We moved out here with hopes of pursuing something that resembles a self-sustaining eco-friendly life, and we're getting there, slowly but surely. I use the word "resembles" because although we want to be self-sufficient, we don't want to be uncomfortable or have to do without things we love. It's not likely we'll be giving up our imported beer or coffee anytime soon. So for us, it's more about finding a balance we're comfortable with. We've learned to live without constantly consuming and making waste, and make better choices without feeling deprived.
This process started with one big move (literally) we packed up everything sold our house and moved out of the borough of Northampton, to less populated area about 30 minutes North of Allentown Pennsylvania, We choose a modest ranch home with a manageable amount of property. I wanted a ranch home because I've found it to be the most efficient type of construction for our lifestyle. It's got no steps, it's super energy efficient, it's easy to clean, and most importantly, it's large roof surface will easily accommodate a solar energy system when we're ready to go off-grid.
Acclimating to a life out here wasn't easy, no matter where I need to go it seemed FAR from home. When I was pregnant with my son, it was a rare occasion when I could make it to my destination without having to make a pit stop, I mapped out my travel routes based on where the cleanest restrooms were located. But being surrounded by farms and dairies means we had access to fresh locally grown produce until we got our own little homestead up and running. I expect that our homestead will continue to be a "work in progress" for many years to come. Some books I refer to regularly are:
- Living on An Acre: A practical Guide to the Self-Reliant Life
- The self-sufficient life and how to live it