And we are in the process of down sizing our home to prepare.
On top of downsizing we are also looking for a rental (and property to eventually purchase
after our first year), researching locations and also getting in mind what our home
we are purchasing needs to have or not have. Our goal eventually is an off grid sustainable homestead.
In order to do that we have to learn how to be more frugal with our resources.
I'm not talking about just money. But with our energy as well.
Being off grid doesn't just mean creating your own power but to use less power.
We have seen many who go off grid and want to live the same life as they did before.
Gadgets galore, lights on all the time and then needing to use propane to power their whole house
generator or still getting some power from the grid. Off grid to us doesn't just mean some solar power.
Off grid to us means we create all our own power with no help from the grid or alternative means of fuel.
We understand that the only way that can happen is if we just consume less power.
Why wait until then to start? Using less can start now if we want a true off grid life.
We know this is a hard process which will have many learning failures.
But we also know planning helps in any major change in life. So, we plan.
What is necessary and what can go by the wayside?
Our list of things we are reducing or giving up :
Lights - We have begun slowly to use oil lamps for dinnertime and eventually will rely
solely on them when we are in our own home. Whether we are off grid or not.
Dryer - Given that up completely already.
Dishwasher - Also have given that up completely already.
Multiple Game Systems - We gave our oldest who is not living at home the PS3.
We are selling are super outfitted PS2 and only keeping the Wii.
We are also eliminating any games that are not favorites.
I realize gaming systems are a luxury but at this point we enjoy playing
them together as a family. And we only play it a few hours a month.
But that could certainly change in the future.I am hopeful it will. :)
Heating - Before anyone has a heart attack understand we live in South Florida
where in the coldest of weather we use maybe 2 weeks of heat.
The climate we are moving to will be colder than we are use to. We are doing this
this winter in order to save money and most importantly acclimate ourselves to the cold.
Microwave - We are trying to give up the microwave not only for money and electric
saving issues but health ones. They are not safe for our foods and really break
down the nutrients in food. So, we try to use ours less. We home in our next rental to
either not have one or to unplug it. In the home we purchase we will not have one at all.
AC - This is an area we are reducing now in hopes when we move we can REALLY
reduce or do without. Our thought is if we can brave South Florida heat with minimal
AC, then Northern heat will be easiest to tolerate. At least that is the plan!
Desktop Computers - My wish is that the 3 desktops we have be replaced with laptops that are
better quality. They use less power and now a days, hold just as much.
Washer - Now, you really have thought I lost my mind. But we are using our washer
more efficiently and less often because we are downsizing our laundry & reviewing
our wearing habits. When we are off grid we will not have an electric washer.
We will use a manual one, whether our hands or we may invest in a James Washer,
either way we will have a wringer. This wont be the first time we have
done laundry by hand, so we are prepared for that.
Small appliances - We have a vast array of small kitchen appliances. Many I really do not need.
Seriously, they are a luxury items (stick blender, anyone?) mostly so I am parring them down.