Most of you who have been around any length of time
have probably figured out that I don't let not knowing
how to do something stop me.
That's not always a good thing, but . . .
I have learned so much by doing.
Children also typically learn by doing
so this can be rewarding on multiple levels.
Perhaps you've not noticed, 😉
but things have been a little sketchy for the past year or so.
It doesn't appear as though the current stresses
are going to be alleviated any time soon.
With that in mind,
I'd like to share something that happened to me years ago.
We lived about 45 minutes from the nearest grocery store.
This was when we were living up the mountain.
I was getting supper ready, making enchiladas
with left over roast beef.
I was getting everything out and ready when I realized
I didn't have any enchilada sauce.
I was evidently set on those enchiladas (still love them!)
I thought, "This is nuts. There has to be a way to make it.
I'm sure they didn't just go buy it years ago in Mexico."
I think that was it - the moment I started asking the question,
"Can I make it?"
I don't recall ever being afraid of making things,
but that moment sticks in my head as the moment
I was no longer interested in purchasing things that
for so long I didn't think of as being optional.
That first batch of enchilada sauce wasn't supreme,
but it was good.
I don't think I've purchased enchilada sauce since then.
Like most recipes, they are better once changed-up
to suit our own tastes.
Since then, I've figured out how to make so many things.
Not just in the kitchen.
It's become a way for me.
(again maybe not always a good thing)
Regardless of what it is, I tend to ask if I can make it or do it
rather than buying it which is really no more than paying
someone else to do it for me.
Over the years, it's been a good thing.
The first perk is that it nearly always saves money.
Other perks to making your own or doing for yourself are
you can make it exactly how you want it, and
you are not reliant on anyone else for it.
That last part in particular is important right now.
It seems to vary by area,
but I've experienced, read of, heard of
not being able to find certain items (shortages),
and not being able to have someone do certain jobs.
An example: Some shingles blew off our roof.
It was about 3-4 months before
someone could come take care of it.
It's been like that with mechanics for the rigs also.
I could make a longer list,
but I have a feeling most of you get it.
The thing is, there's a lot we can do our selves.
From changing battery cables to that enchilada sauce,
you can do it.
Changing a battery cable requires only that you know the difference between red and black and are able to operate a screw-driver or wrench. It really is that simple.
Enchilada sauce is no more than tomato sauce and broth
(or water in a pinch) with a couple spices stirred in.
Now, why on earth would we want to change our own cables
or make our own sauces?
You might choose not to.
That's up to you.
But there is no guarantee that the products & services
will remain available as many of us have learned.
What is available right now is knowledge.
There are online instructions for just about everything.
We each live in our own way, and
we each have things that are important to us.
I could tell you to learn how to make your own cat food,
but if you don't have a cat, that would be useless.
So I guess what I am suggesting is that you ask yourself
the question - Can you make or do it yourself?
I will make a list of some of the things we make or do ourselves.
If I have done a post, I will link it.
If there is something on the list I've not posted on,
feel free to ask.
Pumpkin Pie Spice
Meals (cook at home)
(multiple canned foods so won't link, please use search tool)
Process Meat Animals
Small Sitting Bench
Socks (I'm still learning)
Gifts (so many possibilities!)
Linen Bath Towels
Lotion & Lotion Bars
(I see they are 8 yrs. old, only 1 has needed repair.)
Change Vehicle Oil & simple maintenance
I'm sure there are more things I'm not remembering.
Once you get started, you will discover that it does
become a way of living.
You won't think twice about it.
You will also find that many items are multipurpose.
This means with a few basic ingredients,
you can make many products.
An example is tomato sauce:
think of all the dishes you can make with it.
Olive oil is similar in the hygiene/apothecary dept.
A few basic tools will enable you to do many
mechanical and home/construction tasks.
One more thing to think about ~
As with most things, experience expedites most projects.
I work outside the home so time is a very real factor.
We can't do it all, all at once, all the time, every time.
We are human and can only do what we can.
This is why humans develop communities.
For me, doing things myself brings peace of mind.
That peace of mind equals less worry and less stress.
Having restored a trailer (with MUCH help from Hubby),
I'm not sure I'd be up to do that again.
I don't regret having done it.
It was sorta fun (that's a big sorta!) but
it was a lot of work and time consuming.
But now, I've done it.
Nobody can take that knowledge away from me.
Once you've done something,
you can then judge or prioritize accordingly.
I prefer to wash my own car.
I do a far better job and get in the door jams, gas hatch and
double scrub the grill and wheels.
There are times however, I don't have time
and go through one of those drive throughs.
I might grumble a little about the price for the outcome,
but it's all on me, my decision.
It is empowering to be able to make that decision,
not only with a simple car wash, but with many
aspects of our lives.
And lastly, there is something to producing something
with your own two hands.
There seem to be so many jobs today that have nothing to show for the hours of input.
To actually produce something or fix something
feeds the soul and is visual feedback for your labor.
I know this sort of feeling well.
I like to be able to see what I've done
even if it's washing the dishes or mowing the lawn.
I can see the results of my labor and that fuels me.
I love the reassurance of pulling up a video if I'm uncertain,
then giving it a shot.
Success doesn't happen without trying.
And. . .
It only takes a question.