Stacy Wright

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since Jun 04, 2013
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cat home care food preservation
Just moved back to the house I grew up in on 11 acres in the UP of Michigan. USDA Hardiness zone is 5a.
Chatham, Michigan
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Recent posts by Stacy Wright

John C Daley wrote:
You may get used to the idea of no mobile phone, they dont work where I live, but I do have a land line.
Its amusing to watch adult visitors mucking around on their phones like teenagers, trying to find a signal.
When the pain looks too great I let them know there is no signal and they struggle to believe its possible!!

I also have a landline, just in case. A cellphone is useful for when I'm away from home. It does get expensive to have that redundancy, though.

Instead of another vehicle, have you thought about a trailer?

I have thought about a trailer. I really don't want to buy a big pick-up truck that I have to hoist myself into every time I want to go somewhere. I'm a shortish person and want to keep things small.
There's still time to mull over exactly what would work best for my needs.

What is the issue with LP heating and its removal? Why not just turn it off if you dont want it?

I'd like to stop depending on a fossil fuel for heating, and to stop paying for heating entirely by installing an efficient wood heater (a rocket mass heater is looking really good to me). I have five or six acres of forest I can get wood from. Having my heating fuel right behind my house is the epitome of security in that area of life. But like I said, that will be one of the last changes I make, because it's functional for me now.

Oh, and my house is pretty small, so there's not room for both.

Thanks for you questions!
1 year ago
Thanks for asking!

I've been living here since the end of March, and it's been interesting. When I moved in, I had to deal with the water main busting and spewing water all over the basement. Luckily, it was caught by an employee of the water department, and he was able to shut off the water within a day. So I used gallons of bottled water until I could get it fixed by a neighbor who has since become my go-to handyman. That's one way to get to know the neighbors! Also, having no internet for a few weeks reminded me of how dependent I was on it. I would go to the nearest city and park near the university to get residual WiFi, because I also had a cheap cell service that works great in the city but not at all in the country.

Covid-19 was just starting to spread as I was moving, so lock-downs in Michigan meant that my plans for getting to know the neighbors through local activities was not going to happen. Once I got Internet service for the house, I did find a very useful local Facebook group which has turned into a great resource for finding local services. I found someone to haul firewood to my house for my sauna (an essential for this Finnish-American), and learned when businesses were closing due to Covid-19 restrictions and reopening again. I'm so grateful for social media to keep the isolation away.

I was unemployed for three months and then employed part-time for a month, and I put in four garden beds, mostly cleaned up the house, and kept up with mowing about half an acre closest to the house. I also moved my adult son in, who is having some problems with depression and was isolated himself and in a bad state of mind when he moved in. Peaceful country living is doing him good, and I don't care if he lives here for free with me for awhile. He's helpful with the yard work, and it's good for both of us to be with family. There were times in my life when I could have used a sabbatical myself.

Now I'm working full-time at a labor-intensive job, and I only have energy to do anything around here on my days off. We just had our first frost of the season, and I really need to finish up my garden for the year. Fall color season is starting. I am in awe of the beauty of this place and I'm feeling happy and grateful to be here.
1 year ago
No answers yet? Well, I'm about to throw my money their way. They do seem to be the most affordable. And I like the idea of getting lessons in short modules.

So I'll report back.

Erin Blake wrote:Yes! I started this a few months ago and I'm still absolutely loving it. My hair is clean and has more body and natural bounce to it.

I came to it because I ran out of my favorite plant enzyme-based shampoo that I can only get by driving 1.5hr away, and it comes in a plastic bottle. I wanted something cheaper, easier, and waste-free. It was total chance that I saw the chickpea flour method posted in an unrelated group on FB.

My tidbit to add is that adding fenugreek powder to the chickpea flour is really helpful. It's conditioning and I like the smell, though for some the smell might take getting used to. Once your hair is dry, the smell is gone, anyway. If you're using 3tbs chickpea flour you could add 1/2-1tsp fenugreek. I find that too much will end up negating the effect of the chickpea flour; it becomes more "slick and slippery" - like you'd expect from a conditioning ingredient - than absorbent, which is what you need from the chickpea flour.

