Wednesday, January 9, 2013

We're back!

Faithful readers (of whom I'm shocked I still have a few - seriously, who is still googling "afriendlyhome"??? I haven't posted since MAY! I'm touched, really I am.) know that has long been a dream of the Friends to have a small, self-sustaining farm. We had hoped that we had that opportunity with our last housing arrangement, but that turned out to be unexpectedly short-term, so this fall we left behind the fruit trees we had planted and the spring irrigation system we had designed, and struck out on our own again. Thank you to everyone who helped us and believed in us during that period. We're back to the dreaming stage again, dreaming of a bit of land that's actually ours this time, and the freedom to turn it into the permaculture farm of our dreams.

Here are a few of the things we're dreaming.

Image source and story

This is a house made out of a shipping container - you know, the big metal boxes behind Walmart. That sort of shipping container. Apparently it's becoming a big thing in the eco-world. They're sealed and weatherproof, they have a strong frame, and all you have to do is cut out your doors and windows and put up your insulation and walls. Best of all, they're recycled. Shipping container homes give a new life to something that's worn out its usefulness carrying loads of plastic things we don't really need from China. They're honestly ridiculously tiny, but they fit together like Lego blocks, and people weld them together to create large and luxurious eco-friendly homes. Luxurious homes with corrugated metal on the outside and no drafts at all. We're not looking for a mansion. We just want enough room for the five of us.

I mean, it's an idea, as long as we're dreaming, right? Whatever we do, whenever we manage to get a bit of land of our own, we won't be hiring a conventional contractor to build us a standard house. Sorry if we gave anyone the impression of being normal, but at least now you won't be confused in the future.

Also, permaculture.

image source

It's the future. I mean, unless we want to be extinct in a century. Not to be melodramatic or anything, but most people who don't live under a rock are aware that we're skipping merrily toward destroying our entire planet, and we Permies think that the only way to save it is to begin treating our ecosystems like ecosystems again, instead of continuing in our false and failed beliefs that we can just keep treating our earth like a factory. Permaculture is an entire philosophy of life, not just a farming method, but I'll send you to the excellent links above for more information, and save my pontificating for another possible future post, if I ever get around to it.

Ryan's also become super interested in soil microbiology.

image source: The Soil Doctor. Highly recommended.

If he has anything to do with it, our future dream farm will have more microscopic living organisms per square inch of soil than anywhere around, but I'm going to let him manage that on his own because, well, I hate dealing with stinky compost. And if you tell me it's not supposed to smell bad, I'll smile and nod and imagine telling you to come take care of my compost your own darn self if you think you can make it not smell bad.

I'll leave off with our current dreams, because speaking of things that smell bad, Ion just crawled by with his diaper. Good to see you, let's not get this out of contact again, shall we?