Letter to Alaina Lockhart (Liberal Elect Fundy Royal)

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Dear Alaina,

I am in your Liberal riding and old enough to have asked Pierre Elliot Trudeau for his lapel rose at a rally at the Chateau Laurier a few decades back now. You see, I’d worked as a youth in his campaign. I recall a couple things about his character that still resonate with me at present. He was a man of the people, for the people and a sound representative for human rights and the Canadian Constitution. He was the Charter of Rights and Freedoms incarnate. He stayed out of our bedrooms and would never have supported insidious Bills like C-51. He did not want our sovereignty occluded by the illusions proffered by a Queen that God had already saved. It was a time for us to swell with autonomy and self-governance. We were a big nation of small population, but we were ready. With Trudeau at the helm, we could trust him as our representative and statesman to move forward into a bright future.

When he looked in my eyes, smiling into my face, that fateful moment, unabashedly proffering his rose to me, I felt a pure love and ethical centre that I’ve known in few people since; let alone in the heart of a politician! He was full of life, a natural born leader. He was opinionated, charismatic, and ballsy, protective and a true Canuck. He shone with knowledge, brilliance, character and discernment; a rare thing indeed in any human being. It is fair to say that I loved him. All of Canada did. In that moment when I gazed into his eyes, I peered into his ethical centre. I waved to him like a friend every time I drove past 24 Sussex.

Conversely, our country has taken a perilous journey since that time. It is true that I abhor big governments. Majorities in the hands of a few make me even more nervous. Since my fateful meetings with P.E. Trudeau, I’ve known few men with the integrity, genius and knowledge of economics that truly represent their people until Ron Paul, the Libertarian, a true historian and economic luminary from Texas of all places! His emergence has completely caught my breath. The concept of auditing the Fed and giving the integral power back to the people and enabling them to drive the economy naturally burgeons my hope. We all know that the debt-based Fiat economy is a sham; an abomination of each individuals creativity.

In this North American climate of change, my more feminine faith remains broken knowing that the people haven’t the health to wholly hold the charge of Libertarianism, self-governance and autonomy at this time. I’m thinking, that it will have to take a grass roots revolution in the States to provoke any real change. Perhaps read anything Ayn Rand wrote and also “The Creature of Jekyll Island” (it’s a free pdf) if you want some history behind the impulse to enslave North Americans. However, I digress.

As a result of the last decade in Canada under Steven Harper (spoken seething between clenched teeth), I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m not sure I want to identify as a Canadian anymore. In fact, I’ve not voted FOR anyone since Trudeau, just strategically against the worst possible candidates. I did the same this time too. Seriously, what was the point?! If Harper got back in, this election, my plan (which is already in motion) was to repatriate to Central America setting up offshore, get my tax money and investments out of this corrupt nation being sold off to China in unethical chunks. I beyond tired of Bills being passed behind our backs, corrupt leanings, bipartisan politics and dirty back room deals. It disgusts me beyond measure. (Did I mention that I used to work for the feds years ago? Dark years for me indeed.) I hate that our peace keeping grace, internationally, is now tarnished beyond recognition. I am deeply ashamed. When I travel, I no longer where my Canadian flag as an insignia of pride on my knapsack. That makes me feel sad.

Yes, it is come to this, even though my family has been in Sussex (and Grand Lake), New Brunswick since 1789 since the Elliotts/McQuinns first landed on these shores. I kept my name through two marriages out of a sense of pride. Although I grew up and was educated in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto, I came back “home” to work with and for my beloved brethren. I’ve hired a small slew of local New Brunswick women to help run our international natural health clinic, publishing house and natural building collective (shebearconstruction.com) over the last 6 years since I’ve been back. We’re thriving here! We’ve promoted lots of natural home births, helped folks with their chronic ills and provided many jobs. Heck we’ve even helped other want-to-be local authors publish their own books.

I attributed it all to the fact that my husband and I are self-starting, self-governing individuals who abhor hand outs. My kids are brilliant, self-educated homeschoolers. We’ve written 13 books, some best-sellers, and consult with our patients worldwide. Because of the passing of that fateful, rose, I learned to become an emblem of integrity and true Canadian grit. I am the essence of myself! I could have easily taken my family to BC and Alberta, a much more progressive climate, but we came east, against a tide of escaping Maritimers, to see what we were made of. Pierre Elliott taught me to grab your inner gumption and git ‘er done in the face of tradition and social adversity.

My husband is from Laval, QC, but he and I both love the people and landscape here. We also LOVE a challenge. Living out West, for us, would have been WAY too easy given our state of mind and work. We love being agents of change! Also, rush hour, here, is laughable. I also love to hike by the ocean. NB is an untapped jewel of beauty and charm. Grand Manan my go to place for healing, writing and self-reflection. We own acreage over on the Kingston Peninsula where we are starting a teaching centre for people (mostly women) to come learn how to build off-grid solar/wind homes out of hempcrete and strawbale.

We’re not about sustainability, we’re about permaculture and rejuvenation! That is the impulse that we bring to all that we hold sacred. The petro-chemical giants, around these parts, will phase out, naturally, it is not sustainable and it is NOT the way of the future. Every home in Germany is now powered off-grid by the sun! Pipelines and fracking (change 2 letters and you’re closer to the truth) are unethical practices of old-boys networks that marginalize our crown land and native holdings and their (our) peoples. It is not ethical to destroy our water table, our health or steal aboriginal peoples lands. I am “idle no more!” It also isn’t ethical to leave 1,000 murdered native women, and their bereft families, devoid of love, care, compassion or answers. I will not live in a land of seeming unethical cleansing especially where world health organizations know more about our dirty business, demanding a full investigation while we sit “Conservatively” and idly by. I am deeply ashamed.

There is little in the way of international vision in New Brunswick. Many folks outside this province think of it as the land that time forgot. Friends who’ve left to go to Alberta and Ontario tell me that New Brunswick feels like one big “Kings Landing” sucking on the teat of what ever Ottawa throws down east in the way of bones and benefits. We’ve been in this hobbled state of mind since the fishing/local farmers industries collapsed. We’re pathetically a province of hand-out recipients who abhor change with undertones of bigotry and racism. I’m not proud, and I’m not like my ancestors. I have changed and I will follow Gandhi’s maxim to “be the change you want to see in the world” just like Pierre Elliott did.

The trouble is that many Gandhi-like folk land on these shores, now, flavouring our traditional Maritime landscape with change, great food, self-motivation and education. Sadly, the bigotry and unfriendliness often drives these innovators away, up, into the more accepting urban, upper Canadian cities with the capacity to blend in racially and culturally. I detest that we only wave to white, fleshy people with Scotch red hair and Irish blue eyes. I am ashamed. Pierre Elliott mentored me differently.

In a couple of weeks, I leave Canada longterm for the first time in my life. Now that my children have grown and have left home, I can be a digital nomad working remotely to run my business via Internet and Skype. From a distance, I will ruminate on my choices. Do I resonate with Canada and her majority government? Likely not. Will the past wreckage and carnage be undone? Perhaps. Will I feel empowered to continue the work we’ve begun in the last 6 years in NB? Is this the right geography for me to fully become my essential self, to be fully actualized as an ethical and righteous human being within the construct of a Canadian identity? The answer 4 days out of this past election, is … I simply just don’t know.

Right now the more easy beach breezes, solar off-grid home, and high speed internet calls to my more than mid-life bones. I’ve worked full-time since I was 16 (orphaned tragically by both parents), completing an honours BA, a medical degree and post graduate study. For the first time in 52 years I’m solvent without student loans crushing my spirit even though this country was supposed to be built on the mandate of FREE education to all (reference to Natural Persons and the serial number on the back of each and every Birth Certificate). I’ve tirelessly researched, written and published 13 books as an Indie writer with not a cent of support from outside sources. Perhaps it is time to hand over the reigns/reins to my own beloved children while I live offshore. You see, I just don’t know. I’m not feeling it.

As you go forward, please think of me. Although, we come from the same town we are different and yet the same. We are entrepreneurial women who love our children, husbands, our Province, our Country, integrity and the truth. Please do not forget that I am who you represent … in the name of God and the essence of the rose.

Sincerely,
Allyson McQuinn
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DHHP, Diploma Homeopathy Heilkunst Program, JAOH, Post Graduate Journeyman in Anthroposophical Orgonomic Physical and Medical Heilkunst
Arcanum Wholistic Clinic Inc.
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Art and Nature Centre, Knowlesville, New Brunswick

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I had the wonderful pleasure of taking my daughter away with me for 2 days to Knowlesville, New Brunswick this past weekend.  The Fall colours were mind-blowing and at times when we crossed a ridge, my driving knees would go weak with awe at the gradation of colours. Nature gets very showy at this time of year and I feel so blessed to be able to enjoy it in one of the most magnificent places in the world.

 

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There is nothing so awesome to me than hitting the top of a ridge and seeing nothing but trees, trees and more trees.  Central New Brunswick has little to clutter up it’s beauty but a few choice farms and fields of harvested food peppered with livestock on it’s landscape. There is no industry, few gas stations and fewer factory farms.  It feels like Vermont, only about 200 years ago!

Our chosen destination had a few purposes.  I’d chosen to take my daughter away before my husband and I leave Canada for a warmer climate for the next 6 months.  I also wanted to visit the Knowlesville Art and Nature Centre and my new friends Tegan and Leland, educators, natural builders and off-grid homesteaders.  I wanted to connect with the people that I’m working to become.

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When we arrived at the straw-bale constructed home, our hosts had let us know that they would be attending a birthday party nearby and that we should just go on in, settle ourselves and then go in search of children’s voices to join them at the bon fire celebration.  Once I entered their magnificent home and cozied in next to the fire after the 3.5 hour drive, from Saint John, it took a lot to tear myself back outside into the brisk Fall air.

