Tag Archives: frustrations

Why I Decided To Blog

Day Three of the Zero to Hero Challenge, which was supposed to be the other day, but I missed it, was to post about why you decided to make this blog and what inspired you.I can sum it up in three words:

I’m not lazy.

I love my family dearly, and goodness knows i can be as loath to get out of bed as the next person, but while they don’t intend to, there is this suggestion in my family that I’m lazy. I don’t think they intend it that way. They know how hard I work at school and such, but they are very physical people, building sheds, making things, digging out tree stumps and such, and there are some physical things I just can’t do right now. That doesn’t mean I won’t ever be able to do it, that I’m not working on my abilities, just that I’m limited.

But one thing they like to say is “Oh, you have an excuse for everything.” or “You wouldn’t know what to do with a full day’s work.” It’s teasing, but it still bothers me. 

This leads to an idea that I won’t stick with something, so when I suggest something like trying to become more independent and self-sufficient, and homesteading that they just think it’s yet another one of my ideas that I’ll drop in a week, I mostly formed this blog so I could share my ideas and track my progress with this endeavour while exploring my faith closer to nature, and get support and help from it, rather than “Oh, why don’t you just give up now. You’re not going to finish anyway.”

I don’t want anyone to think I’m being harsh on my family, or that they don’t support me in things. They do. This is not the first scheme I’ve had, and not the first one I’ve thought of and then stopped. They have good reasons to say and think those things but sometimes that kind of history is the last thing you need.


Labels & Such

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So, I joined the “Zero to Hero” challenge oping it would help me keep up with my blog. Unsurprisingly, the first challenge is an introductory challenge, wherein you’re supposed to talk about you and why you blog. The thing is, I always have trouble defining the “Who Am I” bits. it’s all rather bullet points and I always feel like people don’t get a feel for who I am. That’s the thing about labels, no one fits their labels, even self-appointed ones perfectly. Heck, while trying to apply for insurance today, I spent twenty minutes trying to figure out whether to click “disabled” or not. I don’t collect social security or anything, but I can’t drive and I was delayed with every milestone growing up, spent loads of time in physical and occupational therapy, the labels don’t fit comfortably.

So, me. I’m a 26-year-old heathen woman, living at home, going to night school to try and find a job, and trying to become more independent and self-sufficient while trying my hand at homesteading. Doesn’t sound that hard, right? Well, it’s harder in the middle of rural Pennsylvania when you can’t drive, there’s no public transportation and you’re more likely to see Amish buggies than sidewalks. People don’t realize how hard it can be when you can’t just jump in a car. I dare you, darling readers, to think about how you would get from every Point-A to Point-B tomorrow, if you couldn’t drive, had no public transport, and no sidewalks. It’s not easy. 🙂

As for why I blog, I have many reasons. It keeps me motivated if I have things to share, so I’m less likely to fall behind and never pick it up again than the dozens of private journals I’ve started over the years, because there are readers. It also helps me feel less isolated, especially in winter, where just walking across town is dangerous. It’s hard to make friends when your town is small and you can’t just “go see” a friend really easily. It’s also nice to have a way to connect to the heathen community, especially since I can be (unbelievable to those who know me) very shy, I actually found out there’s an organization in Berks County, though I’ve never been able to go to anything or meet any of them, because 1. shy and 2. night school Monday-Thursday.

So…that’s why I blog. I hope it wasn’t too boring.


Sheds and a (Lack of) Quality Time with Dad

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So, the big project going on in my family this year is a new shed for tools and the rototiller, things like that. This being at my grandmother’s behest, however, means that it cannot be easy, oh no. My grandmother has been collecting dozens of wooden skids for months. so, rather than buying lumber, she and my father (84 and 57, respectively) decided that the pair of them were going to  rip up the skids and build a shed out of the wood.

Yay recycling! Or…not so much. This is a lot of time-consuming work. There were no blueprints, so of course, my dad had to draw them up. then he has to put this thing together, and she wants it to be weathertight and done before winter. This all sounds good in theory. Especially with homesteading and reuse and recycle and not having to pay crazy prices at Lowe’s for lumber. Saving money, woo.

However, throw in the fact that my father works ten hour days, doesn’t get home until after 5:00 at night after working in a steel fabrication plant all day and then at 9:00, has to leave to pick me up from my classes in the nearest city. All the work, therefore, has to be done on the weekends. This…has led me to be a little resentful of the shed, and let me explain why.

My mother died when I was very young. Since my dad went to work before the sun was up, I spent half of elementary school, and all of middle and high school at my grandmother’s, getting maybe an hour of time with my dad a night, until the weekends. Weekends were this free time where we could just do stuff or do nothing, because Sunday night I’d be carted back over to my grandmother’s house.

Now, yes, I am 26. I am an adult. However, I do like to still spend time with my family, and a half-an-hour a night with my dad during the week, and maybe two-hours on the weekend is making me wish I lived in Bewitched and could just wiggle my nose. My hope is that in a year I’ll have my own place, or at least a nest egg and a job with which to try and get my own place — and let’s be honest, I doubt I’ll get one within walking distance of where I am. I’ll have to move to wherever I’d get employed. I don’t know if that happens, how much quality time I’ll get with my dad, when I already see so little of him during the week. I want to spend what time I can with him, while I have it.

Of course, I can’t say this, because the work needs to get done, and all the whinging in the world won’t do anything but make everyone feel bad or think I’m being overemotional, so…I think I’ll be baking tomorrow. Bread maybe?


Rural Headaches

Most people labor under the idea that homesteading and self-sufficiency are easier out in the country, surrounded by neighbors with donkeys and farms. This is not always the case. I live in the middle of Amish country, where there are few sidewalks and the nearest Wal-Mart is ten minutes away, the nearest city, half an hour. Not so rural, right? Not so far away. Well, when you can’t drive, might as well be in China.

Another problem is that because you are rural there’s a lot of thought that you don’t need X, Y, or Z.
Today while at that local Dark Lord WaldeMart, I went to the gardening section, looking for seeds for a fall sowing. Since we live in the country, they apparently felt we didn’t need seeds, as their gardening section only had flower bulbs and grass seed.

Bah, humbug.

Now it seems I’ll either have to resort to mooching a ride to the semi-local feed store or order seeds on the Internet. The chances that the seeds at the feed store will be organic? Slim to none. Farmers around here want hardiness and size over everything else. They think “organic” is a pointless, city-slicker movement, and think nothing of laughing at the silly twenty-something looking for seeds.

So, for those out there who think the country is “easier” on a homesteader, don’t think it’ll solve your problems. Problems still exist in a rural homestead — it’s not “better” or “problem-free,” just different.