Archive for May, 2011

Making Progress!

I am so excited for Little Dude. Up until now, he has resisted greatly the idea of drinking from anything but his baby bottle. At age 3, we are really wanting to see him use something else. Problem is that like most autistic kids, Little Dude doesn’t deal well with change. Today his older sister left a mini sports-type bottle of water where he could get to it. He picked up the water bottle and tried to drink from it. This is so awesome! Very silly thing to many, but for him it is a huge step. We are now going to make sure that he has a water bottle of his own during the day and see if he will drink from it and not fuss for his baby bottle.

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I would not have thought that yard sales could be such a good resource, but I am changing my mind.  Last weekend, I was visiting a dear friend and their community had a city-wide yard sale.  We went around to various homes to see what we could find.  At one home, I got very lucky.  The family homeschools their children and had placed for sale curriculum that they had finished using.  Some of it was expensive textbooks and full curriculums in my daughter’s grade level and just above her level.  I ended up buying over $150 in curriculum for only $6.00!  Having found this makes me eager to keep a look out for other homeschool resources at the yard sales. 

I am preparing for us to have a yard sale or two (maybe more) over the summer.  It is a great time to declutter and purge your home of any items that no longer serve a purpose.  I do this every year.  I go through each room and box up no longer needed items that are in serviceable condition.  I then either do a yard sale, freecycle, or donate the items to a charity.

Gradually, the house is getting emptied out to my liking.  Eventually, we will be down to only the items used on a regular basis and a couple of totes for seasonal gear and blankets.

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We have been in the Catskills area of New York visiting family for the past week.  What a fun time it has been.  My Father-in-law is feeling better now that they have increased his medication dosages.  Yesterday, he felt so good that he took me for our much anticipated ride on his motorcycle.  What fun! 

It has been a trip that has me reflecting much about our chosen lifestyle.  The more that I see how the economy’s effects on family and others, I am becoming more convinced that we are being wise in our decision. 

Prices are going up.  There is no indication that they will go down again anytime soon.  I am convinced that our Grandparents and earlier generations were right.  Having the ability to grow our own food and be as self-reliant as possible is a path of freedom.

In any area of our life that we become dependent on outside sources for our needs, we fall into bondage to those sources.  If you doubt this, try going without electricity.  How would you manage?   Take a look at everything that you have in your home that requires electricity.  Appliances, lighting, heat, air conditioning, fans, computers, clocks, radio, and TV all require electricity.  How would you store your food?  How would you prepare it for your meals?  Pretty basic, but a necessity.  Now, here is where the bondage comes in.  Unless you are able to get solar, wind, or some other alternative source for your electricity you are stuck with having to buy your electricity from a single source.  You can’t shop around and compare prices with other power companies.  You are forced to buy from the local company.  This is a form of bondage.  Not the slavery of old, but whenever you have a loss of basic freedoms to choose for yourself you are in a type of bondage.

Joe and I are trying to be as self-reliant as possible.  This gives us the freedom to do things our way.  We don’t have to pay the higher costs, because we have the freedon to choose what and where we buy what we need.

It is heartbreaking to see others struggle, working full-time but still barely making ends meet.  Having to make choices between groceries or heating bill is a decision that no one should have to make.  The hard part is when they make more than the limit for getting aid, but not enough to make ends meet.  They fall through the cracks.  Many are renting their home/apartment in the city to be close to work.  Because of renting, they are unable to garden and grown their food.  Housing costs and other basic expenses are higher due to the presumed convenience of living in the city.  Yet, their income does not match the cost of living rate.  Why don’t they move to a cheaper area?  If you don’t have the money to meet your basic needs, how can you afford to move?  They are stuck.

I am so grateful that we live where we do and have the ability to live a lifestyle that allows us to be self-reliant in as many areas as possible.  Yes, it is more work, but the blessing and peace of knowing that we are able to meet our family’s needs without depending on others makes the work worth it.

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