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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 63060  
Subject: living lightly on the land Date: 4/19/2011 3:37 PM
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The home of an incredibly environmentally sensitive family, a short slide show from Sunset Magazine:

http://www.sunset.com/home/natural-home/zero-waste-home-0111...

I love this. It makes me feel better about our fairly extreme downsizing--and how much further we can take it.
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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32663 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/19/2011 3:58 PM
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<<Garbage, though, is something that happens rarely in this modern, minimalistically decorated house. That’s by day-to-day intention—to live simpler and lighter on the planet. Their quest started three years ago when Béa and husband Scott downsized from a 3,000-square-foot home to their current 1,400 square feet. But it had been on Béa’s mind ever since she’d nannied for a family that lost everything in a fire. Béa decided she wanted to truly love and use and know everything she kept in her home. “Even down to the vegetable peeler,” she says.>>


My idea of necessary living space is shaped by a pioneer log cabin that is part of the town museum in Friday, Harbor, Wa. It's about 20'x20' and the sign notes that it was built by a pioneer husband and wife and occupied by them and their eight children.

I imagine that understates the square footage though, since the two holer that was probably out back at one time isn't there.



Seattle Pioneer

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32664 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/19/2011 3:59 PM
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I put out my garbage once every six weeks or so, and put out the recycling bin every two months.

I don't see much difference.

I do get the daily paper.....

I bring back the few plastic bags from Walmart for recycling.

So what's the big deal?

I grew up in a 3 bedroom 1000 sq foot house. The milk came in glass bottles that were recycled every few days. We had a trash can that could hold about six gallons...that was it..... it was all fresh food back then....and not packaged.... paper bags.




t.

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Author: lindytoes Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32667 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/19/2011 5:35 PM
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I saw this story on TV -- probably Today show. It is amazing.

I could aspire to be half this green and I would be happy. Of course they mostly talked about waste...I didn't read all the blogs she created so I don't know for sure, but the ultimate would be a wringer washing machine and hanging clothes out to dry, driving way less (I see bikes in the garage but I bet they have to drive a good bit with 2 boys) and what about energy consumption with other appliances, electronics, etc.?

I'm not knocking what they are doing -- it is great. But it feels like they are addressing half a solution. I think living in NYC in a much smaller apartment and using public transportation is going to be a great "green" step for you, alstroemeria. And of course they did downsize their living space (which is an energy saver). For that I give them big kudos. Bigger houses and bigger lots have caused a huge sprawl problem in this country and not only do those houses use more energy on the inside, it causes us to drive more and contributes to destroying ecosystems, ruining our water through runoff, etc., etc.

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Author: ariechert Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32670 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/19/2011 6:02 PM
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"I could aspire to be half this green and I would be happy." - lindytoes


Linda you'd be so proud of me. The little dump area a couple of miles from our house has all the different recycling bins now. Mixed paper, plastic bottles, clear and colored glass, metal, and cardboard. This morning I dutifully walked around putting all the different recycles into the proper bins.

It sure does feel good to throw stuff out. Wish I could haul it away by the box full. I'd take five or six boxes in every day if I could get away with it. <grin!>

Artie

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32671 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/19/2011 6:05 PM
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When I first opened the article I thought they were all living in what was their garage. That would have been impressive.


Living in an 1100 foot house --- not.



Seattle Pioneer

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Author: lindytoes Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32675 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/19/2011 6:16 PM
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"I could aspire to be half this green and I would be happy." - lindytoes
---------
Linda you'd be so proud of me. The little dump area a couple of miles from our house has all the different recycling bins now. Mixed paper, plastic bottles, clear and colored glass, metal, and cardboard. This morning I dutifully walked around putting all the different recycles into the proper bins.

It sure does feel good to throw stuff out. Wish I could haul it away by the box full. I'd take five or six boxes in every day if I could get away with it. <grin!>
Artie
----------------
Congrats! I don't have to separate -- all paper including junk mail and cardboard can go together, then all other metal, glass, plastic goes together. It's wonderful.

