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Monday, November 5, 2012

Monday Musings.

Self-sufficient.  Self-sustaining.  I wonder, is sufficient enough?  Is sustaining just the minimum?  Should we be self-thriving?  There are times when I feel that this is all such a struggle, and what is it for in the end?  I think that part of the joy for me is the process - the learning of new things; the challenges.  Can I stop at the store and buy a bottle of vanilla extract?  Of course.  But I would rather make my own.  A lot of the things I have learned have been out of necessity.  I am a one-income family and my time is spread pretty thin.  That combination is ripe for self-instruction!  I can't call the vet for every injection, so I learned how to do it myself.  Clogged drains, rodent problems, plumbing problems, holes in the wall, broken thises and thats, I call me. 

I am not a doom-and-gloom, end-of-the-world type.  I am ever hopeful.  A long time ago, I decided that this type of outlook was way healthier for me and I'm sticking to it.  I have gone through a lot to get where I am today, and I would like to think that I am getting close to self-thriving.  I would like to think that I am pretty much up to any challenge - because I'm not afraid of failing.  Joel Salatin gave a great example in his latest book about a baby just beginning to stand on her own - she struggles up on her own two feet, then teeters and falls back down.  Her parents and grandparents cheer her on - they are so proud!  Do they say, "Rosemary, if you can't stand up correctly, just go sit down".  (I am flagrantly paraphrasing).  It seems to me that we all tend to lose our cheering section as we get older.  Hell's bells - if you don't have one, create your own cheering section!  There is nothing wrong with feeling proud of what you can do, no matter what it is.  I don't trail regrets behind me like Marley's chains because I believe that things happen for a reason.  Sometimes that reason eludes you for years...other times, it's pretty obvious.  If this path I've chosen becomes an onerous and unhappy trek, then I'll stop and reassess.  Otherwise, I'm going to enjoy the journey and any twists and turns still left in it.

14 comments:

  1. I think our little group has always had to be their own cheering section---we differ so much from the "norm" (McDonalds, Walmart, and designer clothing) and I think a bit of self encouragement is a good thing.
    I can't even count how many times someone has said to me--"ya know, you could just go BUY that if you need it".
    Yep. I could. But I won't.

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  2. Thanks for this post, SusanWiseWomanThatYouBe! I'm sending it to my hubby's computer so he can read it, too.

    P.S. Sue, wanna see my "designer" outfit this morning? UGGG-ly! But very serviceable for the coming day!

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  3. I am definitely in your cheering section! Nice post, even if I am more of a DOOMsday type LOL - but, I always like to find the humor in all my preps and sufficiency learning curve and that keeps me going :)

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  4. Well said Susan. I agree w/Sue, I think we have our own cheering section through this blogging medium & it feels good.

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  5. I just had a conversation with my 2 youngest girls about this! I was bottling homemade vanilla extract and one reminded me that it was probably cheaper to "just go buy it at the store, Mom." I tried to explain to her that it wasn't about doom & gloom, it was about the satisfaction of doing it myself. Later that day, our South African neighbor stopped by and commented at how "beautiful" that extract was and "doesn't everyone make their own?" He comes from a place where people had to be self-sufficient. Where running to the store/doctor/vet, etc. for every little thing is unheard of.

    Your cheering section is growing, my friend. Good post!

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  6. Add another voice to your cheering section, can you hear me cheering you on all the way from California. It's nice to have options, do it yourself, or splurge and go buy something instead, variety is the spice of live.

    Got my package Saturday, thanks, now just find the time to sit down and relax and enjoy it.

    Hope the Noreaster they are predicting for east coast this week is a mild inconvience, enough is enough for now.

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    1. oops * life, I should proof read what I write before I hit the publish button

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  7. Great post Susan.

    We make our own life's journeys. When we fail, we must just pick ourselves back up and try, try again. I would rather fail at trying to make something, then go out and buy and item that doesn't have my ability to make it or my sweat and tears behind it.

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  8. This is a timely find on my part for your post. As a "psuedo" homesteader, just chickens, garden, homeschooling and LOTS of diy projects I've always landed in the odd crowd with my peers. Especially as a now middle age mom who still has 2 grade schoolers when most of my aquaintances are empty nesters I've often found myself in a solo category. It's my choice and one I'm quite satisfied with, but have had to be my own "cheering squad" too. I don't relate to what's in fashion, haven't a clue about the "latest TV hits", am not up on the trendy eateries, etc.
    Admittedly was feeling maybe I was odd at not having much to add to a conversation in these regards until I stumbled across your blog and thought - hey there are other ME's out there!!! Thanks : )

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    1. Lynda, you are not alone. I am a 50-year-old homeschooling pseudo-homesteader with a 10-year-old son; we DO exist!

      Susan, I loved this post! Self-thriving . . . so much more positive (and don't we all need to be more positive?) than self-sufficient.

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  9. Sue - Yes, indeed, we DO have a wonderful cheering section, don't we? And I'm sure it goes out to include lots of others who are 'odd'.

    Mama Pea - Oooh - His & Hers computers! Talk about WiseWomanThatYOUBe! So, what was this designer outfit? Care to describe it???

    Erin - Where would we be without a sense of humor? Or YOUR sense of humor?

    DFW - There is a lot of comfort in knowing that you are not alone. Even if you are, physically, alone. I don't know what I would do without you all.

    Kim - Sigh, even by being a good example, some people don't get it. Of course we don't HAVE to. But who knows? I like being prepared. And we are very lucky in this country to have so many advantages. It's just too bad that so many take advantage of our advantages - you know what I mean...

    TL - Yes, I can hear you when the wind is blowing in the right direction..;) Be sure to MAKE time to enjoy your little package. Glad you got it.

    Sandy - Well said!

    Lynda - You are now officially a member of the Cheering Section! There are quite a few of us out here - and we are here for you.

    Michelle - Amen.

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  10. Great post Susan, add me to your cheering squad too! I really like: "If this path I've chosen becomes an onerous and unhappy trek, then I'll stop and reassess." That is something we all should remember but I know I'm sure enjoying my journey!
    Got my package Saturday too, how did you know lavender was my favorite scent?!? :)

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    1. Candy - Just call me "Clara Voyant"! It's mine, too.

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