Yesterday marked the tenth week camping on our land. About two weeks ago we moved into the unfinished cabin, but it is still like tent camping as there is no water, electricity, heat, bedrooms, or privacy to be alone for a minute.

Today I feel physically and mentally exhausted. I need to get back to work, but I am having a hard time getting my head in the game.

They say that in survival situations, what kills most people, is when they get to the stage where they have a hard time doing what they need to keep fed, dry, and warm. I can completely understand that right at the moment. I would just like to go sit next to a tree for the rest of the day and not worry about anything. However if I do that the cabin will not be ready for winter and we would be miserable and probably freeze to death.

I do not typically write about stuff like this on my blog, but it is the reality of undertaking such a project. Lots of people have a glamorous view of doing something like this, but it is extremely hard living on property with very little and camping while you undertake building a home in a place like northern Minnesota where the closest hardware store is over an hour away.

So there you have it. I cannot afford more idle time so I must get up and finish getting this cabin insulated, for the cold nights are here and winter will be upon us very soon.

Off the Grid Living and Blogging!


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I just thought that I would show everyone how I am publishing this blog right now while we are off the grid.

Since we have no electricity on the property we are using a tablet and wireless satellite thing to get onto the internet. Not really sure how that works but it does.

As night falls the kiddos head to bed and we get a few hours of quiet time that consists of planning and working out the next days work. When that is done I sit down to write at a flimsy card table with 1920’s Rayo Kerosene lamp and a tablet that does lot of weird things.

It definitely makes things interesting as the sounds from outside come in, the Rayo Lamp radiates heat on my face, and the tablet randomly does whatever it wants as I type.

Since leaving our home and coming out here I have felt very much at odds with technology. From the get go when we were packing up after selling our house, we started having problems with our modern machines. One truck had electrical problems that caused run issues, while the other had its muffler blow up and leaf spring break.

The day we got here to our homestead, our four wheeler decided that it no longer wanted to run despite having less then 100 hours on it. Our lawn mower would not start to clear a spot for our tent, and when as a back up we tried the year old Echo weed wacker, it failed to run as well.

Soon after that both our laptops died within a day of each other for no apparent reason followed by our small 12vdc to 120vac inverter.

So all that to say that I am struggling with the fact that I question keeping the technology in our life as it seems like the more we lose these things the better off we are for it. It simplifies things while removing some of the stress of an already very stressful situation.

We supposedly have this technology to make life more simple, but what it really does is complicate things and cause stress where it is not needed. It has been freeing in a lot of ways and I am kind of nervous about having a house where these things might creep back in. Granted if we have electricity it will be via solar, and our water will still come from a hand pump well, but living simply in tents on our property has stripped away much of what modern society has imposed on us and it really feels pretty good.

Belongings are starting to lose their importance to me and I do not fear the loss of what I have. That was my biggest fear leaving our old house. I had worked and saved for so long to build the machine shop I had always wanted. For nearly ten months before leaving I stressed out so much about what I was going to do to move and store the equipment that needed fork lifts and semi trailers to move.

Now tens of thousands of dollars worth of equipment is sitting in a storage over a thousand miles away and the stress and anxieties associated with this “Stuff” is gone completely. Do I want to have it back and build a shop to put it in and use again? Of course, but if I never see it again…….., well, whatever. That sounds really bizarre to read after writing it, but things are changing for me. My focus if redirecting and my priority’s are changing.

Interesting don’t you think. All that because I was going to post one picture of my blogging set up . I suppose I will do that now.


There you have it. I started this as a short post and got all lost in thought about a simple lifestyle decluttered of stuff and technology. We can build a better future with less and I intend to prove that. Stick with me and lets see where we go from here.

Take care — Dave

On Our Homestead!


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I just wanted to do an update to let everyone know what is happening.

We made it up to our property in northern Minnesota back in the middle of July. We spent 6 weeks camping on the property in a tent with our two small children while we got all the permits and so forth filed and approved for building.

Then my father and brother came up and spent about two and a half weeks helping me get the place framed up and dried in. We did everything from the concrete up ourselves.

I would like to have posted a few blog posts during that time but living in a tent with a small child and baby did not give me much time to do it, let alone the ability while living without electricity or so forth.

For the past week we having been in the cabin shell and working to get things ready for the winter. There is so much work to be done and the temp’s have been getting below freezing at night already. Without insulation it has been in the low 40’s in the cabin which is hard with the kids.

I am going to break down the cabin building process into several parts and try to catch up to where we are now. I am working on that series of post right now and should start getting them up this week.

For now here is a picture of our story and a half 16×28′ cabin we are building on our 40 acres.


This is just the beginning and we hope to have a small scale organic farm set up in the next few years. There is going to be a lot of exciting things coming up in the new few years so keep watching and follow us on our journey to a more sustainable and hands on lifestyle.


P.S. – If anyone is interested I am typing this on a tablet sitting at a card table using an old Rayo oil lamp as light. I tried uploading a picture but this old tablet is extremely frustrating and nothing seems to be working right. Plus I am trying to get this thing to work over a spotty wireless space connection.

Sold Our Home!!

Well we just put our house on the market yesterday and had a showing today and already entered into a contract to sell it. I was hoping for a little more time to sell it and get ready to move but it is good we are selling it. I am surprised that it sold in one day of being on the market. That is cool though.

So now the journey really begins. We have to get packing and work towards getting out to our land. This is going to make getting there a little harder since we will not have gotten a temporary building put up yet out at our property. I guess we will be living in a tent for a little while this summer. That wont be the first time, but it will be the first time with kids.

Whoo, I am feeling a little amped at the moment. Things are moving a little quicker than I thought they would. Time to get into high gear and finally make this happen.

I will give updates to let everyone know how things are going. I probably wont be doing any other kinds of post other than a quick update here and there because things are going to be crazy. My biggest concern is moving my machine shop. That will be fun!! :-0

I will post more later.


Still Here

Just a quick update to let all of you know that I am still here and alive. Life has been pretty busy and my blog has taken a back seat because of it.

We had a new baby this December and have been working to get the house ready to put on the market. We are hoping that the house will sell early summer and then we can move out to out property. The realtor seems confidant that the house will sell pretty easily so that is good.

I have a number of projects that I have documented with photos, I just need to get around to working on the written end of things. So don’t lose hope, I am still here and will be posting new content hopefully soon.

Thanks for your support.