[Homestead] Homestead survival plan

Tvoivozhd tvoivozd at infionline.net
Tue Sep 28 12:57:59 EDT 2004

clanSkeen wrote:

>I have reread TVO's survival plan and can say that to a certain extent I can
>verify that it is on target.  We paid cash for this land and moved up an old
>(older than me but made of good materials) mobile home that I overpaid $800
>for and lived in that for almost three years.  The first thing we built was
>a workshop into which was hoarded tools and every sort of materials
>(electrical, plumbing, fasteners, wire, etc.).  We built the house with a
>stone foundation, stone and brick for several feet around the stoves in all
>directions, and an enameled metal roof (over top of 1" sheeting).  It is
>under a grove of huge oak trees which requires constant vigilence but it is
>cool all during the summer.  We are in the middle of huge forest (the
>Cherokee National Forest) where dead standing wood is free for the taking
>(asking and then taking) so the house is heated and food is cooked with
>wood.  We are twenty miles from small cities and almost 140 miles from large
>cities (Roanoke and Knoxville).   Taxes (at present) are cheap and insurance
>is cheap.  For example the property taxes on the 20 acre farm and house went
>up hugely this year to $280 ( a year).

tvoivozhd---the $1000 mobile home that HAS to be moved keeps 
recurring---not often, but periodically in the newspaper ads. but you 
can always find them by visiting trailer parks and talking to residents 
or managers.  Two days  ago (I keep watching for such things), in the 
Roanoke Times, there was an ad for a 72' x 14' foot mobile home in good 
shape for $1000.  The principle cost would be moving it.  Since you as a 
new owner would not be under time-compulsion to get rid of it when your 
new house was built, you will at least break even, more likely make 
money on a resale.  Not a bad idea of using it as a cheap workshop or 
storage for tools, stuff you don't want in or around your new house either.

>We seem to have been attending the Tvo school of homestead survival unawares
>even in some of the small details.  For example, my father and I are amateur
>radio buffs and I have two of the old Heathkit HW-12 trancievers that
>operate off a 12v car battery (just about forever).  If I can find a few
>more, I'll get them.  In the event of a meltdown, they provide periodic
>communication even globally.  In the event of a meltdown, we will be little
>concerned about licenses.   Gotta keep that code up to speed though.   Used
>to do nearly 50 wpm but I'm not in that much of a hurry now of days.  (That
>is, I couldn't do it now!)

tvoivozhd---I really HATED IT when Heathkit shut down.  They produced 
some marvelous kits, the construction of which was an unmatched learning 
experience.  There were a couple of other kit-producers too that no 
longer exist---I built quite a few to test electronic circuits that were 
helpful in the days when I was scavenging for old radios and restoring 
them to their original condition, and when I had a small side-business 
repairing the easily-repairable black and white television sets.

>Also we are located in a "holler" whose access is a narrow mountain road if
>it should ever need defending, and our own "driveway" is 2000' through a
>notch so deep and narrow we call it "the Valley of the Shadow of Death" ...
>all according to the Gospel of Tvoivozhd.
>So Tvo isn't just blowing steam with his plan.  It is the backbone of a
>workable life's plan, we are in some way the workshop of same.
>I'd add a couple of things:   don't trim your homesteading boat so that any
>wave or wake will upset it.   What I mean by that is that you need food and
>fuel and water on a continuous basis.  Even a short time without them puts
>you at the mercy of things outside your infuence.  So I want to make sure I
>can grow corn next year and have kale and turnips this winter (and milk and
>eggs and such too).  I am happy to rely on wood for fuel since I can go out
>to the woods any time and renew it.  But clothes, nails, tools, pipes, and
>such are much longer term prospects.   It is easy to keep your boat even in
>the water for a very long haul with a little planning.  When times are good,
>put away blankets, jeans, shorts, towels, shoes, nails, wire, etc. so that
>if evil (or interesting) times come, you can ride them out for years until
>better times come.  Better times always come just as evil times always come.
>That is, prividing youself with coveralls is not the same thing as providing
>yourself with soup and bread.

tvoivozhd---the gospel of Tvo certainly has its counterpart in the Sgian 
episode.  I don't think anyone on the Homestead List is better prepared 
for all exigencies, while maintaining a reasonable, if reduced cash-flow 
while he eyes the horizon for storm clouds or clearing skies.  He and 
Denise have done exactly what I would be doing if I were twenty years 
younger and wiser. Chasing , and occasionally catching the multi-million 
dollar rainbow all over the world was exhilarating and I would regret 
missing the experience (even of getting shot at in the less 
financial-rewarding Air Force), but in balance I now feel the Sgian
plan and course is the best to follow for them and their family.

>Plan for 94% of your life.  People used to ask what we would do if a storm
>filled our notch full of snow, how would we get out?  The answer is "we
>wouldn't."   The world won't come to an end if we bow out for a few days.
>Planning for 100% of your life is ten times more expensive than planning for
>94% of it.   The other 6%  isn't that important.  This holds true for the
>question "What will you do when you are alone on that mountian, all your
>children are gone - not interested in homesteading, you can't garden and you
>can't do your luthier work,  you are too old to look after chickens and milk
>the cow and make bread (or - gasp - run a pint of  'shine) .. what will you
>do then?    The answer is:  then?  We will die.   But by the gods that other
>94% is gonna be something!
>One more thing.   You have to have a vision.  Now Tvo is very good a plans
>and with him not being all that far away I've been tempted once or twice to
>shamelessly pick his brain more than decorum would deem seemly.  For example
>I've got this plan for an injection molding system using recycled soda jugs
>I want to set up for my eldest and can you even imagine what Tvo has already
>forgotten about that!  Tempting.  But all that Teultonic and Slavic
>precision must also have a vision.  There's no doubt it's there, but it
>isn't the side of equation that is as easily expressed as the quantitative.
>It is summed up in this:

tvoivozhd---there he goes again below with the word-music that I so 
envy.  If I could reorder my education I might attend Jesuit school too.

>A vision without a task is and empty dream
>A task without a vision is drudgery
>In the survival plan, have the task honestly laid out before you and
>evaluate it coldly; but have a vision as well.   Then you won't need that
>last 6%  ... or more likely you will get that last 6%  with interest.  Now
>there's MY investment plan.
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