the tone of my thinking

Phil and I are reading this book with everyone at Turtle Dreams. We got together last night for a book discussion, but with all the logisitics of living together that needed to be discussed, the book was tabled for next meeting.

Phil and I had done some of the reading and exercises from the book with friends last year, pursuing thoughts on community together. It's so different now, reading it with a group with which we are already living so closely. The examples feel so much more tangible and logical, whereas before they seemed far more abstract.

It's exciting, living close to one another, with so much to learn and grow. So with that book out on our table, I've been thinking a lot about community lately.

This is the last book Phil and I read aloud to each other. It's so inspirational, and now we want to structure our lives to become closer to being "locavores," which is eating a diet of all local, all seasonal food. That's going to take a lot of planning and organization, but it really reinforces a lot of what we believe in.

So that's been on my mind a lot lately.


Phil's been doing a lot of landscaping for work, so he's fully immersed in planting and growing things. It is very labor-intensive, but he is enjoying how rewarding it is, and all that he's learning about plants and design.

The family I work for found another nanny, so I'm back to part-time there, and part-time work-trade at Turtle Dreams. Yesterday I helped out with laying rocks to birm up and reinforce the keyhole beds being laid in the garden, as part of the Permaculture design being worked out there. It was good to be active, getting my hands on dirt and rocks, under the sun, amidst friends and music.

Plans are coming together for our loft bed. While in Lancaster Phil and George made a huge, beefy garden cart with mountain bike wheels. This will help us move materials up to and around the yurt hill. I wove together a seat and back to a rocking chair, and it's a great addition to our place. (I'm sad to say, I have no pictures yet.)

Now in warm sunshine weather, the yurt is getting rather hot inside, even with all three windows open. Phil has been climbing on furniture to open the top dome-light to let the heat escape upward. We're thinking of investing in a system to make it open with a crank.

Food spoilage is a constant battle. We've been putting a lot of things to cool in the spring, but it's an annoying trek to take too frequently. This makes a pit-cellar move up the ranks in the urgent/important matrix.

I wish I had pictures to share. Not of spoiling food, but of the other things. Soon enough, I suppose.


mennogourmet said...

Hooray for locavores!! I'm eager to hear how it goes for you. I wish we were in a place where that was more possible. We were planning to sign up for the CSA here in Anchorage (the farm is in Palmer outside of Anchorage) but it's full already. :( Also our apartment doesn't have yard space for a garden. So I'll be the most loyal farmer's market customer I can be...

MOM B said...

It's so interesting reading about the problems that you face when living a life without electricity and running water--things that we who have those things at hand don't even consider. I'm enjoying reading about it and thinking about how people years ago struggled to survive. I'll be interested in reading about the cellar. I had never heard of locavores--fascinating. But would I miss strawberries!!

Liana said...

I can't wait to see a picture of your rocking chair!

heidiann(e) said...

MOM: don't they grow strawberries anywhere around chicago? well, they do here, so i guess you'll just have to move quick!

Abigail said...

Hehe. Build a wigwam in Nanticoke, and we'll show you an intentional community!

These look like good reads, especially the one about seasonal eating. I've been interested in this since you gave me that copy of "Simply in Season," and I think that's one of the many benefits of canning, freezing, and drying food for the winter months. One could enjoy the fruits of summertime even in their local "off-season."

MOM B said...

Silly me! I'm just so used to seeing "California" or "Florida" on the strawberries I buy at the store. Of course we grow them here in Chicago. Don't you remember when we had them growing along the back sidewalk--and had to make sure we got them before the birds did?