Glimpses of the Village, Part One

at farmer joe'sWHAT IS A WWOOFer?  A WWOOFer is someone who is part of the WWOOF network of volunteers exchanging their labor on organic and sustainable properties for a place to stay, food to eat, and a learning experience.  When hosting WWOOFers, we often visit other nearby farms that need a hand harvesting or planting crops.  With these tasty no-spray Jonathon apples from Farmer Joe’s we have been making dried apples, applesauce, apple cider vinegar and other tasty “value-added” foods.  No need to remove the peels on these!

Partnering with other farms gives a more expansive view of the regional food system for visitors, while also relating to Earthen Heart’s business model of sourcing bumper crops from other area farms to produce value-added products.  This will be scaled up in the years to come through use of a commercial kitchen, proper labeling and expanded partnerships with area sustainable and organic farmers.

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Lake Michigan is another nearby point of grounding.  Truly immense and captivating.

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Sometimes the hens get pretty demanding!

Maybe a little too free range around here?

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Here you see Nickolay and Irina (from Russian Republic of Sakha, Yakutsk in Siberia) traversing the trails on the back side of the property.

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Shush and Moira (from the U.K.) though your visit was short, your energy and smiles are dearly missed by myself and the girls.  Thanks for putting all that effort and positivity into the heart of this land!

895-1  Nickolay!  Thanks for the help with roto-tilling for the new garden beds, chopping wood, organizing the barn and so many other projects!

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Irina, thanks for helping pick apples and tending the herd of goats several times (with uncanny ability).  Thanks for cooking some scrumptious meals and cleaning in the kitchen!  Help like yours in the kitchen is a true blessing!

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(from top left) Irina and Nickolay, Fabio and Chloe, Guala (my mother) Papa Cardo (stepdad) Damien and Julian

Thanks also to Chloe, Damien and Fabio (from France)!  Thanks for your time and conversation during what turned out to be a brief high quality visit.  Still can’t figure out how Damien and Nic took care of that goat fencing so quickly!

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You all TRULY TRULY helped me and the girls to get a glimpse of the village.  We, at Earthen Heart, are promoting the community homestead model in a rural setting but share a greater vision with the rest of the planetary human beings now shifting towards sustainability and increased reverence for the Earth as a living organism.  Some areas I consider to be related to the earth shift:  sustainable and organic farming, permaculture, urban agriculture, suburban co-housing conversion, food hubs, green building, off-grid living, grid shift to renewables, controversial health food chefs, nutritionists and healers, outside the box teachers and home-schoolers, artists that challenge the norm or allow us to see or feel something in a new way, interfaith dialogue, multiracial and inter-generational communities, alternative currency and outside the GDP nightmare economy thinkers…

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There are many creative solution driven minds and beings out there in all realms of our globe.  Now, let’s all move to make it more harmonious and cohesive and unified.  I appreciate what you WWOOFers continue to do for us at Earthen Heart to help us manifest the village mentality and lifestyle that is often just inside my head, but exists in reality anytime we want it.  The shift to a more earth reverent, socially cohesive way is available to us now.  Most of the time it is hard to find within the current paradigm that prevails.  For this continued manifestation of the village in this setting, I continue to work and dedicate myself.  I wish I could also join many of you doing your part in other locations.  Maybe I will.  Maybe you will join us here.

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There’s our dog Ollie the Black Dog on White Snow.  He’s doing his thang!  You do your thing, in your place, in your way and combine forces with others!  If you are interested in collaborating with us by tasting some of the products we produce you can connect directly with Earthen Heart though the CSA Share offering!  $120 per share for 2014, distribution/delivery not included.  You put in requests for items from a list of likely available products.  If you buy a share, you are investing in the farm and the Earthen Heart collaboration with other farms.  You will be sharing the risks and rewards of the farm and enjoying the value added foods we create from food produced on site and nearby.  Reach out and re-enter the garden.  It is ours to enjoy.

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