do? What if they cut off power to your house or just lost power or whatever? What would you do? Like do you have a generator? Like, you know, it’s very, like, you could go down that rabbit hole hard. And they’ll be like, Oh, nevermind, like plug your ears like I don’t want to hear it like

Lauren 1:31:42
Yeah, yeah.

I mean, no, nobody, nobody wants to face the idea that they could end up having to live in Amish life. You know.

Matt Derosier 1:31:51
People aren’t ready to look better though, doesn’t it? It does.

Lauren 1:31:55
I mean for me Yeah, absolutely. But you know, I’m not I’m not as tighten as some might be. So

Matt Derosier 1:32:04
Yep, absolutely. Is Bitcoin part of your preparedness?

Lauren 1:32:09
Oh, yes. Yeah.

Matt Derosier 1:32:11
Are you a maximalist

Lauren 1:32:13
um no, I’m a land maximalist.

Matt Derosier 1:32:18

Lauren 1:32:19
A land maximalist.

Matt Derosier 1:32:21
What does that mean?

Lauren 1:32:22
You know, well, we hold Bitcoin, but it’s not our primary investment. Our primary investment is land tools. tangibles.

Matt Derosier 1:32:31
I get it. Okay. I was like, Is that like a crypto thing that I’ve never heard of? No, maybe we could just start a coin we’ll do a new Ico or whatever. And just the ticker is LAND and somehow NFT something something? I don’t know.

Lauren 1:32:52
I don’t know. It sounds like a shit coin. To me.

Matt Derosier 1:32:55
That’s why it has to have value like it needs to be non non fungible.

Lauren 1:33:02
That’s right. Yeah, no, we hold some some good old traditional Bitcoin and you know, otherwise we’re sinking resources into land livestock tools. We just brought home a sawmill you know, things that that we can continue to produce value with if you know whatever happens happens. I think Bitcoin is wonderful. I think it’s going to be an exceptionally powerful tool for sovereignty and for the decentralized revolution that we’re looking at trying to drive here but I don’t think it’s everything and you know, I think there are a lot of people that that look at Bitcoin as the end all be all and the final solution that they need for the financial system and yeah, I mean, it’s it is it is a good store of value potentially and you know, a tool for exchange and I love everything about its story its background and its its future but I don’t think that we should be just stacking SATs at the expense of the real thing this because you can’t eat a Bitcoin you know, Bitcoin can potentially provide you food. But right now you know, you you actually need food and you need tools and you need space and those are things that I think are are very, very worth investing in as well.

Matt Derosier 1:34:22
I think a couple of things. One, that no, you can’t eat a Bitcoin but you can’t eat us all metal either. That’s true. I think cash like the US dollar being a soft asset. People don’t have like they don’t think of anywhere else to put a soft asset like cash into anything other than Bitcoin being a hard asset. So like for you to be able like you diversify in putting in some into like Bitcoin. And then some into like a sawmill. The sawmill itself doesn’t do anything unless you have lumber, but you can produce lumber, which is a hard asset, like people are going to need it. And so like that makes a lot of sense to me to be able to spread it spread it out that way into tools and land and being able to produce food, like if you had, like infrastructure to be able to raise more chickens or goats or pigs or literally whatever BS. So yeah, it’s, it’s interesting. So what, uh, what do you think about these people that are like, get on zero, like zero Fiat?

Lauren 1:35:48
Um, well, I think I think we’re all going to end up having to do that sooner or later. At this point, Fiat has its place. I don’t love that. That’s the fact. But it is, you know, there are a lot of places that you need to transact that don’t accept crypto. And that’s, you know, everywhere from your grocery store, to your neighbor who’s selling tomatoes. You know, and I mean, those are great places to have the conversation about Bitcoin and to get people on board. But right now, we do still have need for Fiat and for the US dollar. So we kind of have to work with what we have. And I think I think it would be best to create a slower transition if we can, into you know, decentralized currency, rather than trying to take this sudden leap and destabilizing everything. I know, there are some people who advocate for you know, just rip it off, like a band aid and deal with what what comes. But not everybody’s in a position to to go through that in a graceful way. So I, you know, I mean, I have fiat currency, I have a bank account, I use it every day. But I try to use it in a way that is going to increase my stability over time and not increase my dependence on it. So I think that’s a that’s a key point that needs to be made. And people probably, realistically are going to need it, you know, they’re going to need the US dollar for a while. But I think we can move through it. And I think we’ve had some recent events that are showing people the power of Bitcoin, like with the truckers in Canada, you know, they’re freezing accounts, they’re freezing people’s bank accounts are taking their fiat currency right out from under them. But there are guys like popping into truckers windows with manila envelopes with $8,000 worth of bitcoin and saying here, not here. That’s crazy.

