Thanks to some much appreciated help and motivation from a friend, the yard is cleaned up, the roof is cleaned off, a new screen door is installed, and the master bathroom make-over is nearing completion. I'll post before and after pics of the bathroom when it's done; all that's left to do now is cut and install quarter round around the baseboards, prime and paint the woodwork, caulk between tub and floor, change out the door hardware, and install a shower curtain and towel bars. The wallpaper was stripped, walls mudded and sanded, two coats of primer, caulked around the tub, two coats of paint, installed new light fixture, and changed out the light and fan switches. I had the plumber replace some defective toilet parts and change out the 20+ year old sink fixture.
Other than the house progress, I've been occupied with churning ideas around in my head spawned by a combination of watching Jeremiah on Netflix, reading the Unreliance blog, and reevaluating my concept of simple as it applies to living. What if you couldn't get gasoline or propane any more? What if your grocery store stopped getting food deliveries? And for people on the grid, what if your electricity was shut down for good? How would you get by without the conveniences we take for granted every day? Reading back over that, it sounds rather survivalist, and I guess it is. But I'm asking myself how I could work around those situations now, and eliminate the need to be concerned about them in the future. I don't have my answers yet.