How to Prepare – Graceful Degradation

Sometimes, words get in the way when explaining how to prepare for whatever might come. Our recent post No Need for A Farmhouse Nightmare could have been read in many different ways. Based on the questions we’ve received, we learned that each of our readers understood what we had to say. But they understood what we said in their own individual way.

So, in keeping with our promise, here is the first in the series of posts explaining what we do to ensure lifeline functions resilience. We will try to keep the concepts simple. You will learn why it’s much easier than you may think.

Why Prepare? – Bad things happen.

How to prepare for a flood

The flooding of our vast 1.203-acre estate in September 2018 opened our eyes to one of the realities we face here at Serendipity Farmhouse. But, as you can read in our post Monte’s Bug Out Buggy to the Rescue, we had a plan and the plan worked.

Likewise, when the lights went out and the phone went dead this May, we were not overly distressed or inconvenienced. We had plans and the plans worked. (See No Need for A Farmhouse Nightmare for details.)

How to prepare for loss of power and communications

Be Prepared – It’s Nothing New

How to prepare - Be prepared

Here’s a picture of yours truly during his scouting days in 1962. The red circle shows that I was a Second Class at the time. The badge of rank declares the motto “Be Prepared”.

When you study the origins of that motto, you find a scout must be prepared to do his duty. – That is, my duty to God, my wife, my children, and my country. And my duty dictates that Serendipity Farmhouse must be prepared.

How To Prepare – Understand Upgradation

Our farmhouse came into being sometime around 1927. Our historical research indicates it was originally a very simple structure. It did not have indoor plumbing. The first tenants used coal and wood to heat the house. Of course, it did not have electricity. – Despite all that, many people called it home.

Each family left its mark. Electricity probably came during the mid-1930s. Someone added plumbing to the kitchen. – And so, it went. Now, Serendipity has a host of modern upgrades. Let’s call that process ‘upgradation’.

Serendipity Farmhouse doesn’t grow older with time – it grows better!

How To Prepare – Graceful Degradation

Many people we know love to go camping. They enjoy heading to the woods or the mountains just to get away from the rat race and the distractions of modern life. In a sense, they voluntarily live without some modern conveniences. Sometimes, they say they want to learn how to live like their grandparents lived. In their minds, they have what they need, and they enjoy their voluntary graceful degradation.

Even though Serendipity Farmhouse is situated on a floodplain, it still stands. SFH has never surrendered to the elements. And it has served its tenants well for nearly 100 years. It provided shelter and stability for families well before any modern upgrades were ever made. Thus, it only stands to reason that the best way to prepare for a breakdown in lifeline functions in the 2020s, is to learn how to live in this house the way the first residents did in the 1920s. If it worked for them, it will work for us.

Following posts in this series, will show you some of the things we’ve learned. You will see why we rest easy at night. No, we aren’t prepared for every possible disaster. But we know now that our grandparents didn’t have to live with the pesky distractions of modern life. We also know that the Scout motto “Be Prepared” is for us a most welcomed duty.

How To Prepare – Just One More Thing

The SFH motto is Pray, Prepare, Preserve. When you ask us how to prepare, we also have to let you know that our plan is not just about physical welfare. So, as we discuss material graceful degradation, we will occasionally provide details on something we call spiritual grace-filled degradation. – That is what completes our plan on how to prepare.

Pray always and God bless!

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