We are the family with the un-mowed grass at the end of the block.
I’ve been comparing my blog with that of others who write about the subject of living off grid – perhaps unfairly. Most blogs offer accurate information and how-tos, informed by education and experience. People like blogs that offer useful information.
Mine is stories.
When we left our old world for our new, the adventures began and I felt compelled to record them, and maybe share them with others. I hope to turn our tales into a book.
Neither me nor my husband or super go-getters so almost nothing we do is top-notch although we try. We end up stumbling along in a human rather than super-human manner and the results of our efforts are often just-enough and not pleasing to the eye.
When I take pictures, I avoid the trashy looking parts of the property. My husband says I worry too much about appearances.
We do all of our own repairs so half of them don’t get done if we can’t find instructions of the internet. That would include our central heat which stopped working when we attempted to install a propane fridge which is now sitting in the shed getting dusty.
I built our generator shed out of pallets and it looks like shit. I also built all of the shelving in our shed from pallets. They aren’t Pinterest-worthy but they hold stuff.
Our garden fence was constructed from trees and old barbed-wire fencing left on the property seventy years ago. Our solar panels were mounted on plywood for the first six months we had them.
We are experts at nothing but the journey seems to be what is worth writing about. I wonder how many people are like us – that just do their best which is far from perfect but they still live a rich life despite themselves.
Although we’ve struggled financially for the past two years, we haven’t been sitting around doing nothing. We were working on something that has finally come to fruition and the rewards are just beginning.
Now we can pay someone else to fix things or just buy new ones. We paid off our current property and are now in the market for a larger chunk of land with a house.
I’ve thrown some money at my blog hosting site and hope to reach more people in the coming months.
In the meantime, you won’t find hacks here – just stories of how we fudged this or that. I hope that revealing our humanity is enough to keep someone coming back.
If you’re looking for authoritative pieces on this and that – keep looking.
You see, I’m no authority on just about everything. What you’ll find here are my personal experiences, thoughts on things, and some poetry with odd themes such as solar power and Halloween.
I’m the first one to admit I’m not perfect. I have a really bad anger problem along with depression and anxiety.
Neither me nor my husband have our shit together by any stretch of the imagination. When we made the big move from our suburban home to a wildly different setting, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to talk about it but I am not offering advice because I probably shouldn’t.
We are self-professed eccentrics; responsible people wannabes. We’re secure enough with ourselves to admit we envy others who seem to have perfect lives. We are the ones who show up at the farmers market to sell something only to discover the seller down the row has four times the inventory, professionally displayed with matching business cards (that really happened).
I’d like to think that we represent the archetypal underdog -that part of our collective consciousness that we hide from each other’s view. I hope that by being honest about ourselves, we can reassure others who suffer from less-than-perfect syndrome.
As a matter of fact, we like being a little off. We’re intelligent and kind and we revel in our off-ness. We are castaways on The Island Of Misfits. In a nutshell, we have low self-esteem but we also think we’re pretty cool. Reconcile that.
I think we all struggle with the idea that we have aspects of ourselves we love and some we loath and they have to occupy the same space in our heads. Just stay on your own sides of the room.
So we’re not perfect, and we didn’t have the picture-perfect display when I sold necklaces at the farmer’s market. We’re the kind of people who’ll use duct tape when we’re supposed to be using electrical. Why?
Because we either can’t afford it, don’t want to do it the right way or don’t know how.
“Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.”
― Louis L’Amour
Yeah, only in my case, you have to dig the damned well, install a water filter and about five-hundred feet of hose, put the hose in the trailer water inlet (it puts the water in the trailer or it doesn’t get the coffee), turn off the water pump that you realized has been on all night pumping air, make the coffee after you get enough water in the tank to make it, check on said status of water refill, run in and check on coffee making status, run up to the top of the property again to “turn off” the water (pull the hose out of the spring), run down again and turn the coffee to low for perking, turn on the generator sometime during all of this, and plug in the fridge because it was turned off when plugged into the solar.
It’s then and only then that you can sit down and have the freaking coffee.