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Keeping up your standards, or not


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Having enough burnables in our current house in the city would definitely be a problem. However, if we were to bug out to my parents' house, they have a 90 foot long barn that collapsed over the winter due to the heavy snow...Wood wouldn't be an issue there for awhile. Most gasoline would be reserved for cutting firewood. Of course the other issue at their house is a lack of a fireplace or woodstove toburn the wood in! We'd need to pull out our fireplace insert and take it with us. It is a model that can be used as a freestanding wood stove or as an insert. It probab ly wouldn't be sufficient for heating their entire house, though.

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The area I'm planning to move has few trees. However, there are a good many feed lots. I read an article yrs ago (I think in BWH, though may have been MEN) where the author said he made bricks from manure, let them dry and burned them in the woodstove. He also said that he was wondering how the ashes would do in the garden vs the straight aged or composted manure so he did two identical beds. One he used composted manure and the other ashes from the manure bricks. He said the one with ashes did significantly better. So I'm thinking once I move I can probably get a few truckloads of manure. I can make a form that will make several bricks at once, then dry them in the sun. I don't think it would be any more work than cutting, splitting and stacking firewood. The bricks stack nicely once they are dry too and should be easy enough to handle.

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This is a really interesting question. I'm not sure if it is a good or bad thing that I don't do a lot of this stuff now. We don't change sheets every week consistently, sometimes I just forget and typically the girls are washed when the go to bed so their sheets shouldn't be that dirty.

 

We usually do baths every other day because otherwise we have dry skin and in the winter especially I don't see a need for more often. We hang our towels to dry after baths so we can reuse them a couple times. The girls change clothes at least once a day but there are times I go to bed wearing what I've worn all day, sleep in it and wear it most of the next day. I do need more jeans/pants though. I rewear mine a day or two simply because I don't have enough that fit to change any more often. I'm a sahm to two small girls showers are a luxury most days and our house is never spotless, lol.

 

Teaching the girls will still be a part of our everyday activities. Learning about math while cooking, numbers and counting while picking up toys, etc. We weave our learning into our regular daily activities. But I do need to add more candles to our emergency supplies. That is something that I know we don't have enough of.

 

I'm not saying I think this will be a breeze by any means and of course I will dearly miss my washing machine and dishwasher but I've done without in the past. This does give me some new specific areas to focus on though. More pencils and paper for the girls, more candles, bar soaps, and extra clothing for myself.

 

LOL I wasn't about to say how often I change my sheets either! Let's just say it won't take much to adjust...

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I haven't read all the replies to this, but my resounding opinion is a big fat NO! I think we will be more worried about and occupied with everyday life and making it through the day. We will try to fit in some of those extras when an opportunity presents itself, but no we won't be preoccupied with the "fluffy" stuff.

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CGA, you brought back a plethora of memories. Great thread.

 

I was raised on a self sufficient farm in Michigan. No electric, no sewer, and an hand pump for water, for the first 5 years.

 

Daily chores started at the break of day and included tending the animals: cows, chickens, turkeys, ducks, and pigs; gathering and chopping wood, cooking, canning, gardening and cleaning. We'd shed our work cloths, soap up and get water poured over our heads to rinse off. The used bath water was recycled to wash the work cloths. We'd hang them out to dry on the line as we headed off to school. Repeat when we got home.

 

I hope that we never have to return to those days, but if SHTF, we know what to do and how to do it. After the initial shock, priorities and routines would set in. Yes, we would do everything within our power to maintain our standards.

 

Our particular difficulty, where we live now, would be a source of water, something that is a rare commodity in the desert. Bugging out is one of our contingency plans, depending on the circumstances.

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My Granny lived off grid on her homestead and as a child I loved to spend the night with her. She taught me so much! Of course I thought it was a wonderful adventure. I doubt I would think it was as much fun now!

 

I have hardwood floors (no need for a vaccuum) and we handwash our dishes now. Not having lights would be a big adjustment but I have plenty of oil lamps, oil, and candles, hopefully enough to last a couple of years using them sparingly. I would start washing clothes in 5 gal. buckets with a plunger to aggitate them. But without a clothes wringer my hands and wrists would hurt something aweful from squeezing water out! We have a spring fed creek and pond but hauling water to the house would be another back breaking chore. I know sheets would not be washed every week! Baths would probably be a bucket wash once or twice a week with a daily wash up in between (face, pits and privates).

 

We have alternative forms of heat so we could stay warm and cook food but this would only last as long as the kerosene and propane held out. If we couldn't get more after about six months we'd be up poop creek. We don't have a wood stove or any kind of a supply of wood.

 

For me I think the 2 things I would miss the most would be daily HOT showers and ice cold 2% milk. I LOVE my showers. The hotter the better! They're like therapy for me (mental and physical). And I'm a milk-a-holic. If I don't drink it every day I get an intense craving for it. I've tried raw milk and I know I couldn't drink it like I drink milk now, if at all. Plus there'd be no refridgeration.

 

The scary part is that I feel I'm totally unprepared for primative living, but at the same time I feel I'm substantially more prepared than 90% of the population!

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The scary part is that I feel I'm totally unprepared for primative living, but at the same time I feel I'm substantially more prepared than 90% of the population!

