baby dragonfly
August 26th, 2016 by Off The Grid

If you have been a long time listener to the Off The Grid Podcast you know that recording and posting two shows a week has been challenging most of the time. When I first started posting episodes both were audio format. As the year went on I realized that the amount of video. I accumulated many hours of video working on various projects in and around the off grid camper. In an effort to get listeners caught up I began posting one show a week as audio and the second show in video format. The thing is video editing takes even more time than working with only audio shows. So.. The podcast will be changing from posts twice a week to once a week. A majority of the shows will be in audio format and when I have time I will post videos as well. Looking back to this time last year I was no where near ready for winter. Knowing what I know now has solidified my decision to post once a week here so I can at least stay ahead of the snow!! LOL Also as I mentioned if you have been listening for a while and enjoy my work out here on the Off The Grid Podcast please consider making a donation to help me STAY OFF GRID!! I have not asked for much until now and believe it or not there are costs for running a podcast / website, web hosting, editing software equipment, etc.. Thank you again for listening! I really appreciate it! 🙂

By the way I did manage to get a picture of the baby dragonfly that was a distraction several times while recording today’s podcast episode. 🙂

 

Show notes from today’s Off The Grid Podcast

  • Today’s lesson: Sometimes you need to remind yourself of new responsibilities and prioritize your time to effectively manage.. everything!
  • Be social! Connect with me and the podcast on Facebook, like the page, and tell a friend! 🙂
  • Check out Live Video Broadcasts of the show here on Periscope.
  • Brent emailed in his video here and also another listener feedback show here.
  • If you want to be part of the conversation say hello on Zello! Search for Off The Grid Podcast channel.
  • Please help support this show and the off grid community by checking out Off Grid Singles.
  • Get The Off Grid Podcast on the go with iTunes and Stitcher. Please Subscribe and rate the show!
  • Like to watch videos about off grid living? Please connect and subscribe to my new channel on YouTube.
  • Got questions, comments, or tips about living off grid? Please share your thought below or Contact me!

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August 10th, 2016 by Off The Grid

If you are like me you enjoy gardening as well as all the fresh fruits and veggies each season. Over the last few months I have been fortunate enough to have my first “off grid garden”. Gardening can be challenging at times. When you add in the fact that I am right in the middle of mother nature’s back yard with all the woodland creatures big and small along with a whole plethora of insects this year of gardening beside the off grid camper has been a learning experience to say the least. It seems that my countless hours dragging fallen tree limbs from the forest, gathering bags of leaves from the side of the road, and overall preparing the off grid wood core (hugeukulture) garden bed has really paid off! Still with all the critters and sometimes relentless summer heat is seems as though some of my garden is heading down hill.

The tomato plants are really heading out fast. My cucumbers are for the most part done for this season. All of the okra is going crazy! Unfortunately fortunately they are growing so fast that I keep missing them when they are small enough to pick for good eating. When I got back from my road trip to Pennsylvania it seemed like the 2 foot long beans just grew overnight. The pepper plants on the other hand have really made a comeback! I planted a couple varieties of bell pepper but they did not make it. The Tabasco peppers are doing great and I also have another variety that is doing good as well.. did I mention that both of these are HOT!!!!??? Anyway.. if you have not already listened to today’s podcast please listen for more on this. Also look forward to either the next video episode or the following week where I will share my recipe for an awesome super healthy spicy vinegar with a kick to it. Its great for adding to any dish you like with vinegar.

*** I forgot to take a pic of the garden but will upload one tomorrow!! 🙂 ***

Show notes from today’s Off The Grid Podcast

  • Today’s lesson: If you are growing new peppers in your garden be careful before taking to big of a bite into a potentially very HOT pepper!!
  • Be social! Connect with me and the podcast on Facebook, like the page, and tell a friend! 🙂
  • Check out Live Video Broadcasts of the show here on Periscope.
  • Brent emailed in his video here and also another listener feedback show here.
  • If you want to be part of the conversation say hello on Zello! Search for Off The Grid Podcast channel.
  • Please help support this show and the off grid community by checking out Off Grid Singles.
  • Get The Off Grid Podcast on the go with iTunes and Stitcher. Please Subscribe and rate the show!
  • Like to watch videos about off grid living? Please connect and subscribe to my new channel on YouTube.
  • Got questions, comments, or tips about living off grid? Please share your thought below or Contact me!