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I felt myself take in the walls with awe and wonder.  Most of the walls were finished with a white lime wash, while others still had their “rough coat” only where some bits of straw were visible in the corners.  I was very thankful that I got to observe the living phases of a natural building on these more exposed walls.  It was like observing everything that I had studied about natural building thus far.

The walls felt warm, insulating, enveloping and they seem to lower my more churned up city psyche and bring it down several notches.  My gut was smiling into the roots of my being.  It confirmed how much I’ve craved this feeling full time in my own home.  The post and beam construction spoke to a solidity and master craftsmanship that made me almost weep with the detail and care.  My woman’s heart felt love and beauty carved in each male and female joinery.  This home was an artful rending.  My soul rejoiced!

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Each window provided a seat for one of the four children that I later observed reading or napping in the warmth of the sunlight.  The lights were few and remained off much of the time due to the desire to conserve the solar power stored in the bank of batteries and so often you’d feel drawn to the deeply magnificent linseed oil sealed windows to see or read something more clearly.  Beauty and activity abounded by the portals of light.

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I loved how each wall curved in the most feminine way from the surrounding straw bale shape making the window that much more accentuated.  The ledges so wide and inviting that a bowl of fresh picked Quince, a Russian Doll, the ingredients to make sourdough bread and necessary travel books, lanterns and a hat all graced the ample surfaces.  Posies from a day gone bye dropped the seeds of potential for next year’s planting.

I was truly besotted by every detail.  So much love, meaning and tenderness went into this more than 3,500 square foot dwelling.  I was captivated to such a degree that it was like falling deeply in love.  I could not wait to meet my hosts!

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Tegan and Leland were both the most generous, talented and loving individuals that I might ever have had the pleasure to meet.  Their home was a tapestry of muted children’s voices, the straw bale walls seemed to absorb and then exhale their calls for their mother or the 8 month-old baby’s mewling in the early morning shortly after the near light of dawn.

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Both Leland and Tegan chose to build their house on a 4 foot poured concrete foundation given the height of this buxom timber frame structure.  Each floor above rose in a slightly smaller proportion allowing for the slope of the roof and the load bearing posts and beams.  My daughter and I were on the top floor in the loft, just below the ladder to the pinnacle which is “tree-house” sweet spot of the home.  What an awesome place to play, sleep and marvel at the world from above the surrounding treetops.

The bath had a traditional four claw tub and a humanure toilet.  I’d read extensively the practice of bucket pooping, but I’d never personally sprinkled sawdust onto urine or excrement until this weekend.  I was sure that my olfactory senses would balk, however, I only noticed a mild earthy-like odour that smelled very much like an early day in Spring,  just alive and healthy without wasting precious drinking water.  Leland let me know that the compost from this culmination of organic materials created the richest of soils about every 3 years.  I was so excited to have lived everything I’d studied in books and watched hours of Youtube videos about natural/off-grid building.

We chatted for hours over freshly pressed apple cider from the apples in their yard, or warm milk from their family’s jersey cow with a dash of organic molasses. Yum!  Tegan and Leland informed me that their house is powered by 30 year old solar panels that the Reagan administration had done away with during the oil and gas boon in support of the petrochemical giants.  Some unassuming fellow in Maine had the foresight to buy them up and sell them to other off-grid-ers for a reasonable cost.

Tegan mentioned that they did have back up wind power for November and December when sunlight is in short supply, however, one day after stepping out of the bath, during an ungodly storm, she heard the wind rip into hollow beside their house and watched with horror as all the blades of her windmill got blown to smithereens, scattering like toothpicks across the gnarly landscape.  She said that someone had kindly donated a new kit, but that they’d been so busy, of recent, to have gotten around to installing it yet.

As we got into the territory of She-Bear Construction, Leland said that he was blown away by the recent surge of women builders.  He said that women were adding a real artistry to their homes with coloured glass bottles in transoms over the door to river stones in the shower or hand-made tiles for back splashes.  He said that they all seem to want round homes!  In fact, he’d just finished building a permanent round yurt out of straw bale for a hospital nurse neighbour up the road, “The cedar shakes for the roof was the biggest challenge.  She’ll have to apply Linseed oil on them every 5 years on a hot day during the summer to maintain it’s durability.”

After a pause, Leland spoke, further ruminating, “With all our traditional supplies designed to build square structures, I sometimes wonder if there will be a place in future for a male builder like me.  Natural building is evolving so quickly that I’m unsure how I might fit in to serve this burgeoning evolution.”  When I looked around his home, I could see no reason for him not to be served by an apprenticing natural builder like me.  I’d do just about anything to spend a summer working for him.  Also, he could build me a square, triangle or round house for me any day … his craftsmanship was superb!

After Leland had provided me with about 5 different female builders from Nova Scotia to Oregon, I decided to go for a walk to clear my head and check out the area.  I walked down the road to get a good look at the round house he’d built from the outside.  900 square feet with a naturally peaked cap of the roofline over the doorway, lent an artistry that was awe inspiring.  The chimney was blowing smoke rings from the height of the central peak.  What a masterful feat of thought and engineering!  Would I ever be able to pull off something as beautiful as this?

I continued my walk while being passed by periodically by trucks with men and women wearing camouflage gear and bright orange vests.  I waved to them, as all New Brunswickers wave to each other on country roads.  It is buried courtesy in our culture.  I got down quite a piece when I heard the hunter’s shots not too far off in the distance.  Even though I was wearing a bright yellow rain jacket, I decided to turn back.  I hadn’t slept well the night before due to the excitement and so I had the desire to take an afternoon nap in the loft next to my teenage daughter who still wasn’t out of bed yet.

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The snowflakes on this late October day fell in giant clusters as I reached the front porch. Several laying hens, and their accompanying roosters, had hopped up on the wrap around deck in an attempt to stay warm and dry as the early snowfall must have also accosted them.  I found them hiding behind several cords of wood stove wood.  The hammock hanging at one end spoke of summertime’s passing and Tegan’s work in Mexico and Central America as a biologist, propagating orchids, before marriage and children.  She now spends her days studying and applying the principles of holistic and inspirational education from the inside out.

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The next morning, on Sunday when we departed, full of wonderful, dynamic conversations about Waldorf education and natural building, I stopped by the church cum school that they’d had moved from the village of Knowlesville a few years prior.  The sunlight dappling it’s mustard walls with the early tree figures from the sun on the rise.  Our bellies also full of homemade oatmeal peppered with raisins and fresh apples from this years bumper crop.  The local maple syrup, the chai tea made with fresh cream skimmed from their Jersey milk still churned with pleasure in my mind and belly.  I’d enjoyed a little slice of heaven on earth.  I had embodied my model of excellence in natural living for myself.  The key for me will be to hold this ideal in my mind while I work to become it for myself.

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To find our more about Tegan and Leland Wong-Daugherty’s Natural Building, Land Trust and Intentional Community, you can find them here: http://www.back2land.ca/about-us.html

 

 

 

 

 

What Does Natural Hemp Building, Tiny Houses and Permaculture All Have In Common?

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Andrew Martin is the author of the book Rethink: …Your world, Your future (http://amzn.to/1KShmDL). After waking up to the worlds sustainability crisis, Andrew left the high flying world of finance to move to New Zealand and start a permaculture farm where he now lives with his wife Beth. In this interview, we hear about his research, permaculture and how the tiny house movement provides insight into potential models of sustainable living.  Perhaps you, too, will intuit the link between sustainable living, economy of scale, natural building and permaculture.

 

Checkout this video of him below, giving some great insight onto which direction we need to go in terms of sustainability and how tiny houses fit into that realm.

 

Tiny Houses And Permaculture For A Resilient And Sustainable Future

Move Over Cotton, Say Hello to Hemp – The ‘Forbidden’ Crop That’s Taking the World by Storm

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(Click on the image (above) for the original article.)

Contributing Writer for Wake Up World

The Declaration of Independence was drafted on it. The American Founding Fathers urged the fledgling country to grow it. And the first paper was made from it 1,900 years ago. Hemp. It’s one of the most versatile and sustainable cash crops on the planet. For all it’s merits, however, the plant has also been on a “no-grow” list for over seventy years in the United States, due to draconian laws established by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Thankfully, that’s all about to change.

A Modern-Day Gold Rush

As one of the oldest cultivated crops, hemp has a rich and colorful history. Cloth, paper, food, building materials, fuel, plastic — you name it, and there’s a good chance it can be made from the plant.

Canada has fully embraced the recent demand for hemp and subsequently grows it to the tune of almost $1 billion a year, which equates to $250 net profit for each acre. Compare this with soy, the United States version of a major crop, which averaged around $71 per acre in 2014.

The Los Angeles Times reports:

“Canada’s windfall has been largely due to the American demand for omega-balanced hempseed oil. But hemp is also a go-to material for dozens of applications all over the world. In a Dutch factory recently, I held the stronger-than-steel hemp fiber that’s used in Mercedes door panels, and Britain’s Marks and Spencer department store chain used hemp fiber insulation in a new flagship outlet. “Hempcrete” outperforms fiberglass insulation.”

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While Canada reaps the financial benefits of the plant, the U.S. still lags behind. In a step towards legalizing hemp for industrial uses, President Obama removed it from the Controlled Substances Act in 2014 — as long as it was used for agricultural research. All the same, a number of states are weary of the snail-like pace of the Feds and are taking matters into their own hands — by passing legislation to import hemp seed for pilot programs. But the DEA has been slow in reading the memo.

In May 2014, the agency seized a 286-pound shipment of Italian hemp seed bound for Kentucky’s state agriculture department. “After a weeklong standoff, a federal agency had to be reminded by the federal courts that the law had changed and Kentucky’s seed imports were legal,” writes the Times.