I have to rinse a lot to get it out, too. And even then, I don't usually get it all out until my hair is dry and I can give it a shake. I haven't found this to be an issue, though I can see how it would be if your hair were drying while wearing a black shirt.

Thanks for the suggestion on the fenugreek powder. That is worth trying!

I'll have to just avoid wearing black on the days I wash my hair. That's the only time I have that problem. The day after, when I'm in the shower just rinsing out my hair, I can tell there's a little left from the beany smell. That's fine with me. It doesn't flake out anymore or make my head itchy or anything.
1 year ago

Heather Olivia wrote:Thank you for sharing this and thus giving me the extra push to try it! I had seen it in my suggested videos on youtube, but hadn't given it a shot. I have been trying various attempts to be free of shampoo for probably about two years now. I've tried the baking soda and vinegar method, various plant powders, and herbal teas. Mostly, I have attempted to just go water and boar bristle brush only, but it has been frustrating as my hair rarely ever feels or looks clean. It almost always remains waxy feeling, heavy, limp and much darker in color than when I used shampoo. I don't know whether it's my hair type (very fine, pretty straight, light blond hair), hard water or simply a change of expectations that is needed. I really want to make the water and brushing only thing work, but not at the cost of feeling lousy about my hair. So I am quite excited by the results from the chickpea flour so far! I used the flour only, no rinse or oil. A couple days later and my hair is still feeling clean, bright and has more volume. I will say, it took quite awhile to rinse the flour out of my hair and off my body, but we have a very low flow shower situation, so others might not have such a time of it. I will be curious to see how long it stays clean. I still hope to figure out the water and brushing only thing, but this is a great option for now.

I'm glad that you got inspired to try it! I too have been trying different things, trying to get away from plastic bottles and the desire to simplify my daily routines. I had been using shampoo bars and started out with one that worked pretty well, but it seems they stopped making it, so I tried a few others that were horrible. Then I found the baking soda/ vinegar idea here on permies, and I've been using that for months. It worked pretty well, but the harshness of the combination may have resulted in excessive oil production on my scalp. My hair feels much cleaner with this method, and so far, I've gone down to twice a week, although I rinse my hair with water every time I shower.

I might skip the rinse next time to see what happens.

I have a hard time rinsing too, and I get really good water pressure from my showerhead. I use a washcloth when rinsing it off my body. I consider it a bonus to have the tiny granules to clean off, because it works as a scrub.  
1 year ago
Thanks for the reply!

Burton Rosenberger wrote:Haven't tried it but I have been water only ... and BBB only before.  

What is BBB?

Are you getting good brushing sessions in with your hair?

I comb my hair when I get out of the shower, when it dries, and once at work because of "hat hair". I don't own a brush since my last one vanished while on vacation. Does it work better? I'm really not a fan on spending too much time on grooming, but it might be worth it if I can cross hair washing off my list of things to think about.

 I "wash" my hair only when it gets dirty ... from touching it with dirty hands which is rarely ... maybe once every 2 months if that. For me this means allowing the water from my shower to touch my head long enough to remove the dirt then doing a rinse with filter water and ACV

I'm going to wait and see how long it takes before my hair gets greasy again. Day 3, and it's still good.
Filtered water does make sense with the rinse. I have hard water and I'm sure those minerals bog my hair down.

1 year ago

I hope the above link works.

I've been gradually going poo-less for awhile now, trying different things. For the last few months, I've been using baking soda dissolved in water as a shampoo substitute, with a rinse of plain vineger. That worked pretty well, but my hair would still get greasy after three days. Then I saw the above video, in which she is using chickpea flour made into a paste. She says that she only has to wash her hair once a week, and that sounds wonderful to me. I'm pretty much a minimalist when it comes to personal care these days, doing just enough to be clean and healthy.

The only flour I could find locally was a garbanzo bean/ fava bean mix. I was impatient to get started, so I went ahead and got it. So this makes it a less than pure experiment.

