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Beginner Steps: Off Grid For Weekend

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posted on Oct, 2 2007 @ 08:42 AM
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might be a bit drastic, but
with the cold weather coming
maybe use it to your advantage
starting on a friday
shut off all heating and open a few windows
i keep my windows open till the first frost

introduce your 9 yr old son to the fire bow
make a fire bow yourself
show him how it works
let him try it, and when he starts getting some smoke
take it away from him and accidently break it
and then encourage him to make his own


sidenote:
depending on how cold it is
have some plausible excuses ready
just in case teachers or others start asking

why didn't you go to a motel for the weekend
don't you care about your child's welfare, etc. . .




posted on Oct, 2 2007 @ 10:21 AM
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CANADIAN I plan on starting on a Friday night (after school) so there wont be too many questions especially if my nine yr old is off track.
BTW the nine year old is a 'she'. lol
It's my plan to do this practice excercise during Janurary or February to see if we can cope without room heaters, electric blankets, tv, the computer, coffee maker, etc. I have several activities planned for our time over the weekend.
We are definately having a Fire clinic. How many ways can we start a fire without a lighter and/or matches.
I think the second practice run will be a full week over the summer and then every six months after that.



posted on Oct, 2 2007 @ 10:42 AM
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Thanks for inspiring me Jules! I am going to flag and watch this thread. I think I will get my family to do this as well. I know my kid will be "all in" but my husband is a different matter...maybe after football season!


Here's hoping a real-life scenario doesn't come into play before we have a chance to practice.



posted on Oct, 2 2007 @ 10:55 AM
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reply to post by kosmicjack
 


Same here, kosmicjack there is a man in my home and his priority is what the Packers are doing (or not doing lol).
My daughter is very excited and I will have some projects for my three year old boy as well.
I will definately journal the experience.
Jules



posted on Oct, 2 2007 @ 11:07 AM
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Great thread and idea.
I do have one concern thow. Think about your water pipes. I have had mine freeze and bust on me it cost a whole lot of money and time to fix. We are still fighting the mold in the basement from having 5 inches of water down there. We had to replace the dryer and the washer even today isn't sounding to good. so it may have to be replaced to.

That happened a couple years ago. The pilot on the furnace had gone out while the family and I were at a K9 S&R training event out of state. It was Feburary in MI so it was cold here. we came back to a nightmare, and two very cold P.O.'d cats.

So I would recommend you keep that stove going at all times and hot enough to keep the whole house in the mid 40's. with this just being training it would be a shame to have that happen. Just a little food for thought.

I guess another option would be to kill the power to the well pump and drain the pipes of water. but To me that seems a little drastick.



posted on Oct, 2 2007 @ 11:47 AM
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AA that is a very real problem in this state every winter.
Last winter we had months of zero degree temps and we had to keep vigilant about bursting pipes.
1. Wrap exposed pipes and faucets BEFORE the first freeze
2. Drain and weatherize swamp coolers also before the first freeze
3. Indoors: open cabinets that house plumbing so that the pipes are exposed to the warmer indoor air.
4. As AA discovered, if you leave town for any length of time arrange for a trusted friend or relative to check on your home just incase of a burst pipe.
I'm very careful about waterpipes and plumbing as bursting is so common here. So far I've never burst a pipe. *Knock on wood*



posted on Oct, 2 2007 @ 02:31 PM
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Also if you kill the power to the well and drain the pipes as AA suggested, don't forget the "P" traps and "S" traps in the drain pipes. A few drops of anti-freeze poured down the drain can save a lot of hassle later. Also don't forget that there's one behind the washing machine and in any floor drain that you might have. Get the tank and bowl of all comodes you won't be using as well.



posted on Oct, 3 2007 @ 12:42 AM
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Great points, I will have to 'weatherize' the inside of the house as much as the outside.
The utility people will think I've gone on strike...
I have put a very high priority to obtain fire extinguishers, and a carbon monoxide detector. (I should have these things anyways.)
Forty bucks for two big fire extinguishers, and fifty bucks for a detector.
Yowza!



posted on Oct, 3 2007 @ 01:30 PM
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You might be able to get them for free from your local fire department.



posted on Oct, 3 2007 @ 01:35 PM
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Off the grid? I call it camping.
I saw a public TV show about an urban couple who gave up electricity. They were doing fine. Cute to see the whole family washing clothes in the bathtub.



posted on Oct, 3 2007 @ 02:45 PM
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reply to post by mattifikation
 


Now that's using the noodle, there is a fire station down the road from me; I will call them and ask if they have any programs like that going on. Ya never know 'til you ask. Thanks!
Jules



posted on Oct, 3 2007 @ 02:48 PM
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reply to post by earthman4
 


Call it anything you like; the average family doesn't cope well without all their comforts and my family is no exception.
This is why it's Beginner Steps/Baby steps...
One of the best things I can do for my kids is to teach them to cope with the changing times.
Jules



posted on Oct, 6 2007 @ 10:47 AM
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And here I thought we were just poor when I was a child. I grew
up for the first part of my childhood without electricity. We had running water, it was run out to the well and get a bucket full.
But now I know we were just practicing for a survival scenerio.

