Simplicity by Choice

Off-Grid Living & Self-Reliance

Gotta Love Technology October 15, 2012

Filed under: ramblings — ourprairiehome @ 2:32 am

For the past couple of weeks, I have been going bonkers trying to remember my password for the blog website. Ugh! I finally got it all figured out tonight. Bad part is that I remembered it purely by accident. I thought I had changed it from an old one. Nope! I hadn’t changed it yet. Well, it is changed now. The biggest problem was that I couldn’t remember what email account I had the blog associated with. Another headache. LOL

So, tonight, I changed both the email (to one that I check daily) and the password. And I have done what everyone says you should never do. I wrote them down. I am not good at remembering what password I use on which website. There are some things about technology that is really a pain in the keester.

Well, at least now I can get back to posting again.


Writer’s Block October 10, 2012

Filed under: ramblings — ourprairiehome @ 3:24 pm

I am really beginning to see a problem with writer’s block. I have limited computer time each day. Using a small solar power system that does not allow me to use the computer for long periods is a challenge, but not one that is insurmountable. My issue is more basic than that. I get writer’s block on a regular basis. Some days, it seems that the words simply flow. I am able to write up to 2 chapters at a time. Other nights, and somewhere between my walking over to the computer and my backside meeting the chair, the thoughts simply evaporate.

I am beginning to truly believe the source of the block is that I am trying to write what I want and not letting the book write itself, so to speak On nights when I allow the words to simply flow from inside of me, the writing is so much easier to do. When I try to put my own interpretations in to what I see coming from the book, I seem to hit a snag and the flow simply falters to a stand still.

It is time for me to let go and let the book take me where it will.


Simplicity with Technology? September 7, 2012

Filed under: green living,old fashioned,ramblings,simplicity — ourprairiehome @ 4:59 am

I had a rather interesting question come up recently. I was asked in an email how I can consider our lifestyle to be one of simplicity when we have Internet at home, along with cell phones.

When compared to most families in our country, we DO live a much more simplistic lifestyle. No, we do not go as far with it as the Old Order Amish, for example. We do take on some of the attitude.

Among the Amish, any technology used has to pass a test. Does it truly benefit the family/community without interfering in their family/community relationships? Is it something that is necessary or is it simply a personal want?

We look at many of our technology decisions in a similar way. We homeschool our children and need the Internet resources to aid us in providing them a good education. Without Internet at home, I have to travel a minimum of 10 miles from home to access the WiFi at the library in town. While 10 miles doesn’t seem that much, the fuel cost does add up. We also use the Internet to stay in touch with family and friends that lives out of state. Having Internet at home does simplify our life in a big way. I can get online at night or when the children are playing and my household tasks are completed. I don’t have to pack the kids up into the jeep to drive them to town.

Having a cell phone is a blessing. Living where we do, if you have a vehicle breakdown, the cell phone can make a big difference. It also allows Joe to be able to contact me from the road no matter where I am. It does not take anything away from our family relationships. In contrast, it actually helps when Joe is gone. We can stay in touch far easier.

The key issue for me is that the technology not be allowed to rule over us. Don’t let the technology become so important that your relationships take a back seat to technology.

Take a realistic view of whatever technology you are wanting to purchase. Is it necessary? If you took the time to save up the money to obtain that computer, or other technology-related item, would you still have long-term use for that item when you finally have saved enough to buy it?

Technology isn’t the issue. It is what you do with it and whether or not you allow it to rearrange your priorities in an unhealthful way.


Water Park Fun August 31, 2012

Filed under: ramblings,simplicity — ourprairiehome @ 9:44 pm

Had a fun day out yesterday with the kids. Picked up my eldest daughter & the grandsons to take with us to the park. We chose one close to their home that has a huge play ground for the kids to climb around on. After a time, we went to another area of that park to their water park. It is a fenced area that has fountains, sprinklers, and those fun buckets on a pole. The kids all loved it. The day was very warm and the water felt wonderful. One of the funniest times was when the older kids got caught under the buckets. The buckets are on tall poles. Water fills the buckets and they tip over, spilling the water onto whoever happens to be under them at that time. The water system is on a timer. After the set amount of time, the water shuts off and the kids have to restart it by placing their hand over a sensor.

Pookie was uncertain of the spraying water at first. It was something completely new to him, so that was to be expected. While the older kids were playing in one part of the area, I took Pookie to a more quiet one. A water sprinkler there was trickling water out softly and he timidly stuck his hand under the water. Not long after that, he was laughing as he continued to play in the water.

Sunday, we are going to take the kids again. It will be fun to take Daddy and also their Aunt Edie along with us. Little Miss has already decided that she wants Daddy to put a small water park in the yard for them. LOL Guess that will be a tall order. I hope that a hose and sprinkler will be sufficient.


