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Viewing 15 posts - 391 through 405 (of 417 total)
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  • in reply to: Refrigeration how much? #64861

    There are many foods that people keep in the fridge that don’t need refrigeration, keeping them cool does allow those foods to last longer, but they don’t NEED refrigeration. We have a small cube (dorm sized) refrigerator but rarely turn it on. We do have access to a neighbor’s refrigerator if we really need it (for milk mainly, and the occasional pound of ground beef), I will say that walking/hiking up and down the mountain side to get a glass of milk makes one not be as interested in having milk.

    Anything that contains vinegar is fairly safe to keep outside the refrigerator, pickles, pickle relish, ketchup… I don’t know about mustard (I don’t eat that very often). I know mayo does require refrigeration. We get fresh eggs from a friend and I request that they not be washed, they can safely stay outside the fridge, We use a lot of powdered and canned milk for cooking.

    One thing I do is I purchase those little individual serving size packets of mayo, mustard, ketchup and pickle relish, these do not need refrigeration, but it does say on the box to keep them in a cool location. I find that the mayo has to be used within a year of purchase or they start tasting “off”, the rest of them seem to last a lot longer, I suspect it’s because they have lots more vinegar. You can find these by the box in Sam’s Club, you can also order them from the internet.

    In the 3 years we have lived off grid, we have learned how to live with very little refrigeration for our food, I just don’t buy very many food items that require it.

    Wretha

    in reply to: Refrigeration how much? #64864

    Another thing I forgot to mention, when I did have a full sized refrigerator (in town), most of what I kept in it was leftovers that usually didn’t get eaten before it went bad, so I was paying to store rotten food until I decided to toss it out. I can’t speak for anyone else, but for us, it was a near total waste. We are much better off without the refrigerator, though I will admit that there are times when I wish I had one, not very often, but it does come up from time to time, that’s when I pull out the plug for the small fridge.

    Something I am planning on doing is making a chest freezer into a refrigerator using an external thermostat, it’s supposed to be very efficient, running only a few minutes per hour is what I read, the biggest drawback is placing and removing food from it, it’s not as convenient as an upright refrigerator.

    Wretha

    in reply to: Healthcare off the grid, a must have! #64836

    I can only speak for my hubby and myself, we live off grid, have been here since Dec 07, we didn’t have health insurance before moving here and we certainly do not have it now. We are fairly healthy to begin with but are not in our 20s any more, I’m 45 and he’s 50. We are physically active, could stand to lose a little weight, we have to hike up the side of a mountain to get to our home, it’s not a long hike, but it’s not like we just pull up in the driveway and step into the house either, I believe that’s one of the reasons why are as healthy as we are. We use very little in the way of power tools and appliances, mostly doing everything by hand. Bringing anything home from the store requires several trips up and down the mountain to get it home.

    I am learning more and more about our local plants for medicinal purposes, I also utilize herbs and supplements from the health food store or buy online. We don’t go to the doctor when we get sniffles, we don’t tend to take medicines (prescription or otherwise) in the first place. So for us, this is an easy choice, it’s no different than we lived when we lived in the city, no insurance before, no insurance now. Except for real emergencies, broken bones, major bleeding, fall off the roof sort of things, neither of us will go to the doctor, we take care of our own problems. I did purchased a bottle of antibiotics from a fish supply, it’s the exact same medicine you get from a doctor without the doctor visit and bill. I don’t expect to actually use it, neither of us has had to take antibiotics in many years, hubby had some teeth pulled and needed it then, for me it’s been over 15 years since I took them, it was also teeth related. But in the event that we would need an antibiotic, we have it now and can take it if we need to, if it expires and we never use it, I don’t think of it as lost money, I think of it as our insurance in case we need it.

    I don’t know what people would do in our situation if they had major health issues, I will say though, there are many people living in our community who are poor and have health issues, it’s no different than being in the city, they go to the doctor and to the hospital as needed, many of them are on medicaid or medicare.

    I believe, like Bob Marshal and elnav said, many ailments we have are self inflicted, by bad diets, by not being active enough, by living in polluted and stressful places, by taking the poisons the doctors give out like candy, it’s high time to become more self sufficient with our health, stop relying on pills and doctors, allow our bodies to heal themselves, to take proper care of our bodies and mind (and spirit), our bodies are magnificent machines that are self repairing if we would only give it half a chance. BTW Bob, at 45 I still have skin breakouts, so don’t feel like you are alone with that, I have to wonder if it’s at all related to all the hormones given to cattle and chickens, in the meat we eat… I’m not a conspiracy theorist, it’s just a thought. Give the spammers Hell!

