Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Next Contest Entry

Husband of the Boss communique'

Here is our next entry in the "Safecastle LLC Freedom Awards Self-sufficiency Essay and/or Video Contest" and as such in our "Rural Revolution Essay Contest"

Just a reminder:

While the prizes are certainly better over at SafeCastle LLC., we're only allowed to pass on one finalist in the essay and video catagories at the end of the year for judging.


In the Rural Revolution sub-contest, we have 10 prizes to give out to those of you who submit your original essay or video on self-suffieceny, survivalism, and prepping, specifically the coveted Rural Revolutionary Tankard.

So here's our next entry from Gretchen:

chasing simplicity‏

 Hello Idaho Folks,
My father-in-law just sent me your blog link; I thanked him profusely.  In response to Don's request for writer relief on behalf of Patrice, I thought I'd send out an email.

I'm the mom/wife of a family of 7.  Husband and I have 5 boys, three via adoption as older boys from Ethiopia, two grown in my tummy.   Our boys are ages 8,8,10,11 and 13.  We are Christ following, seekers of simplicity, working to be debt free, dreaming of being self sustaining.

Up until July of last year we lived on acreage in Washington state.  We had chickens, turkeys, ducks, pigs, and horses.  But we were sinking into debt.  It costs a lot to live outside of Seattle and have acreage; we couldn't do it and stay afloat.  So we shopped the Country over for a place we could live in debt free, save up for land, and build a small farm again - all of this debt free.  We sold our Washington home and moved to Texas, buying a home in a neighborhood, paying cash. 

I homeschool 2 of our 5 boys; I've had kids schooling at home for about 5 years.  Next year another son will be homeschooling, I hope to bring them all home.  Our eldest is severely hearing impaired, from Ethiopia, with few language skills - he needs more help right now than I feel I can give, but that's another story.

We buy second hand, except for underwear, there I splurge on new!  Our grocery bill is low for 7 people, 5 growing boys, $600 a month.  I use herbs and homeopathy, prayer and good old wisdom to treat most of our ailments, and to care for our remaining critters: 2 dogs and 3 cats.  We are growing tomatoes, watermelon and pumpkins in our little yard.  Next year I think I will have a better handle on gardening in Central Texas and we'll grow more produce.  I make my own cleaning products.  We try not to use the air conditioner; we leave our windows and doors open to keep a stiff breeze blowing.  We use the library for books, movies, and books on dvd. 

Our plan is to save up and buy land here in Central Texas, then use our current, paid for home, as a rental for income.  We will build our own home again like we did in Washington.  We will not take out a mortgage. 
We do without stuff.  Our boys aren't in all the sports, they choose one a year, if that.  Their bikes are not new, our clothes are not new, we don't eat out often, our cars are used.  I cut our hair, even my own.   We camp, in a tent.  Where we live now we are able to walk to the post office, the thrift shop, the library, and the local cafe.  Other families would not want our life, they would rather have both parents working, send their kids to public schools, and have stuff - I don't like stuff, most of it repels me.  We have more than the majority of people on the planet.  I count my gifts daily so as not to forget how blessed I am to be able to choose simplicity. 

Thanks for your blog.  Mine is at http://countingkropps.blogspot.com



Thank you  Gretchen. Now folks, please consider sending us an essay on your plans, thoughts and experiences in self-sufficiency and prepping. I know a lot of you have skills and training on these important topics. You have a real shot at some great prizes (ours and especially theirs) by simply putting on e-paper or video, things you've already considered and practiced that might be of great help to others just starting out. I've always been into helping others. (And a chance to get "paid" to do it doesn't hurt either.)

Send your entry to: shrewsburydon@hotmail.com

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