Cotton vs. Hemp

Political shenanigans aside, one of the most desperately needed uses for the plant involves the creation of durable and eco-friendly fabric — especially considering the damaging effects of conventional cotton production. Plainly put: pesticide-riddled cotton is an ecological and health nightmare. The crop requires massive amounts of irrigation, and is largely grown in dry regions of the world where water is scarce, like Egypt, China’s Xinjiang province, California and Texas.

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The devastating effects of the crop are seen in places like the Aral Sea in Central Asia. Formerly the world’s fourth largest inland lake with a robust ecosystem, the sea has been reduced to a meager 15% of its previous size — largely due to irrigation required by the cotton industry. Compounding the problem, farmers are using increasingly more water on their fields in an attempt to combat the rising level of water and soil salinity in the area.

On average, it takes 1,800 gallons of water to grow enough cotton for one pair of blue jeans.

Water consumption isn’t the only issue with conventional cotton, pesticide use on the crop is notoriously high too. As the most pesticide intensive crop on the planet, cotton agriculture harms and kills countless farmworkers around the world every year. One pesticide, aldicarb, is particularly dangerous. It’s deemed “extremely hazardous” by the World Health Organization and a single drop absorbed through the skin is sufficient to kill an adult. And yet, aldicarb remains a popular choice in cotton production. Herbicides and chemical defoliants add to the toxic nature of the plant — all of which typically stay within the finished fabric for the lifespan of the clothing, and are assimilated through the skin. The same is true for bedding and furniture.

The Pesticide Action Network paints a bleak ecological picture of the crop:

  • Nearly $2.6 billion worth of pesticides are sprayed on cotton fields each year — accounting for more than 10% of total pesticide use and nearly 25% of insecticides use worldwide.
  • A 1997 Danish television documentary showed methyl parathion being sprayed on cotton fields in Nicaragua and Guatemala while children played in and beside the fields. It also documented numerous cases of methyl parathion poisonings in cotton production.
  • Fish in Alabama: In 1995, pesticide-contaminated runoff from cotton fields killed at least 240,000 fish in Alabama. Shortly after farmers had applied pesticides containing endosulfan and methyl parathion to cotton fields, heavy rains washed them into the water. The Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries stated that there was no indication that the pesticides were applied in an illegal manner.
  • Australian Livestock: Australian beef was found to be contaminated with the cotton insecticide Helix® (chlorfluazuron) in 1994, most likely because cattle had been fed contaminated cotton straw. In response, several countries suspended beef imports from Australia. One year later, farmers were alarmed to discover that newborn calves were also contaminated with Helix, apparently because it passed through their mother’s milk.
  • Birds in Texas: A breeding colony of laughing gulls near Corpus Christi, Texas, was devastated when methyl parathion was applied to cotton three miles away. More than 100 dead adults were found and 25% of the colony’s chicks perished.

 

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A Better Way

When we examine the environmental and health impacts of cotton, hemp stands out as a winner for a number of reasons.

  • Hemp produces up to three times the amount of usable plant material per acre than cotton.
  • Requiring very little pesticide or fertilizer, hemp is a robust crop that can grow in a variety of conditions/soils.
  • Water use for hemp is about half of what is required for cotton.
  • Unlike cotton, hemp actually enhances the soil. With long roots up to 6 feet deep, the plant aerates and breaks up soil. It also helps to clean soil contaminated with heavy metals, solvents, pesticides and gasoline.
  • With 3-8 times the tensile strength of cotton, and 4 times the warmth and absorbency, hemp is an exceptionally durable fabric.
  • Hemp breathes and wicks moisture away from the skin more efficiently than cotton.

Even with all the ecological advantages of hemp, the motivating force for industrial change always comes down to profitability. Happily, hemp covers that aspect too. Says Doug Fine in theLos Angeles Times:

“We’re down to 1% of Americans farming; it was 30% when our world-leading hemp industry was stymied in 1937. The crop is more valuable today than it was then. We should be waving flags and holding parades for the farmers ready to plant the crop that Thomas Jefferson called “vastly desirable.” I know I’m ready. To cheer, and to plant.”

Article sources

Previous articles by Carolanne Wright:

About the author:

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Carolanne enthusiastically believes if we want to see change in the world, we need to be the change. As a nutritionist, natural foods chef and wellness coach, Carolanne has encouraged others to embrace a healthy lifestyle of organic living, gratefulness and joyful orientation for over 13 years

Through her website Thrive-Living.net she looks forward to connecting with other like-minded people from around the world who share a similar vision. Follow Carolanne on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

Lime Plaster; Making My Hempcrete Build Feel Finished

I love talking about hempcrete building.  However, it is a little leap for most, including me, to think of eliminating all the layers in a traditional build.  I get lots of comments like, how will you keep the moisture out without a vapour barrier?  Will the walls look industrial-like when we’re all done?  And my personal favourite, can you paint the exterior and interior walls different colours?

First of all, you want the walls of your hempcrete home to breath.  This is really important for the insulation factor of the building.  This counterintuitive measure is what actually increases the R-factor so you don’t want to seal off the building with a traditional vapour barrier or you actually compromise the efficacy of the hempcrete.

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Also, if you take a look and traditional homes in England, where the climate is very wet, you’ll see post and beam construction with lime finishes everywhere.  Lime is actually a calcium based slake that can be crushed to a powder and applied as the smoothest of finishes with a little water and a fine trowel.  And yes, with some stunning milk paint, you’ve got a gorgeous finish.  Take a look here:

Lime Plaster 101: the basics

by Sigi Koko

Lime is a confusing term, because it can refer to various chemically different (but related) materials.  (Not to mention the citrus fruit!)

For example, cured lime plaster, chemically speaking, iscalcium carbonate…basically limestone.  But theuncured material that goes on the wall, is also called “lime plaster”…but it is calcium hydroxide to a chemist.  Yikes!

So let’s go through some of the basics of lime to give you a great understanding of the ins and outs of how to use it.

What’s the big deal about lime plaster?

Lime has been used for thousands of years as a fabulous binder in mortars, plasters, and paints.  It wasn’t until the post-World War II housing boom that quick-setting cement products eclipsed lime in construction.  Lime cures more slowly than cement, but it holds many advantages because it is a workable, self-healing, breathable, nearly carbon neutral material…making it a great choice for natural building.

Why is lime plaster aligned with natural building?

First, lime-based products have a smaller carbon footprint than their ubiquitous cement counterparts.  Cement production creates 1.25 pounds of CO2 for each pound of cement produced, whereas lime is nearly carbon neutral.

Second, and perhaps most importantly, lime is what’s called “breathable”.  Breathability refers to a material’s ability to allow air-borne vapor, ie humidity, to pass through it.  Think Gortex…water-repellent and vapor permeable.  The breathability ensures that moisture will not build up inside the wall system.  In turn, this ensures that any biodegradable materials, such as wood or straw, are protected from decomposing.

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How is lime made?
(a little chemistry…)

  1. Limestone, shells, or other material that is high in Calcium Carbonate is burned in a kiln.  The heat drives off Carbon Dioxide, leaving Calcium Oxide. This is also called Quicklime.
  2. Quicklime (Calcium Oxide) reacts with water in an extremely heat-producing reaction, a process called “slaking”.  The result is Hydrated Lime, or Calcium Hydroxide (since hydrogen from the water bonds to the Calcium Oxide molecule). This reaction can be quite dangerous, so it is common to purchase Hydrated Lime (Calcium Hydroxide) instead of Quicklime (Calcium Oxide).
  3. Once Calcium Hydroxide is exposed to air (whether it’s in powder or putty form), the lime reacts with Carbon Dioxide in the air and ends up where it started…as Calcium CarbonateSo except for the energy of the kiln, the lime is carbon neutral.

Because lime plasters react with carbon dioxide from the air in order to harden, you can easily keep the calcium hydroxide form of lime in its putty form indefinitely by storing it with an inch or so of water on top of it (or in a completely air-tight container).  This effectively prevents the lime from getting into contact with air and thus prevents curing until you are ready to use it.

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How is plaster made?
(tips for mixing, & applying)

THE PROPORTIONS

For general lime plasters (especially on the exterior), I use 3 parts sand to 1 part lime (calcium hydroxide).  This is a great all-around mix that is sticky enough to work and cure strongly, yet with enough sand to prevent lots of cracking.  If you intend to work your finish to tighten and smooth it out, you can use a more “lime rich” ratio of 1:2 (lime:sand) or even 1:1 for very very finely worked plasters.

THE MIXING

Lime putty increases plasticity and workability the longer it is mixed.  So the longer you mix it, the creamier and easier to spread it gets.  (Magic, right?)  I mix in a mortar mixer (not a cement mixer!) for at least 20-30 minutes.  Only add water (a small amount!) if your mix is extremely thick.  The plaster should be stiff but should spread easily, like cream cheese.  Allowing the mixed lime plaster to sit overnight improves workability, but remember to remix the plaster again before using.

 

THE WALL PREP

To prepare strawbale walls for lime plaster, first shape your walls exactly how you would like them to look once plastered.  It is time-consuming to build up the lime plaster to fill in large voids (since it must be applied in thin coats).  Next, install expanded lath (not chicken wire!!) to cover any slick surfaces, such as wood…anything that is too smooth for plaster to hold onto.  Make sure your lath bridges across the wood and at least 6″ into the straw so you don’t get a crack right where the lath ends.  I do NOT recommend using lath over all of the strawbale, unless you live in a seismic region and your code requires this.

 

Be sure to dampen your walls down well before applying each coat of lime plaster.  For the first coat, this means soaking the strawbales until they are damp and the straw is pliable.  For each subsequent coat, soak the wall down the day before you will plaster, again the morning of plastering, and throughout the day keep the wall damp as you work.  Otherwise the wall steals moisture out of your plaster quickly, and can pop the bond that holds your plaster on the wall.