 

I can really relate to that statement... While I do try to do a few things in an old fashioned way, I don't really live primitively. The first week might not be too bad with all of our preps, but when it has dragged on for three months, I can imagine that it would become tedious. While I don't mind gardening, I don't do it everyday... I love my bubblebaths and girly things. While I love having a fully stocked pantry, I also love being able to go to the store to buy the things that we think we need.

 

The real difference between my household and a household of sheeple is that we have at least tried to use old fashioned methods when they didn't inconvenience us and that we have lots of books and reams of internet printouts that can assist us with knowing what to do to survive. To me, that isn't much of a difference!

 

I can talk a good game about what we can do and how we have know-how...The real question is do we really have the fortitude to endure the extra chores and drudgework that would come our way as a result of the end of our current way of life?

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Prior to the advent of electrically operated vacuum cleaners, the tea leaves would be saved from the teapot (after all the tea was brewed) and they would be sprinkled on the rugs. Then they were swept up. This was supposed to remove a lot of the dirt.

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I think the damp tea leaves are kind of the "old-fashioned" precursor to some of the carpet cleaners of today. Aren't some of them damp when they come out? :shrug:

 

 

I thought of this thread tonight when my fourth kitchen drawer broke. :sad-smiley-012: Darn cheap kitchen. Every time my pans slide around in the cupboards without shelves and push the door open, I groan "Someday... SOMEDAY... I will have kitchen cupboards that WORK RIGHT!" Modular housing is not quality housing. :( (On the plus side, I still have *one* drawer left that has not YET broken... emphasis on "YET"... <_< )

 

Anyway, I guess I wanted to say that I am grateful that I have *some* knowledge of other ways to do things, *some* equipment that might help in those ways (cast iron pots, kerosene heater, etc.), and the ability to adjust fairly easily and not give up because my fingernail broke. Kind of my flippant way of saying that I guess my "standards" are just getting a job done, however I can, safely and carefully.

 

:shrug:

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Och! I'd forgotten about that tea leaf thing, CGA. :P I just thot Christy had accidently dumped the tea pot.....

 

Soooo, did it actually work?

 

MtRider [...hey, I'm not the only one :laughkick: ]

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Yes, the tea leafs actually work. When you sweep up dust, it tends to get airborne.

Damp tea leafs on a wooden or tiled floor, make the dust stick to the leafs and it gathers most dust without any flying up.

You end up with little balls of dust that are easily removed at your leisure :grinning-smiley-044:

Don't put it on a carpet, it will stain.

 

Persian rugs were treated in winter by placing them face down in fresh snow. They were beaten with whatchamacallit in English to remove dust first.

This:

11031229358_8.jpg

Then the snow sucked out the remaining dirt and left a fresh bright woolen rug.

Not that we had any Persians mind you. We did have coconut fiber mats. Rough on the feet but great to protect the floors... which were of scrubbed up and worn out wood. :)

 

As for dropping a teapot... Mt_Rider, you been at my house have you? :cheeky-smiley-067:

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I just use a damp mop when the floors are dusty.

That is what we do, too. Our mop is usually damp from use anyway, so if there is a spill, we immediately mop it up. We also keep a spray bottle with water and vinegar handy to spritz on anything that is sticky or reluctant to come up off of the floor.

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I thought of this thread tonight when my fourth kitchen drawer broke. :sad-smiley-012: Darn cheap kitchen. Every time my pans slide around in the cupboards without shelves and push the door open, I groan "Someday... SOMEDAY... I will have kitchen cupboards that WORK RIGHT!" Modular housing is not quality housing. :( (On the plus side, I still have *one* drawer left that has not YET broken... emphasis on "YET"... <_< )

 

:shrug:

 

LOL I don't even have 4 drawers in my trailer! We have 3 in the kitchen, and the deep one that should have towels in it is broken. So, the towels go inside the cabinet and the drawer is in the laundry room....

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So you UNDERSTAND.... yes.gif

 

 

Modular housing is just a glorified trailer. So far the shell is relatively sturdy, but it's harder and harder to keep mice out, so I'm beginning to worry about *that*. :(

 

It could always be worse, so I *try* to keep chugging along...

 

:bighug2:

 

 

(But yeah, my "standards" bar is kinda low... :24: )

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I'm giving up on drawers. I keep thinking I have all the mouse holes plugged then another one or two find a way in. I'm putting nearly all our clothes, towels and linens into totes. I WISH they'd make a mouse proof drawer.

 

You'll understand why this (the only post on this page) crossed my eyes when you learn that I grew up folding laundry and hearing that "drawers" covers both step-ins (what girls wear) and man-shorts (what boys wear).

Edited by Ambergris
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I'm giving up on drawers. I keep thinking I have all the mouse holes plugged then another one or two find a way in. I'm putting nearly all our clothes, towels and linens into totes. I WISH they'd make a mouse proof drawer.

 

You'll understand why this (the only post on this page) crossed my eyes when you learn that I grew up folding laundry and hearing that "drawers" covers both step-ins (what girls wear) and man-shorts (what boys wear).

 

 

:sHa_sarcasticlol::cheeky-smiley-067::ashamed0002::girlneener::whistling:

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