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LIVING IN TERLINGUA

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Offline Mama Crow

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #15 on: January 18, 2010, 09:03:19 PM »
Before you do anything else you need to talk with Chisos Muse from this group. She and her fella Jon moved out there a few years back.  She is one tough cookie and independant and her lesson is reality is the same where ever you are.

I really, Really, REALLY like that lesson ... it speaks to me.

Thank you, and I'll be sure to take heed to Chisos Muse's input!

"The world breaks everyone and, afterward, some are strong at the broken places." - Ernest Hemingway

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chisos_muse

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #16 on: January 18, 2010, 09:41:48 PM »
Well, Richard & Homero pretty much sum it up. Drifter too  :icon_wink:

Basically, no matter how much planning is involved or how adaptable one can be, keep in mind that there are always factors out of your control. Living in the Big Bend region succesfully & happily is a lifetime commitment, a marriage...

The right decision will of course be determined by you and your family. Good luck!  :icon_biggrin:

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Offline Mama Crow

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #17 on: January 18, 2010, 09:47:25 PM »

Some of the locals will have to weigh in, but areas of concern for families as I see them are education, health care, food availabilty, jobs, etc.

I 'think' we are mentally prepared for these valid issues.

1) For education, I had already accepted the reality that I would homeschool the youngest if we stay in Abilene.  I hope I do not offend anyone by saying I am pretty much turned-off by the BS and/or politics involved with large school districts.  So a tiny school actually appeals to me, and as a parent I need to supplement my child's education (in all areas) anyway.  Besides, the smaller the school system is the less I'll might have to un-do.  If that makes sense?

2) As far as health care, we've already weaned ourselves off of conventional medicine.  We don't run to the doctor for every illness.  I am a student of homeopathy, and am able to treat most of our ailments at home with success.  Of course, in the situation of critical importance, I recognize life-saving measures as it relates to emergency trauma and swift intervention.  But, like you said, we'd all have to make a harrowing trip to Alpine for that anyway.

3) Food ... I want to make this move as a living lesson in self-sustainability.  So I will learn my lessons the hard way by trial and error.  In a perfect scenario, we'll be able to provide most of our food at home.  But I realize there is no such thing as perfect ... so the quick trips to Study Butte's grocery store won't bother me a bit.  Our philosophy here really needs to be "less is more" anyway.

4) Job!  This is the gristle I chew on the most.  Of course, I recognize without a mortgage looming over my head, and no utilities (as we will be off-grid), this removes the largest burden of my shoulders.  But, still, we must be able to have some kind of income.  So, I continue chewing the gristle.  Obviously, I am going to have to tap into the entrepreneurial blood coursing through my veins, and come up with something spectacular.  I'll get back with you on this one.  I'm tapping .... heehee.

Keep the comments flowing ... I need it and love it.

;)

  
"The world breaks everyone and, afterward, some are strong at the broken places." - Ernest Hemingway

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oldfatman

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #18 on: January 18, 2010, 11:05:22 PM »
Off grid is not no cost for utilities.  There are real maintenance costs for off grid utilities.  The cost just doesn't go to the local utility company.  For instance solar has batteries to maintain and replace. Panels can be damaged and need replacing.  Please plan this carefully because folks I know in the hill country did not consider the maintenance aspect closely enough and it bit them where it hurts most.

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Offline Mama Crow

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #19 on: January 19, 2010, 01:10:03 AM »
I think I'm fixing to scare y'all with what I'm about to say next.  Dare I say it?

 :icon_redface:

When I say "off-grid" I mean off-off-grid ... like, no nothing ... like, camping in a house instead of a tent ... like, outdoor showers in hot weather and warm baths in a small trough in the middle of the floor in cold weather ... like, woodstoves for heat (which would mean I'd have to buy cords of wood each winter) and cooking most things outside on the grill and rocket stoves, and in dutch ovens, and in sunken hayboxes (instead of electrical crock pots) ... like, charging our cell phones in the car thingy, and the laptop, too (through an inverter) ... like, candles and kerosene lamps for soft light at night ... those sort of off-off-grid things.

*ducking for cover*

It all makes logical, perfect sense in my mind, and fits within my personal goals of self-sufficiency ... but when I type it out, it forces me to realize more than ever just how much it doesn't fit the status quo standard of living today.  But, then again, getting away from the status quo is what it is all about for me anyway.

I hope Terlingua embraces insane women.

