The road to my home goes through the state forest.
I have seen many changes in my life over the years. Even if you do not live a long life, that holds true for everyone. Life would be pretty boring if changes did not take place. Looking at a person in their nineties, we often hear remarks of wonder of all they have seen in their lives. I discussed all the changes my father had seen in his lifetime with him often. He loved to talk about it. He was very alert and knowledgeable right to his last days. These conversations with him were some of my favorite conversations with him that I will always treasure.
The pot of gold is my homestead!
In social media we are discussing our favorite periods of our lives often. Someone will post a picture of some item we used in the past asking if you remember using it. Many times that once forgotten item will take me back on what I call my memory train. Back to another time and place. I personally don't have any really bad memories, unless I count as a teen, becoming a single mother and running away from home too scared to tell my parents. That turned out okay though because of my mother, who always made bad situations better. Two other bad periods for me were my two divorces, which is a subject better left buried.
For the most part, changes in my life were many and usually at the time, I felt they were good. I liked change. It was exciting to explore the new things it would bring to my life. One of the biggest changes of course, was moving to my off the grid home in 1999. That was the year everyone was preparing for the year 2000 and what was going to happen due to computers running everything, known as the Y2K. Truthfully, we didn't do much as far as the Y2K was concerned once we moved here. Instead we were busy preparing for winter. No computers. No televisions. In fact, I gave away my own big screen television because I felt even if I could ever power it - it was out of place here.
Cooking and heating water on my wood cook stove.
Was the change good for me? I thought so. Now I think it certainly was. Living with no electric bill for over sixteen years was good indeed. Over the years we have saved thousands of dollars including the cost of our alternative energy system. No cost of fuel for heating, most of the time, except for gas and chainsaws and their parts. I think we have only purchased about four loads of logs in all that time. I haven't figured out how to eliminate propane (for cooking) since I need it for canning. All winter I cook on my wood cook stove, which is my favorite method of cooking. I also use the wood heating stove for cooking and heating water during the winter. One time the propane delivery man asked me, "Don't you cook?" I sure do! I cooked and baked a lot back then. Homemade made from scratch. No processed foods most of the time. I still cook, but don't bake so much now since we eat low carbs.
Our road in winter
In 1999, my husband could cut a tree down and let it fall across the road and not have to hurry because of cars driving by. It was days before we'd see one or two cars go by. Now more and more people are moving from cities to the country. Mainly from NJ, Long Island and NYC in our area. I don't blame them for wanting to leave. It has made us think of looking for a more secluded place. But then again, do I really want to start over again? In our sixties? Right now we are centrally located from several small towns and one small city. Once our two elderly cats are gone, I think the traffic on our road won't be such a big stress point for me.
My most recent change has been doing almost all my shopping online. Yes, even groceries and household products. It is easier for me to find what I need on the four sites I shop at regularly, Amazon, Netrition, Emergency Essentials and Walmart. I don't have to drive anywhere, which is good because at this time I do not have anything to drive (another big change for me). Most people do not like change and I am one of those people, IF it is forced on me. I need the changes to be my own doing.
Copyright © 2016 Kathleen G. Lupole
All Photographs Copyright © 2016 Kathleen G. Lupole