This is funny! I was writing about how hard it was living without electricity and how much better it is now. Nice long blog with lots of details. I was about halfway done and the power went out. At least the generator was consistent and I was in charge of when it went off and on:-)
I’m not in the mood to write all that again so I’m going to sum it up. I will write in detail how we went about homesteading gradually, but I want to give an overview today.
We bought our place with nothing on it but lots of trees and mosquitoes. From that, God has provided and we have a house and barn and lots of critters. It has taken time and lots of negotiation.
I didn’t ever want to live without power or water, and even made my husband promise me that he would never ask it of me before we married. I was raised without power and had decided it was probably the worst thing ever! God is the master of attitude adjustments and I am so thankful to Him for working in my life.
One thing we did, was to buy bare land and finance it with the landowner. That is still done, even this day and age. Then we bought rough cut lumber from the local saw mill and did the interior in log from trees from our place. I have pictures of that first summer…everyone peeling and peeling logs, and setting them in place.
One thing that is true to homesteading, is that we had animals before we had a place for them. A friend called and said she knew of a baby cow that needed a home. I called my husband and begged. We cut down a couple of trees, cut that into lengths and nailed it to other trees for a pen. Then we cut 4 trees that were in the middle of the pen down and left tall stumps…about 5 feet in the back and 8 feet in front. Covered that with a tarp and Viola! Mocha had a pen and a barn.
Since starting, we have refined things alot. Our house is now properly insulated and sided. We have real floors, not OSB. Someday, I even hope to have porches and a dishwasher…maybe we’d better not get carried away:-) We even have a real barn—log of course!
The point of all this is that I know that if you are teetering on the edge of starting a project like this it can be scary. Come October of that first year here, we still didn’t have our house insulated. Did I mention that we live in Alaska?? I have never known cold until that winter. But it was okay. Boy did we grow as a family. No light and not enough heat forces a family to work together. I would get the lantern in the evenings and read to everyone as we would snuggle on the couch. It sounds wonderful now, but it was the hardest time of my life.
I want to share one funny story. (I can laugh now…not so funny then!) My son, daughter, and husband all got the stomach flu. It was winter, of course..20 below to be precise. The kids had the pukies, but my dear husband had the other end. He would sit out in the outhouse until he couldn’t feel his legs anymore then come back in to warm up. It was miserable. We ran out of water so I was stuck. I started melting snow to clean up after them. We ran out of clean towels, paper towels, everything. It was the middle of the night. Finally, around 4 am, things started to settle down. Everyone was through the worst and had gone to sleep. I was wiped out from caring for all of them and trying to clean up after all the ick. I was loading up the woodstove so I could try to get some sleep, too. A spark shot out of the stove and got me. I swatted at it and didnt’ think much about it until I smelled burning hair. I turned to sniff my hair and it was ON FIRE! Yeah, I had used hairspray the day before. I was fine, it was not that big a deal, and you couldn’t even see the damage the next day…but you could smell it! I can only imagine what they thought at the laundromat the next day when I went in to fill my water jugs. I smelled like icky flu and burned hair! When my healthy son woke up the next morning, he asked what smelled so bad. He had slept through the whole thing….the flu, hair on fire, everything!
Homesteading isn’t so bad, but I never cut it that close with water again. And I went and bought more towels.
Maybe I will spend Wednesdays writing about our process from start to now. We have learned alot. Hope it can encourage you.
Thanks for reading.