When our big adventure begins it is not as though we are just city folk moving to the country. We are moving off-grid and sans running well water.

I think we’ll have some adjusting to do.

Our initial plan was that I was going to spend the summer writing a book and the papa would take some time off a few days a week so I could head to the coffee shop, laptop in hand, and write like a mad woman. After much consideration we knew that this book deal wasn’t for us at this time, so we thought… what if papa still took that time off and used it for our transition instead.

We’re going to take the few months we have left to prepare for our move and do some adjusting before we leave our current home. One of the bigger adjustments will be to learn to live without grid electricity.

The thing is… we can all lower our dependence on nonrenewable fuels no matter where we live. We can drive less, grow and buy food locally, use less electricity, and keep everything (school, food, warming/cooling, healing, clothing, etc.) in the home or our neighborhood.

So we are going to take the plunge and quit our dependence on grid electricity… one outlet at a time. I have added planned dates so that we have something to shoot for, but all is Lord willing, and we will take things as they come.

This is how we’re going to break the habit:

  • Turn off the lights and use alternatives only as necessary. This is the most basic and right now should be the easiest. The sun comes up around five and goes down around nine. I usually go to bed by 10 anyways, so putting alternatives throughout the house and using only as necessary makes sense. Start Date: June 5th.
  • Start washing laundry by hand and continue to hang laundry to dry. I am already hanging 85% of our laundry on the line, but I need to start learning to wash laundry by hand. I have a feeling this will also help with the next phase of our summer manifesto… get rid of everything. Start Date: June 13th.
  • Cook outside over the grill or an open fire as much as possible.  Start Date: June 20th.
  • Make/buy a solar oven and begin to use it for at least one meal per day.  Start Date: June 27th.
  • Unplug the refrigerator and use it, instead, as an icebox. We are so brain-washed that we don’t realize that a lot of things don’t even need to be refrigerated. A lot of produce, condiments, and fermented vegetables don’t really need to be in the refrigerator. By unplugging this beast and keeping ice in the freezer we can store a few things like dairy, meat, and delicate vegetables like lettuce. Start Date: July 4th (independence day!).
  • Make a solar hot water heater and begin to use it for bathing, washing dishes, and laundry. Start Date: July 11th.

Eventually we hope to, Lord willing, transition to a small off-grid power system for things like the laptop and perhaps solar freezer ice-making. The above steps are to wean us of our dependence on grid electricity.

We hope to share these steps with you… what works and what does not… and hopefully not losing sight of why we’re doing this in the first place.

What do you think about cutting back on your electricity dependence?