The idea for OzEarth arose out of a deep craving for an authentic life. We wanted to know where our stuff (food, water, shelter, power, warmth) came from, and to be directly involved in the getting of it, or at least know the people personally who provided it. We wanted to be sure that our waste was either being reused or at least doing minimal or no harm. We wanted to deconsumerise, to be free to earn less and do more.
So we embarked on a wild learning spree about four and a half years ago. We have studied and are studying (in alphabetical order and this list is probably not exhaustive):
animal husbandry, aquaponics, beekeeping, cheesemaking, crochet, community-building, fire planning, food preserving, gardening, knitting, knots, mycology, natural building (including: adobe blocks, cob, earth floors, leichtlehm, lime plasters mortars and renders, living roofs, natural insulation, reciprocal roofing, stonework, strawbale, superadobe, tadellakt), nonviolent communication, online storytelling, pattern language, passive solar design, pasture cropping, permaculture, remedial horticulture, renewable energy (solar, wind, microhydro, compost – both for heat and for methane digestion, and superefficient woodburning), sewing, spirituality, soil biology, solar passive design, spinning, teaching, water management, and weaving.
The initial idea was the usual: go bush, build a house, grow a garden, keep goats and chooks and bees and maybe the odd alpaca, have a simple, enjoyable, healthy life, sing a song, do a dance and be free.
It’s a great idea and we’re still on that path, but in the meantime we’ve got a bit more ambitious. Having learned all this stuff, we’d like nothing more than to share it. OzEarth is the vehicle for that sharing.
The plan is to start by implementing our plans at home. Once we have proof of concept for our local systems up on the Hill, we’ll gradually incorporate our techniques into our teaching.
Watch this space for upcoming OzEarth events!