Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Growing up Off Grid

I was recently fortunate enough to have an interview with NPR / american Public radios "MarketPlace" weekend addition. ( If you are interested in listening it will air this weekend.) The topic was "cutting out the Middle man".
After the interview , I called my mom to chat and tell her about the interview. So what kind of questions did they ask you?"she asks,  and then asks " Did they ask how it has effected Norah , growing up with this lifestyle?"
They did not ask this question. The interview was fairly short and they had specific questions..

But what if they had asked that?? There really would not have been an answer.. And  like my husband said " Norah doesn't know any different, she is growing up this way, its what she knows."

She is an off grid kid ;) She doesn't have the handheld devices ,  video games , and has very limited tv time. We do not have television per say, but have a TV for dvds, which can only be watched when there is an extra sunny day.

It just  what she knows..................

She knows not to flush the toilet if the generator is running( haha),, she knows to turn the lights off when she leaves a room, she knows when I say " we have hot water now. that means right NOW while the fire is going or the sun is hitting the passive solar heater,and bath time is right then n there.
She knows to turn off the water when brushing her teeth to conserve water. She know that the sun makes our lights work and that wood heats our home, lets us cook and gives us hot water. She knows that rainbarrels are used for watering and that using the hose is a luxury ;) She knows to dress warm in the winter and light in the summer because there is not air conditioning and winter mornings can be chill until the fire gets going.

This is what she knows.

I suppose there are times when I might feel a little guilty that she can't wake up on Saturday and watch the morning cartoons ( like I did as a kid!) but when I see her wake up put her play clothes on and run outside at 8 am to catch bugs, crayfish or dig a hole in the dirt, or build something and use her imagination..  I tell myself,, this is what   She Knows .............. and this is a wonderful thing!!!

The Cools

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Autumn: Stocking up and winding down

well, We are Finally caught up on the wood situation. Robb spent 2 weeks bringing home truck loads of wood. We live in a National forest with a 12 mile gravel ride through it, so he is fortunate enough to be able to grab a down Tree off the side of the road ( or sometimes in the road, and yes that happens often; he always carries a chainsaw with him) cut it up and bring it home. and it only costs us 20.00 for a wood permit to legally get wood throughout the forest.. pretty cheap heating bill ;)

We heat entirely with wood, with NO back up. all of our hotwater is heated with wood, and we solely cook and bake with wood. So its kind of important to have the woodshed stocked.
AND after 5 yrs of splitting wood by hand or trying to borrow a wood splitter we were fortunate enough to be able to buy one. This has helped Tremendously in saving time. We are by no means done hauling and splitting but feel we have a good handle on it.

The pantry is pretty well stocked too. I still have some more to do . I am hoping we get around to building more shelves. I want to extend the pantry on the right hand side, ( L shaped) by putting more shelves up there. I am running out of room! 

The fall garden is in. I planted Kale, lettuce, carrots beets, broccoli, cabbage, and spinach. My spinach had a heck of time germinating, so I have reseeded it for the 4TH TIME. 

I have more Beans flowering and hope to get a good harvest before frost sets in.

Sweet potatoes still need dug, and I am really trying to be patient and let them grow a little bigger , but am really tempted to go out there and tear things up ;)

Robb did a hive inspection and all the hives look pretty good. Its probably the last inspection for the year before winter sets in.

 Hope everyone is having beautiful weather! Its been an absolute Joy to work outside these past couple weeks. Enjoying every second before the cold sets in!!

Happy Autumn!!!!
The Cools