The Riot for Austerity Challenge is about more than just utility bills. The Challenge is to reduce our emissions footprint in all aspects of living but not to feel deprived while doing so.
There are few things I need or want but living comes with some wants. Personally, books have to be a part of my life or I would feel terribly deprived. I use the local library as often as I can which amounts to five or six months out of the year.
This afternoon I noticed a new addition to the bottom of my checkout receipt that shows the dollar value of the books I borrow.
The receipt is a bit hard to read but the books I brought home today were valued at $229.00 bringing the grand total I’ve saved by borrowing books versus purchasing them to $1,268.56 in the two and a half years I’ve been here.
My grandchildren enjoy visiting friends who live across the street from me when here. One of their favorite toys is a sand table. I thought it would be great to have a small sand box for them to play with here but wasn’t going to buy a plastic container no matter how inexpensive I was told it was.
Speaking of sand, in an effort to have as few toxins as possible in my home and on my property I did not purchase play sand the dust of which is known to be cancer causing.
I realized I still had a couple of tires I rescued from a neighbor who was planning to send them to the landfill. One is about to be hung from the tree as a swing, two were stacked to make a planter box for my grandson to grow carrots in, which are doing great.
So why couldn’t I use a tire to make a sandbox?
I set a heavy duty cardboard box under the tire first to contain the sand then partially filled it with sand. It’s the only thing my grandson wants to play with, outside of bugs at the moment. A couple of the older neighbor boys came over to play with my grandchildren (notice the pair of shoes below).
In an effort to lessen my diet footprint planting continues. We planted two types of squash, cantaloupes, tomatoes, lettuces, and cucumbers in one afternoon. My grandson joined in telling us his mom helped him plant. 🙂 I’ll have to thin out a few of the squashes in particular as he put several seeds in each hole but that’s easy enough to remedy.
And surprisingly, we found apples on the only remaining apple tree, a granny smith, that survived the cicada invasion last summer. Surprising because apples are supposed to need a pollinator of a different type to have apples. Since I only had one tree I was taken aback when we spotted four apples forming on this tree.
The only thing I can figure is my tree was pollinated by a tree about 250 feet away on another property.
My granddaughter is so excited by the apples and peaches she is watching them every day she’s here, multiple times a day because she finds them “beautiful”.
Finally, more of my food will be sourced from local farms thanks to a farmer’s market that will open in late June that won’t require a car to visit. I’ll purchase as much as possible from the market to put up for the long winter months.