:eusa_pray:

 





"The world breaks everyone and, afterward, some are strong at the broken places." - Ernest Hemingway

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Offline Al

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #20 on: January 19, 2010, 01:30:49 AM »
As long as you recognize that the environment in Terligua is self-sustaining in some ways and not in others, depending on how much you want to invest in accumulation systems for water and electricity, and carefully control the use thereof, it can be done.  Don't count on self-sustaining for food, unless you can afford several sections of land and are primarily a carnivore.  I doubt there will be enough water for a garden, particularly one that is sufficient to be self-sustaining. 
Al

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Offline Mama Crow

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #21 on: January 19, 2010, 01:45:34 AM »
Hello Al.

((hug))

You know, I've given this a lot of thought ... the garden.

Do you think it would be feasible to grow most of my veggies in compact clusters within containers?  That would reduce my need for irrigating large plots ... and scale down my need for space and water, wouldn't it?  Mulching heavily would help retain moisture ... and I could recycle my greywater to feed the plants.  Does this sound like a good way to start? 

I've even been researching how certain veggies grow within strawbales ... which are densely packed, and retain moisture once wet ... and I could make a strawbale bin (from what's leftover from building my little abode) into a possible, prolific gardening medium.

My mind is working overtime.

 :eusa_think:

"The world breaks everyone and, afterward, some are strong at the broken places." - Ernest Hemingway

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Offline fartymarty

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #22 on: January 19, 2010, 03:05:59 AM »
I hope Terlingua embraces insane women.

I think Lajitas had a goat that drank beer. They made it mayor. It died. They stuffed it. Lajitas is sorta upscale to Terlingua (opinions vary).
People that have a drunk goat (also dead) for a mayor most likely don't care how you cook or bathe or even if you bathe.
Now I'm not sayin' you're insane, and I'm not sayin' that you'll be embraced, I am sayin' that I think you'll fit in just fine.
It's a very eclectic little community, your presence will help maintain that eclecticnicity.

If later on you decide that some solar panels and an electric crock pot causes a lot less pollution than daily smoldering wood fires,(maybe cheaper too)
...well I think they might overlook it and let you stay.  :icon_smile:

I do have my doubts about how much produce you will have to put in your crock pot/sunken haybox from your garden. The gray water used by 4 in Abilene might be enough
for a garden in Terlingua. However you'll not be bathing as well with the water you'll have on hand from rain in Terlingua.
My calculations may be off, but I come up with 20 gallons per day MAX and that is based on a 1200 sq. foot roof and an annual rainfall of 9.8 inches and no losses. I think that
you may only get 3/4s of that after evaporation and collection loss.
Will you have goats (for milk and cheese) and chickens (eggs) that need water?
Fort Worth

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Offline Mama Crow

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #23 on: January 19, 2010, 03:30:05 AM »




If the kids (or parents) are not used to the geographic (and sometimes social) isolation out there, they could be in for a difficult transition.



To say the least. If you are lined to do the move, what basic consideration would dicitate is to ponder your daughters interests, it will be very tough on them if they come from a very sociable,crowded,easy access to many amenities that you take for granted. Just let them know where you are heading,visit the area...thuroughly and make your call. 

 Most of us here love the isolation, but i will be honest too, i for one still like to come back to some civilization of some sort. Chisos Muse can give you a hands on experience of the way of living in the area, and it's hardships.


This post, Homer, above all others touched me most deeply. This post forced me to switch gears from logical, strategical thinking ... back to doing what women do best: feeling.

As a mother ... everything I do, I do for my children. Always wondering what is best for them: the right choices ... the right examples ... the right friends ... the right influences ... the right opportunities ... the right, well, everything.

When I say all these things, I'm not talking about outside choices, examples, influences, opportunities, etc ... I'm talking about inside (ME!)

What are my personal choices, examples, and influences portraying to them? Am I showing them how to be an independent, yet feminine, woman? A loving mother? A loyal wife? A carefree spirit within those personal boundaries?

I realize my decisions affect them ... sometimes even, on the surface, negatively ... but I weigh each of those decisions carefully, keeping in mind at all times what I feel/think will be the best for them at a deeper level.

I can handle a little resentment from them if I firmly believe my decision is best. I am their mother after all, and they are my children. But one day they will be in my shoes with their own ... and I hope they can subconsciously recall the loving backbone that is in their genes.

