|Lots of open land on the Rez.|
We were unable to bring all of our stuff in the truck that we could afford to get here. So we left half of our things in a storage unit. Well, probably more than half. So when we got here, we unpacked as much as we could right away. We managed to get dishes, pots and pans, and some of our food storage here. With that said, there are some things that we realized we did NOT have. Or at least did not find right away.
The first thing that we were really missing was towels. Now mind you, we could not run to Walmart and buy a few towels and we did not know anyone here so we couldn't borrow any. So we had to make due with what we did have. I did bring fabric left over from Christmas projects and my mom had given me a couple of large pieces of felt. Felt is a good replacement for towels. The kids also had their warm fleece "snuggies" and those were great after a shower or bath too. The grocery store had some kitchen towels that we bought for doing dishes. About 5 days later, we found towels in one of the boxes we didn't get unpacked right away. We were grateful, but often keep in mind that the flannel and fleece are much warmer than towels and still use them from time to time when it is really cold.
Missing towels made it difficult to do dishes too. But we made due with the little hand towels we found at the grocery store. We laid them down on the counter and let the dishes dry on top of them instead of trying to hand dry each dish. This worked pretty well. Doing dishes without a dishwasher has been probably the easiest thing to learn. Quite honestly, we tended to do that before sticking dishes in the dishwasher anyway. We just liked that the dishwasher cleaned everything a bit more and sanitized the dishes.
The hardest adjustment has been learning to live without a washer and dryer. The laundromat was expensive when it was working. So even before it stopped working, Lee started washing clothes in the kitchen sink. He filled the sink with clothes, add a little detergent and filled the sink with water. He'd then "massage" the clothes for a few minutes to clean them. Then he would let out the water and let in new water to rinse the clothes. He would ring out the clothes as much as possible in the other sink. We had some rope
that he strung up in each of the bathrooms to hang up clothes on. It was not really very hard, but definitely time consuming. Now we are waiting for some 5 gallon buckets and plungers to show up to try another technique we learned online to wash clothes. We will put them in the bathtub, fill them with clothes, soap and water and then use the plungers which will stick up through a hole in the lid to agitate the clothes. We will hang the clothes up to dry after ringing them as dry as we can.
we are using the plastic tubs as night stands and as a little table in the living room. The advantage to this is extra storage. We also have a box that we keep our computer on. We've covered them with a sheet or blanket so it isn't so obvious that they aren't tables. We have one little couch and a rocking chair that made it. For additional chairs, we have a few camp chairs. We also brought in one of the seats from our van which gave us more room in the van and gave us more seating in our living room. I guarantee our living room will never be featured in a magazine article showing style and class, but we are cozy and it works.
With all of this, we have considered ourselves very blessed. We had all of the necessities for living and the know how to make do for the things that we did not have. Part of being "prepared" is being able to improvise and make do with what you have to take care of needs for your family. We are grateful for all Heavenly Father has given us and provided for us.