It does feel good to get rid of stuff. I started putting out the meat trash for loose animals like you suggested.

I dump gray water from the kitchen every day--I have lots of plants that love it.

Here is what I have on the patio: swiss chard, beets, spinach, onions, radishes, potatoes, lettuce mix, carrots, Japanese sweet potatoes, chives, thyme, mint, parsley, oregano, and of course some tiny tomatoes and peppers that just don't want to grow. I am going to get one big tomato plant pretty soon. I am having a terrible time growing tomatoes from seeds this year.

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32677 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/19/2011 6:45 PM
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Here's a video of the couple:

http://www.homebysunset.com/home_by_sunset/2011/03/yahoo-vid...

Even if you think the concept of zero waste is a zero--or a waste, Bea's French accent is sure to please ;-)

Their nearly all white home is a little scary though.

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Author: ariechert Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32679 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/19/2011 8:21 PM
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"I started putting out the meat trash for loose animals like you suggested." - lindytoes


I bet by the next morning it's completely gone. We have a small red fox, an oppossum, 4 feral cats, and Isis (Jeff's great Pyrnees mix) that all come and eat up any leftover meat type scraps including chicken, pork, squirrel, deer, bones, and leftover cat food that the cats turned up their noses at. By the next morning it's all completely gone. They don't leave anything.

I'm pretty sure they lick the big flat rock I dump it out on because the next morning it's clean. There is a pretty siamese cat that comes during the daytime and eats and she's not even that afraid of me. I sit up on my deck and she just looks up at me and keeps on eating. I think she belongs to someone nearby.

I dump the vegetable scraps over the fence, including eggshells. They break down eventually. I figure they add some extra calcium to the environment. They are 5% protein so they break down pretty fast.

Artie

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32693 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/20/2011 5:51 PM
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I put out my garbage once every six weeks or so, and put out the recycling bin every two months.
I don't see much difference.


I do. They are four people, you are one. You eat almost all of your meals out, they eat at home.

Most of my garbage is generated by eating at home. Meat/chicken/fish/cheese wrap, plastic kefir & yogurt containers, berry & egg cartons, almond milk cartons, juice bottles... Although I usually buy bulk beans, grains and nuts, I've been using the plastic bags at the store to carry them home.

Maybe I'll start carrying my own containers & bags (besides the backpack and tote bags). So in addition to the Rowan Workout System, I have the Backpack Food Transport System--now heavier with jars?!

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Author: IBPore Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32694 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/20/2011 5:57 PM
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alstroemeria: Most of my garbage is generated by eating at home. Meat/chicken/fish/cheese wrap, plastic kefir & yogurt containers, berry & egg cartons, almond milk cartons, juice bottles... Although I usually buy bulk beans, grains and nuts, I've been using the plastic bags at the store to carry them home.

Maybe I'll start carrying my own containers & bags


We generate a lot of trash, especially recyclable, because we get our product deleiveries at home, and they usually come in cardboard, but there is a certain amount of just trash as well. We have two recycle cans and two trash cans as a result.

Been using my own bags for some time. THey are sturdy and can be loaded more than the store's bags. Besides the feel-good value.

I.B. Pore

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Author: lindytoes Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32697 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/20/2011 6:47 PM
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Maybe I'll start carrying my own containers & bags (besides the backpack and tote bags). So in addition to the Rowan Workout System, I have the Backpack Food Transport System--now heavier with jars?!
--alstro
--------------
I carry canvas bags in my trunk and use them almost exclusively. I hate those plastic grocery bags because they are so cheap now they break rather easily. If I do get a bag, I get a paper bag and use it to collect my recyclable paper/cardboard. I use those over and over until they become too torn or damaged and then just throw the bag away with the recycled paper.

Art goes to a store in Murfreesboro, Aldi's, that has no bags. You bring your own or just take your groceries to the car in the buggy (which you rent for 25 cents which you get back when you return it to the locked space. I think it is a German owned, European style store. It is not very big and doesn't have everything, but the prices are good. They stack everything up in the open boxes.

I wish American grocery stores would rethink how they handle customers' groceries.

