Consider how the wildflowers grow....Luke 12:27 NIV
Living small in our 880 square foot cottage and micro farming on approximately an acre of land.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Considering Electrical Usage

Almost $300 for electric this month.  Last year and every year prior, it hovers around $100-$120.  I even made concerted efforts to lower our usage (started hanging my laundry and being firm about turning off lights) and it went up.  Now I am rabid!

I am considering every bit of thing that uses electricity in our house.  If it isn't being used, it is being unplugged, turned off.  I admit I use the TV to occupy my younger ones while homeschooling my older one.  Perhaps I'd better reconsider that.  Not a bad thing, to be sure.  

As an experiment, I washed a load of laundry by hand (or rather by foot) in the bathtub by candle and lantern light.  It was a remarkably peaceful experience, but it did take an hour out of my morning.  Is that doable?  Certainly not for every load of laundry, and boy oh boy would I need a hand wringer!

One of our biggest energy suckers is the portable heater we use to heat our daughter's room, which is not hooked in to our central system.  It is an infrared electric fireplace.  I bought it because it is safe to the touch and will not burn, and it looks nice.  But, it is large and seems to use a lot more electricity than I imagined.  THIS article is helping me decide what may work for her room instead.  Would the De'Longhi heat a small room that is otherwise unheated?

Her room is also the hottest in the summertime.  Air conditioning is going to be pretty much unaffordable this year, used only when dire.  But, you have to keep up on her room or else it takes all that much more energy to cool it off.  I'm considering light colored shades on the outside of her windows to block the sun from even hitting the glass.  

I would love a Vermont Bun Baker in the basement to heat and cook with, even if just when the power goes out.  Our house is small (under 1000 square feet).  I thought if I put in a grate in the central most room, the heat could rise nicely.

I'm going to pour over a Lehman's Catalog and consider any other ways we can reduce electrical usage.  

Solar energy is gaining in popularity, though I'm not sure our roof could handle the weight of solar panels, or our pocketbook the cost of them.  Plus, I'm not sure we get enough sun for half the year to gain much energy from them.  Plus, what do you do when they get covered in snow?  But, it doesn't hurt to answer those questions.


  1. When Maddy had her first apartment I bought her Lehmen's counter hand washer
    I works well for small things, of which you have many with the small children.

    1. I saw those years ago and considered one (or two). I have quite the grocery list as far as the Lehmans Catalog is concerned.