 

APPLYING THE PLASTER

I generally use 3 coats of lime plaster for exterior walls or showers.  You can use 1 or 2 coats for decorative interior finishes.  The first coat can be up to 5/8″ thick if it is applied to strawbale, otherwise each coat should be a maximum of 3/8″ thick.  Any thicker and the lime cannot absorb carbon dioxide adequately for curing to fully take place.

 

I apply the plaster with a wooden float to create a well-shaped wall that has decent texture.  For the finish coat, I smooth the final surface using a flexible pool float.  You can continue to buff or polish the lime as it is curing for a very smooth sheen.  There are many highly refined finishes that can be achieved with simple lime plaster.

 

Score the surface of each coat (except the finish plaster) to create lots of surface area for the next coat of plaster to key into.  And allow at least 7 to 10 days between coats to give each ample time to cure.  (Also see the next section for curing tips.)

 

NOTE: I do NOT recommend lime plaster over clay plasters for exteriors in wet climates.  The clay substrate shrinks and swells depending on moisture content.  The cured lime cannot shrink and swell with the clay and so it will be more susceptible to cracking when used over clay plaster in a wet climate.  Lime can be used over solid clay walls, such as cob & adobe, because there is so much more clay present to absorb ambient air moisture without measurable swelling.

 

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THE CURING PROCESS

You want the lime to cure…NOT dry out.  That means it needs to react with carbon dioxide from the air before all of the moisture evaporates.  If it dries out before it has cured (and converted into calcium carbonate), the resulting plaster will be weak and possibly crumbly.  So protect the plaster from wind and sun until it has cured, and it helps to dampen the wall daily as it is curing.

 

Do not apply exterior lime stucco if there is any risk of freezing, otherwise moisture in the plaster can freeze, expand, and cause critical failure of the plaster.  The temperature needs to be above 40 F for at least a week to keep the curing process going.

 

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Some nitty gritty details
(and where to find materials…)

SAFETY FIRST!

Note that lime is highly alkaline, and can severely burn your skin.  Unlike acid burns, you generally do not feel an alkali burn until the damage has been done.  So please use full protective gear whenever working with lime, including elbow-length rubber gloves, long sleeves, eye protection, etc.  If your clothes get lime putty or lime water on them, change, so the lime is not in contact with your skin through your clothing.  I always keep a bucket of water & vinegar nearby to neutralize my tools, gloves, and hands as I’m working.

 

WHAT KIND OF LIME TO USE?

I use fresh hydrated powdered lime and then soak it on site from the very beginning of construction (ideally several months).  The longer you soak it, the creamier and easier to trowel your plaster will be.  I have had most consistent results with vertical kiln products fromMississippi Lime.  The vertical kiln operates at a lower temperature and so there is less inert material in these products, meaning they are very high in purity and total calcium content.

 

I ask for bags that are date-stamped less than 6 months prior to purchase.  This ensures the lime is fresh.  If it has been in the bag for a long time, it gets exposed to CO2 in the air and begins to carbonate and become inert.  Powdered lime that has converted to calcium carbonate looks identical to calcium hydroxide (hydrated lime), but when you soak it, it will not get very thick and when you put it on the wall it will dust or crumble.

WHAT KIND OF SAND TO USE?
Choosing the sand for your plaster can seem mundane and unimportant.  But that is not the case!!  The key variable is that the sand must be “angular”, which means it has a lot of surface area to bond with the lime.  I use “toothy” or “angular” mason’s sand for all three coats of lime plaster.  You can also use concrete sand (which is larger)…just remember that your plaster needs to be thicker than the largest particle in your mix (otherwise the pieces will drag around with your trowel).  Note that the color of the sand will impact the final color of your finish coat of lime.  If you want very white plaster, experiment with white sand.

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CAN LIME BE PIGMENTED?
Yes!!  Any pigment that can be used in concrete will work with lime.  The pigments must be able to handle the alkalinity of the lime.  Mineral pigments generally are fine, plant-based pigments generally will not work (they change color and fade due to the alkalinity).  In any case, do several test patches to confirm how much pigment to add to achieve your desired color.

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To follow Sigi Koko at “Down To Earth Designs” and perhaps take with her in Maryland or Pennsylvania, follow her offerings at Sigi Koko at Down To Earth Designs.

 

Appealing to New Brunswick Agriculture to Grow Industrial Hemp

 

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Dear Claude and Nicole,

Nathan XXXXXX suggested that I contact you, both, in order to inquire about potential industrial hemp being grown in New Brunswick or the Maritimes in general.  I’m looking for the shiv or hurd which as you may know is a by-product of the more valuable ropey core.  The shiv falls away during processing and is used mainly for animal bedding and construction.
As you probably know, the less than .3% THC plant grows like a “weed,” without herbicides and pesticides, and will yield 5 foot, or more, plants in 4 months, however, the rope is tougher than steal (which is why it’s being used in the door manufacturing of BMW’s) and is challenging to harvest without specialized equipment.
Many traditional combines have been known to catch fire after getting the rope caught and bound around the blades.  However, the rope for clothing, paper, plus the seed and oil for food when harvested is a high yielding crop with $250 per acre in profit for the grower.
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The seed, alone in one acre can feed 12 men for a year. 3 acres of shiv can build a 1,200 square foot carbon negative home with natural soundproofing, fire retardant, healthy, affordable breathable walls with no off-gassing glues, insulations or moulds given our wet climate.
Most New Brunswick homes last about 40 years before the materials start breaking down.  Vapour barriers and off-gassing materials are trapping spores in homes producing more incidences of asthma and allergies.
A house built of hempcrete will last about 2,000 years with much less maintenance.  The Egyptian pyramids have been found recently to be built out of hempcrete which naturally petrifies over time. The UK is building sub-divisions out of this long lasting, light weight, material with R-32 value in a climate very similar as ours without concerns for harmful moulds, mice, bats, rats or termites.  It is just that effective in a wet climate.
Western Canada, principally, has created a most lucrative industry in hemp given that 50% of their seeds and oils are sold to the States.  They are more than 6 weeks behind in processing capacity given that the demand far exceeds the supply.  I’m curious, as a natural builder, if the infrastructure is even being thought of in this province.
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I know that there used to be a hemp farmer in PEI, however, Maurice retired about a decade ago as he was only getting demand in NFLD by a brewery and grinding seed for a local hemp flour baker.  At present, I’m having to import bales from Manitoba which means delays and higher costs.  Have you heard of any local farmers thinking of getting into this billion dollar industry?  Fingers crossed!
Kindly,
Allyson
———————————————
She-Bear Construction: We teach you how to build natural, affordable, healthy eco-friendly homes. We’re a group of Maritime Canada birth-workers, healers, naturo-therapists and physicians who’ve formed a collective in order to help teach individuals how to build living, breathable off-grid homes out of hempcrete. We feel that everybody should have a healthy, affordable, sustainable home of their own, in beautiful surroundings, to live in and also raise their families. You can literally eat off our floors, walls and ceilings too!

My Speaking Notes From August 8th Fundraiser/Potluck

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Hemp in Canada

The history of hemp cultivation in North America begins in Port-Royal, Acadia (present-day Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia), in 1606, when French botanist Louis Herbert planted the first crop on the Eastern shore. Hemp cultivation soon spread westward across the country, as burgeoning settlements experimented with harvesting and production. Hemp was one of Canada’s first agricultural exports when the fibre was sold to Britain and France for use in their navies. It was common practice for tracts of land to be issued to settlers in Canada on the provision that they grow hemp.
Three years after Halifax was established the Governor of Nova Scotia announced in April of 1752 that a bounty would be offered to settlers who grew hemp. A notice printed in Toronto in 1849 announced the proprietors McGee and Dew were prepared to pay cash for 1,000 acres of hemp straw, 10,000 bushels of flax seed, and 1,000 acres of flax straw. These materials were intended for export to Britain as supplies from Russia had been cut off due to war.

As the 20th Century approached, hemp cultivation was an established Canadian industry, with mills in Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and British Columbia. In the 1930’s, Mr. Howard Fraleigh of Forest, Ontario had developed a successful and profitable hemp processing business. Having designed and built specialized harvesting equipment, Mr. Fraleigh had a state-of-the-art fibre separation mill in full operation.

In April of 1938 the Federal Minster of Health, C.G. Power amended the Opium and Narcotics Control Act to classify all varieties of Cannabis as a regulated substance. It was the intention of the government to control the production of marijuana, a variety of Cannabis known to produce THC, the psychoactive ingredient. However, because hemp is also a variety of Cannabis, grown for the fibre and seeds it was also prohibited, even though it contained virtually no THC. The similar leaf shape for all varieties of Cannabis resulted in hemp suffering from a case of mistaken identity, as the government did not differentiate between hemp and marijuana. Thus the cultivation and processing of hemp ended in Canada. However a small acreage was grown during the Second World War near Ottawa and Manitoba for cordage and cloth. Some research was carried out in the 1950’s and 60’s to observe fibre content in the stalks and oil profile in the seeds. Mean while hemp cultivation continued throughout China, Europe and Russia.

Then in 1971 Dr. Ernie Small of Agriculture Canada Grew 350 different strains of Cannabis on the experimental farm in downtown Ottawa. Dr. Small found there were very different varieties of Cannabis, classifying them as fibre and narcotic types. The point of distinction was set by the level of THC in the leaves and flowers, and Dr, Small concluded that varieties containing less than 0.3% THC were suitable only for industrial applications such as fibre and seed.
In June of 1994 Hempline Inc. planted five varieties of hemp on 10 acres of land near Tillsonburg, Ontario. This was made possible after extensive lobbying to secure a special permit from Health Canada, marking the first private sector hemp research project since the 1940’s. The renewed interest in hemp caused Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada to write a comprehensive report titled “Hemp (Cannabis sativa L.) Bi-weekly Bulletin Vol.7 No.23 – December 16, 1994.
In the following years, numerous research projects were initiated across the country focusing on variety and fertility trials for hemp fibre and seed production. At the same time legislation was being drafted to allow for the commercial production of hemp again in Canada.

