We’ve moved to a new spot for the summer, close to where we were last summer but deeper into the woods and down a really rough track with muddy spots that will occasionally hold on to any unsuspecting vehicle.

Just about settled in now, the village moved maybe a month ago we’ve been working hard moving stuff, getting the workshop going and making beds and planting. There is some really rich looking soil so we’ll see how things grow. Short growing season at the elevation where we are.

Last week, during the rain, the Big Lodge went up in a really beautiful spot.  Big Lodge expands the whole community, gives us a common place to gather and a place to accommodate visitors.

A new young couple turned up, expecting, and they spoke about looking for a place to bring  new life into the world. They seem really happy and have been working on poles for their new lodge. It’s a good feeling for me remembering a little over a year ago, living in people’s back yard, tipi living out of context, trying to find a place to just be able to live simply on the earth and realising that, in spite of the amount of wilderness in this country, there seems to be few people who are inspired to live in it. or more like the place wasn’t existing, because it would be incredibly difficult to live like this alone and isolated as a single family. Now we all seem to have found it; the place being the people as much as the land.

The deeper we move  into the woods  the more we learn the difference between isolation and remoteness. As previously mentioned, living in a back yard, in town, in the winter, in a tipi, with kids, surrounded by people in buildings can be incredibly isolating. Tipis are lonely on their own and make little sense out of context. Why would anyone want  to be out in the cold and damp or, moving more into the summer, heat and dry, when there are climate-controlled buildings just sitting there waiting to be used.

We move with intention and it takes intention to get where we are. It can be a lot when it’s raining and you’re stuck in the mud and you just want to go home after a trip into town. But the air is clear, except when there is a pollen storm and everything gets covered in a layer of yellow dust. There is a whole new environment for the kids to explore and it’s incredibly rejuvinating to have a fresh pitch and it’s relieving to know that the place where we just left gets to have a rest and recover from being lived on. It feels good to move twice a year. Makes sense.

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  1. I am living in a tipi in rural Kansas, and my hope is to go through the winter (this will be my first) with neither a fuel powered vehicle, nor a chainsaw. I currently commute the short 12 miles to town and work by bicycle. I am nervous about what the winter will bring, but have found unlimited inspiration in your writings over the past few months. I will be married in the spring, and I wonder if my wife and I might be interested in visiting you for a spell, though I haven’t discussed this with her. Regardless, you and your family are an endless inspiration to those of us who are younger, less experienced, but passionate and dedicated to treading softly on this earth and singing the song that all creation sings.

    All the Best,

    John

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