Yeah, I just saw a video the other day, some truckers doing a live stream and this guy pops in his window and hands in this envelope. And he’s like, Hey, man, thanks for what you’re doing. Here’s 8k in Bitcoin. And this was so you can keep doing what you’re doing and resisting. And this, you know, I had instructions in there on how to marshal the Bitcoin and you know, step by step and, you know, keep it off of keep it out of the system. Keep it off of exchanges, of course. And that’s that’s the other thing, man get your coins off the exchange if they’re there. Because Absolutely, we just found out that they’re not yours. If they’re there.

Matt Derosier 1:38:32
I heard first off that guy handing out envelopes. That is a hard core orange pilling somebody I mean, that’s amazing. I’ve never heard of that before. That’s cool. And I heard it heard, I always have been trying to get my any of my crypto off of exchanges as fast as possible. Yeah, I heard that coin base, like, for all the money that’s being exchanged, or you know, crypto that’s being bought by like billionaires and all this stuff, all these traders, that they might not actually have his Bitcoins, that it will almost be like fractional reserve banking of Bitcoin through Coinbase. If that makes sense to people that know what it is we’re talking about, like so. Get your money off of these exchanges before it’s too late. And we do find out that Coinbase is kind of like a huge drift like

Lauren 1:39:40
yeah, like, what if we ever run on Coinbase and we find out that there’s not not enough coins to go around? What do i Exactly,

Matt Derosier 1:39:49
exactly. So as part of preparedness, what’s the difference between self reliance and self sufficiency

Lauren 1:40:00
Hmm. I guess it depends on who you ask,

Matt Derosier 1:40:05
I’m asking you.

Lauren 1:40:07
So to me, self sufficiency is not possible. I actually wrote a piece on this some years ago called The Myth of self sufficiency. And, you know, I explored this idea that a lot of people who are new to the homesteading sphere come into this with the idea that, you know, I’m gonna go live on the land like a rugged individualist out in the Alaskan wilderness. And I’m going to provide everything I need for myself, and I don’t need nobody that, you know, might work for some extraordinarily skilled people who have all the time in the world and don’t really need other humans, but for the average human, that’s not the goal here. You know, if we’re talking self sufficiency, you know, if we really can’t be completely self sufficient, we’re always going to need something that somebody else makes, or produces or provides, or, you know, versus we can’t do everything, we can’t know everything, we can’t produce everything, there’s just not enough hours in the day. So, you know, I really don’t like the term self sufficiency for that reason, self reliance, though, you know, I can rely on myself and most of what I need, I can produce and what I can’t I can cover is more attractive. You know, it’s, it’s, the image that I have is more one, like interdependence, right? I have a neighbor who welds and I can make leather things and we can trade or I can trade my goat milk for some honey or whatever. Right. So the interdependence of a community of self reliant individuals, I think, is kind of what we need to aim at more than this kind of deep prepper mentality of of self sufficiency at all costs, and not needing anybody else. I don’t think that’s realistic.

Matt Derosier 1:42:03
I mean, look at look at that picture

of your parents when they were trappers, right. I mean, heavily, heavily self reliant to like, the nth degree. But they couldn’t be self sufficient. You said they still had to go into town every now and then to get supplies or whatever it is, like, that’s like the perfect example of what you’re talking about.

Lauren 1:42:29
Yeah, exactly. I mean, you’re not growing coffee beans on the top of a mountain in the winter in Colorado, right. So there are always things you need or you want and that’s that’s fine. That doesn’t mean that you’re failing at the homesteading dream. I think it’s realistic outlook.

Matt Derosier 1:42:48
Absolutely. So switching gears a little bit here. Who did you piss off on Twitter today? Anybody? Any today, specifically? Every day?

Lauren 1:43:05
I knew this interview was coming. So I behaved really well. today.

Matt Derosier 1:43:09
I want to talk about drama. I want to

Lauren 1:43:13
I don’t know Do you hear about that guy? Who stole his wife from some other guy? No. Oh, that was that was a big drama today. Yeah, so some masculinity influencer, apparently wrote this, this thread about how he stole his wife from some other man she was engaged to and he got just dragged through the mud. It was kind of glorious, because his story was quite awful. To be honest. I thought about jumping into that one. But I thought Yeah, you know, I’m gonna sit this one out and just laugh from the sidelines.

Matt Derosier 1:43:52
You’re the one I’m thinking about specifically. I think it was just earlier this week. You got blocked by soy boy.

Lauren 1:44:02
Yeah, yeah.

Matt Derosier 1:44:04
That was funny.