Good thread, and I will be watching for the results of how folks who try this report it working out.

[edit on 6-10-2007 by NGC2736]



posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 12:40 PM
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This last weekend I did only one thing out of the ordinary: turned off the lights! Yes we still used electricity and running water and all the other 'stuff' but everything we did in the evening hours was by candle and hurricane lamp. Wow it's dark at night! LOL

I learned that I don't have enough lighting, and that one bottle of lamp oil fuels two lamps for about three days. That isn't as much as I thought it would do.

I taught my daughter to maintain and light the hurricane lamps. Just the mechanics of filling them with oil, how to adjust the wick, where the replacement wicks and additional oil is, how and where to light them and place the chimney without burning any fingers.

I keep a lot of candles and only two lamps and I realize that is nowwhere enough lighting. The hurricanes actually give off a little bit if heat.

We cooked, cleaned, ate meals, bathed, read books, even did a tune up on my car by coleman lamp (I know not to use propane lamps indoors) and all the other mundane family things all without flicking a light switch. Holy smokes it's different.

When my daughter tried to show me the gaping would made by our indoor mountain lion (the four month old kitten) I told her that poor kitty didn't leave any scratches and she insisted it was there but I just couldn't see it because the lighting was so dim.


I can see I have my work cut out for me...



posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 01:00 PM
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Originally posted by julesmac8
I learned that I don't have enough lighting,


have you seen those outdoor patio lights
the ones with the solar cell on top
providing light thru-out the night

the only problem is the amount of light
maybe take off the plastic covering around the light

and they're portable too . .



posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 01:18 PM
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the only problem is the amount of light
maybe take off the plastic covering around the light


In my earlier years when I'd go camping I thought I had to light the place up like a shopping mall. I'd take 2 or 3 Coleman lanterns with me and see just how much fuel I could waste. 'Course I didn't see it as waste at the time. One time years ago I was on a weekend camping trip with several friends and friends of friends. One of the ladies on the trip was constantly complaining about the bugs flying in her face, yet she refused to move away from the lantern. It startrd me to thinking. How much light do we really need to see and how much is psychological either from habit or fear? After all, light drives the boogers away doesn't it?
Now I use candle lanterns. Did you know that one of those little wafer shaped tea candles (the kind molded in little aluminum trays) will burn for over 5 hours? They're quiet and are great for atmosphere. If I want to read I use an LED light.



posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 01:46 PM
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Originally posted by SemperParatus
One of the ladies on the trip was constantly complaining about the bugs flying in her face, yet she refused to move away from the lantern. It startrd me to thinking. How much light do we really need to see and how much is psychological either from habit or fear?


Aha! you've just given me a 'bright' idea


With regard to beginner-steps survival and food sources, perhaps we should push the boundaries of our tastebuds and look at what food sources there are available without the equipment or skills needed to track and hunt medium/large game (we aint all Davy Crocketts y'know)

The idea is this...since moths and other nocturnal insects are attracted to light-sources, this can be used to an advantage. If you built a sturdy A-frame framework, draped a cotton bedsheet over the top and put a lit Coleman lantern at full-tilt inside, the insects would be attracted to the lightsource and could be swatted off the sheet and gathered for food.

No doubt most of us would find such an idea of eating bug-stew unpalatable, so the best method of preparation would be to dry them out by the camp fire, pound them into powder and mixed with a few herbs/spices to add (ie: disguise) any bug taste, mix with a few dried/shredded vegetables and a little water to mix to a thick paste, roll into patties and cook...hey presto, high protein/vitamin bug-burgers!



posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 02:17 PM
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Now I use candle lanterns. Did you know that one of those little wafer shaped tea candles (the kind molded in little aluminum trays) will burn for over 5 hours? They're quiet and are great for atmosphere. If I want to read I use an LED light.

Semper those are good ol' Tea Lights! Great idea!


Citizen Smith that gives a whole new meaning to "Vege-Mite" Sandwich..
Ewwwww blekie!!



posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 02:19 PM
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CG those outdoor patio solar jobs would be a great solution to one of my kids hopeless need for a night light. Great idea, and those aren't very expensive either. At Home Depot a cheapie box of four is about twenty bucks. Fabulous!



posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 11:10 PM
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reply to post by citizen smith
 


Careful with ideas like that, some bugs (especially moths) are poisonous!



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