In the spring of 1996 Geofrey G. Kime, President of Hempline Inc. appeared before a Senate committee to request that hemp fibre and stalks be removed from the definition of Cannabis as defined under Bill C-8: The Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. Senator Lorna Milne, a member of this committee was impressed by the presentation and worked to ensure the amendment was adopted. On June 21, 1996 Bill C-8 received Royal Assent by the Federal Government, and on May 14, 1997 Bill C-8 officially became law; with the result that hemp fibre and stalks were no longer regulated and the Minister of Health Canada now had the power to implement a commercial licensing system for hemp cultivation. On March 13, 1998 Health Canada implemented commercial licensing regulations, allowing Canadian farmers to grow hemp once again, a little over sixty years after they prohibited it.
In the summer of 1998 close to 5,000 acres of hemp was planted across Canada in almost every province of the country.

Various sources
With thanks to Hempline Inc.

HEMP AS A SOLUTION.
If all fossil fuels and their derivatives, as well as trees for paper and construction, were banned in order to save the planet, reverse the greenhouse effect and stop deforestation; then there is only one known annually rendered solution! HEMP

Credits: Jack Herer 2003

Hemp homes are cutting edge of green building

published: September 12th, 2010

author: John C. Fletcher

source: USA TODAY

website: http://content.usatoday.com/

Hemp is turning a new leaf. The plant fiber, used to make the sails that took Christopher Columbus’ ships to the New World, is now a building material.

In Asheville, N.C., a home built with thick hemp walls was completed this summer and two more are in the works.

Dozens of hemp homes have been built in Europe in the past two decades, but they’re new to the United States, says David Madera, co-founder of Hemp Technologies, a company that supplied the mixture of ground-up hemp stalks, lime and water.

The industrial hemp is imported because it cannot be grown legally in this country — it comes from the same plant as marijuana.

Its new use reflects an increasing effort to make U.S. homes not only energy-efficient but also healthier. Madera and other proponents say hemp-filled walls are non-toxic, mildew-resistant, pest-free and flame-resistant.

“There is a growing interest in less toxic building materials, says Peter Ashley, director of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Healthy Homes and Lead Hazard Control.

“The potential health benefits are significant,” he says, citing a recent study of a Seattle public housing complex that saw residents’ health improve after their homes got a green makeover.

The U.S. government has not taken a “systemic approach” to studying chemicals in homes and instead addresses problems such as asbestos, lead, arsenic and formaldehyde only after people get sick, says Rebecca Morley, executive director of the National Center for Healthy Housing, a private research group.

She says green building so far has focused mostly on the environment, not the health of the people inside. Ashley agrees that federal attention has been “sporadic,” but says an interagency group began meeting last year to tackle the issue more broadly. He says HUD is funding more research on the health and environmental benefits of eco-friendly homes.

Some green-rating programs, such as the one run by the private U.S. Green Building Council, give points for indoor air quality.

“We are taking the next step in green building,” says Anthony Brenner, a home designer with Push Design who created Asheville’s first hemp home. “We’re trying to develop a system that’s more health-based.”

Brenner says he’s been searching for non-toxic materials because he wants to build a home for his 9-year-old daughter, Bailey, who has a rare genetic disorder that makes her extremely sensitive to chemicals. “We have to keep her away from anything synthetic,” he says, or she’ll have seizures.

He says a hemp home can be affordable, even though importing hemp makes it more expensive than other building materials, because skilled labor is unnecessary and hemp is so strong that less lumber is needed.

The hemp mixture — typically four parts ground-up hemp to one part lime and one part water — is placed inside 2-foot-by-4-foot wall forms. Once it sets, the forms are removed. Although it hardens to a concrete-like form, wood framing is used for structural support.

“This is like a living, breathing wall,” Madera says. Hemp absorbs carbon dioxide and puts nitrogen into the soil, so it’s good for the environment, he says.

Alex Wilson, executive editor of Environmental Building News, says hemp can be grown with minimal use of chemicals and water. He says it has a midlevel insulating value (R-2 per inch) but is usually installed in a thick enough wall system to make it appropriate for all but the most severe climates.

The mixture, “Tradical Hemcrete,” has not previously been used in U.S. homes, but in 2008 it went into a community center on the Pine Ridge Reservation in Badlands, S.D., as well as a small chapel and pottery studio near Houston, says Mario Machnicki, managing director of American Lime Technology, a Chicago company that imports hemp from the United Kingdom.

Asheville’s second hemp home will be finished in about six weeks, says builder Clarke Snell of the Nauhaus Institute, a non-profit group of designers, engineers, developers and others interested in sustainable urban living.

Snell says the home, which has 16-inch-thick walls, is airtight and energy-efficient. He expects it to meet rigorous Passive House Institute standards, which call for homes to use up to 90% less energy than regular ones.

“On the coldest day in winter, the body heat of 10 people should heat the home,” he says. “We’re basically building a European home.”

Snell says his group will own the 1,750-square-foot house, and its engineer will live there for a couple of years to monitor energy use.

He doesn’t know how much it will cost because, as a prototype, it was built with donations and volunteer labor.

The owners of the first hemp home say it cost $133 a square foot to build, not including land and excavation.

“That’s pretty remarkable” for a custom home in Asheville, which is a pricey area, says Karon Korp, a writer who moved into the house in July.

Korp says she and her husband, Russ Martin wanted primarily an energy-efficient home. They’re not particularly sensitive to chemicals, but they were drawn to Brenner because of his modern aesthetic and green building enthusiasm. She says they’re thrilled their house is made of a renewable, toxic-free material and hope it sets an example for the nation.

“Hemp could replace tobacco if it were legalized,” says Martin, Asheville’s GOP mayor from 1993 to 1997. He says some area tobacco farms have gone bust.

Martin says they have spent less than $100 a month so far to cool the home, which has 3,000 square feet plus a garage. It has 12″ thick walls, Energy Star appliances, dual-flush toilets, high-performance windows and LED lights. Korp says they might add a windmill, because the house sits atop a mountain.

They say they have fantastic views. “We seen the sun rise,” he says. She adds, “and the sun set.”

Latest Articles

Hemp: New Brunswick’s Crop of the 21st Century

New Brunswick can become a model for the 21st century, create a vast array of jobs in many sectors, and retain westward fleeing job-seekers by fully embracing hemp farming. Not only could hemp production keep workers in the province, it could also attract new industry and immigrants into the province.

Hemp is truly one of nature’s gifts to mankind, but no member of the plant kingdom has ever been so willfully and stubbornly misunderstood. It is generally assumed that hemp became collateral damage in the United States’ so-called “war on drugs.”

There is compelling evidence, however, that hemp was actually the primary target of the whole “Reefer Madness” hysteria. A number of major U.S. corporations, lumber and pulp barons, and chemical companies stood to lose lucrative market shares because the hemp plant is so useful and versatile. Hemp provides the raw material for bio-fuel, paper, and plastic alternatives, among its many uses. It is time to understand what we have lost, and will continue to lose, if we don’t realize the infinite benefits of hemp production.

Since the mid-1930s, about half the world’s forests have been cut to make paper. If hemp had not been outlawed, most forests would likely still be standing, providing oxygen for the planet.

Hemp plants provide four times the paper fibre per acre per year than trees do, and can be re-planted yearly. Hemp is naturally resistant to insects and weeds and thrives in New Brunswick. Nearly half of the agricultural chemicals used by the U.S. are applied to cotton crops.

As people continue to become more ecologically aware and responsible, the demand for all types of organic products will increase. Hemp fibre is a naturally organic alternative to cotton. It is much more durable, wears longer, and is resistant to salt – which is why it has been traditionally used to make ropes and sails for ships for thousands of years. In fact, the word “canvas” comes from an Arabic word for hemp.

Henry Ford experimented with utilizing hemp as a bio-fuel source and as an ingredient in a composite material for automobile bodies. In 1941, the Ford Motor Company rolled out an experimental car that was made from hemp. Ford demonstrated this vehicle’s durability by beating on the fender with an axe. It bounced off and did not leave even a scratch. Imagine the benefits of a rust-proof, bio-degradable car that runs on hemp bio-fuel…. and where the planet would be today if this had become a reality 70 years ago! Also imagine that petro-chemical companies and many other major U.S. corporations still have a stake in preserving the status quo while they fill their coffers with money spent on over-priced gas, oil, chemicals, fertilizer and consumer goods that are petroleum based. The United States is the only industrialized nation that prohibits the growing of hemp.

In 1937, Popular Science magazine listed more than 25,000 potential uses for the hemp plant, and modern technology has increased this number. The market for organic food and personal care products has exploded. In addition to its many industrial uses, hemp also provides one of nature’s most perfect foods in its seed. It contains the essential fatty acids omega 3 and 6 in the proper 3:1 ratio for human health, and provides superior anti-oxidant qualities. Hemp nuts are also one of the world’s richest sources of protein, second only to the soybean, and they taste great. Chefs all over the world are using hemp butter, nuts and oil in their kitchens.

Right now, in many N.B. stores, you can buy hemp foods and goods that were produced in other Canadian provinces. The Manitoba Harvest Company is a co-operative that is co-owned by more than 20 farming families. In Ontario, the Cool Hemp Company is producing ice cream and cookies made from hemp seed – desserts that are both good and good for you!

When you add up all of the environmental benefits, jobs, products and industry that would be created by hemp production, you have only a win/win situation for the province of New Brunswick.

There is a lingering reluctance to embrace hemp farming because of the current U.S. laws and attitude. But people should control their institutions rather than continue to be dominated by these human creations. At the Kyoto Summit, Al Gore used an apt hockey analogy when he appealed to Canada for environmental support. He suggested that we not look to where the United States has the puck now – but where the puck will ultimately be in the future.

