Back to Basics: No it's not child abuse and yes our children love living off the land


Since posting online about her family's plan to stop shopping at the supermarket for a a year, our columnist Lydia Harvey has received some harsh and negative feedback from the public accusing her of being a bad parent. But as she writes in her column this week, contrary to popular belief, her children love their new lifestyle.

When we decided at the end of last year to really implement our supermarket free year for 2017, almost instantly we received negative feedback from the public.

Lydia says her children are excited to learn where their food comes from.

Lydia says her children are excited to learn where their food comes from.

Source: 1 NEWS

What we were doing was different and it wasn't a lifestyle choice that would cross the mind of most people and to most this would seem like an impossible task to take on.

But this was not a New Year's resolution or an unprocessed thought. This was carefully thought out plan for a new way of life by our family and in every aspect we weighed up the pros and cons of living off our own backyard.

I went into this project wide awake. I knew this would mean that for me it would become an unpaid full-time job, yet my final decision was to just do it.

Those who really know us were not surprised but also not sure how or if it would work.

Then there were those who did not know us and that's when the negative comments began to flood in.

After we made headlines for our plans to ditch the supermarket we received cruel and unwarranted remarks targeted specifically at our parenting saying what we were
doing was "child abuse".

Lydia's daughter helping out in the garden.

Lydia's daughter helping out in the garden.

Source: 1 NEWS

That one comment alone almost broke me and made me want to stop before we had even really started.

That was until those who did know us saw what we could do and supported us.

So are we helping or hindering our children?

These past four months my children have learned so many lost skills from foraging food such as berries to knowing how to store food.

They are connected with where their food comes from and they can all prepare meals.

Lydia's little boy helping out his mum in the garden.

Lydia's little boy helping out his mum in the garden.

Source: 1 NEWS

They are connected with their community, making friends with all ages and they think of things others around us need and contribute to many community projects.

Are my children doing without? Depends on how you see it. Every day they have access to unlimited fresh foods, hot meals and home baking.

So no it's not child abuse and no my children don't hate this lifestyle.

They're loving it and we're becoming closer as a family and learning to service others.

From Lydia's Garden: Black forest cake gluten free/vegan

Everyone loves a piece of chocolate cake and this delicious black forest cake will go down a treat with friends.

Lydia's gluten and vegan free black forest cake.

Lydia's gluten and vegan free black forest cake.

Source: 1 NEWS

1 cup of almond(or soy) milk
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 3/4 cups of self-rising GF flour
1 cup of brown sugar
1/2 cup of quality cocoa
3/4 cup of warm coffee
1/3 cup of sunflower oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 line of broken dark chocolate (Whittaker's)
1 handful of frozen berries

In a separate baking jug set aside the milk and baking soda. In a mixer combine the dry ingredients.

Once they're mixed, add the rest of your ingredients to the mix on low.

Then add warmed milk and baking soda to the mix.

Continue until the mixture looks moist and glossy.

Then pour the mixture into a cake tin baking at 160 for approx 25 minutes.

Sit for 10 minutes before turning onto a cooling rack.

Once cooled, cut in half, spread a layer of jam in the middle before topping in melted dark chocolate and berries.

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