okay, after baking 63 (yes, five dozen and three) chocolate chip oat cookies from scratch, drinking chamomile tea, knitting, and thinking about my favorite movie (Lost in Translation), and talking to a very old friend, I am feeling much much better than I was earlier, mired in concern over my finances and the world's finances while I was at it. So ... I decided to delete my miserable post. I have no intention of sugar coating my world ... in fact, I think most of us are here because we recognize it for what it is and want to better it/conserve it ... but I also think that living as positively as possible is the most effective strategy toward such an end ... and by positively I mean both by action and by attitude. So much of our world is the way it is today because inaction and sour attitudes, i.e. complaining people, have paved the way. They are great destroyers. Our job is to tend to our small gardens -- gardens of life, family, hobby, friendship -- with as little destructiveness as possible. Our peace form the seeds, our care the garden, our intentions the sun, and our determination and grit ... well, the rain and wind.
I will try hard to keep my optimism in times that are trying to both myself and to my country. It will be needed, because from optimism springs positive, productive practicality and frugality. Sounds ironic, that product can emerge from frugality. Sometimes the truth is in that irony.
I'm realizing that I'm going to have to really, really plunge in if this lifestyle is to ever work for me. Not just do little scrapings of the bowl here and there, such as recycling and reusing bags and cooking almost everything from scratch. No, radical change is about really NOT spending on a bagel here, a coffee there, a cute pair of shoes on sale at Target. It's about making your own facial moisturizer from olive oil (anyone have good recipes? what about sunscreen? how to get natural sun protection for your skin? can't wear a floppy hat ALL the time ... and it doesn't protect the arms in warm weather) .... knitting your own cleaning cloths ... at LEAST whittling my ridiculous $20/week cell phone plan to a pre-paid plan etc. etc. See some steps are necessarily small when you're venturing into a "new world" ... but how do toddlers learn to walk, right? They don't just start running marathons. And there's that Rome cliche ... but in this case I think we're hoping not to DEconstruct Rome in a day. ; )
I'm scared to completely flip this life I've been raised into and become an adult in on its head. I see my minor changes making big waves with some people, many of disbelief. Or ... "wow it's great to talk about this stuff but you're actually doing ....?!?! uh .... ok." and i get these bewildered looks ... somewhat piteous expressions ... (i can't believe these, but i'm sure many of you know what I'm talking about here) .... and still, I soldier on. Not for my cause. For my children's cause, and for their children's cause.
Not everything in life can be trusted to politics and government, whose oft-atrocities are becoming so transparent ... by the minute, seemingly. No, it's about individual responsibilities. Forming a bridge to the future that the government, that politicians, can't rob from you, can't tax you on. Your handmade clothes. Your homegrown vegetables. Your stockpiles of food. Your reusable containers. Your knitted scarves, mittens, socks. Your library books and DVDs. Your homesteading skills. Your penny-pinching grip. Your pennies, stashed wisely and tucked away well for use on what's really important. (and which, materially, amounts to very little). Your donations. Of time, money, and love. Your friendship.
We still have power. Lots of it. Let's harvest and use it to make our own "machine." Aligned with nature and independent and fully functioning, always. Circular. There is hope, and it lies within us, manifest in our hands, our vocal chords, and, most of all, in our great big hearts.
i love you all. happy week-end to you.