Rebecca Blake

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since Sep 14, 2020
Rebecca likes ...
homeschooling kids forest garden urban books homestead
New Braunfels, TX, Zone 8b, multi-generational suburban household
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Recent posts by Rebecca Blake

I'm not an aging homesteader, but the daughter of some.

I have never heard the phrase 'aging in place' but my parents have seen how important that is. They had bought 20 acres about a 2 and a half hour drive away from their home around 5 years ago. After too many drives to and fro and countless comments from my mom about 'not having a husband' (because he was always at work or "at the farm"), they realized that was not going to work. There were also many discussions about whether they really wanted to retire in a town where they knew... nobody.

Needless to say, that property has been sold and they're in the process of buying land near by so they can stay where their support is. NOW they can really start their homesteading journey, in theirs 60s.

They've figured out how to use their new land as leverage to get guaranteed senior care as well- by offering my family to build on it.
Reality is, I'm probably the one most interested in permaculture and thus will be the main one running the homestead, but we all have our own unique skills and interests that we can bring to the homesteading table. :)
15 hours ago
This is exactly the type of thing we're doing to multiply our equity before moving onto land!
3 days ago

Thomas Brinn wrote:I forgot to mention that we'll be mortgage free, and have some available funds from the built up equity in our house when it sells. Don't know how long it will take to sell though, especially since Corona-Mania has impacted the housing market. Maybe a rent-to-own deal would be a better route to get out from under the house quicker, and maybe at a better price point.

I'm not an expert (yet), but we're starting a real estate business in the San Antonio area. There is not nearly enough inventory. I.E. Your house would sell very quickly and at a very good price.

I know this to be 100% true in San Antonio, it seems to be true in the Houston area... I'd bet it's true in Corpus Christi, too. (Do check with a local realtor)

So despite all logic that corona would hurt the housing industry, it's turned it into a really popping place here in Texas! It's making it hard for us to get our business off the ground, but we're patient

And if the 2008 recession taught me anything, it's that people move to Texas when tragedy hits (for the cheaper costs of living and due to no longer being able to afford luxuriant lifestyles)... which of course creates more demand in the housing market.

Don't sell yourself so short!

Edit: Not that I'm advising you to move.
3 days ago

David Huang wrote:I think my submission above may have gotten lost in all the BB event activity so I'll make this little "bump" post.  :)  

David, I believe the proper protocol if your submission has not been looked at is to 'report' the post using the report button on the top right (on desktop) of your post.
Just notify them why you're reporting it- to get reviewed for a BB!

This will make it way easier for a staff member to see your post, bumping the forum thread really has no guarantees.
3 days ago
I first saw this BB and thought, "Aww, I just cleaned my drain." But then... a brilliant thought hit me! "I wonder how well my mom's drain is draining?"

Lo and behold, it was sluggish.
3 days ago
I love spending time outside with my 1 year old rugrat (she's almost 2!)

You can tell she is definitely in her element when we are outdoors. Inside she is always hovering around me and I can't get anything done but while we're outside she's as happy as can be! We live in a suburban home with a backyard fence, so I'll let her do some wandering around on her own in the bakcyard- moving her when I'm not comfortable with where she is. For the most part, she can be quite a ways away from me but I can still see her thanks to the layout of the yard and gardens.

I have always made it a point to bring her outside even before she could sit up as a baby, perhaps that is why she is happiest when outdoors and content being on her own! One of her first words was even 'outside'.

Though I get work done in the back, the front yard is unruly because I never work there since I don't like the stress of glancing over at her every 3 seconds. The street is not too far and has gotten busier since they built a school in our neighborhood.

During the summer she did a lot of swimming in her kiddie pool; I finally have to put it away now that it's cooled off, I wonder how she'll do without her water play. (Yes, the pool is just finally being put away in late October, that's Texas for you)

I'm new to permaculture and have even learned some stuff from my daughter! Like the day she started eating the flowers off of the oxalis. I knew nothing about this plant aside from the fact that my mom loves it and planted it there, so to google I had to go. Lo and behold, it's considered a 'wild edible'! I find it very interesting she doesn't eat just ANY plant in the yard, but when she does she naturally knows it's edible. This oxalis isn't surrounded by other edibles either, so I find it very peculiar she decided to eat that one and not something out of the vegetable garden. Mind you, before this experience, she had never seen me eat a flower.

I'm just amazed at children's natural intelligence.
Mike, I love how your Farm it Forward campaign isn't just solving the problem of deforestation/desertification but also taking care of the people who are stewards of the Earth!

I see this is your only post on the forum, I'd highly recommend you stay awhile and perhaps check out the regional forums to see if others are interested in helping with your project in California. I haven't been on Permies too long, but it doesn't take long on the forum to recognize there is a huge problem where many people want to practice permaculture but they feel restricted for one reason or another, whether that be because they rent or because their yard is smaller than they'd like.