News Hawk: PFlynn – http://www.420magazine.com/

Source: TelegraphJournal.com

Copyright: 2008 CanadaEast Interactive, Brunswick News Inc.

Contact: telegraphjournal.com – Breaking News, New Brunswick, Canada

Website: telegraphjournal.com – Hemp: N.B.’s crop of the 21st century

Hemp Can Save NB and the World

Marijuana is dangerous. But not to the human body or mind in any way, shape or form.

It is, however, a deadly threat to the corporate criminals and oil cartels who currently rule our world.

When corporate profit became the touchstone of civilization, the future could only be sold out.

And one of the biggest sell outs to ever be forced upon an unwitting public was the criminalization of hemp in 1937.

The hemp plant is a masterpiece of nature, truly a plant bestowed upon humanity by a wise and just universe. The hemp plant was revered by people for thousands of years.

But in a twisted perversion where public health and welfare, the future of humanity and the very planet itself mean nothing compared to immediate corporate profits hemp has been banned for 75 years and counting.

Food, fuel, fibre, paper, clothing, plastics, medicines, building materials….. The sheer scope of the thousands of natural products that can be made from hemp are hemp’s fatal flaw. So much value that the powers that be cannot allow this plant to be grown.

Everything petroleum can do, hemp can do better: Biodegradable plastics and bio-fuel are easily made from hemp.

Hemp was deliberately demonized and made illegal by a conspiracy between William Randolph Hearst and the DuPont Chemical Company in the mid 1930’s. Up until then most people had no clue what “marijuana” was, although hemp was a valuable cash crop for fibre.

Hearst was one of the richest men in America who owned vast tracts of forest he wanted to cut for pulp. He was also the owner of the largest newspaper chain in America. He used his papers to demonize hemp and scare the hell out of a naïve and gullible American public.

The DuPont Company had invented nylon and petroleum based plastics. No way did they want any competition to this industry.

Hemp clearly had to go, and through a campaign of lies and propaganda these corporate criminals succeeded in making the most useful plant on our planet illegal. And people still don’t get it even today!

Hemp has been used throughout the world since the beginning of time for just about everything mankind needed.

You can produce 4 times as much paper from an acre of hemp as you can from an acre of trees at one quarter of the cost, and you can grow another crop the next year.

An acre of pulp wood takes 25 or 30 years to re-grow.

Think of it! The pulp industry requires continual clear cutting of forests. The industry pours millions of gallons of pollutants into our New Brunswick waterways as the wood is processed.

Add to that the silt run off created by all the bare ground left from clear cut areas…. Causing the rivers to choke with silt and becoming a major factor in the disastrous flood in Perth-Andover last year.

Compare this industry, which also always needs government subsidies and bailouts to stay alive, to utilizing hemp for the pulp and paper industry.

A new crop each year, providing four times the cellulose of an acre of trees! As an added bonus that same crop is providing nutritious and tasty food as well as pulp!

It sounds like a no-brainer to me, but entrenched corporations and oil and energy companies are determined to continue to suck the life out of our planet by continuing their mad quest for yet more fossil fuel.

It will be a sad day for New Brunswick if these unimaginative and greedy men begin hydro-fracking for shale gas in earnest in our beautiful province.

Hemp requires no chemicals to grow, has very few natural enemies and grows in the widest variety of climates of any plant on our planet.

It is also the fastest growing plant on earth, growing 4 times faster than corn.

The seeds from the hemp plant provide the highest source of complete vegetable protein of any food
source on the planet.
One acre of hemp can provide enough seed to feed 12 people for a year!

Most of our larger grocery stores are now stocking hemp foods from farms in western provinces. Hemp Hearts, oil, butter, milk…. Why are we not producing these products in our own province?

It would provide far more jobs in all sectors than all the gas extraction plots and schemes on the planet, and be good for the environment!

Hemp has been used medicinally for thousands of years, and concentrated extracts of cannabis were one of the most widely used medicines in America for 150 years.

It is estimated that hemp would have at least 50,000 commercial uses if it were made legal today.

Sure, it’s legal to grow in Canada, but because of the influence and prejudice of those American bullies next door we have not fully embraced this crop.

Hearst with his yellow journalism tactics and the hysterical rhetoric of the anti-hemp corporations are still poisoning the public discourse on this subject.

Many people are still convinced that hemp was made illegal for the good of humanity!
(insert sound of sardonic & hollow laugh here)

There is still the persistent myth that cannabis is a so-called “gateway drug.”

The true gateway to drug abuse is poverty and despair. And even people with money can despair of our future and turn to drugs to escape.

A few years back when California first held a referendum vote to legalize cannabis the two biggest lobbyists against legalization were the liquor industry and illegal cannabis grow operations!!!

Ironic, don’t you think?

We are all also still saddled with the belief systems of our Puritan forefathers. This is that sad and destructive conviction that God loves us better when we suffer.

Two of my favourite quotes of all time poke fun at Puritans:
H.L. Mencken famously said: Puritanism…The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.

Thomas Babington MacMacauly perceptively wrote: The Puritan hated bear baiting, not because it gave pain to the bear, but because it gave pleasure to the spectators.

We all need to step up to the plate, together, and demand that our government begin to work for us, the people, and our communities….not Big Oil, Big Pharma and Corporate Agriculture.

Hemp agriculture can and will remake our world.
Stephanie Kelley

biodegradable plastic, biomass fuel, cannabis, corporate criminal, DuPont, hemp, hemp conspiracy,New Brunswick hemp, oil cartels oppose hemp, Puritans, William Randolph Hearst

ABOUT STEPHANIE KELLEY

Hello! My name is Stephanie Kelley. I’m originally from sunny Florida, but these days I live in a little village in rural New Brunswick, Canada where we have just two seasons…Winter & Blackfly! I write the Blackfly Gazette to amuse and entertain, but also to explore some of the issues and challenges facing us all these days, no matter where we live…from how to rebuild community and live sustainably and abundantly to turning my gimlet eye on the criminal insanity of our psychopathic governments and corporations. Thanks for dropping by!

Poem/Prose by Wil Liam

I am not ritch…

and I am not poor…

I am able, and reasonably young.

And I am debt free…

(except student loans….)

……..and …..( my membership as an American citizen, where I share the burden of 18 trillion dollars of hypothetical debt…)

but I don’t have any car payments, the van I’ve’ve had for 3 years cost me $350 with a little bit of continual work.

I don’t have to pay rent because I work for the landlord on the land that I live and and the work that I’m doing is improving the land upon which I live, trying to create a permaculture farm/ community/ land project….. …

……….

and I don’t go to town very much.

I live in the redwoods and I’m pretty happy.

but every now and again…

I have to buy shoes or something… and so I have to go to a store…

well one thing I have to say, is that it like a lot of the stuff inside of most stores, is made by slave labor…

Modern day slaves.

or at least serfs. .

by the millions…they are virtually enslaved by the Chinese and other 2nd and 3rd world economic systems so that their government can purchase American debt…

so right now…

China and others enslaving their people to buy US debt, in the form of Bonds.

and the American Government is selling the future of it’s own people, so that future adult Americans will be enslaved to pay back “China” etc……

this is what happens,

when the governments of the world are run by lawyers and crooks…

they legalize the theft of the treasury.

And in our economic strata of first world nation status…

the good and obedient fat horses upon which the rich ride, are given a set level of disposable income as a reward for their servitude.

They are to use these tokens of entitlement, to fulfill all of their consumeristic needs… to achieve their supposed status…. all the while drunk on their continual wants, as they are lured by the lust for status…

And the “power’s that be” do not want any body to subvert the system of servitude.

success is taxed…

excessive richness is rewarded.

That is modern capitalism.

When:

a desperate human steals a couple hundred dollars worth of something, can go to prison for a good bit… but a rich, greedy human can steal millions and billions of dollars from hundreds and thousands of people… and they can receive a fine that is paid for with the plunder of their previous conquest.

We do not live in a Democracy.

It is a mockery to assume that we do.

There is no justice, when injustice thrives.

but the people, all people, are all equal.

and if we stand up for ourselves and each other, together; then we can do a lot of good.

And that “goodness” will come very fast.

If we can all work together, a little bit… and stand together with your neighbor every so often…. reach across the aisle… and slowly soften all the borders…. and we take a few more vacations…closer to home… and go on long walks…and cook delicious food…and …

and live good lives with each other.

We can all be happy ..

I think even the rich people will be happier…

everyone deserves to be happy…everyone deserves to have enough food to eat and have a safe warm place to sleep…

and nobody deserves to have bombs dropped on them…

nobody deserves to live under harsh sanctions…

nobody deserves to be a refugee ping pong’ed around…

nobody deserves to be enslaved to pay the debt of a government…

Or to pay for past World Bank loans, that were stolen by corrupt dictators, that were put in by foriegn powers.

No one deserves to have their country subjugated where, to have their culture decimated.

Peace and happiness exist, they are in between the monetized moments.

Peace, Love and Freedom exist outside of the almighty dollar.

Money is meant to be a beautiful thing; to properly share and store and exchange the fruits of our labor.

But the government’s, and the ruling classes have conquered most all of the natural resources…they own the rivers, and they own the mountains…and they own the banks that own all of us.

Our money is not even our own money, it’s owned by the Federal Reserve, a private bank…

America is debt ridden…the only hope we have a paying it back is exploiting people and exploiting the ecosystems for natural resources…

……wft……

The madness must stop.

The numbers are not real.

The real power is in the individual.

Together we can free ourselves.

or we can submit to the system.

but you can’t effectively stand up against the system, alone… you can only stand up against the system as a community, as a functioning economic unit, that supports each other and itself.

