It has been a long, busy winter so far. The solar power has not been enough to really use my computer at home with all the dreary and snowy days. It has been increasingly difficult to get to town to use the internet at the library to post even comment replies. Good news is that it is starting to warm up and the snow is beginning to melt. I can charge my computer and it is easier to get to town. I hope to hit the ground running with new blog posts and lots of projects as spring approaches. I have a couple stories to share about the winter and a little about choosing seeds and planing a garden with seed saving in mind. By then, it will be spring and the projects will be on a roll. The first story is the story of the tent collapse.
The first summer we lived on our property, we camped in a canvas wall tent. It was a great little home for the warmer months, but was not set up to keep us warm for the winter or to support a snow load. We moved into the cabin in a hurry in late October (we live in Central Maine). We hoped to save a little money by emptying out our storage shed and moving our stuff into the tent. It would only be able to be there for a month or so before the snow fell and the tent had to be taken down. It never was emptied out, so we had to keep the snow cleared off of it all winter, but it survived. That spring, we kept saying, “we gotta empty out that tent.” And that summer, “we really need to go through our stuff in the tent.” And that fall, “we have to do that tent tomorrow before it snows.” “It’s gonna snow tonight. Better keep an eye on that tent.” “Nah,” he said, “it isn’t going to snow that much.”
I walked out the front door the next morning and noticed how very much it had snowed. I ended up being 4 hours late for work because I couldn’t even get out of my driveway. Then I noticed that something just didn’t look right. I surveyed the area carefully. It was early in the morning and I couldn’t quite figure it out at first. ‘Wait a minute…where is the tent? I think that’s it, but has it always been so low to the ground or did the snow just pile up high all around the it?’ “Hey honey…I think the tent may have collapsed.” I stated rather calmly. “Oh yeah,” he answered as he looked out the front door, “I guess it did.”
You would think that we would care a little more that our storage tent full of junk has collapsed on top of all of our stuff that was inside. Tons of stuff piled up that we hadn’t hardly touched since the move. We just moved it around a lot. The reason I share this is because one of the biggest mistakes we made when we made the move off grid was keeping too much junk. We moved boxes from storage shed to storage shed all over the place and we just ended up ruining the stuff anyway. Most of the important items had been removed from the storage tent as we needed or wanted it, so it was mostly just stuff. But there is still of tent full of stuff that we moved all over, just to have to throw it out. This issue doesn’t just apply to moving off grid, but you do need much less of the stuff you once needed once your lifestyle changes so much. The items and tools you need living off the grid are much different from the items you would need living in town. Not only do you need much less of this stuff, but it is also much harder to safely store. Don’t waste your time and effort like we did. Just get rid of it!