    One more thing, in our community, we have a physician’s assistant, this is a nurse who can do most everything thing a doctor can, this leaves the doctor free to treat more major problems, our PA can even do minor surgery if need be. We haven’t had to go to either of them, but I understand our local doctor and PA still do house calls, and I know that they sometimes work on people without taking payment, sort of like a real country doctor. :)

    Wretha

    in reply to: How to get started off-grid #64819

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    in reply to: In an Emergency, country or city? #64820

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    in reply to: How long have you been off grid? #64821

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    in reply to: What are the best cold weather clothes? #64822

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    in reply to: When is off grid not off grid #64823

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    in reply to: Would anyone live without electricity? #64824

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    in reply to: DC powered lights and fans #64826

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    in reply to: How long have you been off grid? #64803

    Hubby and I are living 100% off grid, we moved here Dec 22, 2007, we have done everything very much on the cheap. We both love living primitively, yet we do have some technology, such as electricity (we generate all of our power via solar), we have lights, computer, internet access…

    I wouldn’t go back to living like we used to, I feel like we are in more control of our lives in every way.

    Wretha

    in reply to: In an Emergency, country or city? #64804

    I would say where ever you are, city or country, you need to be prepared for short and long term disasters, have a supply of food and water, it doesn’t have to be a lot, most disasters are short term, if you are able to get by for at least …2 weeks without having to leave your home, then you are far ahead of the masses. Get foods that don’t require cooking or heating, canned foods, there are lots of rice and noodle dishes that are pre-made in packages that can be eaten right out of the package. It doesn’t cost much to buy up a few extra packages of food like this each week or each payday, shop at dollar stores to get good buys. Canned meats, chicken, turkey, ham, tuna… you can even get these in foil packs so they will not take up too much space.

    Buy cheap bottled water and store these, if you can’t afford it, then recycle plastic soda bottles, just be sure you clean them well and add a few drops of plain chlorine bleach, honestly if you can afford to buy soda, you can afford to buy cheap bottled water, it doesn’t need to be the uber expensive water, look for store brands. These tend to take up more space, you can get creative where you store them, line them up in the back of your closet, under your bed…

    As you are doing this, and it would be utterly irresponsible if you choose not to, you can be buying up other things that may be needed if you have to shelter in place, things like first aid-bandages, alcohol, aspirin, ibuprofen, tape… if you can afford it, invest in a good first aid kit.

    There are lots more things to do to really be prepared, but if you will just START doing it, starting this payday, you will be much better off than if you didn’t do anything. Before anyone says “I can’t afford to do any of this…”, my response is how can you afford not to, do you really think the government is going to take care of you? Remember the last few natural disasters and what those people went though? Do you want to be in that boat?

    Shop at the dollar stores to make your money go even farther, save your money for important things, do you really need to eat out at lunch? Bring your lunch to work and you will save lots of money. Cut down on your frivolous expenditures, do you really need every channel on cable or satellite? How much money can you save by getting a cheaper package, or perhaps cutting it off altogether? I know I’m asking tough things of you, but in a SHTF situation, when you are standing there with your world falling apart, will you be wishing you had watched another soap opera or will you be glad you purchased some food and water to get you though whatever problem you are facing…

    Wretha

    in reply to: What are the best cold weather clothes? #64805

    I use a down blanket at night in bed, we don’t heat our cabin very much, in fact, it’s not uncommon for us to see our breath inside the cabin, I used to freeze at night under layers and layers of blankets, my MIL sent us a down filled blanket and it made all the difference in the world, I am comfortable at night now, in fact it’s about time to get it out and get it on the bed. Thinsulate is a good material, down filled is good (not feathers, get down), wearing layers helps, I know you said you are allergic to wool, but perhaps you can wear wool in a layer that is not next to your skin. I am also knitting and crocheting fingerless gloves, hats and socks, it does keep me warmer.

    Remember, layers are good, loose layers allow air pockets between the layers and that helps, wearing a hat is also good.

    Wretha

    in reply to: heat alternatives for residence #64787

    Starlite, my hubby and I live off grid in a small cabin, we have a wood stove, but don’t use it very much, we dress warmly, let me repeat, we actively dress warmly, especially at night. We keep the place just warm enough to keep the pipes from freezing, during the winter it’s not uncommon to see your breath inside the cabin. I don’t know where you live or what your temps are like in winter, we live in a high desert mountainous area, our daytime temps are comfortable, but at night it gets in the 30s, sometimes into the 20s, and on rare occasions it gets into the single digits. Since you have heat, and I assume you have a thermostat, I would say to turn it down as far as you can, get used to that then turn it down a little more, do it a little at a time, it’s amazing what you can get used to. Get a good down filled blanket, that made all the difference in the world for us. Get some good thermal long underwear, wool socks, wool hat and gloves.

    For your windows, you can get those window kits that cover your windows with plastic, you can also add a layer of bubble wrap, anything to create dead air space will help insulate your windows.

    You can also close off any rooms you aren’t using, no one says you have to heat unused rooms. If you can afford it, get a programmable thermostat, that way you can set it colder at night, and have it come on in the morning just before you get out of bed. Again, keep it as low as you can, but you can bump it up in the mornings, that’s when I want more heat, after I’m up and about (and dressed) I can handle the cold again. :)

    Wretha

Viewing 15 posts - 391 through 405 (of 417 total)