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The Grid-less Vacation

Power Down Week is April 21-27, 2024

Photo by Rufus O’Dea / Unsplash

Two years ago we ran our first “power down” experiment at the Grovestead. After years of pursuing a simpler, more sustainable life, we wondered what it might be like to go without electricity altogether. We also wondered how prepared we actually were should the power ever go off for a prolonged period. So one Sunday afternoon we flipped the breakers, put away the screens, cooked by campfire, read by candlelight, and focused fully on our farm and each other for a full seven days. It was the best vacation we ever had.

We’ve repeated the experiment several times since and each time found it to be profoundly fulfilling, grounding, and family-bonding. Powering down has a way of recentering and refocusing our busy, distracted, lives in a way no other activity can, which is why we keep returning to it year after year.

We’ve heard from several readers who wanted to power down at the same time. So this year we are inviting you to join along. The last full week in April (21st through 27th) we will get rid of the distractions and live deliberately. Whether you can power down for just a few days or the whole week, we encourage everyone to give it a try. Just keep a journal and write your reflections. Then share them with us when we meet again.


P.S. I’ve posted some suggestions below. You may also want to read Reflections from our first power down (especially worth reading what our kids had to say).

Tips for a Successful Power Down

by Becca Groves (Reprinted from The Grovestead Newsletter Winter 2023)

What I will say from the start is that a week without power takes effort. But like all things that take some effort, there is a satisfaction and goodness that is hard to put into words. The entirety of our first power down, I kept reflecting on how my mom raised her kids with only a land line, and only much later, a message machine. That means that all of my mom’s child rearing days were without texts, emails, voice messages, social media and scrolling of any kind. So much has changed in just one generation, and I think this practice is just a great opportunity to step back and assess: what have we gained and what have we lost?

Read the rest

Power Down: Quiet Focus on Your Real Life – The Grovestead