So……..

my answer to world peace is:

improve your own community…

but do it with real gusto and start today…

take down your backyard fences and start amazing gardens and mini parks…

work less, use less, spend less, waste less.

eat healthier!—–that would save so much money in healthcare… wow….

and it would greatly improve people’s quality of life and overall happiness.

End “planned obsolescence” – almost every consumer good is designed to break …. cars and electronics are especially designed to have a specific lifespan… I have a pair a Walkman ear phones from the e

80’s and the chords are still fine…but I went through a half a dozen $25 earbuds…where the cord start to fail in about 6 months….

stop hating other people so much…there are a few people in the world that we can hate…and they deserve our hate so much that we need to keep hate sacred and potent.

do not hate your neighbor,

do not hate your hater.

do not hate your rival labor

do not hate the clumsy waiter.

forget.

don’t worry about forgiving, just forget move on, deal with it enough to get it out of the way but do not dwell on it don’t give it that much energy

….

Dance…. that’s it … just dance.

Not a real dance, not like a specific dance not a good dance, not a pretty dance but dance….

dance to the beat of your own soul….dance alone in the moonlight..

dance in the silence…

dance to the beat of the crushing leaves beneath your feet…

…..

and

Love….

Love often and love broadly, love deeply, and love truly…

Love does not have to be used sparingly to be potent.

fill your world with love…

imagine it as spray paint and tag everything, graffiti everything with invisible, spiritual love…

Bevauae if you do, everyone else can still see it…

make the world beautiful and others can feel it.

Help each other enjoy life…

do not detract from the joy of others…Help them because they will help you…and that’s all you can possibly ever get out of life…

that’s what money is supposed to be for…

to buy other people’s help…

AND…

….

Live how you wanna….

if you ain’t happy swimming against the current…maybe it’s time you switched streams…or switch horses…but don’t try and switch horses midstream…

….

Be Thankful…

because most everything in life is epically beautiful and wonderful….

If you let it…

do not dwell on the unfortunate.

Transcend the past…

We are perennial beings.

We flower every so often…

just keep watering the roots of your soul…

and life will once again surge through you….

when the season is right.

so plant the seeds…

and tend to the garden of your happiness…

and share your bounty.

Peace and Love

Ruminations of a She-Bear Elder

 

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The culmination of this project comes from a variety of occurrences and tensions within me. I’ve not been able to hire a “traditional” contractor for several years for my property. They never call me back! I kept wondering why. Every time I would go to buy a trailer, some force would sabotage my efforts. Every time I thought to approach the bank for a “traditional” mortgage, I’d feel sick.

It is so clear to me now. Like being hit over the head with a chunk of hardened hempcrete. The truth is that every time I approached a “traditional” builder and asked to participate in the build, I felt a profound reticence. I could feel the divide between what I wanted in the way of an “artistic,” natural home filled with river stone accents and coloured bottle mosaics open like a gaping maw. The truth is that I was not-so-subconsciously sabotaging the whole fucking thing.

It wasn’t until I attended the Womyn’s Summit in Grande Digue, NB for natural birth workers that the big answer smacked me harder than hardened block of hempcrete. I had just finished delivering my two workshops (one entirely unexpected and the other mostly unprepared for) that I was all soft and juicy to receive the wisdom that side wangled my whole life’s trajectory.

I was headed to the kybo as I had to go like a woman in her 4th trimester, when I heard the words of a beautiful, young husky voice, full of enthusiasm rake my ears, “There is nothing like building your own home to give you the fullest feeling of satisfaction imaginable!” My head ripped around on her axis to view the originator, Kate Versava, talking to a group of fellow birth workers over a picnic bench peppered with books on natural home building.

I ran like a crazed woman on a mission to the loo and hurried back for the rest of her talk. I was so enthralled with Kate’s description of how she built her own hempcrete home with her partner, Noel, that I was both swooning with delight and crying with relief at the same time. My enthusiasm hitting many peaks during her talk.

Prior, I’d been stymied with regards to the right foundation and wall materials in order to have the maximum insulation value without using toxic materials. I had been looking at sono tubes and decking, however, the raised platform would need to be insulated. Sheep’s wool or denim in a floor could more easily take on the damp of the earth and vapour barriers defeat the whole purpose of having a breathable floor and shell. Also, wood rots in about 40 years in our ocean climate.

Hempcrete made from a combination of hemp hurd or shiv combined with lime, a little natural clay and water is the answer! This is how Kate has built her home in Nova Scotia. It forms a hard, breathable, heat loving (in the Summer), cold resisting (in the Winter with an R factor above 30). It won’t rot with damp ocean foggy soaked weather, mice and rats will never make it a home and it a sustainable by-product of the growing (legal) hemp food industry.

Like in Heilkunst Medicine, where I’ve been mentored by knowledge workers who’ve taught me the answers to treat every chronic disease, I’m not used to the feeling of being thwarted by nature. The frustrating part, for me, was knowing that the answers were out there, but I’d not turned over the right straw bale to unearth what those were until “the Kate phenomenon” occurred at The Summit.

During Kate’s talk, she encouraged me to perhaps organize a work-shop build on my own home on our recently procured 2 acres. I lit up like a Yoni Tree (whatever that might be) and I was suddenly hearing the voices of about 10 fellow birth workers shout, “Can I participate?” and “Yes, I’d love to come!” and “I so want to learn natural building too!” Something was birthed like a kernel at my core.

After Kate’s talk, and pictures of her build had been subsumed in my belly, I attended the Keynote speaker (Sister Morningstar’s) keynote presentation. I’d had the pleasure of having her attend both my ad hoc presentations earlier that day. When I entered the ginormous handcrafted yurt to sit down with the sunlight streaming through the dome, she asked me in front of 35 Moms (aka Birthworkers), if I’d wholly support her through her talk as a “native elder” and “wisdom bearer” with her by ensuring her medical statements were accurate.

I was surprised by this. This woman, in her 60’s is a Missouri native elder who has been attending “untouched births” with women for decades felt much my senior. I felt myself quietly bow my head in acquiescence after letting her know that I couldn’t possibly be of use to her. She called on me again and I realized in that moment that there was nothing else for me to do but sit down, hush and listen up.

However, when the “Great Mother” is at work, you don’t interrupt the flow with a stupid tirade from the false ego. The next moment hit me square in the pit of my loins. It was the moment in Sister’s presentation when she rose up her wee body to assume the example of a “She-Bear,” rocking violently back and forth, yelling as an example of her client, “I will birth this baby naturally, I will birth this baby naturally, I will birth this baby naturally!” She was imitating a Momma who’d previously has a C-section.

On the drive home, all of the impressions from the conference started to infuse into my etheric body, circumnavigating my whole history. I felt a re-visioning process occurring deep in my loins. After about an hour of this processing, out popped a concept, “She-Bear Construction.” My very own naturally built hempcrete home would be an artistic rendering, built by women for a woman; me. I felt the sensual act of mixing the compound and pouring the hempcrete into the mould in the wall and the satisfaction of tamping it down as the walls rose hour by hour from the ground to the roof line.

In my imagination, it was already done! Holy fuck, this was going to happen, the portal was open, the plumb-line a clear trajectory forward. I excitedly raced home to research myself silly. Buzzing in my mind was the project management categories, Kickstarter campaigns, movies to shoot, website to build, key players determined, fundraising ideas, where to source the hemp shiv locally, marketing, etc., etc., etc.

Home-births can be the most rewarding, life altering event imaginable, and as a newly inscribed native elder written in sun-streamings, I will take on my new role great aplomb, enthusiasm and the sweetest feminine humility while receiving monumental support and grace from a whole variety of unnamed sources to be sussed out. As Sister Morningstar says, “to allow a mother to birth in grace, learn how to knit!” Even in a footling birth, let the mother hold the toes of her baby as she allows the babe to come forth into the world naturally.

My own home building adventure has felt like a breach footling of great pain and suffering destined for a C-section up until now. All I had to do was let go and allow her to come through me without all the machinations while holding onto her foot. Now, I can finally let go my limited fears around succumbing to patriarchal tools I though I needed, limitations, victimization, self-hatred, pushing, striving and what felt like the inevitable scalpel in home building. I needed the ceremony of healthy, powerful women to hold me through the process of letting letting go, “I will birth this baby naturally!”

We will do it for ourselves and we will show other women how to do it too! We will form a collective:

She-Bear Construction:
Natural, Affordable Homes Built For Women By Women. We’re a group of Maritime Canada birth-workers, healers, naturo-therapists and physicians who’ve formed a collective in order to help teach building practices for natural, breathable homes out of hempcrete and straw bail. We feel that every woman, and her partner, should have a healthy, beautiful, sustainable home of her own in beautiful surroundings to live in and also raise her family in if she so chooses.

A Little She-Bear Idea!

 

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Dearest Kate,

Please let me thank you again for taking my leaking ship with little navigation and wholly pointing it in the right direction. I’m on fire with ideas after your talk. Pieces fell into place for me in ways that I’d never imagined.

I’ve spent the rest of this weekend healing from having felt lost in a building forest without the right resources for many years. This is SO the piece, in conjunction with the feeling of full actualization in this domain, of my life that I’d craved and I’m so excited that it came in the form of you and your spirited knowledge!

It is really all that I can think about; a collective of women, spreading clay, mixing hempcrete, making artful mosaics with glass, river rock floors, cob ovens, wood cook stoves, lofts with a view, etc. I’m on fire with ideas!

I started putting together some way we might solidify our presence with regards to how we might form a collective, beginning with a series of workshops. What do you think about:

She-Bear Construction:
Natural, Affordable Homes Built For Women By Women. We’re a group of Maritime Canada birth-workers, healers, naturo-therapists and physicians who’ve formed a collective in order to help teach building practices for natural, breathable homes out of hempcrete and straw bail. We feel that every woman, and her partner, should have a healthy, beautiful, sustainable home of her own in beautiful surroundings to live in and also raise her family in if she so chooses.

