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this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • r ranson
  • paul wheaton
  • Jocelyn Campbell
stewards:
  • Devaka Cooray
  • Burra Maluca
  • Miles Flansburg
garden masters:
  • Dave Burton
  • Anne Miller
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Mike Jay
gardeners:
  • Bill Crim
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Greg Martin

!! Akhu's Permaculture Bootcamp Journey  RSS feed

 
Posts: 18
Location: United States
62
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Intro
My name is Akhu (aka Philip). I am a new boot at Wheaton Laboratory.
I drove from southern California to learn more about homesteading,
permaculture, and living holistically with { Mother Earth | Father Sky | Great Spirit }
I have been listening to Paul and Jocelyn's podcasts and videos for quite some
time now and felt it was time to throw my shoulder in, so to speak.

-Arrival Day- Feb. 3
It was in the low 30s that day with snow and heavy winds,
Montana is a stark contrast to Cali in the winter, it is like another world.
I am enjoying the winter here, the cold tests everything, it makes you feel alive.
I feel more respect for Mother Nature than ever before.

Upon arrival to the Lab I had my first boot experience, putting on snow chains!
With Fred's help plowing the excess snow, I was able to park no problem, and headed for the main house.
Upon meeting everyone I must say it is very humbling to be accepted with such hospitality and love, I felt right at home.
At it's core, the Lab feels like a solid foundation to build, learn and live a holistic communal life.

-Day One- Feb. 4
• Learn how to fire up rocket mass heater stove
• Fred gives partial tour of the property
• Drive to Lab to fell a dead standing tree for fire wood
• Begin balcony woodworking project

-Day Two- Feb. 5
• Continue work on class room balcony (Phase II)
• Fred gives tour of WOFATI structure
• Trip to the waste disposal plant
• TACO TUESDAY! The food at the lab is awesome!

-Day Three- Feb. 6
• Learn how to drive tractor with plow
• Continue work on balcony rail supports
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Fred clearing main road
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View from Red Cabin
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The Duke's rocket mass heater
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Luxuriant combustion efficiency
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Beautiful Montana winter
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Winter dawn
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Classroom rocket mass heater
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Interior chamber of rocket mass heater
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Fred cutting round wood
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Chris & Fred working on post supports
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Splitting firewood
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Driving Kubota tractor to plow snow
 
steward
Posts: 3027
Location: Moved from south central WI to Portland, OR
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Welcome Akhu!  Thanks for the update and all the pictures!
 
steward
Posts: 1381
Location: Northwest Montana from Zone 3a to 4b (multiple properties)
207
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Outstanding, Akhu! Very nice post and looks like you get a PM from me - The Biological Reverse Kickstarter!!  <-- That's a link!!

 
gardener
Posts: 1115
Location: Manitoba, Canada
316
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Ooh, I like pictures and updates! Keep them coming!
 
Philip Huerta
Posts: 18
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-Day Four-
• Jocelyn made breakfast, soaked oats! Thank you Jocelyn!
• Continue carpentry work on roundwood balcony supports.
• Felled multiple dead standing trees to process into firewood.
• Clean/organizing shop/auditorium.
• Conversed with The Duke at dinner about building community and the evolution of the Gapper program.
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The Lab Kitchen. Fully stocked! Many great meals have been prepared here. I&I am very grateful to Paul & Jocelyn for opening up their home to us boots.
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Good food, good life.
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Fellow boot Chris working on balcony rail supports.
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Cutting wood outside Cooper cabin.
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Felling my first large Fir tree. I&I give thanks for this tree and the others we felled, we will stay warm with the wood they provided.
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Fred examining my cut. Not the best cut, but I safely brought the tree down with the aid of a tree jack.
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Timber!
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Father Sky warming Mother Earth. The beauty in Montana is beyond measure.
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Judy full of timber to take back to the shop/auditorium.
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The Solar Leviathan
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Montana Sky
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Roundwood chiseling work
 
master pollinator
Posts: 346
Location: Galicia, Spain zone 9a
64
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Wonderful pictures! The snow looks very pretty from my comfy seat. Indoors. With heating. And hot tea......
 
Philip Huerta
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-Day 5- Feb 8
• Cutting timber collected from yesterday.
• Fred instructs us how to sharpen the different chainsaw blades
• Tool maintanence and sharpening
• Continue organinzing and cleaning up shop/auditorium
• Roundwood work on stair's first rail post
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Morning walk to the shop. I&I give thanks for my new Brothers, Chris & Fred. We are all on this permaculture journey together.
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The Red Cabin where Ant Jeremy and gato Cloud reside.
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Fred explaining one method of chainsaw sharpening using the metal file and guide. Keeping one's tools clean & well maintained is paramount no matter what field you are in.
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Setting up to logs to cut into splittable wood. Again I&I give thanks to Great Spirit for these trees.
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Feathered friend flying above scouting the land. The crow is a powerful spirit animal it is a symbol of magic and mysteries that exist in our lives.
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Shop/auditorium rocket mass heater blazin' away.
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Holz zu hacken ist eine gute Arbeit. (Chopping wood is a good job.)
 