Lauren 1:44:07
Yeah, yeah. He was, uh, I think he was a, like a vegan vegan guy, plant based guy who jumped into a thread where I commented about, you know, food, of course, because that’s usually what I’m talking about. And he got quite upset about my perspective on these things. And that he, he followed me through you know, from that thread to my, my own comments and my posts and kind of created this, this little drama, it was interesting. And at one point, after a lot of back and forth, he goes well, we can agree on Bitcoin and something else. I don’t remember what so I guess we can be friends. And then

Matt Derosier 1:44:55
okay, that’s what friends do. Like. Like I I like how he was like declaring this is these are the terms? And then how?

Lauren 1:45:06
Yeah, people on the internet are interesting. Sometimes.

Matt Derosier 1:45:10
You you post a lot on Twitter about needing strong men. What do you mean by that?

Lauren 1:45:17
Well, we do. You know, I, I very and ironically called myself an anti feminist for a while on Twitter, I removed that. But it still stands, you know, I see that we’ve, we’ve had a damaged relationship between men and women. And that’s, that’s been going on a long time. I think it started with, probably with the women’s suffrage movement, maybe even before that, but it really took on steam with the sexual revolution in the 60s. And you know, all this, well, I don’t need no man, I’m a strong, independent woman, you know, women need men like fish need bicycles, that was a popular t shirt in the 60s. And I think that it’s time for our social immune system to kick in a little bit and realize that that is not a healthy outlook. It’s damaged relationships and family systems deeply. In the work I’ve done over the years doing Equine Assisted Therapy, and counseling for people, relationship counseling, family counseling, I’ve seen this firsthand, I’ve seen broken family after broken family, and a lot of it I’ve identified as coming from this primary relationship being damaged. Women need men, and we’ve been told that that’s not the case, we’ve been told that we shouldn’t say that or think that. And I think that’s, that’s kind of an illness, because it’s, it’s a basic biological fact. I mean, we are we are not the same, we each have different roles and skills that we fulfill. Kids, I mean, the data is very clear, it is in it is final, that kids do better in two parent households with a mother and a father present. And I feel like that should not be something that is up for argument, but it seems to be these days. And and that bothers me, I think that this is something we need to fix on the cultural level. And, you know, maybe I can do a little part by knocking some heads and arguing with some feminists and, and changing that and telling men, you know, that you you are needed, you’re appreciated, you are capable of things that we are not as much as, as women like to sometimes pretend that we can do everything a man can do and do it better. It’s not true. So I, you know, I think that this is this is part of, of the grand cultural narrative that needs to shift. And the sooner it shifts, the better off we’ll be, because I think we’re moving into some times, where having a strong man in one’s home and one’s life is, is going to absolutely, potentially make or break the success of a household and a family system. So, you know, we’ve skated for a while on government support, stepping into that role. And, you know, it’s allowed a lot of women to make choices that they maybe otherwise wouldn’t make if they didn’t have that support in place. So, you know, we, we really need to examine this, I think and create a different narrative, and one that celebrates the roles of the genders and the need for both people to show up as whole humans in that relationship and provide what we are designed to provide to the family system, and not at the expense of the other, you know, and not as a strong independent individual in this in this system. Because it’s, it’s not working, it’s just not working.

Matt Derosier 1:49:09
Do you think that’s intentional, like the Castro castration of men in our society? Is that like, by design, do you think?

Lauren 1:49:20
I think it is. You know, I don’t necessarily think that there was some, you know, secret meeting in a dark room where a bunch of social engineers decided, hey, we need to eliminate men. First, probably

Matt Derosier 1:49:32
on Zoom.

Lauren 1:49:34
Probably on Zoom. George Soros was definitely there.

Matt Derosier 1:49:39
Klaus Schwab and

Lauren 1:49:40
Klaus Schwab

Matt Derosier 1:49:41
Bill Gates.

Unknown Speaker 1:49:42
Yeah, yeah. No, I do think it’s intentional. I think, you know, the, well, there’s probably multiple aspects of this, and this is a whole other conversation. But convincing women that being in the home is basically slavery. And, you know, they’re not supposed to feel satisfied with that. And that the only place to be really satisfied and, and fulfilled and whole as a human is in a boardroom somewhere. That I mean, the immediate effect of that was was creating a whole, you know, 50% of the population suddenly becoming taxpayers, you know, it created a new tax paying base. So even if we don’t go beyond that, that’s, that’s significant, I mean, that significantly increase the power of the government, because of the influx of money. And then, of course, you know, the after effects of that were the depressed wages. So now, you know, with women in the workforce, men don’t make as much money as they used to. So now, the single earner household is much more difficult to achieve. So both parents have to be gone. Now the kids are in school being raised by the government, and you know, when the kids are being raised by the government, then they’re susceptible to the programming that keeps this whole thing going. So, you know, I do think it was intentional, maybe, maybe not as a well thought out plan, but definitely as a way to sway the population into giving up a lot of autonomy and sovereignty that we used to have in favor of, you know, the state taking the central place in the household, and that’s been extremely damaging to our families and homes.