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Author: ariechert Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32707 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/21/2011 1:21 PM
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"I am having a terrible time growing tomatoes from seeds this year." Lindytoes


Well I was at Wal-mart yesterday and as per your suggestion I bought one tomato plant and one bell pepper plant. The tomato plant was quite large and cost $5.00 and I'm pretty sure I won't ever get $5.00 worth of tomatoes from it but it was pretty and I figure the ornamental value was worth $5.00. The peppper plant actually had two "siamese twins" pepper plants stuck together with no way to separate them so I just left the two small plants in the cup together and planted both of them.

The lady in the garden center told me to just remove the plastic and the bottom of the container and then plant the whole thing, paper pot and all, but instead I took a pair of kitchen shears outside and removed all the paper and plastic and only planted the potting soil and roots and plants (of course). I figured it would take less time for the roots to spread throughout the whole pot that way.

By the way, the chive plant you gave me didn't make it through the winter. I left the pot on the front porch and I guess they froze? Next time I get chives I'm just going to plant the chives somewhere outside instead of putting them in a pot.

Artie

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Author: lindytoes Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32709 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/21/2011 1:56 PM
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The lady in the garden center told me to just remove the plastic and the bottom of the container and then plant the whole thing, paper pot and all, but instead I took a pair of kitchen shears outside and removed all the paper and plastic and only planted the potting soil and roots and plants (of course). I figured it would take less time for the roots to spread throughout the whole pot that way.

By the way, the chive plant you gave me didn't make it through the winter. I left the pot on the front porch and I guess they froze? Next time I get chives I'm just going to plant the chives somewhere outside instead of putting them in a pot.

Artie
-----------
First of all...wow. $5 for a tomato plant? I haven't looked this year. Last year I paid $3.50 for a beautiful big brandywine plant from Thomas Orchards. I hope they didn't hit $5 this year. If you don't get $5 worth of tomatoes but enjoy piddling with it, it will be worth some value. Will it get plenty of sun? Needs about 6-8 hours I think (not filterd by trees).

You did the right thing cutting off as much as possible. I have planted those biodegradable peat pots and the roots have a hard time reaching through the "container".

re: chives...yeah a small pot might freeze. But I have mine in a long container (not the ground) and it is doing fine. It was really cold this year here including about 4 snow events. Hard to say what happened. If you can plant the next chive plant in an island (in the ground) somewhere with some afternoon summer shade, they will probably do fine over winter.

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Author: ariechert Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32713 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/21/2011 5:50 PM
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"If you don't get $5 worth of tomatoes but enjoy piddling with it, it will be worth some value. Will it get plenty of sun? Needs about 6-8 hours I think (not filterd by trees)." - lindytoes


No, probably not. It seems to be even more shade this year than last. Maybe our trees are growing? But like mom used to say "you just got to live in this world kiddo!" Another words you got to play the hand that you've been dealt. Maximize my economic situation. I guess I could pick the pot up and chase the Sun around the yard? <grin!>

I bought the tomato becuase I wanted to put something in that pot - and I like tomatoes so it's sort of like the same reason I buy lottery tickets? I'm trying my luck. I've got it and the pepper plant planted and they are both in nice big fancy pots and they are setting about in the only spot they can set so if they produce fine and if they don't? Oh well, just like those lottery tickets - into the compost heap!

Artie

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Author: andrew61 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32744 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/22/2011 8:56 PM
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My idea of necessary living space is shaped by a pioneer log cabin that is part of the town museum in Friday, Harbor, Wa. It's about 20'x20' and the sign notes that it was built by a pioneer husband and wife and occupied by them and their eight children.

I imagine that understates the square footage though, since the two holer that was probably out back at one time isn't there.



Goodness. My 762-square-foot apartment, where I live all alone, seems positively palatial all of a sudden.

My mom was the second-youngest of thirteen children... and when she showed me the house in Cleveland where she grew up, I couldn't believe such a large family coexisted in so small a house.

Mom shared a bedroom with two other sisters. I grew up an only child and never had to share anything... maybe that's why I'm so selfish... heh.