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home made ac cooler
July 27th, 2016 by Off The Grid

Join me today as I talk about some ways to homemade ac cooler 2stay cool when you are living off grid. When you have little to no power the extreme summer heat can be unbearable so stay cool with some of today’s ideas for staying cool. You may or may not have power. Chances are that most of you listening to the podcast do. The next time you walk over to adjust the thermostat for your AC be grateful! I have a couple of solar panels and a gel cell battery that I use for most of my electrical power. If you are out in this insanely hot summer heat you had better be staying hydrated and cool! Summer heathomemade ac unit cooler can be dangerous especially for those with no AC or that are outside a lot. Necessity as they say is the mother of all inventions. Well take a listen to today’s show as I discuss a staying cool towel enduracoolfew ways to stay cool when living off the grid. My homemade AC unit cooler is a nice addition for this one so please sit back and enjoy the show. As always thank you for listening! I really appreciate it! 🙂

 

Show notes from today’s Off The Grid Podcast

  • Today’s lesson: When its dangerously hot outside this summer stay cool and hydrated!
  • Be social! Connect with me and the podcast on Facebook, like the page, and tell a friend! 🙂
  • Check out Live Video Broadcasts of the show here on Periscope.
  • Brent emailed in his video here and also another listener feedback show here.
  • If you want to be part of the conversation say hello on Zello! Search for Off The Grid Podcast channel.
  • Please help support this show and the off grid community by checking out Off Grid Singles.
  • Get The Off Grid Podcast on the go with iTunes and Stitcher. Please Subscribe and rate the show!
  • Like to watch videos about off grid living? Please connect and subscribe to my new channel on YouTube.
  • Got questions, comments, or tips about living off grid? Please share your thought below or Contact me!

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picking okra
July 19th, 2016 by Off The Grid

Join me today as I get back to the off grid camper talking about my homemade AC cooler, gardening, and coping with summer heat. As you may know I have been house sitting quite a bit these last few weeks. It seems like going back to a live that most people quite frankly take for granted left me in the same spot.. Honestly I got lazy while enjoying the AC on brutally hot summer days, cooking like civilized folk in a “normal” kitchen, and just plain relaxing in front of the TV with a good movie. In case you are wondering NO I do not miss the urban city life. I very much enjoy being out in nature with the peace and quiet that only the birds, bees, and rustling trees can bring. I do however very much want to stay comfortable when the elements are extreme though. So take a listen as I revisit the idea of putting my homemade AC unit cooler to use with a couple of slight modifications to the design. As the birds chirp happily up in the trees recording today’s episode of the podcast got difficult as the off grid camper began to quickly heat up. As always thank you for listening and if you have any questions, comments, or ideas to share please post or email me. 🙂

 

Show notes from today’s Off The Grid Podcast

  • Today’s lesson: Its easy to get lazy when your life is easy. Get up and make the life you want because each day you are either taking one step toward or away from your goals.
  • Be social! Connect with me and the podcast on Facebook, like the page, and tell a friend! 🙂
  • Check out Live Video Broadcasts of the show here on Periscope.
  • Brent emailed in his video here and also another listener feedback show here.
  • If you want to be part of the conversation say hello on Zello! Search for Off The Grid Podcast channel.
  • Please help support this show and the off grid community by checking out Off Grid Singles.
  • Get The Off Grid Podcast on the go with iTunes and Stitcher. Please Subscribe and rate the show!
  • Like to watch videos about off grid living? Please connect and subscribe to my new channel on YouTube.
  • Got questions, comments, or tips about living off grid? Please share your thought below or Contact me!

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walk around off grid garden
June 3rd, 2016 by Off The Grid

Join me today for a walk around the camper to see this years off grid hugelkultur garden. If you have been enjoying the audio podcasts this video edition is for you! For the last number of months I have been working on prepping the hugelkulture wood core garden bed. In the last few weeks I have been putting up the fence around the camper, planting okra, tomato plants, peppers, beans, and other gardening projects.

 

Video Post notes from today’s Off The Grid Podcast

  • Today’s lesson: If you want a bountiful garden start early and plan ahead.
  • Like to watch videos about off grid living? Please connect and subscribe to my new channel on YouTube.
  • If you want to be part of the conversation say hello on Zello! Search for Off The Grid Podcast channel.
  • Be social & Connect on Facebook, subscribe YouTube, or send me an email through the Contact page!
  • Get The Off Grid Podcast on the go with iTunes and Stitcher. Please Subscribe and rate the show!
  • Please help support this show and the off grid community by checking out Off Grid Singles.

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June 1st, 2016 by Off The Grid

As the dog days of summer make there way ever closer the cooler temperatures are becoming few and far between. This past weekend was of course Memorial Day weekend. Hopefully you have a great weekend and enjoyed a good cookout or spent some time with family and friends. I ended up working most of the weekend. Monday I did a lot more work but I don’t really consider working out here on the off grid sun breaking free clouds treeshomestead to be work. It rained off and on most of the day. Despite all of the rain I still went outside and worked on the off grid garden planting okra, extending the fence, cooking out, working on my homemade wing chun dummy, and washing my truck! Yes I got a lot done despite the rain!!!

