Friday, April 15, 2011

Frugal Fridays - what can be learned from our ancestors and BOOK CONTEST!

As you know, I have been reading Surviving Off Off-Grid: Decolonizing the Industrial Mind.  One thing this book will definitely make you do is think!  I am amazed at all the knowledge that has been lost in the past 100 years!  I am visiting with my parents in Jersey and they live in a very old house.  The book prompted me to go on a history scavenger hunt of sorts to see what I could learn about "the old way".  I do not know the true purposes or story behind some of the things that I discovered, but here is what I found and my interpretation. 

The house has a well and a septic, and therefore is not dependent on the city for water or waste removal.  However, you do need electricity for the well to pump. 
There is a basement with windows near the ceiling of the basement, which I would imagine would help heat to escape during the summer  months. 
There is no central air-conditioning, but being underground the basement should remain cool during the few hot summer months. 
In the basement (in a side room) there is an alcove about three feet deep, five feet wide, and ten feet long (very rough estimate).  I do not know what the purpose behind this is, but in light of the information presented in the book I was thinking that it would make a great root cellar.  (hard to get a good picture)

There is also a wood-stove in the basement.  My parents still use this as their primary source of heat in the winter because oil prices are so high.

Windows are in the closet so that you do not need to rely on an electrical light to see during the day.

And I found some old tools that my Dad's Grandfather forged.

In support of today's Surviving Off-Off Grid book-bounce I am holding a give-away!  To enter to win a copy of the book:
1.  Leave a comment below with one thing you can find around your house that gives a glimpse into the ways of your great-ancestors.  You can come back each day to leave a new comment. 
2.  Blog about Surviving Off-Off Grid and leave a comment with the link.
3.  Purchase a copy of the book (for yourself or someone else - kindle or paperback) and leave a comment saying so (on the honor system!). 
Contest closes on Thursday, April 21st and winner will be announced on Friday, April 22nd.   

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