Kendra, over at New Life on a Homestead has a great post on considering non-electric alternatives. They are going off-grid with a solar panel system.
I love reading real-life accounts of how people are doing this. We are so electric-dependent that it is hard to think about everything we use electricity for. The convenience and safety factors are certainly desirable. While I don't mind running things on calorie power, when life comes at you with a sledgehammer (like my recent fight with vertigo), it is so nice to be able to just flush a toilet, flip a switch, run a faucet, and throw wet laundry in the dryer to catch up on mount laundry.
All the same, I'd like to become less dependent on the grid, even if just for storms. I'd like to get through a storm without praying the power doesn't go out. I'd like to just shrug my shoulders and say, "so what. I'm prepared."
Considering Electrical Usage