Matt Derosier 1:51:26
Absolutely, it. It almost seems like whatever the mainstream is doing, like mainstream society, you got to go the other way. Like, I was saying that, like, don’t take that like, to the absolute, like, people aren’t eating rocks, I should start eating rocks, but like a lot of people or a lot of people are putting their kid in government school, gotta homeschool or whatever other option, like, like, just don’t do that. People are going to the grocery store. I better grow my own food. Like just gotta like, do you remember that? That movie? Maybe you never seen it? Lucky Number Slevin? I didn’t see it. There’s a movie called The Kansas City shuffle. If everyone’s looking right, you go left over, everyone’s going left you go right, like so it’s just like, just got it. You got to swim upstream sometimes. Like it’s, it’s tough. My, my wife does stay home with our son. And somehow, we like she, when she went back to work at like, three months after our son was born. Her. Her boss was just awful to her. Just like, it was like, something happened. I don’t even know what it was. But her boss is just just terrible. And so she come home just are like upset all the time. And she’s like, I crunched the numbers. We can afford for me to stay home. And I’m like, if you say so let’s do it. Like this is? Yeah, absolutely. Let’s do this. And so, so far, a year and a half later, we’re still making it work. So

Lauren 1:53:24
that’s good. I bet I bet the whole family system has benefited from that decision.

Matt Derosier 1:53:29
Absolutely. It’s I don’t like leaving. I don’t like leaving the house because like, you know, he’ll be standing at the door waving Biden’s like, dammit, I’ll just just throw my keys in the ditch and just stay home. Yeah. But yeah, we’ve been very lucky to be able to make that work. So because I’m sure a lot of people would like to have it this way and just can’t either can’t figure it out, don’t want to figure it out. Or, I mean, it’s honestly, to get a little little personal here. If my, if my wife was like, career driven, like she was you’d like she, she was like working in coffee shops or whatever. Like that’s her thing. She, you know, was a store manager and then started opening up stores for a chain and whatnot. And they were like travel, having her travel around the country opening up coffee shops or whatever, like that was her thing. And then I ruined that by moving us to Montana. So and she was trying to get her foothold in here. And the her last job was at, at the airport in Missoula, and they just like, it all fell apart. So like for, for her if she was more career driven, and like wanted, whatever she wanted to do like I want to Um, I want this. I’d say go for it. Like, if that’s what you want to do, I’ll be a stay at home dad, I don’t care. Like that’s just, that’s just us personally. But if that’s not how it worked out, so we’re the conventional mom stays at home dad goes to work, instead of mom and dad go to work and you get raised by an almost changer.

Lauren 1:55:30
I’m really glad you were able to figure out a way to make that happen. And I think most people if they were willing to make some changes could figure out how to make that work and their lives would require some downsizing. You know, but I think it’s worth it.

Matt Derosier 1:55:47
Oh, you mean living below your means? Oh, like a peasant?

Lauren 1:55:52
Yeah. Yeah.

Matt Derosier 1:55:56
So well, hey, very cool. We’ve been going for almost two hours now. You want to you want to play you want to wrap up on anything before we do? Do plugs?

Lauren 1:56:09
No, I mean, this has been a wonderful conversation, and I’m really glad to have been invited on I appreciate your time and appreciate yours. Been a lot of fun. Thank you.

Matt Derosier 1:56:20
This has been a lot of fun. You can find Lauren on Twitter at Lauren in the wild. Her handle is bull respecter. What did that come from? By the way? What does that mean? Is it pretty self explanatory?

Lauren 1:56:38
It is. We bought our first bowl and had a lot of conversations in our house about what that means. You know, and a big part of that is is not forgetting to respect that that animal could kill you. If he decided to and that bowls are dangerous even when they seem very placid. So somewhere in that conversation, I said, Man, I’m a lifetime bull respecter because I have been chased by them. I have been terrified by them. I’ve had to jump over fences to get away from them. So it stuck.

Matt Derosier 1:57:11
Understood. Understood. You said you’re working on a website. So that is, Are you are you trying to like hook up your Farm Stores? Do the website? I’m assuming. So

Lauren 1:57:27
yeah. So our website is actually going to start out as a digital farm store. You know, until we have a physical location built, which is going to come a little bit later that will serve as like our online ordering system for our neighbors and our community. So they’ll be able to log on see what we have in stock. Put their orders in.

Matt Derosier 1:57:48
Yeah. Well, great.

For everyone else.

You can follow FarmHopLife almost everywhere. Let’s try to make it hard to not not stay in touch with you. So, great, thanks for thanks for being on Lauren. I appreciate it.

Lauren 1:58:08
Thank you