Stay tuned for Thursday’s show to see video of the progress out here in the off grid garden. You will finally get to see a lot of the projects I have been working on outside the off grid camper. Last years unbearable summer heat really made an impression on me. The hot humid temperatures of late summer can be extreme. This is why I have been working on as much as I can when the temperatures are still tolerable.

 

Show notes from today’s Off The Grid Podcast

  • Today’s lesson: Opportunity ~ Try to make good use of your days with tolerable temperatures even if its raining!
  • Be social! Connect with me and the podcast on Facebook, like the page, and tell a friend! 🙂
  • Check out Live Video Broadcasts of the show here on Periscope.
  • Brent emailed in his video here and also another listener feedback show here.
  • If you want to be part of the conversation say hello on Zello! Search for Off The Grid Podcast channel.
  • Please help support this show and the off grid community by checking out Off Grid Singles.
  • Get The Off Grid Podcast on the go with iTunes and Stitcher. Please Subscribe and rate the show!
  • Like to watch videos about off grid living? Please connect and subscribe to my new channel on YouTube.
  • Got questions, comments, or tips about living off grid? Please share your thought below or Contact me!

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lizard outside off grid
May 24th, 2016 by Off The Grid

Living off the grid has its challenges and with summer heat fast approaching that means preparing for potentially dangerous high temps NOW! If you are living in a traditional grid tied house then chances are the changing seasons may not affect you that much. In my case the off grid camper does not have a lot of relief from the relentless summer heat so I am doing what I can not by creating shade everywhere I can. I have also found myself buying a lot of ice lately.

Buying ice on a regular basis to substitute a refrigerator is adding up quickly. Most people probably take for granted that they simply open this big box in the kitchen and everything stays relatively cold. When you are living off grid food preservation by way of cooling (refrigerator or cooler) can be challenging unless you have a steady supply of power from solar panels for example. I have been researching some pretty heavy duty coolers. These incredibly well built ones like Pelican, Yeti, and Grisly ice coolers seem to be some of the best on the market. I watched this one video where they did a head to head comparison called the 5 Day Ice Challenge. In the video they filled all of the coolers with ice to see which ones would still have ice in them. Surprisingly most of them did! Another video along the lines of DIY showed how you could essentially build a cooler with the same insulating capabilities for about $70. If you think that is a lot of money then look at the alternative. The Yeti, Pelican, and Grisly coolers seem to have a price range of around $200-$500 range. This is something to explore in the future and for now I am still buying many bags of ice! lol

 

Show notes from today’s Off The Grid Podcast

  • Today’s lesson: When you know summer heat is coming prepare now! There is no time like the present.
  • Be social! Connect with me and the podcast on Facebook, like the page, and tell a friend! 🙂
  • Check out Live Video Broadcasts of the show here on Periscope.
  • Brent emailed in his video here and also another listener feedback show here.
  • If you want to be part of the conversation say hello on Zello! Search for Off The Grid Podcast channel.
  • Please help support this show and the off grid community by checking out Off Grid Singles.
  • Get The Off Grid Podcast on the go with iTunes and Stitcher. Please Subscribe and rate the show!
  • Like to watch videos about off grid living? Please connect and subscribe to my new channel on YouTube.
  • Got questions, comments, or tips about living off grid? Please share your thought below or Contact me!

 

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planting wall of beans for natural shade
May 18th, 2016 by Off The Grid

This last weekend I had the perfect opportunity to get a lot done thanks to a combination of beautiful weather and actually having a full day off work. Sunday I was able to get out into the wood core hugelkultur garden once again. In the few short years that I have been fortunate to be able to garden I have never had much luck with vine fruits. This weekend I gave it one more try as I planted 3 watermelon seedlings. If you have kept up with the podcast you know that my off grid garden is not your average garden. This years off grid garden venture is leaning heavily on wood core beds with a solid 4-5 inches of composting leaves and grass clippings above. All of this will help to maintain a natural source of moisture for the garden plants even during dry spells.

Next up was the “Wall O Beans”! As you can see from today’s featured image for the Off The Grid Podcast the dirt has been turned over. At the base of this natural lean to of tree limbs I planted two types of beans. Once the brutal summer heat is upon us hopefully these beans will be providing a natural wall of shade from the sun on the off grid camper. Also the fence has been extended down another 30 feet. Once the fence is complete and the beans have taken off the landscape around the camper should change dramatically. This will provide me with a lot of awesome fresh NON GMO vegetables and something to be proud of. Thank you for listening!

