Thursday, April 10, 2014

Self- Reliance Tip of the Week - If You Hate It, Don't Store It and Garbage Warrior ! April 10, 2014

What's Your Gift?

Oh man, do I have some great stuff for you today!

I received this response from a "Tip of the Week" recipient, and this is SO realistic!!

Through personal experience with my family members I have learned to store only what you will actually eat.  
Example:  My aunt bought two cases of pork & beans.  I went over to help her fix a light dinner and opened a can of the beans. 
Aunt:  Why did you open those beans?
Me:  Because you have a lot of them and I figured you liked them.
Aunt:  I hate pork & beans
Me:  Well why did you buy them?
Aunt:  For food storage for your family.
Me:  But we don't eat pork & beans.
Aunt:  You'll be glad to have them when times get hard.

I wish this story had a good ending but unfortunately when she died and the job of cleaning out her house fell to me, I had to throw away the two cases of bulging, bursting pork & beans.  

The concept of rotation for food storage is an easy concept but it's a difficult skill to master.  And the task is made harder by a self-defeating way of thinking.  Some families I've talked to won't eat the food they've canned at the cannery.  It takes on a different specter and it shouldn't be touched until Armageddon gets here.  This is a mindset that is hard to overcome. 

Thank you "mystery recipient"...those are words of wisdom. The most inopportune time to eat things you don't in an emergency. 


Lately I have been watching "off the grid" videos. I am intrigued by people who are wanting to be self-reliant with their food, electricity and water. Alternatives some choose are solar panels, some go wind generators, and many do both. I love watching how some people take ideas from various ancient architecture to create a "feng shui" (a Chinese thought that there is an energy to how things are arranged in a room or how a building is positioned) and calm ambiance in a self-sustainable home. Some homes are pretty...some, more on the "wart-on-a-troll's-nose-ugly" side, Who am I to judge?

Then I watched, "The Garbage Warrior" - this video was about a New Mexico hippie type (who uses very colorful language). My first thoughts were that he was an environmental tree hugger "global warming" type, and I wasn't really interested. Yet I kept watching. This man wanted to create sustainable living in the deserts of New Mexico, through experimentation. He wanted  to use recyclables like tires, glass and plastic bottles, and aluminum cans. Because his ways were not "conventional" they (the law) really put him through the ringer. His architect's license was taken, fines were imposed, and he was devastated. Being overwhelmed and discouraged, the creative streak was stifled to almost nothing. He still wanted to create and improve on the ideas he had. He went to the state legislature to pass a bill to experiment on his own property. Despite continuous efforts on the bill, it was repeatedly killed during the legislative process. He wasn't asking for money. He only wanted it to be "legal" to experiment on his own property. When it seemed like his talents would never be accepted, in 2005, there was an 8+ earthquake and 30 foot high tsunami that struck the coast of India. He was asked to come help the people there. Out of 32,000 who had lived there, only 7,000 remained. He and his crew were staggeringly humbled by the conditions they witnessed. 

The survivors were resilient as they began building homes through "Garbage Warrior's" designs using the available trash that would (ironically) give them clean water, shelter, and sanitation...using trash?? I was like, "Yeah buddy!" He taught these humble people the steps they needed to take to make the same home he fashioned for them - so they could in turn teach and help each other. 

Think about this: What would have happened if our creative Warrior had given up? His skills were developed as he experimented, making him a useful tool of service. Sometimes we need to look past the "fine" print of the status quo. One of my favorite quotes by President Uchtdorf says "Creation is your opportunity in this life and in the life to come...Don't let the voice of critics paralyze you. You will make the world a better place. The more you rely on the spirit, the better your capacity to create." LOOOooove it!

What gifts and hobbies do you possess that will help you help others? Some may disagree, but I believe EVERYONE possess at least one gift that they can share, especially in times of emergency. They may not be considered "conventional" talents...who cares, if you have a dream go for it. You never now how you might bless an entire village with it. Maybe you are a seamstress, a quilter, a master culinary artist, a blacksmith, a musician, or someone who works well with animals - whatever your gift, we all have need of it. 

Garbage Warrior said, " When you see how open people are immediately following a disaster, there is a real difference with the people and the opportunity here (in India) and the people and the opportunity in the West. It is almost like a disaster has to happen to cause the rest of the world to start preparing, and then it will probably be too late." I really think that speaks volumes. 

If you want to watch how he builds, here is the video I watched. Seriously, the language is pretty colorful, so ,"listener discretion advised"

So, if my kids' junk piles up enough I might start to build a more sustainable house with it. It might be "wart-on-the-troll's-rear" ugly, but, hey I'm experimenting. It might be valuable to you someday :).

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