Saturday, July 31, 2010

This and That

First, I want to thank everyone who has contacted me via comments and email to express their encouragements and support regarding my last post.  I know that the post was one that is not my usual style.  I have been considering having a journal of the Autism experience from a Momma's point of view.  Then, it was put on my heart to share it here in hopes that as our family walks the path given to us, the posts may become an encouragement to others.  I have been finding that one of the setbacks for the parent of a special needs child is the sense of being alone.  Friends and family can offer some amount of emotional support, but there are times when you really NEed to connect with someone who is going through it and knows first hand what you are experiencing.  I am still thinking about the idea of doing a journal/blog specific to Micah and our family's journey with Autism, if I do choose that route later on, I will certainly have it linked to this blog.
Recipes - In the past week or so, I have been receiving email asking for me to share my canning recipes.  Thank you for the interest!  I will gather them up and start posting them to my recipe blog.  I have been wanting to get that blog going again and it seems this is a good time to do so.
Now, for a big piece of news. After about 2 years without electricity, Joe and I have made a decision to make a few changes.  With his new job, we are planning to rewire the house.  The wiring was in bad need of replacing at the time when we had the electricity shut off.  So, we are taking the opportunity as we fix up the home to get the wiring taken care of.  We have been taking stock of the realities of our lifestyle, taking into account Joe's new job, Micah's needs, homeschooling Abigail, and my age/health.  We agreed that the 2 largest challenges that I have is the laundry and the heat.  We are going to wire the house so that we can get a washer & dryer.  Though I will still be using the clothesline as often as possible, the dryer will be a blessing in winter and in the rainy season.  The washer will be a blessing in that it will free up time and be less taxing on my body.  I have been noticing that on hot days or in the cold, my fibromyalgia flares up much more.  I have been having chronic pain more often again which is frustrating when I have been medication-free for over 3 years now.  Joe is wanting us to have the ability to use fans in the summer and if needed, an a/c for the bedrooms so we sleep better at night.  It will also make a cool room available in case the heat is too much for anyone.  The other 2 things we will do with the wiring is have a couple of outlets available.  One will be for the laptop so that I will have more access to it both for contact and for homeschooling.  The outlet will also give me the ability to keep the cell phone in the house while charging it instead of having it in the van.  The second outlet will be for the radio.  Joe is wanting to put in a ceiling light in the living room and kitchen/dining room.  On overcast days, these rooms do not get much light due to being on the north & northeast sides of the house.  In winter especially, we end up having to use oil lamps much more often.
We don't see this move as a step back.  We are still going to be living much as we do now.  The electricity is only going to be for a very few things.  No TV or buying of a lot of electrical things.  We are simply getting things set to where we can be more efficient in our lives.  The only new things that are planned to be added are the washer & dryer, possibly a printer for the computer, fans, and only if truly necessary, an a/c for the bedrooms.  One luxury that we are definitely looking into is Internet access at home.
One thing that we are looking at is the monthly expense for batteries, fuel to drive to a library to use the Internet, and the time factor.  Yes, it is a matter of convenience.  Taking care of family needs, homeschooling, and therapy for Micah takes up Most of my day.  Having the ability to research in the evenings after they go to bed will be a blessing. 
We are looking at options for alternative energy that is affordable, but if nothing is found by spring we will go back on grid.  We prefer to stay off-grid, but we are being realistic.  Joe is determined that the kids and I do not go through another hot summer without some form of relief.  So, the search if on to find an alternative energy source that is not going to cost us 10's of thousands of dollars to set up.
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