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Author: andrew61 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32745 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/22/2011 9:08 PM
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I could aspire to be half this green and I would be happy. Of course they mostly talked about waste...I didn't read all the blogs she created so I don't know for sure, but the ultimate would be a wringer washing machine and hanging clothes out to dry...

Wringer washing machines still use electricity. "The ultimate" would be washing clothes by hand using an old-fashioned scrub board like my grandmother did when she was young (and even occasionally when she was older, when she wanted to only wash one garment at a particular time and not use the machine).

Remember the scene in the movie "Far and Away" where Tom Cruise is trying to teach Little Miss Not-Used-To-Working-With-Her-Hands Nicole Kidman how to wash clothes? "Plunge and scrub... plunge and scrub." I got a kick out of that one... heh.


I'm not knocking what they are doing -- it is great. But it feels like they are addressing half a solution. I think living in NYC in a much smaller apartment and using public transportation is going to be a great "green" step for you, alstroemeria. And of course they did downsize their living space (which is an energy saver). For that I give them big kudos. Bigger houses and bigger lots have caused a huge sprawl problem in this country and not only do those houses use more energy on the inside, it causes us to drive more and contributes to destroying ecosystems, ruining our water through runoff, etc., etc.

I live in a city apartment and use public transit (and good old-fashioned walking) and I'm perfectly happy. I never consciously, deliberately set out to be "green", but I'd match my own carbon footprint against that of most Americans any day.

-andrew, whose electric bill last month was $17

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Author: lindytoes Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32746 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/22/2011 10:07 PM
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I live in a city apartment and use public transit (and good old-fashioned walking) and I'm perfectly happy. I never consciously, deliberately set out to be "green", but I'd match my own carbon footprint against that of most Americans any day.

-andrew, whose electric bill last month was $17
----------------
Welcome andrew!

Yes, you have a much better carbon footprint. MUCH BETTER. Congrats.

But I am trying to imagine washing rugs by hand. Not going to happen. Not unless electricity gets a lot higher or unavailable altogether. That may happen. But anyway, I think there is a wringer washer that doesn't use electricity. I just looked up something modern, and there is a camping washer...here it is -- just for you for earth day!
http://www.laundry-alternative.com/pages/campers-ad.htm
Introducing the Wonderwash Pressure Washing Machine. Now no matter where you roam you can wash your clothes quickly and easily without using any electricity, very little soap and minimal water. The machine is pressure sealed for intensified washing and it's 90% faster than a conventional washing machine. Best of all the Wonderwash Pressure Washing Machine is light, compact and easy to set up making it ideal for any camping or RV enthusiast who likes to be prepared for whatever comes their way.
here's even more info (I love it): http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=...

And on an early post you mentioned your mother shared a room with 2 sisters. So did I (but only 'til my parents divorced).

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32747 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/22/2011 10:10 PM
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<<Remember the scene in the movie "Far and Away" where Tom Cruise is trying to teach Little Miss Not-Used-To-Working-With-Her-Hands Nicole Kidman how to wash clothes? "Plunge and scrub... plunge and scrub." I got a kick out of that one... heh.
>>



Man! Washing clothes is just plain hard labor and one of the best things power machinery has liberated human beings from doing.

Digging and moving earth, pulling a plow by hand --- there is a huge amount of just plain hard labor that few human beings do much of at least in this country.

We really don't know how lucky we are!



Seattle Pioneer

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Author: lindytoes Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32749 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/22/2011 11:09 PM
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Man! Washing clothes is just plain hard labor and one of the best things power machinery has liberated human beings from doing.

Digging and moving earth, pulling a plow by hand --- there is a huge amount of just plain hard labor that few human beings do much of at least in this country.

We really don't know how lucky we are!

Seattle Pioneer
----------------
You are so right. We have life so much easier now. I can't imagine having to go back to what my grandmother or great grandmother had to endure (or as SP mentions, what our great grandfathers had to do).

