I still have a job. The economic downturn has hit home, finally, in a very real and up close way. I had a meeting with my boss yesterday; the upshot of it was that I keep my job, but I got hours cut. He had two shifts open that I offered to work: an 8 hour shift every other week, and a 4 hour shift also every other week; these two will keep me at my same hours but I have to be at work an extra day per pay period. So, because of gas, I am still losing money, but I am grateful to be keeping my job.
I have land to plant on that we own (well, us and the bank). I have been working in the back yard this afternoon, cutting down a scrub oak, planting lettuce, planting my mini greenhouses with produce, and prepping beds for later in the season. I could be paying rent that goes ever up, with no available planting space, and no security. I am planting many more plants than we will have room for, but I am hoping to be able to sell some healthy tomato, eggplant, and pepper seedlings in my community.
We have chickens that give us eggs every day. We presently have probably more than we can use but I am grateful for the surplus. I know several people that could use free eggs, and we could reduce our footprint equally well by eating more eggs — local, fresh, organic, and lower on the food chain. I have already begun trying out egg recipes and will expand our repetoir as the season progresses; I can also crack them open and freeze the eggs raw. This will carry us through to the winter season when we get few or none. For the cost of grass, water, and a little scratch and feed, we get their love — and eggs!
I have family that is supportive of my craziness. Not always, but mostly. And they’re always amazed that stuff works! I can’t take credit for plants growing, sheep giving wool, cotton plants, flax plants, or knitting needles, but I’m grateful that my family appreciates that I work to give them fresh produce, hand knit socks/hats/sweaters/etc.
Relative health. I’m strong, I’m willing to work, and I like doing ‘grunt’ work around my house. I’m grateful I can.
I’m grateful I got a reprieve, that I can still spend my income on prepping our house for a lower cost, lower energy lifestyle, that I can prep my gardens to be self sustaining (thanks in part to chicken poop), that I have sources for local milk and meat.