I will be leaving this week on quite the adventure. The Community Herbal Intensive is going across country to offer our services at the Rainbow Gathering. It is located in Utah this year. I can’t wait to be camping in deserts and mountains. 7song, our teacher, runs the first aid station at the festival, and this is a great learning opportunity for his students. We have spent weeks preparing, but learning about a hypothetical first aid situation is nothing like the real thing. I am hoping to strengthen my skills working with actual people. We have done some role playing and I find that it’s really difficult to be quick thinking on the spot. Someone comes in with rashes, stomach ache etc. and all of a sudden my mind is flooded with medical information soup. The Rainbow Gathering attracts thousands of people for a week of complete off-the-grid living. Food is provided free or by donations and we are miles away from any civilization. Everyone has to be responsible for themselves and their impact on the environment, but in case something goes wrong that is where we come in.
After a week at the gathering, our class will head off to a currently unknown location to find plants for wildcrafting. We will be scouting, gathering and making medicines on site. I am really excited to be going out west and experiencing these incredible landscapes. I wonder what sort of wildlife and plants are there to be discovered.
I feel like this will be an interesting experience to share with you here on the Dacha Project online community. Many common injuries such as cuts, burns and infections are difficult to deal with in an environment like the Rainbow Gathering. Providing first aid to people “roughin it” with herbal remedies inspires me by just how much can be accomplished with a DIY mentality. I also want to share my thoughts on ethical wildcrafting and on-the-go medicine making. I will be doing weekly updates on my experience.
For now please enjoy my first video project for the homestead – it is an introduction montage, to what will eventually (when I return) become a weekly video series.
Have you ever been to a baby shower and thought hey aside from these cute cupcakes this has very little to do with new life? I have thought this exact thing while munching on a delicious cupcake. I won’t do it, said I to myself! Then as I was sitting around wondering how I can possibly get done all those things I want to this spring a train of thought hit me, and it went like this. I like my friends, I do want to celebrate with them, I/we can use some serious help in the garden, and my friends want to come get sweaty outside after a long winter.
After a bit of planning here at the homestead we invited framily from near and far for a Saturday of epic gardening. That day we crossed off of our list these things: prepping old garden beds, digging many a hole through tough soil, pounding black locust posts in for a new garden, clearing out trees for a baby fruit tree orchard, planting fruit trees, building trellises for peas, and planting early plants directly into the garden. We ended up getting that done and more. Other things that got done: bonding, new friend making, fixing tools, maple syruping, bon-firing and a ton of cooking.
Thank you to all who participated. It made all of us here at the DP feel so warm and fuzzy to celebrate a new life coming to the homestead with all of you. Like, Monica Fanya, one enthusiastic participant said, “It’s like planting baby food, just in the early stages.” So true!
Please enjoy some photos and videos of the event.
For your viewing pleasure, the finest flakes lay down to bed one January morning. Just before they land a sauntering winter sun catches hold of them, and thus the glitter. Meanwhile the usual crows are in the trees and the fire is crack-a-lacking.
It is 1.4 °F out there, and though I don’t want to worry you dear reader I must report that our water pipes have frozen for the second night in a row. We should have know better than to put the water system in the uninsulated sun room. Do not fret, or judge us too harshly. The pex pipes will thaw with all this sun in just a moment. This very day, we will temporarily fix the issue with the clever use of clear construction plastic. In the future, we will build a wall to insulate the water system, effectively divorcing it from the fickle nature of sun room living. The water system will thus become part of the very house from which I write, where it never-ever freezes. Even if each resident here would choose to be away for the coldest month of the year, this house will not, would not, drop below the steady temperature of the earth by which it is buried in the north and west. More
Yes, yes, we love all our sustainable systems, but a lot of us here at the Dacha are also really into the arts. It is our hope to integrate the systems side of things with our love for music/art/writing..etc. Luckily for us, the arts have been coming to us.
Recently Lisa Marie Patzer from Philly came with her film crew to use the Dacha in her movie a.k.a. Profile Glitch. Check it out.
Part of the film takes place at an intentional community – and hey,we’ve got one of those (although I think the one in the film is a bit different). We got to watch the crew set up for scenes and re-arrange the place to fit their vision.
They also had to deal with things like lighting with our giant windows, or sound with the generator/inverter making their respective noises. There was also the issue of energy – the lights used in the film needed a lot of power and we had to be careful to make sure the batteries were charged. We are proud to say that this part of the film was shot all off grid using solar and veggie converted energy sources. Helping out the sustainable movie biz – that’s right.
Thanks to our new friend Clover from North Carolina we now have these 3 videos where Joe attempts to explain our Tri-Gen System. Check out what we’re doing with the power of our Lister Engine, which is essentially a small scale power plant. Joe explains how it provides us with electricity, domestic hot water, as well as compressed air.
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The Dacha Project presents a short by Lea LSF. Starring Joe Fisher-Price, Danilatron & Lea LSF. For more info visit. dachaproject.com.
Strawbale Hijinks- A near silent comedy about the countless opportunities to act like a monkey one can miss if they choose not to build a straw bale cottage. Critically acclaimed as the must see monkey short of this fiscal year. Sponsorships welcome.
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Here is our video entry into the Pay It Forward Contest, held by our local Alternatives Federal Credit Union.
Alternatives gave out ten dollars to whoever wanted it, and those people were supposed to give it to someone else in the community, an organization or an individual.Then, the giver of the ten dollars is encouraged to make a video or write an essay about their recipient, and in it illustrate what they can do with it that would benefit the community. Afterwards! A committee at Alternatives picks ten or so videos they like the best, and set them loose into the public, where anyone can vote on which entry they think should get the grand prize-oh- $500.
Taking advantage of some beautiful footage our friend Shira took of us, plus friends, plastering the straw bale cottage, I put together this doo-hickey.