My sister lived in a house with no toilet and only a kitchen sink in the early 1980s. Every time I visited it was like visiting another time and place. She gave birth to both her boys there with only an outhouse which she had to visit while in labor. I can't remember if her husband set up a shower stall on the back porch during those early days--with no heat in winter by the way. Maybe Art can remember.

It boggles my mind. BTW she had electricity but for a while she even used a wood-burning kitchen stove.

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Author: ariechert Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32751 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/22/2011 11:41 PM
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"I can't remember if her husband set up a shower stall on the back porch during those early days--with no heat in winter by the way. Maybe Art can remember." - lindytoes


They got a bathroom eventually but it wasn't enclosed. It was on the back porch and the back of it was open to the field behind them.

Robin lost her mother when she was ten and her life pretty much sucked continuously since then. Lots of suffering and depression. I'm hoping that my theories about "heaven" are real because if anyone deserves something good after this life it's her.

Artie

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32787 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/24/2011 10:26 AM
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I guess I could pick the pot up and chase the Sun around the yard? <grin!>

Have a rec for that image and for comparing gardening to buying lottery tix :-)

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32788 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/24/2011 10:53 AM
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My sister lived in a house with no toilet and only a kitchen sink in the early 1980s.

My husband's parents bought a cottage in the middle of very rural Maine when he was 5. They lived in the burbs and spent summers and some other vacations & weekends in Maine. Until my husband was in college they had no indoor plumbing, just an outhouse and a manual water pump. as the elder sibling, he used to haul water for his mother (the buckets got progressively larger over the years-). His mother used a washtub for years.

In our rental duplex when my kids were young, I had a washing machine but no dryer. In nice weather I hung the wash outside, otherwise I had a big wooden rack that I placed in front of the dining room radiator (and turned around halfway through the drying process). My daughter has happy memories of helping me with the wash...handing me clothes pins, helping me take dry clothes off the lower rods of the indoor rack. In high school when she was thinking about getting a job like some of her friends, I persuaded her to do the family laundry instead (I paid her). I must say it was a treat to come home from work to laundry washed, dried, folded, ironed, and put away! She still enjoys doing laundry (me, too). I unloaded the dryer when I was growing up as well, and folded, ironed, and put away. Didn't get paid, though. Actually, we've come full circle--I often do laundry for DD while I'm babysitting. She usually starts a load before she leaves in the morning, then I put it in the dryer and fold & put away.

Heh...I sort of experience the washtub thing, too. When Rowan has an overflowing dirty diaper or a very "cheesy" outfit (spit up-), I scrub the soiled items in the sink.

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 32799 of 63060
Subject: Re: living lightly on the land Date: 4/24/2011 12:00 PM
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<<In high school when she was thinking about getting a job like some of her friends, I persuaded her to do the family laundry instead (I paid her). I must say it was a treat to come home from work to laundry washed, dried, folded, ironed, and put away! She still enjoys doing laundry (me, too). I unloaded the dryer when I was growing up as well, and folded, ironed, and put away. Didn't get paid, though. Actually, we've come full circle--I often do laundry for DD while I'm babysitting. She usually starts a load before she leaves in the morning, then I put it in the dryer and fold & put away.>>


I enjoy doing laundry well enough, but only because of the availability of that marvelous labor saving device, the electric washing machine.

After my last one failed, I bought my current washing machine for $50 off Craigslist a couple of years ago.

I am happy to fill my washing machine with buckets of water from my rain barrels, and am happy to hang laundry on my clothes line to dry by craftily choosing windows in the weather that will permit drying.

Sometimes I actually regret I don't have MORE laundry to do!

When I was doing my furnace and gas fireplace repair business, I used to put down old blankets as floor protection, and these usually needed to be laundered after using them each time. So I did LOTS more loads of laundry during that time! Usually one blanket = one load in the washing machine.

As a frugal person, I despise waste. Despite my best effort I have thousands of gallons of rainwater I can't use overflowing my rain barrels each year!

Eat your hearts out Callie-fornians!



Seattle Pioneer

Where the forecast is for rain today and the five days after that:

http://www.wunderground.com/US/WA/Seattle.html

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