K Carpenter

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since Mar 13, 2021
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*Raised on a farm in PNW.
*First attempt at homesteading in the mid/late 70s. (Hippy days!) Didn't work out. Homestead did, spouse didn't.
*80s-2010s Lived mostly near town/burbs, working and raising kids and saving money for retirement. Oregon, CA,  GA, NC.
*2020s NC - Trying it again. Retired,  bought 30+ acres of forest with few acres hay field, that sat fallow for 30 years, mostly undeveloped. Off grid, 25 mi from small town, private, springs, creek, across road from branch of river. Neighbors are awesome.
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NC zone 7a
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Recent posts by K Carpenter

We bought our property out in the sticks for a few reasons. The small subdivision we lived in wasn't bad as far as the CCRs went. It was the clique of the first people who built there. We got tired of the constant whining and complaining and 'special treatment '.

The codo we had owned was not as bad, but you have to deal with other residents on a closer basis. No yards in between. Just walls. Nice large yard areas that kids weren't allowed to play in. And they weren't allowed to play in the parking area. Why allow kids?

Out here on our acreage we went solar. While we were building we seriously considered hooking up to the grid. That got nixed because  it was an electric co-op and their requirements are ridiculous. We considered it a couple more times and just couldn't bring ourselves to sign that agreement.

When we first came to the state we checked out one of those all-in-one communities.  But you have no choice but to pay-in to all the services and if you're not a people person forget it. They assured us we would learn to love the social gatherings etc. They're fun! Even group trips! WHATever!

So being older and retired we didn't want to be locked in to anybody's rules and regs and lifetime fees. Ugh! We wanted peace and quiet and nobody for the most part telling us what to do. There is the county though.

If you're old enough to remember communes, they worked pretty well. But my idea of a modified elderly commune would be like mentioned above. A version of tiny homes but not so tiny and everyone owns their own lot. Whether that lot is acres or just a lot.

People change. People may have friends that aren't so desirable. Having rules can eliminate certain issues but can also cause problems. So we moved into a very small rural farming community.  And it's awesome.

All of our neighbors stopped by to say hi when they'd catch us outside. We had a mechanical issue and were pulled off the road with our heads under the hood. 6 different people stopped and asked if we were OK or needed help..

Nobody bothers us and they don't expect to have a midday coffee clatch. We all have work to do or want to be left alone! It's grand.

WHAT? I had no idea. . . .really!

I don't do social media. Until recently.  I tried Telegram just for the medicinal herb forum and it turned into a bunch of 'Click Bait'. CANCEL. I'm on Truth Social for some news and for most part it's not bad. So far.

Permies is just a different animal. It's a joy to come here and research, find great information from decent people (as far as I know). But I guess I kinda have a PollyAnna point of view.

I had no idea. . .that there was any 'censoring' going on in the background. Not that I disagree with it at all! It's just that it's done in such a way we aren't aware of it. And I for one appreciate it.

What was the question? 8^)

I like the current system of thumbs up/down, apple and pie etc. But all of us including staff and volunteers have to take people as they present themselves.  I feel that we'll figure out how genuine they are after reading a few of their posts.

I for one am not the least bit interested in what they may or may not have posted on some other site. And won't waste my time looking for said information.

You be you and I'll be me!
I too use a scraper. It's a small, about 2.5" Wide X 3.5" long blade. Here's how I clean my pan, which also cleans out flavors I may not want in next meal. 😋

Every time I use my cast-iron pans:
** I scrape and wipe out as much food as possible.
** Then I put a scant layer of water to just cover pan bottom.
** Turn on heat to get it to simmer. Turn off heat and let sit just enough to loosen stuck food, using scraper as needed. Immediately wipe out pan to finish cleaning. It'll still be hot so be carefull.
** While still hot add some coconut oil and spread it all around sides, bottom and top edge of pan. Let sit over night or at least until fully cooled. It'll absorb some of the oil.
** Wipe out excess oil. I lay a paper towel in pan if I'm putting in drawer and might set another pan in it.
1 year ago
Okay, can't help myself. Gotta add my 2 potatoes worth!

Russet potatoes, boiled whole in salted water, peeled if you want & cubed after cooled.
Boiled eggs (I use pastry cutter to slice up for salad)
*Celery seed
*Dried diced onions
*Dill seed
*Sweet pickle juice (I don't like sweet pickles AT ALL! I buy a small jar of midgets just for the juice)
Dill pickles Like Nalley's hamburger dill chips, not Kosher.
Yellow mustard (prefer Frenches)
Secret ingredients:
Plain yogurt (Greek style is best)
Black olives, sliced in half (Black olives!? Ewww!)

I mix the *items in a little bowl to partially rehydrate before I  even start the potatoes.
Put potatoes, eggs & olives in a bowl. Mix *items, yogurt & mustard. Gently mix into the bowl. Salt & pepper to taste.

I never measure the ingredients. So it's kind of a guessing game. BUT! I'm not beyond adding extra of any of the ingredients after the fact.

I like lots of olives and mustard. Don't ask me what got into me to think of the black olives. Be careful with the sweet pickle juice. You don't want your salad too saucy/runny.