My oldest daughter will, for the most part, be unaffected by this move. She begins her life on a college campus of her choosing. The time is fast approaching where she will have the freedom to chase after her own dreams and goals. She will always know where to find me when life knocks her down. I am the anchor that won't weigh her down.

My youngest daughter will only have memories of Big Bend if we are able to make the move within the next year. She just turned four. She already loves adventure, and the outdoors, and all things related. She will adapt with ease, and the lifestyle will be all she knows. She will flourish "within what comes natural to her already" at such a young age. I have no doubt whatsoever she will simply glow, and bring many more smiles to what is already there within that tight-knit community.

It is my middle daughter that gives me pause. She is fourteen ... a very well-known awkward, difficult, insecure age where peers rule the world, and mom is dumb.

:icon_rolleyes: You know the look. :icon_rolleyes:

Truth be known, she'd pout over moving to a LARGER city ... she'd pout at the thought of moving ANYWHERE.

The thought of leaving her current line-up of friends (which changes weekly; sometimes daily) will devastate her ... already does devastate her. But, then again, these beloved so-called friends devastates her daily anyway ... it's such a tough age.

I have faith a move such as this will benefit her greatly, in the long run, for she is also my most sensitive and spiritual child. I'm willing to let her hate me for a little while ... and, as long as there is Facebook and her musical device, she'll cope .. as I watch her slowly grow into acceptance and love of our new home and lifestyle.

As far as civilization and isolation and what not, we are all lovers of fine art and music and theatre. I think she will be pleasantly surprised to find that the area there embraces all three. We'll also go back "home" regularly to visit family ... both in Abilene and DFW and Austin/San Antonio ... so the girls will always have snippets of so-called "civilization" to recharge their modern-day batteries.

It will be interesting to see where she goes after she attends college ... will she choose the larger lifestyle or the smaller lifestyle? Will she go to civilized chaos or idyllic isolation?

I suppose we'll all wait and see.

:icon_wink:

I should mention that my older daughters are very familiar with the area. They've been there many times, and love it. They are in awe of the beauty. Of course, I know to live there is another deal entirely ... but at least the area is not foreign to them.

I've been talking about a drastic lifestyle change for four years now, and we've been scaling down to prepare ourselves for the axe, so it is no shock to anybody. There is a "For Sale" sign in the yard as I type. Everyone knows as soon as it is sold, we are gone.

The "WHERE" is the only thing left to decide with absolution ... Oklahoma or Terlingua?

:eusa_pray:

"The world breaks everyone and, afterward, some are strong at the broken places." - Ernest Hemingway

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Offline Frogdown

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #24 on: January 19, 2010, 01:51:05 PM »
Life in the desert is full of compromises.   Raising a 14 year old daughter is a monumental challenge.  But living in the desert and raising a 14 year old daughter without electricity could be a disaster.  I think I would consider that very thoroughly.  Young children are very flexible, teenagers are not.  Bending is fine but breaking is not.

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Offline RichardM

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #25 on: January 19, 2010, 01:58:52 PM »
I won't even begin to try to get inside the mind of a fourteen year old girl, but I can say that my 5 1/2 year old daughter would probably think living out in the desert without electricity would be fun.... for about a week. Then she'd want to know who else she could play with other than Mommie. Kind of hard to hop down to the neighborhood park to play with other kids her age when there isn't one anywhere nearby.

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Offline dkerr24

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #26 on: January 19, 2010, 02:32:01 PM »
I look at places like Terlingua as a place I like to visit, but not really to live there full-time.  I can do short stints of a week or so without the comforts of being 'on the grid', but that's about it for me.

My hats off to folks who can pull that off full time... like John at The Field Lab.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2010, 02:34:40 PM by dkerr24 »

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Offline bjbriggs

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #27 on: January 19, 2010, 07:01:34 PM »
Mama Crow, Have you spent anytime in Terlingua  during the Summer, Do you know how hot it get? 

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Offline homerboy2u

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #28 on: January 19, 2010, 07:28:13 PM »
Almost 10 responses say "NO", think twice about this move. Not 1 saying go for it. I see a trend here. Common sense? :eusa_think:
Stay thirsty, my friends.

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Offline RichardM

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Re: LIVING IN TERLINGUA
« Reply #29 on: January 19, 2010, 07:32:28 PM »
Speaking of heat,what do you plan on doing for refrigeration of food? I assume even a vegan diet would benefit from being able to store foods for extended periods.

 


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