 

Show notes from today’s Off The Grid Podcast

  • Today’s lesson: ~ From the weekend ~ You can get a lot more done if you concentrate your time in a single day VS trying to do a little over many days.
  • Be social! Connect with me and the podcast on Facebook, like the page, and tell a friend! 🙂
  • Check out Live Video Broadcasts of the show here on Periscope.
  • Brent emailed in his video here and also another listener feedback show here.
  • If you want to be part of the conversation say hello on Zello! Search for Off The Grid Podcast channel.
  • Please help support this show and the off grid community by checking out Off Grid Singles.
  • Get The Off Grid Podcast on the go with iTunes and Stitcher. Please Subscribe and rate the show!
  • Like to watch videos about off grid living? Please connect and subscribe to my new channel on YouTube.
  • Got questions, comments, or tips about living off grid? Please share your thought below or Contact me!

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classic camper cushions
August 18th, 2015 by Off The Grid

If your living in an average house in the suburbs chances are you have the convenience of central heat and air conditioning AC. When your living off the grid you need to be even more careful in the summer heat. Most people off grid are a ways out from help so situational awareness must translate to the dangers of summer heat. If your not careful you can check out pretty quick from heat stroke. Living in the city its easy to find a place to stop in and cool down. Living in a camper off grid for example introduces a whole new set of challenges with the weather and today I learned a very valuable lesson first hand about heat exhaustion. These first few episodes of Off The Grid Podcast were recorded on my journey to being off grid. Today’s show was recorded back in the crazy dead heat of Virginia’s extremely hot and humid summer month of June.. yes it is still very hot out now in August! I have learned a lot so far and this summer provided a valuable lesson for me about the dangers of extreme heat.

old camper cushions

old camper cushions

The day started out about 11:30 on a good note with the sun shining and I was looking forward to making more progress on the off grid camper. What I did not know of at the time is that I was on track to learn a scary yet valuable lesson about heat exhaustion. I started out meeting someone to get rid of the old camper cushions and mattresses. I did not have a clue at exactly how old they were but they all had to go! It felt good to clear out with some of the old to make room for the new. A couple of hours working inside with a brand new roof (black rubber and tar) made for a toaster oven the size of a camper and it was HOT! If you missed yesterday’s episode of Off The Grid see pictures of the camper roof here. During the dead heat of summer here in Virginia the humidity makes the temp that much hotter. After taking a look at a digital thermostat with a reading of 96.7 degrees inside the camper I realized this could be dangerous heat. Stepping outside the air already in the 90s felt cool so that confirmed the fact that this should have been my sign to be careful. The new black top camper roof had essentially turned the off grid camper into a giant toaster oven. I had been drinking plenty of water so hydration was not the issue. The summer heat with the uneasy feelings of BLAH kept coming in waves. Heat was the issue and I was set to learn a valuable lesson about heat exhaustion. Remember the show motto?

“Its not what you have. Its what you know”.

After finally listening to what my body was trying to tell me about the heat I decided to call it a day. At 4:30 I was not feeling so hot (no pun intended) and was on the road. All windows down in my car the wind was a small relief but too little to late. Heading down the road I started feeling really bad so I pulled into a gas station to be inside the AC. Unfortunately my car does not have AC! Everything was ok in the end but this was a real scary experience because I seriously did not start feeling well until about 8 or 9 that night. Today’s lesson is that you can check out any time if your not careful! So please be careful in the summer heat because heat exhaustion / heat stroke can be very dangerous and creeps up on you fast. If your living off the grid this is even more of something to be mindful of.

 

If your in the heat Beware of these Symptoms of Heat Exhaustion.

  • Confusion
  • Dark-colored urine (a sign of dehydration)
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Muscle or abdominal cramps
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • Pale skin
  • Profuse sweating
  • Rapid heartbeat

Here are a few important factors to keep mind about heat exhaustion. 1. When the temperature goes above 90 degrees consider that red flag one. 2. If your out in the heat and the humidity is 60% or more consider that red flag number two. 3. Its not enough to just be hydrated. Your body needs electrolytes to keep you in balance. We are all familiar with how rough high temperatures can be. High humidity starts to interfere with your body’s way to cool itself through sweat. So.. please learn from my first hand unpleasant experience. Stay cool in the summer and stay hydrated with electrolytes as well (not just water alone). If you want to learn more about the dangers of heat exhaustion and heat stroke please check out the show notes below for a link to info on WebMD.

 

Show notes from today’s Podcast

  • Here is a link with good info about Heat Exhaustion with symptoms on WebMD.
  • If you have questions, comments, or tips about living off grid then please post them here!
  • Please help support this show and the off grid community by checking out Off Grid Singles.
  • The Off Grid Podcast is now available on iTunes and Stitcher so please subscribe and rate the show!
  • If you like the show please help support this journey off grid by telling a friend about the podcast 🙂

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