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The sad hard truth, we have become people of leisure and convenience, and for those conveniences both parents need to work, their kids go to daycare or school, and we rely on others to raise our kids. We barely see them. When I talk like this, it makes some very mad. We have to to make ends meet, they say.
I have heard all the things they say, but think about this. Not so very long ago, my grandparents, Granddad worked (his job was the farm) but many other men worked out the house while the wife stayed home with the children. They did household duties along with sometimes going out into the fields. Then I can go back to my great great grandparents. If you didn't have a school close, you were schooled at home with what education your parents deemed you needed. If you go back even a little bit further in time schooling was taught using the Bible. Now, we are a society of convenience and we live in a very busy world of constantly running to keep up.
A few years ago God allowed us to live in a home off the grid and the solar wouldn't last. The generator would quit, so we learned to live in the moment and eat by oil lamp, cook on a wood stove, get what needed to be done done during the day, I worked and schooled the kids as well. We all grew a lot. There are times I miss that house, as we all grew us very close...we played board games by the oil lamps. Life seemed simpler. Harder yes, but way more family oriented. I know that I like modern conveniences as well as the next man but I can see how much God grew me during that time and sometimes it just seems better.
The house that God blessed us with left little to be desired. There are stories to be told before that time, and there will be more stories that won't be told. I could probably write a book from what brought us to this point in our life, another book on this place alone, and then another for what came after that. For now though, I am going to keep it on the main events that are probably the biggest things we learned from. To start, this trailer house was so torn down already, we needed to use a tractor to pull the thing from his property through a tight curve and a canyon onto our property. Once there, we leveled it, got it set down and just prayed that God would help us. We had decided that we wanted to make something with the means that we had. We got to work. I took out almost every wall to rebuild. We used pallets that we had taken apart for the flooring, and put up milled aspen for the walls. Made built in shelves. Found a clawfoot bathtub that needed some work. I ground the rust off of it and painted it and then bought the plumbing for it online . We had decided that we wanted to try to live off grid, homesteading. So between working on the house, taking care of a really sick baby, homeschooling my older son, planting the garden, and tending the animals I stayed very busy. Some days it seemed like we would never move in. Finally, the day that we moved in we had an outhouse. Our refrigerator was in my father in law's barn up the road. We didn't have running water yet, so we hauled the water and warmed it up on the wood burning stove or the fire pit outside. Almost like Little House on the Prairie. We did a lot of bonfires and cook outs. I never liked to cook but I do like science, so between the boys (husband included) food allergies and a wood burning stove to cook on I had a lot of science and experimentation. A decent meal would take me three hours to cook but it would taste some kind wonderful that is impossible to describe. My garden was growing and the animals were maturing. We had milk from the goats. Our pigs were getting to the point were they ready to be butchered. And of course hunting. We did go to the store for food and supplies but not nearly as much as we had before. The house was coming along. The generator would work and then it wouldn't. I tried to conserve using it so that we had it for evening when everyone was home. Using if for an hour or so even at night, meant quality family time. Eating by bonfire or oil lamp, talking and playing board games by oil lamp. There wasn't the Xbox and the computers all the time. During this time we added an addition so that Grandma, who has Alzheimer's, could come live with us. Our house was the closest thing to where her brain could connect. It just all worked out by God's grace. Grandma and the kids are another whole story. The memories and experiences we have will never be forgotten. In our current home we are bringing in the wood cook stove. We didn't put in a television, as we want the basics; the simple life. The kids spend a lot of time outside. We do a lot of hands on learning and we enjoy and value each other. There is more to tell, but this is a start.