Could you Survive without electricity, running water, or grocery stores?? What about roughing it for one night!

It was 4:30pm on Friday night. Our kids had just gotten home from school and my husband was wrapping up work for the night when he said, "let's head out to the land and get some work done." gets dark by 6pm in the great North and we needed to drive at least 45 minutes to get to the land.

Let's not forget actually packing some gear, planning for food/water, and loading up the trailer and atv.

But somehow, we were out the door by 5:40pm. Off to the wild.  My daughter had packed us all sandwiches and apples. I threw blankets in the back seat of the van. It was dark when we arrived and we used a flashlight to gather wood for a fire.

Coyotes were howling vivaciously. I thought we would lie down on the trailer and watch the stars. There are very few visible stars in the city lights, so this was something I really wanted my children to see. It was too cloudy and eventually rainy.

But somehow we survived and actually had fun! We slept in the van - unheated but warmed by 4 bodies. We cooked eggs over the fire for breakfast and spent the day clearing downed wood and debris.

And of course playing a little.

Both of my children learned how to drive a four wheeler for the first time. They were naturals.

And they loved it!

We used the atv to haul trees and pallets. We used it to forge paths.

I spent my time cleaning up debris and planting grasses. I have been gathering wild prairie seeds and bought some grasses to tame the swamp.

This is what my swamp looks like today - with 11 grasses planted around the perimeter.

I split 4 plants into 11. I could not go around the entire swamp but in 2 years or so I will split these again and finish the entire thing. I paid $10 for these Silver Feather Grass Silberfeder plants. Many of these grasses to do not propagate well from seeds.

This was my inspiration for wanting to beautify the swamp:
This is a swampy section near my current home. I took this photo to a local nursery and they told me the grass in the picture is "not hardy" to this area or it is invasive. One of the two - either way they didn't sell it. I question the "not hardy."

I wanted to ask the owner if I could take a shovel of it, but the people living in the home are renters and have no say. The owners are developers and are probably not interested in my request. I think I may ask anyway.

I think this is flame grass  - which is not invasive and does not produce fertile seeds. Or maiden hair grass - which is not hardy in my zone. Or amur silver grass which is invasive. I may be wrong.

In any event, my grasses will grow up to look "similar." If not, I can start over...

I may intermix these grasses with something edible for ducks and chickens. Any suggestions?

We had a blast roughing it for a day... We had no showers, no running water, so access to the fridge, limited food, and no bathrooms of any kind (but all sorts of wild mullein!!)

There is lots of work to do and I am hopeful that we will be busy planting trees and shrubs next spring!


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Thank you for your comments! I appreciate all your tips, advice, and well wishes!


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