The salad tastes best if it can sit in fridge at least a few hours. Over night is better, IF you can keep people out of it!

1 year ago
Thomas Pickens:
Great info and thanks for the included photos! It's such a relief to know the persimmons are diehards. We have two that are so tall they are providing shade where we don't want it. But I've dreaded cutting them down. Is it okay to cut them this time of year or when is best time?

Dan Boone:
Your info was also great and I bought your digital book. It is a good read. I enjoyed the history, propagation techniques and the recipes. https://permies.com/t/126158/ebooks/Native-Persimmon-downloadable-ebook-reprint

Being an eastern transplant from the PNW I had never even seen a persimmon tree or fruit. And so far we've found 7 of them and I'm sure we'll find more.

The big daddy (well mama) is at least 2 foot across at the base and most likely responsible for the others we found. I was shocked when I looked up and saw fruit!
1 year ago

I wish! We do have our well plumbed into the cabin. And have loooonnnng hoses running down to garden and up to barn. Hope to get it plumbed over next year or two. We also have a spring to develop and want to collect rain water.

Our priority at moment is finish fencing and the larger solar power system. Both big projects and I'm not fully up to par yet, so it's slow going. And the power line is going to need buried from the panels up to the cabin. That'll be close to 200 feet. Ugh!

Keep going! You're an inspiration. We both turn 70 in the first half of 2023.
1 year ago
I got one of those too! Lolol. I can't pull start either of the "real" chainsaws. So got an Echo. I last about as long as the battery. So it works out pretty well. They're light weight even with the battery.

We won't be cutting down any large trees, but it's great for the small stuff, cutting off branches and brush.

When I bought mine, I could buy a complete new Echo tool for a few dollars more than a spare battery. Recently went to try that again and they've raised the prices so now it's a better deal to just buy a battery.
1 year ago
So glad to see this thread! We knew we had a persimmon tree, but the last 3 winters were always too late to get any and weren't positive which tree it was.

So yesterday we were noticing the persimmons up in the tree and got to looking to see which trunk went with the fruit. And as I explored through the brambles and looking up, I realized we have half a dozen persimmon trees out in our forest! One of them has a humongous trunk. It must be really old.

We were really excited about it, but had no idea what to do with them. The trees are over 40 feet tall so not at all easy to get. And they have so far to fall they're just smooshed when they hit the ground.

Any growers on here? If I top a tree will it kill it? Two of them need to come down or be topped cuz they're right where they will shade our new solar panels. Or we move the whole set up. I refuse to cut them down so am hoping we can top them.

The recipes all sound good. Do they can well? I'm wondering about making marmalade. I do like the idea of drying. They'd probably make some good fruit leather too. Do the dried ones keep very well?
1 year ago
6 months later. . . .WOW! How's your electric bill? Had any power outages? I'm so thankful we have solar power!

Unbelievable rate hikes and storms in many areas of the world, not just the US. And don't even get me started on electric cars and not being able to charge them.

Now's a lousy time to go solar because all the materials have gone up in price and you're lucky if you can even find what you need.

A lot has to do with why you want to go solar. Because you want to reduce your carbon footprint or save the planet, you want to be self sufficient and not depend on some corporation to keep your power on or whatever. First of all, production of those solar panels is not a 'green' process.

We had to drive an hour to a specific Lowes recently to get 2 breakers and 1 quick disconnect/shut-off that we needed. I don't remember why they wouldn't ship them.

We've spent the last 2 years buying parts for our big system and the last few items were not cheap! But if you can make your plan, list items you need and buy things as you can you'll get there. Watch Craigslist too. You might find someone upgrading or giving up on their system.

Even if you can only get a couple panels, a charge controller, a couple batteries and inverter you'll start saving. I don't however recommend buying cheap products unless you understand that you may have to replace items and are prepared to do so.

Start by charging all your rechargeables with the system. Add a couple rechargeable fans, flashlights or lamps/lanterns. I got a fan that will run for 2.5 days on low. And that's if it's on 24 hrs a day!

Buy the best you can afford and on your charge controller and inverter get them with enough capacity that you can add more panels as you can afford them.

Thinking about putting panels on your roof? You gonna climb up there to keep them clean? Not me! If you have space I say put them on the ground. I squeegee off my panels at least once a month, on my way to the barn or to collect eggs.

Personally I don't recommend the system that your power company pays for. Most of them aren't saving you a whole lot and they don't want to provide battery back up. That means when the power goes out, YOUR power goes out too. So what is the point?

If you've got the money to hire a company to do it for you, yes it's expensive. And if you set up a maintenance program, even more expensive. But it does add value to your property.

So I think everyone should have at least SOME solar for emergencies if nothing else.

1 year ago
Thekla, I completely understand! I love real estate and derelict houses and barns. My Dad thinks we're nuts for buying this place.
He asked what we're going to do with so much acreage. I told him nothing! We have zero yard so nothing to mow. A little weed eating.
It's kind of a "nowhere to go and all day to get there" deal. We want to clean up some brushy areas and improve or make some trails and view points. But what gets done gets done and what doesn't, doesn't.  No worry, no hurry.
And then, when we die, it's the kids' problem. Lolololol!
1 year ago