Julia Winter
steward
Posts: 3027
Location: Moved from south central WI to Portland, OR
538
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It's great to see what's going on at the lab - thanks for sharing these pictures!
 
Philip Huerta
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-Day 6- Sabbath/Rest

THANK YOU Julia, Bill, Shawn, Amanada for the encouragement, it means a lot.

• Sleeping in feels extra special when its super cold outside.
• Single digit weather today, windchill in the negative. Another beautiful day in Montana
• Took a trip into town with Jocelyn and Jeremy for supplies and to pick up Fred.
• "Judy" (The Duke's Firetruck) getting some much needed love at repair shop.
• Dropped off recyclables.
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Jocelyn made Brunch! Super tasty and healthy.
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Serene Montana mountains
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I&I give thanks for all those who work the railroads, transporting goods across this nation.
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I&I give thanks for all the truck drivers who keep our stores full of food, fuel, and other goods.
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Montana winter sunset
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Everyone is very well-fed at the Bootcamp. Thank you Paul & Jocelyn!
 
Philip Huerta
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-Day 7-
1 WEEK! Time flies at the Lab.

• Nest labor day
• Stocked rocket mass heater wood in house
• Fixed broken metal shelf for laundry room
• Clean/organize garage
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Frosty berm
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My new buddy Gert
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Turkey tracks
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Cutting saskatoon green wood to make a spoon for PEP badge
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Cleaned up garage/chop area
 
Philip Huerta
Posts: 18
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-Day 8-

• Continue work on shop/auditorium balcony rail supports and stair posts.
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A decent amount of snow fell last night
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Working on stair posts
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Once snow melts work on berm shed can continue
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Fred using drill auger
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Bolting posts to stairs
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Hart arbeiten. Essen Sie gut. (Work hard. Eat well.)
 
Philip Huerta
Posts: 18
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-Day 9-

• Continue work on shop/auditorium stair rail and posts
• TACO TUESDAY! Jocelyn's cooking is amazing!
• New boot Robbie arrived.
• After dinner discussion with The Duke about past PDCs
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Winter in Montana
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This Boot got new snow boots
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Band saw cuts
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Spider buddy
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Attached stair posts, project nearing completion!
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Shop/auditorium with ample supply of firewood
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Working on stairway handrail
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¡Muy sabroso!
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Tea time wisdom
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Dessert made by Jocelyn with cherries grown by Fred. Delicious!
 
Amanda Launchbury-Rainey
master pollinator
Posts: 346
Location: Galicia, Spain zone 9a
64
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Cherries!!! YAY! Spiders¡¡¡ YUK!
 
Philip Huerta
Posts: 18
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-Day 10-

• Finished balcony rail supports
Seed balling peas
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Love in its essence is spiritual fire. —Lucius Annaeus Seneca
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Winter blue dawn
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Snowfall behind shop/auditorium
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Smashing clay for seed balls
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Fukuoaka style seed balls
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Made some polydough using Jocelyn's recipe!
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Freshly made guacamole and black bean jalapeno purée with tortilla chips for dinner
 
master pollinator
Posts: 467
Location: Zone 7b/8a Temperate Humid Subtropical, NC, US
127
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Neat seed balls! Enjoying your posts!
 
Philip Huerta
Posts: 18
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-Day 11-

THANK YOU Steve!
• Begin work on shop mezzanine
• After dinner disscusion with The Duke about PEP badge system,
bootcamp/gapper program, and all things permaculture.

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Another beautiful day in Montana. 20 degrees seems warm now after wintering a 0 degree day.
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(from left to right) Beautiful shot of berm shed (under construction), shop/auditorium, willow bank, showers, & red cabin
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Removal of old wood boards and insulation.
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Beginning phase, installation of new shop mezzanine.
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Black walnuts, brain food
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Jocelyn made paleo-merengues. SO GOOD!
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Zuhause ist dort, wo das herz ist. (Home is where the heart is.)
 
master steward
Posts: 7318
Location: Pacific Northwest
2397
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Jocelyn made paleo-merengues. SO GOOD!P

Oh my goodness, those look delicious! I've tried like 5 times--failing each time--to make paleo meranges. I'd love Jocelyn's recipe!
 
master steward
Posts: 5354
Location: Missoula, MT
929
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Nicole Alderman wrote:Oh my goodness, those look delicious! I've tried like 5 times--failing each time--to make paleo meranges. I'd love Jocelyn's recipe!


It's here in the surplus eggs thread! The initial recipe picture there is not mine. I usually don't flavor mine (except for maple syrup) and I just spoon them onto the cookie sheet instead of using anything like a pastry bag or tube. I just put another tip or two here with photos of ones I've made in the past in that recipe thread.

This thread is for celebrating Akhu and all the awesome work and learning experiences the boots are racking up. Gut gemacht, meiner guter Herr!
 
