Sunday, July 17, 2016

Some days, I wanna laugh so hard at people

I homestead off-grid, as y'all know. It's not the easiest life to choose, and sometimes it's one of the most difficult, because it seems like everything that can go wrong, absolutely does at the worst possible time. (Right now, it's my sole generator has decided that if the microwave and fridge are running at the same time, it will shut itself off. Solution is to unplug the fridge for a few minutes when I need to nuke something. Getting away from that so eventually, I can get rid of the microwave entirely.)

But what is so funny is people's expectations of how much free time I actually have since I homestead. Apparently, I just sit around all day, waiting for things to happen and enjoying fresh air and sunshine all day long, with nary a care in the world. HA! I only WISH it were that easy!

Today, for example.

Ran into town to do laundry and pick up lunch fixings for this week at the Just Over Broke since the deli is back up and running. The crap that passes for lunchmeat in the prepacked stuff is just gross. Pricier in the deli but more edible.

Filled up a gas can and two water jugs.

Mowed most of the yard and did the weed-eating around the house to neaten things up.

Did dishes.

Fed the cats before I left for errands and came back so I could dump out the litter box and do a complete change out on it. (When it starts to smell a bit ammonia-like, even with twice-daily cleaning, it gets dumped, bleached and redone completely. I wouldn't want to smell ammonia in my bathroom like that, so I'm pretty sure the fur kids don't want to, either.)

Swept the floor.

Replanted all the empty cells in the flats one more time, hoping to get a fall garden of late tomatoes and peppers and eggplant, and late cucumbers and three types of squash (acorn, zucchini and yellow straightneck summer), along with some Calabrese broccoli. Eggplant was Shooting Stars, peppers were plain old California Wonder, and Tomatoes were Mortgage Lifter, Black Krim and Red Beefsteak. We shall see with that. Watered seeds/seedlings that finally came up after FOUR months and the garden. One of the Cherokee Purple is starting to blush nicely, but accidentally knocked a ripening but still green tomato off the vine, so HE can have it for fried green mater slices tomorrow.

Worked on the Etsy shop.

Got some insulating done.

More work on the Etsy shop.

Made and ate dinner.

Anybody wanna trade lives with me? Right now, I think I'd take a nice, quiet-ish city apartment where I can have my cats and don't have all this other stuff to deal with, lol!!! Well, maybe for a day or two, then I'd be bored. Anybody who thinks I have nothing but free time on my hands has no clue what I go through, even on a weekend day.

Back to work in a bit, I think ... there's so much to do and add to the shop, and to pick out from my suppliers that I can't sell on Etsy because it's not something I made or a supply for crafting, that I want to put into a flea market stall or three ...

And yet, there is no looking past the fact that things have to get better because I need a second generator, I need to get the closing done on the land, and I have to get the cabin winterized and a heat source in for winter.

I'm looking at propane this year, as I already have a small propane heater that takes the canisters but can work with the 20-lb. tanks if I get the adapter and hose for it. Cheaper than a wood stove for this year.

I also need to get a couple interior stud walls put up and a shower stall in for something resembling a real bathroom. I need a well dug, I need a deep well submersible solar pump and a small shed for a pumphouse. I need to plumb the cabin. I need a solar and wind turbine system to power the cabin without a gennie. I need a bigger garden. I need fruit trees, nut trees, a small vineyard, lots of different kinds of berries. I need a deep freeze for more meat and other garden produce. I need a dehydrator for easier storage of many foods. I need a smokehouse for more meat. I need chickens and rabbits and redworms. I need to get the interior of the cabin finished properly. I need kitchen cupboards. I need a bedroom with a real wall and door. I need an on-demand hot water heater. And that's just all the things I can think of off the top of my head that have to be done to make this place a properly livable HOME, and a lot less primitive.

It isn't going to happen overnight. It's going to take YEARS of slogging. I might have it all done the way I want by the time I'm ready for Social Security, if it exists then. Am I up for the challenge? I have absolutely no idea, but even on days like lately, when I want to cry so hard it's not funny, I keep my chin up and keep on keepin' on, because quitting is simply NOT AN OPTION. Much like the poem says, "Rest if you must, but don't you quit."

So I'm going to rest with a book for a few before heading back to work on the shop. Gave up on Bonanza ... unless I'm willing to have them "advertise" my stuff for me and pay upwards of 10% of each sale for the "help," I haven't sold a thing in about a year. Buh bye! Sticking with what does work - add in that there are so few groups on FB where I can promote Bonanza but a ton for promoting Etsy, and it makes the choice easier. Stuff I'd sell in Bonanza can eventually go into a flea market stall. Time for book. It's not great (Kindle freebie, author needs to work on verb tenses and so forth a LOT), but it's not so awful that I can't stand it, either.

Now if I only had some ice cream.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Holiday Musings

It's the holiday, and I'm doing okay. The weather broke some recently, so the  temperatures are a bit cooler. It rained really well the last couple of days, so the garden's been well-watered. I really want to get some rain barrels for next year, to catch rain. Plan is to plop a water plant and a couple goldfish in each one, to keep the bugs down and the water from going stagnant, and for the goldfish to eat any mosquito larvae that end up in the water, with daily feedings of fish flakes in the meantime.

No word yet on my job bid at the plant. If I don't hear by tomorrow, two weeks exactly after the job closed to bids, I'll be going to HR and finding out what's going on. I want my new job, and with just over three years in for seniority, I'm pretty well guaranteed a spot.

Spent most of my holiday weekend down with salmonella of some kind. I had it all, and it was not fun. I stayed in bed and slept a lot, ate the "hospital diet" of soft foods and kept really well-hydrated. I was NOT going to end up going to the ER for this. I should have suspected it Thursday night, because I felt like crap all shift and it just got worse the longer the night went on, to where I almost didn't get through it. Friday morning, I woke up and thought I was going to end up in the ER for sure, but lots of fluids later, which I'm still pouring down me, I'm doing well enough to eat a small meal of solids each day now. Back to work tomorrow!

I've gotten a few new things up in the Etsy shop, and some are darned nice. While it's Christmasy, it would work year round, too, and it's a neat design (not mine - I'm not that talented!). People are going to have to lay out some dough for a pair of THESE pretties though, at $40 a pair. What else do you expect with Swarovski and TierraCast elements in the things?

Angel Earrings with Swarovski and TierraCast elements

And this is the first harvest from my new garden! A little cereal bowl full of green beans! I got a small half-handful again yesterday and they are all in the freezer awaiting me to get fully back on my feet, food-wise, so I can make hamburgers, mashed potatoes, and make the beans up with bacon, bell pepper, onion and garlic. Oh yeah. Gonna be yummy!