"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Welcome and Exciting news for Off-gridders

Firstly, welcome to Staci of Life at Cobble Hill Farm.

Staci's "About" info goes as follows:

"I'm Staci and together with my husband Jay we have a backyard micro-farm in upstate New York just south of the Adirondacks. I started this blog in 2009 as a way to document our experiences {read as successes and failures}and serve as a reference point for others interested in a similar homemade type of lifestyle.We dream of, and are working toward, a long-term goal of a larger "someday" farm.    We are currently "farming" on less than an acre, remodeling our 146 year old farmhouse, crafting things by hand, budgeting to stretch each dollar, making homemade alternatives to products we'd typically purchase, caring for our crazy menagerie of critters learning about sustainable living by producing as much of our own food as possible in the garden as well as preserving the bounty, and settling into a simple, homemade life.   All of this on a bit of a tight budget.

I am mama to 2 spoiled French Bulldog "farmdogs", as well as a cat who thinks he's a dog, a princess kitty, and a flock of 16 chickens."

She did an amazing guest posting at Lovely Greens on building a chicken coop - which I've saved to show RMan - when he lets the red tractor rest a while and he finds the DIY mojo again - if he finds the DIY mojo again...

Staci - thanks for hitting the followers  button - I always reply to comments, but sometimes it make take a while whilst I wait on the batteries being charged by the sun...


Now for the really big , exciting news...
Credit:Maryland NanoCenter

... batteries made from wood.

The full story is here and here.

Anything that helps reduce the costs, performs as well, or better, and which will assist those of us off-grid is brilliant news :)


  1. Very interesting, thanks for sharing.

  2. THAT is FREAKIN awesome! i love how the lead guy said that the idea came from "trees" - how smart! thanks for sharing this Dani!

    your friend,

    1. kymber - Anything that reduces the cost, and therefore makes it more affordable to the masses, thus encouraging people to become more self-sustainable is the goal! I'm so happy to be able to share anything I find that will do so :)

  3. Dani - you are so very sweet. Thanks so much for putting info about me and our blog on your blog. Thank you also for the links - very interesting!!

    1. Staci - You're very welcome :)

  4. When we began our farming/homesteading life I had every intention of producing all of our own electricity and fuel some day. It hasn't happened. We practice conservation, but we're on the grid and haven't yet done anything to generate our own electricity. It's still on my list of things I want to do, but the cost pushed it down the priority list. So I join you in welcoming any news of innovations that make it less expensive to get free of the grid. Very cool.

    1. Bill - Trust me, the feeling of freedom one feels when not grid tied it worth a fortune - prices have got to come down...

    2. The upfront cost is a lot sure but overall the costs have plummeted these last 3-5 years. Case in point my recent purchase. 8 - 250Watt panels (2000 Watt array), the charge controller, inverter, and lithium batteries (which are much more expensive, long lasting, and less voltage sage) cost me $7000 USD. I'll prolly spend another few hundred on wire and conduit. Bearing in mind, this is all self-diy. Non Grid tie. Non permit needed etc.

      Regardless. That is very attainable! But yes. Still upfront cost is a lot.

      Oh, and the batteries amounts to 5kwh. So wouldnt run an average home, however, my last 1500SF home,we were using 10KWH a day.

    3. TSAHG - We found that the cost of the 7 X 140 watt panels we have was roughly half the cost of our 2 volt batteries. So, in our book, any reduction in battery price is a win :)


Thank you for taking the time to comment - it makes my day and removes the "loneliness' of sitting at my screen blogging supposedly to myself ;)