January 2007

The strawbale building is coming along. Current estimates are that it will be finished in the Fall of '07. There was a race to get the rest of the straw bales covered before the cold weather hit, but it turned out to be a milder winter than expected and Dominic was able to get it finished up with some help from Angela. Now the work continues on the inside, with mud plastering and drywall going in. We are still looking for natural building interns for the Spring, and we will have at least one more natural building workshop (although the date is still up in the air). You can watch the progress by looking at pictures in our Photo Gallery. If you're on our natural building email list you'll be contacted on a regular basis with construction and workshop updates.

In the second half of 2006 we went through the provisional membership process with Dominic and Angela, and after much struggling with the decision it ended up that we couldn't consense on their membership. So at this point they'll be staying through the end of June so that their kids can finish the school year, and meanwhile Dom is still working on the plastering at the new building. We're grateful for the contributions they've made to the community during their time here. And now we're trying to look ahead to find new applicants that might want to live in the farmhouse starting in July.

We've currently got one intern who braved the cold to stay through the winter. Her name is Margit, she's from Germany, and she's working with Dana in the homeschooling program.

Our income sharing group, Shantagani, is in the midst of breaking up. They've been doing income sharing for 5 years now, but have recently re-evaluated and decided that the time is right to wrap it up. The group is thinking of transforming the relationship into some sort of community bond for retirement or disability, or else a community self-insurance fund.