One of the great things about natural buildings is that they are recyclable. The earthen plaster in Wisteria Lodge has been around for nearly 10 years and it’s gotten a lot of wear and tear, so this season before a new tenant moved in I took some time to repair it and finish it with a natural clay alis paint. Earthen plaster is all organic and so malleable that you can chip it off, add some water, and it comes back to life for reuse in the same repair project. This little project transformed the house from kind of a junky looking quaint tiny house inside, to a beautiful, warm, and inspiring little space.
I’ve tried aging cheese in my under-the-floor root cellar but the times during the year when it is the ideal temperature are way too short. Then I recently was thinking about a place I have that has high humidity, a huge thermal mass, and in spots is over 6′ underground–my cistern. The temperature down there stays above freezing through the winter but because of the thermal mass of the water maintains its coolth much further into the season than my root cellar. So I thought I’d try it out for aging hard cheese without having to use a dedicated cheese fridge. It’s a creative way of stacking functions of already sustainable technology to make my life even more sustainable…and delicious.
Despite the benefits a city can offer, city life can be stressful and polluted with both noise and light, all of which means people are having more trouble sleeping than ever. I used to have insomnia all the time when I lived in the city, and even when over the counter sedatives wouldn’t work I found that the gentle effect of a homemade herbal tincture would do the trick.
I made a valerian, hops, and chamomile tincture blend that served as a great sleeping potion to relax me enough to help me drift off at night. This spring I found a bunch of volunteer valerian growing in my garden so I thought it was time to make some more sleeping potion. I sleep really soundly most nights at Dancing Rabbit, but I figure I can send some of this to friends who live in the city, and it’s always good to have some on hand just in case.
The Tiny House Festival at the St Pete Ecovillage not only featured talks by tiny house builders and tiny house designers, there were tiny house companies and organizations that build tiny houses for the homeless. And then there were the tiny houses themselves–nine tiny houses on wheels that were open for tours. I featured a few of them in the previous video, and I cover five more in this one. These are brief tiny house tours that just give you a taste of what the houses look like and maybe some inspiration for your own tiny house design.
Tiny houses are a big thing in Florida. The St Pete Ecovillage put itself on the map in a lot of ways by hosting their first tiny house festival on April 1st this year. It was a great demonstration of living lighter on the planet and was part of a larger effort to make tiny living more viable in St Petersburg. I was at the festival, since that’s where I was living, and have made a couple videos about my experience.
This is a little video of my musings on the differences between, positive and negative, Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage and the newly started St Pete Ecovillage. Both of these villages are providing a great model for living more sustainably, but they are located in completely different places geographically, demographically, and politically. What are the benefits and drawbacks of each location? Find out in this exploration of different factors.