Blog Spammers August 27, 2012

Filed under: ramblings — ourprairiehome @ 10:12 pm

It is really comical to read some of the spam comments that I receive.  Everything from being chastised to read my comments more often, to write blogs on topics that would actually be found interesting to others, and appreciative comments that have absolutely nothing to do with the blog post they are supposedly commenting on.  The funniest part is that they ALL are coming from the same or very similar sources.  All are from someone trying to sell a product or service.

This is exactly why I moderate the comments.  I especially do not want the trashy content in my comments for any to ready.


Reconnecting Time August 16, 2012

Filed under: ramblings — ourprairiehome @ 7:43 pm

I have been loving the time with my beloved on the truck. It feels so much like when we first were together as a trucking team. Only difference this time around is that I am not doing any of the driving. The schedule is crazy. Some days we were shut down at a decent time of night while others, we are catching up on sleep during the day while waiting on the trailer to be loaded or unloaded. Of course, beloved handles the craziness better than I do. It sure makes me feel my age! But, in spite of the strange hours, I love this.

We have had many discussions about us, the kids, homeschooling, and much more. That is one of the things that I love about my husband. We actually talk about the things that are important to us. It doesn’t matter if the topic is one of great interest to the other person. If one of us feels something is important to us, the other always makes it important enough to themself to listen attentively and take part. That showing of respect really makes the relationship much easier on both of us.

One of the topics that we are both interested in is the fact that those with classic autism are falling through the cracks in the system. We are both disheartened by the experiences that we have had with our son in regards to treatment. Literally each therapist that he has seen in the areas of occupational and speech have treated him as though he were higher functioning or an Aspie. In doing our own research online, it is staggering that the percentage of children on the autism spectrum that are Aspies or PDD-NOS make up 75% of the cases. So, it is understandable that most therapies would address them. In the effort to help these children/adults, they have inadvertently overlooked the more severe and low functioning form of the classic autism. How do I know this? It is rather easy to explain.

Whenever our son has been treated by a therapist, both during and after early intervention, they expected him to perform at a much higher level than he was cap[able of. One was insistent on him riding a tricycle, when the only interest he had in one was to have me turn it over so that he could spin the tires. When she forced him to sit on the tricycle, he was terrified and screaming. He had absolutely no ability to petal the tricycle and would not touch the handlebars. She kept saying that boys his age love riding tricycles and that he should also. What??? Another time, she wanted him to do a “pots & pan band” with us hitting the kitchen pots with a mixing spoon and walking in a circle. Uh, did she not realize that a child with sensory sensitivity to sound would freak out over that? The speech therapist did not much better. She demanded that our non-verbal son make the “g” sound for over 2 months of visits. She admitted that all of her patients were doing that and she wanted our son to do it also. That is just the tip of the iceberg. Needless to say, we stopped going to them. They had no idea of how to work with a child like our son. The speech therapist was not supportive of him learning to do sign language. It was her opinion that if he learned to sign, he would have no reason to start talking. That is ridiculous. The odds against him ever becoming verbal are staggering. Unlike Aspies who are able to become verbal and become quite good with speech, most with classic autism never become verbal. You much find other means to allow them to communicate. Our experiences, along with the stories of other families, shows us that there resources for classic autism are seriously lacking. This is an area where my husband and I are doing what we can to help educate others. Maybe, somewhere along the line the resources may become available.


On the Road August 15, 2012

Filed under: ramblings — ourprairiehome @ 3:41 am

This week I have been on the truck with my dear husband. The little ones are visiting their aunt for the week. It is so fun having some alone time with my beloved. The time for ourselves has been sorely needed. I was getting stressed over the past year or so and this is providing the break that I needed. I will be gone 7 days total.

Being out here, I see first hand how much of a difference the canning has made. We don’t have to eat out unless we choose to. There are plenty of meals on the truck already. The only thing we need to buy is milk for our breakfast cereal and occasionally a drink, such as beloved’s coffee or my juice. Other than that, we have all the food needed.

It feels strange to be on the truck again. Last time I was on the truck like this, I was still team driving with beloved. We left that job together when I was 6 months pregnant with Little Miss. Hard to imagine that was 6.5 years ago. In many ways it does not seem like it was that long ago. Yet, I look at the fact I have 2 little ones, ages 4 and 6, and I guess I had simply not realized how much time has passed.

I am enjoying the time with beloved, but also am looking forward to being home again. I have been doing a bit of computer work, looking up curriculum and other homeschool resources. Now that I am getting the curriculum together, I am looking toward getting started.