Getting off the grid is a learning experience for me, I am going into this lifestyle blind and learning as I go, but there are times when things don`t go your way and you deal and move on. No one has time to sit and pout or complain about what is not in their control.
Each month I am trying to buy something that will help me better for when I go total solar power, although I wanted to finish under pinning the porch and new toilet seats, I did not buy any of that stuff because that is not going to help me, so I bought a "need" instead of "wants."
I needed a chainsaw so that is what I bought, but I have to say this one will be a temporary chainsaw but nonetheless it is a chainsaw, Its electric. I need one for my business because I have a tree that has rotten branches that have laid down onto the roof of one of the houses and it has to be removed, I also need a chainsaw to finish clearing the area for the greenhouse here. I picked a gas powered but the person with me made a good point and that was my age and strength and where I am going to use it. I already have more than a hundred feet of extension cords from the closed business, the roofing business, this chainsaw was not expensive so I said yes this time.
I bought more canning jars. I always wait till Saturday and I buy them from Dollar General store because I have a coupon for $5 off $25, so I can get three cases of half pints jars , pint jars or quart jars for $24 and I will add one box of freezer bags and have the $25, I walked out last time paying $20 so it took the tax and a little more off. But to me $5.00 is $5.00.
Another thing that had not went my way this year is the garden, although I had a wonderful crop of squash and zucchini, it seems the rain stopped and the garden of for the most part dying. Some say water it but this city water is way to expensive to do that daily, it has been said more than once " I need a well" but I have not gotten one as of yet. Last year was an awesome year for my vegetable garden and I am proud to say I still have okra in the freezer and I still have pickled okra for this coming winter because I have only got two fresh meals from the two foot tall plants out of this garden. The corn is almost dead so that is also a no go this year.
The tomatoes are all turning red now, some small and some not, so I am canning those as I get them. So far I have only canned around a case of tomatoes and salsa, 12 jars is not enough because I use tomatoes in many of my meals so I will be making sure to get more tomatoes or tomato products canned up.
I have thought about removing the older dead plants and replanting some foods but I would have to lay a watering system under the dirt to keep them hydrated. I have new baby cucumber plants ( sown last week) that will be put near the deck on the old flowerbed so that I can water those often, cucumbers love water. I have to say they have stopped producing in the field and I only got six quarts of dill pickles.
But I am learning as I go and I know that life won`t always go as I want it to. If I could only get it into some peoples heads ( men) that vegetables in beds are not a bad thing and sometimes you don`t need a whole field to plant to make food then my life would be easier and I could install a backup watering plan.
What is next? Buying tanks for water storage so that maybe this won`t happen again where the plants dry up because the lack of rain and putting up a greenhouse.
Since I know that I cannot depend on the traditional ways to grow food its time for me to plan, plan for plants to get what they need to give me what I need.
How are you coming along with getting off the grid or being off the grid?
By Andria Perry
Photos by Andria Perry