We have entered into a time that we call false spring. We leave behind freezing temperatures and go into this wonderful warm weather only to return back to the freezing temperatures. It will dip it's toe back down to frosts and freezes and then back up into the 60 degrees and then even seventies this week and hold that temperature long enough to force some plants out of their winter dormancy. I am even seeing the insects and gecko's stretching their bodies in the warm sunshine. But winter is not over.
Here where we live it is common to see our camellias in full bloom this time of year but too early for our fruit trees and for several years now the fruit trees have bloomed too early and the blooms have frozen, decreasing the amount of fruit. Our false spring has caused our fruit trees to bloom early again.
I enjoy seeing the camellias blooming because it gives a pop of color during winter. Winter here is December 21, 2022 - March 20, 2023.
I took my camera with me last week when I rode with Charles to get out of the house for a little while. There was a pond with some ducks and other wildlife so I snapped some pictures.
A happy Mallard Duck.
On the way home we passed by a neighborhood book library. I just love these little book houses they put out in neighborhoods. They are mostly for children and the children can borrow a book to read and also donate a book and do a swap out. I would put one in our yard but the road in front of us is too busy and I would be worried for a child to stop here.
I continue to plant seedlings each week and I am taking them outside and back inside each day that the weather permits to let them stay in the sunshine. I start on the window ledge for morning sun and then move them to a clear tote and carry them out to the sun and the sides of the tote protects them from the cold.
The sun hits the plastic tote and works like a greenhouse and warms the inside. Sometime it needs the lid and nice days not. I am not using a grow light of any kind. I moved the tomato seedlings from the first seedling tray to peat pots this week and they have adjusted well. I started on the basil seedlings but ran out of seedling soil. Will get back to that this afternoon.
I want to talk about the great depression study and how to adjust the things that we do to be able to do what makes sense. In the forum comment section a few people have mentioned doing what works for them if it costs less.
This light that I made costs nothing to use. It is solar, I started using this last year or so, I think I may have shown it in a blog post but wanted to bring this up again. We purchased our solar bulbs several years ago and they have worked very well for us. I got them on Amazon and they come with a small solar pad and I take them out in the sun and charge them on a bright sunny day. They can also be charged with a plug.
We can eat and read with this little lamp and all I did was set the bulb downward on top of a vase. I have another sitting downward on top of a drinking glass, they can be put in a jar. They make nice lights. They are safe, not burning anything so no need for fuel. So once you buy the bulb it is free to use. If you buy a candle you have to buy another candle. I just popped over to amazon to see what they cost today and they are two bulbs for $18.00 that comes with two solar panels.
If you use two bulbs it will light up a larger area. I keep one by my bed and turn it on when I walk to the bathroom. Since it is solar it does not require batteries.
If we study about the old way and learn what simple is and we have available to do what they did in a way that costs less or nothing then we do that because it makes sense.
We still use candles and oil lamps at times but when we are trying to not spend to accomplish our goals we will do what makes sense. Costing nothing is what makes sense.
We have even been experimenting with cooking in our fireplace, because we can. We have a firepit outside and we also cook in that because we can cook for free because there is always firewood around when limbs and branches fall from the trees and we save them for firewood.
Our goal of saving enough to get a new roof has been achieved. The roofer man came out this morning and we finally have enough money saved to get a new roof. He went up and measured the roof and we have the work scheduled for February 20th if the weather is permitting. We have been needing this for quite some time so we are very happy to be getting this done.
We also had a plumber out yesterday due to another needed repair so that is out of the way. It has been a very expensive time for us and all the while we are doing a great depression study. We had a car repair that was very expensive last month. However, we had the money for these things because of our history projects.
The plumbing issue was in the kitchen sink area and until we could get a plumber out I could not use the sink. I used this time to find even more water saving methods of doing the dishes.
We have felt the impact of the history studies, we felt the 1940s budgeting and figuring out how to make do with what we had due to rationing.
The great depression study has had a huge impact on us and shown us that we could save even more when we thought we knew how. We studied and practiced before starting the study. Food is a very big part of saving by not wasting, by cooking a bit different when needed. Eating sandwiches can help drop the grocery bill when it is needed and you can still get tea from a tea bag a third time around.
My Grandmother that went through ww1,the flu pandemic, the great depression and world war 2, would make her tea and lay the teabag on a small plate and reuse it until nothing else would come from it. I now understand why she did this. After world war 2, she could have afforded to drink her tea with fresh tea each time but she most likely learned that anything can happen and so she saved what she had, she always lived a frugal life.
We have also found we can use less electricity when we thought we were already using less.
Salad and potatoes is one meal we have learned to enjoy. It is empowering when you figure out what it takes to reach a goal.
It all comes down to simple. It is really hard to describe simple because it is so simple.
This photo above shows the old way while living in this true time today. Charles work tablet with his lunch. He is looking forward to turning that tablet in one day when he retires. He wants to work just a little bit longer to build up the savings a bit more since we did all of this saving for a new roof. Looks like our frugal ways will continue and I hope to remain this way so we do not get wasteful ever again. Never think you can't when you can.