Our new home in Ohio is "off the grid", what does that mean? Well... we are not connected to the national grid for a supply of electricity. So how am I able to post on social media? I'm glad you asked. We have solar panels which supply us a basic amount of electricity. With that daily supply we: charge our phones, power our laptop/printer and charge batteries which run our fans (to help cool us without a/c). We have one strip of outlets in our office area, no outlets anywhere else in the house, we use extension cords if needed. We also have a generator which we run when we need power for our equipment to make our goat milk soap or power tools for homestead projects.
The questions I am asked most is what about a/c and my hair? Anyone who's ever met me can clearly tell I don't care about my hair, I was rocking the messy bun before it was a thing. Now, a/c is a great question. Our home was built by Amish for Amish, it is designed well, to keep it cool in the summer. The windows are huge and there are a lot of them which helps pull the air through, our ceilings are 10ft tall which helps too. We also learned a great trick, keep the windows open all night (in the summer) to let the cool air in the close them in the morning to keep the cool air in, the house is very well insulated. This has been a huge help. We also have to be cautious about how we cook, no long baked lasagna or breads in the summer, rather quick stove top or outside grilled meals. We also use work site style fans which run off rechargeable batteries. Honestly sometimes the heat is a little bit of a challenge but we've made it through our first summer (yeah!).
So has no-electric been a sacrifice? Well... another great question, you guys have the best questions 😌 It's definitely not a sacrifice, I would say adjustment. We are always hunting for a flashlight when it's bedtime but a bit better organization will correct that. I'm surprised to say no microwave has been the biggest adjustment for me. I like to cook big meals and reheat for lunch the next day and that's not always possible to do in the regular oven, we also have a picky eater who may or may not eat when it's dinner time. However with the lack of a microwave we are mostly all eating at the same time and all together, with no TV in the background there is lots of chitter chatter and often sillyness at the dinner table. Sounds like a good trade for a microwave to me!
Since I've mentioned the TV I might as well talk about it some more. We do have a TV, it's currently covered with a bed sheet hiding in a corner. In almost three months here we haven't tried to see if we can even tune it in to receive broadcast TV, the rabbit ears are still packed in a box. We leave it in it's hiding spot then after the farmer's on a Saturday evening we pull it out and set it up to watch a movie or two or three! It's so fun, we all take turns choosing one and watch it all as a family. Some weekends we totally forget about setting it up and it's Sunday evening before we realize we've missed movie time because we've been busy doing other things.
Well I think that's enough words for now. I would love to hear some questions, nothing is too silly to ask, so fire away.......