the water project.

So many times I start a project the wrong way. I know I’m not the only one either! It often happens like this: hear of a new concern or problem (typically involving some sensitive part of my daily life- health, family, home… you get the idea), freak out from the possible ramifications of not reacting to said problem, research options to save me only to find expensive or extensive solutions, worry about how to solve it myself within my budget and time constraints and then get overwhelmed in the process.

My always patient husband is used to this and knows that sometimes the best thing to do is just listen and entertain me.

But every once in a while a new idea hits a nerve with both of us and we are ‘off and running’ on a new project together (which is always more fun).

And that brings us to our current project; what in the world are we eating and drinking??! I mean really ingesting- the unseen, microscopic things found in our food and water. (Remember- I’ve told you before I have slightly granola tendencies. So…you’ve been warned.)

One of my closest friends is always encouraging me through her clean living to be conscientious about what I’m eating and drinking and the effect it has on the planet (I’m not quite on the vegan wagon with her but might be knocking on that door). She distills her families water- and every time I’m over I drink a TON of it! It’s clean, smooth and doesn’t stink of chlorine.

As I started to look into water distillation I entered into this whole world of water filtration and purification. And yes- there is a difference between the two. But I had a hard time at first understanding why- living outside of one of the largest cities in our country- I would need to worry about our municipal water.

Heavy metals. Pharmaceuticals. Chemicals. Chlorine. Fluoride. Cysts. Viruses. Plastic particulates. Pesticides and herbicides. Oh my!

The city’s water report compared our water to the EPA standards prompted me to explore more of my cities’ history with the EPA. I uncovered previous violations of  drinking water from aquifers in our town- yes, I know they are separate from the municipal water- but it made me wonder how they got contaminated, what was in our soil, and if I could provide clean water to my family if I ever needed to in an emergency.

Providing water on a daily basis that doesn’t require electricity and can also serve us in an emergency seemed like a logical starting point.

And so- the search began.

Coincidentally, my brother was working on some emergency prep/water research himself and created a monolithic filtering system using Berkey filters. I was familiar with Berkey systems from other family members, but hadn’t really considered it because of the start up cost and counter space required (1950’s kitchens dont exactly afford you tons of space for modern appliances).

The more I compared the monolithic system, reverse osmosis, distillation, ceramic filters (like the Berkey) and traditional carbon gravity filters (think Brita or ZeroWater), I realized this was a big can of worms and I needed to narrow down what my specific needs were.

How many people did I need to provide clean water to every day?

Do I want to utilize said water in cooking? Cleaning? 

Do I want to use electricity or have it be a portable option (camping) that can run anytime anyplace? (Emergency prep)

What is my water source? (Rain runoff, municipal water, the creek across the street… Etc)

What is in my water that I want removed?

How often do I want to maintain the equipment? (If there is an emergency how long can I provide clean water for my family without needing a replacement that I might not be able to get?)

Lots of questions- right??!!! Is your mind starting to wander off and think about your own  city’s water? Did you just look at that glass- or bottle- of water next to you with concern?Maybe yes- maybe no.  If yes- you’re in luck. I did a lot of reading and shopping online and can save you some time- and share my enthusiasm for what we found.

So- come back and keep reading!!!  The second part of my water journey is coming tomorrow!!

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