My favorite sites have been those when we are not hooked up. To break it down:
- We are not plugged into electricity, so for the blower component of our furnace, the water pump, our lights, and a few outlets, we rely on solar panels. Taken altogether, it means we use them in very limited supply and monitor the charge of our solar panels as they build back up throughout the hopefully sunny day. So we use “local” restrooms and shower facilities (if they exist), we rely on headlamps and lanterns, and we only run the furnace at max for 30 minutes in the mornings.
- We are not plugged into water, which mostly just means we fill our reserve tank and use water pretty sparingly — only critical showers; wash dishes in a bucket of water; fill our berkey (water filter) at the spicket.
- We DO have propane, which runs our heater, stove, oven, hot water heater, and fridge. So those things (except the heater which also uses electricity) we can use with a bit more wild abandon.
Taken altogether, being in a place not hooked up is the equivalent of fancy camping.
One of my favorite things about this is the cold nights. We go to sleep bundled up in long underwear and sleep hard, harder than when things are temperature-controlled. The kids do too. And in the morning, they sleep late. Some combination of kiddos (usually Sam and Guy) come snuggle in our bed and fall back asleep laying on top of us.
Another favorite thing is the scenery outside our window. The flexibility to go deeper into the woods, the requirement to think creatively about our resources. We have space, access, rivers, mountains, hikes. We have a plot of land to explore, make forts, play make believe, and overflow from our chrysalis.