A Taste Of The Homestead Life

Life Style

The recent global pandemic had adults all over the world fighting over toilet paper, and stocking up on canned goods. Many of us were awaken to how reliant we are on others for our basic essentials.

Homesteading or at a minimum, starting a small food garden started to look pretty attractive to even the most committed urban dwellers.

Homesteading: is a lifestyle of self sufficiency . It is characterized by independent agriculture, home cultivation  of food, and may also involve the small scale production of textiles, clothing, and crafts for household use or sale.

One family is already ahead of the curve. Haute & Muslim sat down with Nadirah Ransom. Homeschooling professional and homesteading aficionado, to discuss her journey to living life off the grid.

Nadirah, please tell our readers about you?

I am a homeschooling mom from Philly with four boys and a husband. As a professional I am a preschool teacher. I have an associate degree in computer science and an associate degree in early childhood education. I am currently at the end of my BA program for elementary education at Western Governor’s University and I plan to start my MA in education administration at Grand Canyon University next year InshaAllah.

What inspired /inspires your homestead journey?

 Wanting to be responsible for my children. Growing up I had a lot of family challenges. I was not raised by either of my parents although they were both around. As I got older, I always said that when I had children I would be the one responsible for them. And to me that meant feeding, housing, clothing, and educating.

Can you share your journey?

WOW! Ummm. That goes back to being young. I went to Catholic School and developed a close relationship with God at a young age. This was not forced on me by school (even though we prayed regularly and had religion class) or family. All I wanted to do was focus on my relationship with God. I wanted to read the Bible all day. I was going to be a nun. The more I read the Bible it encouraged the faithful  to be fruitful and multiply. So, I decided that I would listen to God get married and have babies. But I wanted to be responsible. I wanted to raise them in the proper way. The Christians I observed around me were not doing that. So, I looked around for the people that were doing that. That’s when I found Islam. I want to be clear, I NEVER changed any of my beliefs for Islam. Islam confirmed all the beliefs I already had. As I went along in my young, married, and childbearing life I learned how to crochet, cook, and homeschool. As the children got older and were more self-sufficient, I would do more outgoing things like camping and foraging. I did this until I felt the children were old enough and I had enough skills to make the leap. We started volunteering on different farms and getting our hands dirty until we felt ready to do it on our own. Coronavirus changed all that…….. We were not supposed to move to our farm just yet. But Allah swt put everything in place and told us now was the time to make the move. So, we bought a bus, packed up our children and moved to the farm with two tents, a shed, no electricity, and having to get our water from a well with buckets. 

 Have you met other homesteaders and how have you helped each other?

Yes, two have helped me. Both Black women. The first woman lives in a tiny house on land that she rents. She farms meat. She pays her rent with the meat she raises. She taught me how to raise chickens and how to process them. She taught me how to use Instagram and hashtags. The other was a Muslim sister who lives in VA like me. I met her on YouTube. The funny story is we would talk on social media. I would like her pictures and comment. Nothing fancy. Well one day I received a letter from the city of Philadelphia saying that they received a complaint that I had goats and that goats are illegal in residences in Philadelphia. I did not want to get rid of my goats, but I didn’t know what to do. So, I made Dua and asked Allah to help. The next day I in boxed the sister and introduced myself properly and asked her if she would foster my goats. I did not know this woman at all. She got back to me and said yes, and we have been friends ever since. She helps me with the business side of things. She makes sure I have my exemptions, and health permits and all that stuff.

What products do you offer or hope to offer?

Currently we offer organic teas, local honey, and hand slaughtered halal organic pasture raised chicken and chicken parts. We hope to offer larger meat like lamb, goat, and beef.

The morning view on the Ransom Homestead

Do you describe yourself as a minimalist?

Yes, I do. I have always taken the hadith to live in this world as a traveler to heart.

Is your homestead/farming inspired by Islamic values? How so?

Absolutely.  Bukhari Hadith 2320. Where Prophet Muhammad  (pbuh) said there is none amongst the Muslim who plants a tree, or sows seeds and then a bird or person or animal eats from it, but is regarded as a charitable grift for him.

What challenges have you faced?

SOOOO many. We have faced challenges amongst other Muslims. We have faced financial challenges. There have been employment challenges. But the biggest has been family. We have been talked about, unsupported, and just drown right ignored. We have been called naive for thinking we could grow all our own food. Or live without electricity. Or fetch our own water. It has been tough.

How can we follow your journey or purchase items for sale? 

Please Follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube. Like, comment, share, and subscribe @Homesteadransom. We would like to monetize our social media, but we need subscribers LOL. I am really bad at marketing. Our website is www.homesteadransom.com

What Is your favorite Dua (prayer)?

I don’t have one really. I just ask Allah to keep my heart accepting of my circumstances and my intentions pure. I never want to forget why I’m doing this, and I want to remain centered.

What Dua (prayer )  (  would you want our readers to make for you? 

That I am successful in doing the work and that I am able to be a blessing to the community.

If there is anything else you want to share please do.

 I want to let everyone know that we are available. I answer IG messages and inbox messages if there is anything someone wants to know about this lifestyle or how to get started. I am an open book. I will do my best Inshaallah to help anyone.

Ameenah Muhammad-Diggins is an award winning American Entrepreneur and Business Coach. Her best selling book " Bashirah and the Amazing Bean Pie" made history when it became the first Islamic Children's book to be adapted into a play by a major U.S. museum. She founded Haute and Muslim in 2020 to answer the need for a faith based inspirational lifestyle brand. She has been featured in Essence Magazine, Huffington Post, Rolling Out , Philadelphia Magazine and SJ Magazine. Have an idea for an article? Email ameenah@muhammaddiggins.com IG @ameenah_diggins


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