I was thinking of putting together a Kickstarter campaign today to raise money for business planning and materials for the 1st prototype. As mentioned, we also have access to 17 acres of natural materials on the property where our 2 acres is also located.

I spoke to my friends (Marla and Diane) of 30 years last night, who own the balance of the acreage and they’re also excited to participate. They’re also keen to purchase an additional 49 acres above our own land with a kickstarter campaign of their own. They’re also eager to further build an eco-off-grid community, including barns for livestock, so the opportunities are endless.

I’d also like to have you and Marie Cuomo come and do a fundraiser, house party/info-session, by performing to raise money for the coming projects as well. Perhaps we can combine it with viewing the property and looking at what we have in the way of natural building resources with your partner if he’s also interested.

The other piece is that I’d like to eventually put together a grant to be able to fund the $220,000 to buy the hempcrete separator for the grower in PEI. Elizabeth came up with this idea on Saturday.

It is my very deep love and goal to help create a community of natural, sustainability for the long-term and help our maritime women (and men too) live in breathable, resonant home to raise they’re beloved families in. My hope is that we can merge into a matriarchal cooperative, with our men in loving support, and change the face of how we view traditional house crafting in Maritime Canada.

My very warmest,

Ally

P.S. It would be cool, too, to ask Kirsten Dirksen at “Fair Companies” (https://www.youtube.com/user/kirstendirksen) to come shoot a documentary of our collective and our build(s). Also, I would like to shoot stills as we go through this process and also write a book about our collective enterprise as we build. What do you think?
Ally!!

My heart is so humbly broken open and beaming with love and joy for finding you and connecting our dreams and hearing this inspiration pouring out of you! Everything you laid out resonates with me deeply, and I’m so moved and inspired by it. I would be honoured to work with you on this vision, to raise funds, to run workshops, to form a collective of women builders from the dynamic community around us. I would love to come see your property and explore your vision for it with you. And the thought of a hemp processor in the Maritimes makes me want to do a backflip! I’m so inspired by your initiative and want to help in any way possible. I’m still at Nat’s cottage until Wednesday, taking another course with a midwife from the U.S. I get back to Halifax Thursday and would love to connect with you and talk about what to do first! Oh my goodness! I’m so excited and so thrilled to have crossed paths with you.
I was so moved by your workshop as well and really would like to explore Heilkunst more deeply. Another talk, another time. We’re connected now!!!! When would be a good time for you to chat more?

Thank you so much for this. My heart is on fire.

Love,
Kate

Sent from my iPhone
Just Truly

6:14 PM (4 hours ago)

to me

Woot! Woot!

I have a list of women forming in my head that I think would be interested in being part of the collective. Can I start to share the info, or do I need to hang tight until things are more solidified?

– Diane

Why A Romantic Wee Abode?

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“Most men appear never to have considered what a house is, and are actually though needlessly poor all their lives because they think that they must have such a one as their neighbors have.” ~Walden by Henry David Thoreau“Consider first how slight a shelter is absolutely necessary. I have seen Penobscot Indians, in this town, living in tents of thin cotton cloth, while the snow was nearly a foot deep around them, and I thought that they would be glad to have it deeper to keep out the wind. . . . I used to see a large box by the railroad, six feet long by three wide, in which the laborers locked up their tools at night; and it suggested to me that every man who was hard pushed might get such a one for a dollar, and, having bored a few auger holes in it, to admit the air at least, get into it when it rained and at night, and hook down the lid, and so have freedom in his love, and in his soul be free” ~ Walden by Henry David Thoreau

 

As a kid, you would always find me on my bike en route to the forest with the boys.  As a self-stated tom boy, I had little time for dolls as I wanted to build stuff.  In the forest, we would bear culled wood to make tree forts.  Everyone in our group would communally contribute a board, nails or a found ladder, a piece of cloth for the curtain and a whack of carpet for the floor.  Someone’s mom would bake chocolate chip or peanut butter cookies and we’d play for hours, always protecting our coveted home base, from errant mischief makers and perceived enemies.

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We’d all pinky swear never to share our secret hidey hole, especially with any adults or stupid prissy girls whose sole profession with to giggle inanely.  We were serious about our cowboy adventures using cap guns to protect our dominion.  If someone leaked its whereabouts, they were kicked out of the secret club without a word.  Within a day, under the cloak of darkness having snuck out of the windows of our parent’s homes at night, we’d secretly remove the fort limb by limb to another forest entirely using our wagons attached to our bikes.  It was quite the task to remove all traces of our meetings, often splitting up before getting a mile within our sacred abode, separating into different directions of approach before convening within 15 minutes or so at our secret den.

We’d use leaves to cover our CCM tire tracks before getting to the order of our serious plans and meetings.  Much later, into our pre-teens, our forts became a way to explore each others very interesting bodies and cultivate the first streamings of romantic lust and love.  Spin the bottle and double dare games had us racing home before the street lights came on with pink stained cheeks and dreams of forbidden love.  At this juncture, it became to my greatest advantage to be the only girl in our gang, even though I had still had the best lateral pass and was captain of our softball team.

I loved the feeling of freedom in those forts, our domain, our privileged space in the world.  Our anarchy stated in a shared dominion of pieced together culled wood.  We owed no explanation for our plots and no one had any right to question where we set up our utopian estate.  We did as we pleased, the world our little plywood oyster, no questions asked.

In our early teens, we even stealthily built a new fort, far more sophisticated to an island in the middle of the Ottawa River called Upper Duck Island between the province of Ontario and Quebec that you could only get to by canoe.  It was one heck of an undertaking to get the supplies across a body of water without tipping our vessels.  And no, we never used life jackets back then.  Life jackets were cumbersome and also for sissies.  We were in utter command of ourselves and our project to build our romantic abode at any cost.

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Much later, having grown up and assuming adult responsibilities, a loss of my health and also parenting to the expectations of the society that I still secretly most abhorred, I felt broken and fake.  I hated how I systematically dropped each of my ethical values into the fibreglass pink world of ugly aluminum siding and cookie cutter off-gassing pre-fab homes.  I worked endlessly just to pay the mortgage and bills.  My life a tax proliferating diseased matrix.

There was nothing culturally endearing in the suburbs where faceless women jammed the side walks with their baby strollers, where the constant drone of lawn mowers required to cut grass that never served any functional purpose, sucked up precious weekend time to keep shorn.  My husband and I working long hours, while our kids spent their days at the caregivers, to pay for their childcare and the home we stupidly abandoned every day.  Each yard surrounded by  8 foot fences for privacy with barking dogs trapped in the same micro yards that I was.  Dinner with friends and a bottle of wine, once a week, was my only escape in a much too false construct became the high pitched scream of my broken meaningless life.

I’d lost my intrinsic connection to nature.  Gone was the life of ducking branches as they whipped by my head, careening through forest on my blood red bike in the fort we once had by the “red bridge” in Rothwell Heights.  If I tried to even bike up that Delong Rd. hill today, I’d probably lose a lung onto the asphalt.  I yearn for the feeling of the natural tiny house in the trees, although, I’ve so very beautifully narrowed my romantic love down to one very resonant boy now that I’m 50 who will play spin the bottle with me any time i like!  I ache for my fort in the the forest with him.  I will actualize my dreams to be intimately licked again by the seasons.

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My new tom-boy friend (although she doesn’t know it), and Tiny House owner, Dee Williams describes the “thousand different ways it rains” just above her sky-lit head in her book, “The Big Tiny: A Built-It-Myself Memoir.”  As per Dee, if you clap your hands hard and fast, that is November’s rain! You can also watch her phenomenal YouTube videohere where you’ll hear her explain how the limitations of her heart condition caused her to reduce her living to a grid-free tiny house where she lives in community in her friend’s back yard sharing a garden as well as water access.  She is the master of her fort, her resonant kinship for herself within her space while also immersed in nature.  I was deeply moved after I watched her Youtube video above.

I also realized that I want a little little house based on the same principles as Temple Grandin’s squeeze machine.  I want to live in a space that energetically hugs me.  I abhor the 4 and 5 bedroom McMansions of my yesterday that literally sucked the special sauce from my life.  Years ago, I was studying all of Temple Grandin’s books and her view of her world of autism to gain more insights into the human psyche for my own research as a Physician of Heilkunst Medicine.  She is a very autonomous and brilliant thinker.

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I treat many patients in the spectrum, often successfully relieving them of their predisposition to stimming, gut issues and OCD behaviours by detoxing them from their life’s emotional and physical traumas including the vaccines and more importantly the Genetic Miasms.  It was only meeting with a colleague who owns a squeeze machine, like Temple Grandin’s, that I wholly understood on every level the advantages of being in a small space and how comforting that is.  Temple talks about the function and purpose of her squeeze machine, revealed in her movie here.

After a series of erroneous mishaps into disease myself and my son’s own perilous voyage into the autistic spectrum, and then out again which I tell in great morbific glory here in my first book, I came to know myself intimately as a child of the natural world. I realized that I want to go back to reclaim the parts of my childhood that most speak to me.  Camping in the tent with my family, spending time in the forts with just enough resources to be comfortable, with no hassles while keeping societal expectations at bay.

A couple of years ago I asked myself;  where am I happiest?  Camping alone in my tent with loads of time to ruminate, read, write, draw, eat good food both indoors and out with the basic necessities was the resounding answer.  I’ve made the luscious resolve to have less space and more intimacy with myself and my husband with fewer inane responsibilities like mowing the friggin’ lawn.  I will cultivate a permaculture acre in the woods while also living in a smallish home built from natural materials, windows to sit in while studying and writing by our wood-stove, a beautiful tiny kitchen with all the amenities, a pond, raised gardens, fruit trees and a wee separate fort for my artistic pursuits and above all, no stupid grass, adults or barking dogs.  Also I’m the only prissy girl allowed, pinky swear!