Thursday, January 8, 2009

A new year...another move

Been too busy to post much between keeping up with my meetup group, freedom gardens, unpacking, and the holidays. And now we're moving, again.

yup, thats right, apparently my plans for cramming a garden into this little townhome space won't be happening this year.

As everyone knows the economy has slowed many industries to a dying crawl- including construction- and being that my husband is a geologist who supervises construction his whole industry has died as well. His whole office ( except for him) got laid off before Christmas. He's the last man tanding probably because he has a stack of files and reports that need to be completed thats almost as tall as him, since he now has to finish all the reports that belonged to the people who were laid off as well. Its a mixed blessing. He has a job at the moment, but its not looking like we can count on it for much longer. So we started looking at a fallback plan- since I have not been able to find a job in the year I have been looking for work.

His older brother- who is also a geologist, can't fid a job, and his other siblings ( also geologsts, its a family thing) are about to be out of work as well. In the midst of all this, their dad owns a home in the San Fernando Valley thats paid off, no mortgage, and happens to be realy big, ( as in, 8 bedrooms- it was a house that was damaged in the Northridge quake and sold for rediculously cheap in the '90s). Did I mention it has a pool and a hillside view of the entire valley? Anyhow their dad said we could stay there and weather otu this recession till things blow over and constructin comes back to life. So as luck would have it, we're gonna be "homeless" and staying at this huge "Valley" house along with 8 other inlaws. Its like being trapped in yuppie paradise.

Oh boy, do I have my work cut out for me. Urban Homesteading, family commune, same thing really. Much easier for 3 families and their unemployment checks to scrape by and get thru this economic dowturn then struggling to pay rent in a 'decent' area and make ends meet.

I have taken on the offical job of playing farmer to grow as much as I can, so we don't have to buy much food besides the parishables.

Since its on a hill I dont have one large flat area to work with, I have a bunch of terraced off areas ond slops where I can cram in some raised beds for veggies and maybe some fruit trees ( transplanted from our old house, the foreclosure isn finalized yet). Even the pool deck has apurpose, I'm planning on using one large open area as a "garden" of large DIY self watering rubbermaid container planters. Oh yes, call me crazy, call me paranoid, but goshdarnit I am going to grow veggies in every spot I can cram them, and then find some more places LOL.


Susan said...

"There but for the grace of god..." my husband is in construction too. So far he is still working. I got laid off last May. I am saving money but if he gets laid off we're in deep..well you know. I try to grow lots of things too but either I am just not that good at it or I can't get in sync with the weather or seasons. I keep trying. That is go great that you all have a place to fall back on. It might turn into a great experience. Best of luck. Susan

Dan said...

Sounds like a great idea, you all should come out of the recession very well off because of the kindness of your father-in-law.

It is very common in Europe for families to live together until finances are in order to buy-out a home.

Sinfonian said...

Wow, now that's turning lemons into lemonade! I too think it's a great idea. I was just over at my folks place today and thought I should buy the home next door so we could have three houses in a little compound (if the compound were a public street). See, they bought the home across the street from my brother about 2 miles from me.

It also sounds great that you will have so much space to grow. Hopefully the hillside has a southern exposure so you can take full advantage of the slope.

It's hilarious that you found Judy's instruction page. I begged her to put that together and I used it to make mine. In fact I will be going back there shortly to build three more SWCs for more tomatoes this year.

Anyway, I'm terribly sorry that the economy is treating you so poorly. Best of luck weathering the storm and getting your extended family back on their feet. It's great you have such a valuable skill set to help the family out. And I hope you can continue your classes!

Not Hannah said...

I have to say that if y'all all get with the family sounds GREAT. I always have my mom and dad's house out in the country and with a bedroom for each of my sibs (and respective families) in my back pocket as a "when the shit goes down" backup plan.

Best of luck to you!