This is my old Kelvinator beer/worm/water fridge (and a bunch of clutter). This old thing has been going for Lord knows how long. I suspect one of my kids will have this thing in their garage when I’m gone.
It’s not pretty. It’s obviously doesn’t have bells and whistles (though the drawer on bottom does hold a lot of dinosaurs. I had to rewire the plug head after it’s last and final move. But it just keeps going.
I am a bit nostalgic for the 50’s. Now, I realize there were still a lot of bad and disgraceful things occurring in the 50’s, but it was also a time when the family unit was largely intact. When neighbors knew each other and when people were happy with what they had generally. And things were still done and built the right way.
Modern stuff can be wonderful. Improvements in efficiency and design have done some great things, but I’m more inclined to shun a lot of modern things.
I don’t trust the bells and whistles to hold their value. There is an axis of value of course when finding parts is an issue or when a quality manufacturer exists still (stihl chainsaws), but generally, I’ll take an old pick up with crank windows over a sports car with air conditioned seats.
But realistically, I can’t go around buying very many appliances from the 50’s so I end up looking for a dishwasher that is pretty basic and ideally one that is used. I don’t need one that has multiple steam settings or an electronic display to tell me how complete it is. I need a machine that can dump a lot of water and soap on my dishes (we generally wash ours by hand so I’m just using that as an example).
I’ve written about my 1995 Ford bronco before I believe. I drive 16.4 miles a day round trip. It cost me $2,200 14 months ago. I replaced the fuel pump last fall, but has otherwise run just great for me.
Instead of being jealous of that sports car next to me at a stop light, I’m jealous of the old timer in a 1980’s pick up that looks like crap, but runs smooth. That guy in the sports car is probably paying $500+ a month for that depreciating vehicle. The old timer has a fully depreciated asset that has been paid off for 30 years. Who’s the smarter man? I hope those air conditioned seats are worth that payment fella.
The work we do around the homestead is hard at times. I’ve dug holes for plants on ridiculously hot days and I’ve dug them in the rain, but the old adage of digging a $50 hole for a $2 plant is true. If I take the time to dig a proper hole up front, that plant has a much better chance of doing well and paying for itself. Stacking firewood properly means the wood is likely to remain dry and ready to use when we need it.
At the end of the day, I’ve found that homesteading isn’t easy but taking the time to do things right pays off in the long run. Throwing money at something works, but isn’t our approach. Efficient use of time and money is what I want. How does this dollar or hour of my time provide the best long term value for this homestead? Every expenditure of time or money should be weighed according to long-term value.