Philip Huerta
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-Day 12-

• Continue work on mezzanine in shop/auditorium
• Two new boots and a doggo arrived tonight! Dave, Alexis & Hazel
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Large amount of snow fall last night
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gato Gert's heated mini cabin
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Bootception
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Fred's solar dehydrator
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Ich liebe den winter. (I love the winter.)
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Shop mezzanine work
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Close up lichen usnia
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gato Cloud keeping watch in the Red Cabin
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Lumber for mezzanine floor
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Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking. ―Marcus Aurelius
 
Julia Winter
steward
Posts: 3027
Location: Moved from south central WI to Portland, OR
538
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Thanks so much for the picture of Gert's cabin.  I heard about it on the podcast but it's nice to see it.  I really like the stepping rounds of wood.

It's great to see people gathering and getting things done.  Hurray for boots!   Hurray for Fred!
 
Philip Huerta
Posts: 18
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-Day 13- Sabbath

• Worked on PEP Badge
https://permies.com/wiki/98371/PEP-BB-roundwood-sand-club
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View from the Boot's bunkroom, another beautiful sunrise
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Tea time wisdom
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Die Küche ist das Herz des Hauses. (The kitchen is the heart of the house.)
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Serene Montana skyline, fresh air
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Hazel having fun in the snow :)
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I&I give thanks to Most High for this journey, this life, and all my relations.
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PEP Roundwood Mallet Badge work
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Hazel watching the light
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Holz schnitzen ist gut für die Seele. (Carving wood is good for the soul.)
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Getting some sun in the auditorium
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Feels good to have a dog at the Lab. Alexis' dog Hazel is an official Boot!
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Finished mallet
 
Philip Huerta
Posts: 18
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-Day 14-

• Nest labor day
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Indoor garden, natural air purifiers
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Rocket mass heater keeps house warm all day & night
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Awsome old arc welder
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Shop clean up (phase I)
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All Heaven and Earth Flowered white obliterate... Snow ...unceasing snow —Hashin
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Checking in on my buddy Cloud
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Snow Moon approaches (Ojibwe Tribe called it Sucker Fish Moon)
 
Philip Huerta
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-Day 15-

• Finished mezzanine floor joists
• Begin cutting floorboards
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Snowfall on the shop
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The Willow Bank (Compost Toilet)
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The Makita Dual-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw w/ Laser, such an AWESOME power tool
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Mountain skyline, crisp cool day today
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Mezzanine joist framing
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Shop firewood collection
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Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst. (Starting is easy; persevering is an art.)
 
Philip Huerta
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-Day 16-

• Work continues on mezzanine flooring
• Recycling old lumber from flooring, pulling staples & nails
• Taco Tuesday & Poker Night
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Animals are the messengers of the tree, and trees the gardens of animals. Life depends upon life. All forces, all elements, all life forms are the biomass of the tree. ―Bill Mollison
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Jocelyns's Hens And Chicks House Leeks, extremely hardy plants and medicinal
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Using the floor nailer
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Using brad gun
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Food color spectrum
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Poker Night!
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Playing with Paul's Permaculture cards
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The Kings of Permaculture
 
Philip Huerta
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-Day 17-
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Montana mountains
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Sun was shining bright today
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Wild mullein on the path to willow bank
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As the weaver of the web, the spider symbolizes the spirit of creation.
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Mezzanine progress
 
Philip Huerta
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-Day 18-
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Father Sky
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Winter Sunstar
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The expectations of life depend upon diligence; the mechanic that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. —Confucius
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Icicles on the Fisher Price house
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Removed hundreds of staples & nails from the old flooring lumber so they can be used again in other projects.
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Mezzanine flooring almost done!
 
Julia Winter
steward
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That floor looks good!  What will that space be used for?  For storage?
 
Philip Huerta
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-Day 19-

That floor looks good!  What will that space be used for?  For storage?



Thank you Julia! Fred did a great job teaching us various aspects of wood flooring.
All of our carpentry skills improved. Storage is precisley what it will be used for.
Storing the tipi poles, tipi canvas, tarps, rocket mass heater materials, etc.

• Installed second spice rack in kitchen
• Completely dissambled and repaired front loading washer
(ball bearings were completely worn out)
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Everyday is a new opportunity to learn, to grow, to work, to love.
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Installation of second spice rack
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Complete! Spice is life ;)
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With the proper tools, parts, and wisdom almost anything can be restored/repaired.
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Washer disassembly
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Youtube University
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In fixing something that everyone uses and relies on, it is easy to stay motivated and focused. If it helps the Tribe it is worthwhile.
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Raus mit dem Alten, rein mit dem Neuen. (Out with the old, in with the new.)
 
gardener
Posts: 466
Location: St Paul, MN/Tularosa, NM and now a gapper at Wheaton Labs
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Besides storage of the items Philip mentioned,  paul also hopes to someday use the space as "hippy storage". When the bermshed is complete and expanded we plan to put a lot of those materials in that relatively dry spot. The mezzanine could then be used as a sort of bunk room for students or boots.
 
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