Living The Basics

Simple and Resourceful Living

Living the Basics is a site made by a not so tech savvy couple who just want to share the information and skills we gather while attempting to live life a little more simple and resourcefully. 


Living the Basics

Donnie and Karen


I am a wife, a mother, a medical laboratory scientist, an artist (loosely), and a student.  I always have a lot going on, but I still somehow never feel like I accomplishing much.  So I begin a new hobby at least once a year.

Like these super cute mini koi ponds:

There has always been a trend here as well.  I always try to pick something that I am hoping will sell or save us money.

Why?  So I can justify spending money on these hobbies.  So far, the koi ponds have made great gifts.  This works for me.  It saves me a little money on gifts so I am making back the cost this way.  Plus my neice loves them!  The quilting I did 3 years ago?  That was a total loss.  Turns out I can sew when I have to.  I am pretty good at a cross stitch.  But I CANNOT put pieces of fabric together into a pretty pattern.

More recently, we have decided to tackle RABBITS.  This has been an experience.  I will post a lot on this later, but the idea is to save money on meat.

But they also happen to be adorable.  My husband may have to keep you updated on these instead because… dispatching these sweeties?

(Here we brought them into the house during a heat wave)

Back to the point.

These hobbies make me feel more accomplished than anything I do on a regular basis, because they make me feel like I have gotten something out of them.  There is something incredibly fulfilling about harvesting from a garden or realizing that you can make something with your own two hands.

This is just not a feeling I get from work.  I enjoy my job for the most part.  I  know I am helping people.  It just doesn’t give me the feeling of accomplishment that I get from a more direct approach to meeting my families needs.

My goal, is to find different ways of doing this and sharing them on this site so I still feel like I am helping others.  Plus, if I am already doing the work, why not share it?  Eventually, I hope to put these skills to good use and begin living a more basic life.



Ever since my wife decided to drag us across the country, I have had the opportunity to be a stay-at-home dad.

Growing up in Southern Indiana, my family and I used to always have a garden, raised livestock, and tried our hardest to make sure our family had what they needed in a more traditional sense than just money.  I’ve always been sort of a “jack of all trades, master of none” kind of guy. I learned a lot of different things from my elders who tended to have more hands on careers, they were linesmen and tree trimmers mostly, and tended to be a little more self sufficient than tends to be the norm today.

Unlike my wife, I don’t have a set career.  I’ve done a lot of different things, from kicking shovels in a drainage ditch to rebuilding Peterbilt semi engines (And that was all in the same job!)

With this in mind, I have a little more experience with the skills my we are trying to build upon and put to use.  I also have more available time to work on it as our daughter gets older.  My wife does a lot of research, but I am usually the one to implement it, so you will be seeing a lot of pictures from my end as she writes about what we have discovered.  While I learned about raising rabbits from my uncle when I was a kid, every day seems to be a learning experience with these guys, so be on the look out for our first post on the topic!

Living The Basics