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Granny Miller

"Since 2006 Granny Miller's primary purpose has been to share forgotten skills and to encourage others in a life of greater self reliance."

Joined May 28, 2010
What I Want to Do: Live my vocation
Causes: Neighborlyness
Activities: Breathing

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Joined May 28, 2010 Activist Aspirations undeclared 
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Birthday Jan 01  
About Me I started Granny Miller in October of 2006.

It seemed at the time a nice way for me to keep a journal of my thoughts and day-to-day life.

But I also wanted to share with others what I had learned about farming, homesteading, rural life and living deliberately.

It had occurred to me that I might have knowledge and experience that would be of value to others.

And the internet seemed the perfect place to do it.

I took the idea and concept of “Granny Miller” from Mother Jones and Carrie Nation.

I wanted to convey the sense of an older and mature agrarian social activist, so I choose “Granny” as my feminine description.

I picked the name “Miller” because I’ve been known to get carried away on a rant, and I free-associated “ax to grind” and “grist mill”.

Granny Miller has been through a couple of different incarnations and I have stopped and started Granny more times than I care to mention and for various reasons.

For the most part Granny Miller has worked out well.

It has afforded my writing a small degree of online anonymity that I appreciate.
It has also become a place where I can share images of my life with my children, grandchildren, family and friends.

I didn’t always live in rural Pennsylvania.

I was born and raised in the greater metropolitan Washington, D.C. area.
I’m the oldest of 4 children.

I traveled a bit while growing up and lived and went to an all girls French/Lebanese boarding school for a couple of years in Beirut as a young teenager.
I have lived in Boston, Baltimore, Nashville, New Haven and several other places.

The most unusual place I ever lived was when I was a young child.
I lived on a boat at Buzzard Point in Washington, D.C.
I have earned some of my living from milking cows, as a used book dealer, a school bus driver, a fabric store manager, a messenger for the Center For Law & Social Policy; as a housing inspector, a waitress, a short order cook, a display designer, a self employed cleaning lady; as a graphic and studio artist, and I even worked for Standard & Poor’s in Washington, D.C. for awhile.

Up until the age of 35 I lived my entire life in large metropolitan areas .
Back in those days I wanted the life that I have now but didn’t know how to get it.

Truth be told, I’m a city transplant that grew into a country person.

What I discovered about self-reliance, rural life and homesteading has only been within the last 25 years or so.

My country education was helped a great deal by marriage.

Much of what I have learned was passed on to me by my husband’s family and by the local people I have met here in rural Pennsylvania.

Many of the skills and some of the knowledge that today I take for granted I had to learned on my own.

Practical experience supplemented by the local public library was often invaluable to me.

Many things about country life I had to learn the hard way.

25 years ago I knew nothing about cows, water witching, wood stoves, guns or so many of the other things that I know about today.

I get a lot of questions from people who live in the suburbs or in large cities and want a more self reliant life but don’t know where to begin.
Sometimes they express doubts as to whether or not they can learn the skills they’ll need.

I share this information about myself because readers often assume that I have always lived a rural life and was born knowing how to render lard or milk a goat.
Not so.

My agrarian outlook and life has been acquired and cultivated.

I think it’s reassuring for some people to know that it is possible to make the transition from the city life to country life.
From total food and energy dependence to a relative independence.

If you really make up your mind, a more self reliant and sustainable existence is possible.

In fact it’s more than possible.

Sustainability and self-reliance isn’t dependent upon geographical location.
In the suburbs, on a tiny town lot or even in the big city, you can become more responsible for your own basic needs.

It’s really about choices that are made every day.
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Quotation ‘Never regret what you have let go.
Life is, in many ways, a series of choices.
It is, I suspect, in our nature to not always choose wisely. We are bound to wonder if a particular choice was the right one.
In some instances we may become convinced in time that a choice we made was the wrong one.
If only we had chosen the other path, the road ‘more traveled’.
Or the road ‘less traveled’.
A different love, a different career.
Eschew such doubts. Do not allow the smallest seed of regret to put down roots in your soul.
It will bear a bitter fruit.”
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