Yesterday was my first time trying this. All went well, except the flour took a lot longer to rinse out of my hair than baking soda does. I did like the lemon juice/apple cider vinegar rinse a lot better than the plain distilled vinegar. Probably just because it smells a lot better. I didn't do the oil part at the end. I'll wait and see if that's even necessary.

Also, when I was combing my hair, little white flakes flew out, smaller than dandruff. It was not a good idea to wear a black shirt that day. Those white flakes very well could have been the fava bean flour, though. Today, I just rinsed my hair with water, and that seems to take care of it.

I'm liking this so far. My hair really feels cleaner and softer than it has in a long time. I'm going to keep this up for awhile as long as it works for me.
1 year ago

Rufus Laggren wrote:
1) Find out the best person to fix your car and start a (business) relationship there, immediately regardless of the condition of your car right now.

I agree! I need to find somebody local who can take care of my car when it's broken down in my driveway or along the side of a road. Unfortunately, the only auto repair shop in town shut down when the owner retired, but there may be others nearby. Or individuals.

2) Don't know how this would fit your life and style, But maybe think about maybe buying a backup vehicle. Starting from your chosen mechanic and branching out in a search pattern (CraigsList?), find a "good" functioning rattle trap for about $500-$1000. The mechanic can help in this. Old cars in these U.S. are are very plentiful and with care good functional vehicles can often be had cheap.

That's actually my primary car. I bought it for $1000, and it's 17 years old. The previous owners took great care of it, though, and it has pretty low mileage for a car that old. But I also need something I can haul things in, like a pickup or a van, especially when I start the renovating phase of my plan.

Just run the thing around the block (sorta speak) once a month and bring it up to operating temperature for 10 minutes. It will be there when you need it in an emergency.

I had a neighbor in my last town who did this. He mostly walked and biked, and he only took his van out when he needed to haul something. This was rare, so he had to run it around the block a couple times a winter.

2a) Better _and_ Best: Get to know the old lady next door with the late model Buick she never drives and has offered to let you use. (!!!) Well, guess that depends on some luck, but it's sure worth keeping your eyes open and maybe an extra conversation or two.

Yep, I intend to get to know my neighbors.
2 years ago

Ashley Cottonwood wrote:The interior is a wreck.
- Could use this as an opportunity to gain a new skill set. Just  take it one project at a time and I think you'll be amazed where you are by the end of a year

I've always wanted to learn how to fix up a house, but I never really had the opportunity. When I was married, it was always my husband's "thing", and he didn't want me to help. I've done small projects, though.

- You can use Paul's book to cut down your utilities like crazy. Not gonna lie, snow plowing sucks! Increased transportation fees could be minimized if you found a job you could work part time' full time from home

I'm reading it now! Snow plowing is going to be a huge expense, but that's the way it goes up north.
The propane heater will have to go, but that will be one of the last things I do. It will probably be expensive to have that and the tank removed.
I hope to eventually work from home or very close to home. In the meantime, I will have to be careful to combine my trips to work with running errands, maybe finding a carpool.
2 years ago

Trace Oswald wrote:
You may find commuting 35 miles in the country is far more relaxing and easy than going half that distance in the city with the traffic, stop lights, honking horns, and just general ugliness that can accompany city commutes.
In my mind, the extra expenses you will incur far outweigh the drawbacks of apartment life.  Want to guess the last time someone walking around their home or playing their TV too loud disturbed me?
I'm an introvert as well, but I can tell you, many people feel far more alone in a city surrounded by people than the do in the country where the people are more sparse, but in my experience, much more kind and willing to help a neighbor out.)

Come to think of it, I have commuted that distance plenty of times. I didn't always like it, but it was pleasant in decent weather. The worst part of the commute does tend to be the stressful last part after entering the city. But the city I will be near is pretty small.

Yes, it will be nice to get out of apartments. I won't miss hearing my neighbors yelling or being very restricted in what I can do in my apartment. Last spring, I was interested in vermiculture in dealing with food scraps, but there's no way that the landlord would agree with that.

Agreed on the friendliness of country people (except for a few grouches). It's something I will have to get used to again. There may actually be less privacy than in the city, where most people pretty much mind their own business.
2 years ago