Paul Wheaton, creator of this forum, saw this same exact problem and has provided his own little solution to it for people that are willing- giving/renting 1 acre parcels of his land to those who are passionate about permaculture. Your program sounds like it'd be able to provide a similar solution. I see how hard Paul works at everything he does to maintain this forum and to keep the community on and around his land a positive one, so that is all the more reason for you to become a more involved member of this forum- to learn from him.

Now to answer your questions:
B) Currently do not have 1+ acres to work on but my friends want me to practice permaculture on their land and I'm enjoying my parent's .2 acre lot for starting my journey
C) Do not live in California nor would I ever move there
I love this post! I was just entertaining this same thought the other day: a 'metal building' made with clay and straw walls.

We're a few years off from building, but I predict we'll end up doing the whole metal building, walls included, and finish it out ourselves. We're thinking of purchasing a larger 'shell' but just finishing out what we need at the time so that we can grow into the building. We're young and planning on more kids :)

Another member of the forum shared this great article with me that lists out non-toxic insulation materials you can use. Maybe you could purchase them or use them as inspiration. (I have no clue how much these cost.)
1 week ago

David Wieland wrote:I didn't check your math

I mostly just wanted someone who has expertise in the field to verify that yes, the tower does send out the signals and therefore radiation at about 5-10 degrees descending from the top of the tower.

(I also noticed a misleading statement there:
"IARC (International agency for research on Cancer) declared radio frequency radiation (RFR) to be cancer causing in May 2011. "
IARC merely identifies hazards, that is, things that might cause cancer. Risk depends on exposure. A swimming pool is a hazard; the risk of drowning depends on other factors.)

Oh, thank you for pointing that out! That's the exact type of literature that makes me want to pull my hair out anytime I research something.

And the might is very important, a friend and I were having a discussion about the studies that show X number of people who lived Y distance from a tower came down with cancer. Who is to say there is not another factor at play such as water pollution? (I tend to believe these studies still since they have test samples such as tenants in the top floor of an apartment with a tower on top.)

She even mentioned a friend of hers whose whole family was coming down sick all at the same time. Some people may conclude it's EMF related, but it turned out their home had a serious toxic mold level- it had to be burned down it was so bad.
1 week ago

David Wieland wrote:As has also been noted, the cell transmission antennas are directional, and if the antennas had been installed above inhabited space, there would likely be no danger at all. I live in a rural area beyond cable and get my Internet service via wireless "hub" that connects to a cellular network. The nearby tower, less than 500 meters away and just tall enough to need a blinking red light, is visible through the trees. I've put the hub in my second story office, more in the "beam", and get only 3 bars (out of 5).

When the tower was first proposed over a dozen years ago, I helped canvas the neighborhood with a petition to our council to block the application, citing primarily the Precautionary Principle. (I even read a paper on the subject during the petition period.) But the truth is that the level of radiation is so low that the tower poses no hazard -- and has the great benefit of enabling my access to! I've also learned about hormetic effects and that humans evolved in a sea of radiation. Holding a cell phone to your head for long periods every day might expose your brain to risky levels of EMF, but I'd have no concerns about your preferred property being the least bit risky, and I doubt any future purchasers would either.

This is 100% where I am at now. Though, because I come from a background of fearing cell towers I can still feel some hesitance. For example, I felt perfectly comfortable with the decision when we accepted the seller's offer yesterday and then immediately entered a state of panic once again when I came back to see many people on this thread saying not to do it and how they'd never live near a tower.

I'm a mathematician, so of course I ran some numbers on the situation with this particular land and tower. I found it a bit hard to find accurate information to work with, so if anyone is a source of authority and can tell me if these values regarding the tower's radiation are incorrect or correct please do share.

If: The cell tower's radiation extends out at a 5-10 degree angle from the top. Any distance from the base of the tower to where the radiation first hits the ground creates a 'shadow zone' of minimal radiation under the tower.
Tower A is 200 feet tall. Building site A's elevation is 120 feet lower than the base of the tower.

For building site A: Tan(90-5) = x/(200+120)
x=3658 ft
Tan(90-10) = x/(200+120)
x=1815 ft

Therefore: The tower's radiation first hits the ground along building site A's elevation between 1815-3658 feet away from the base of the tower.
So, any home built on this elevation and between 0-1815 feet from the tower will receive minimal radiation.
Building site A is less than 1815 feet away from the tower base and will receive minimal radiation.

I would like to have some more verification that the signal extends down at a 5-10 degree angle. Regardless, it seems like a very logical conclusion to me since the pieces attached to the top of the tower face parallel with the face of the earth.. not toward the earth.

If nothing else, I'm glad to have taken this journey to reinvigorate my passion against EMFs so I can take measures to keep my phone away from me as much as possible AND AWAY FROM MY CHILDREN AND UNBORN. I can't believe how many pregnant women constantly rest their phones on their wombs or how many nursing mothers are on their phone as they nurse that 1 week old.
1 week ago