New Beginnings: Back to the Land

Where do I begin? 

I’ve laid back on writing here for a while. Life has been incredibly full, replete with cross-country travels, moves, work & fun, land purchases, puppy acquisition!, and the overall beginning of New (though longstanding) Dreams.

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How could I be more excited? Probably couldn’t. 

What’s so exciting?

We are now the caretakers, lovers of an 18 acre parcel of land in the Ozarks of Southern Missouri. The land search went alright. Finally, it came down to me forgoing getting realtor help in actually finding the land and just picking through the MLS search religiously… Narrowing it down… Literally visiting dozens of properties. It was a good experience, though of course bearing the expected strains at times. After it was over I even wondered if I would get my realtor license to keep a tab on land for sale in order to help other permie/likeminded people who want to move to the region. Could happen. A lot of the land for sale is done through word of mouth and never even gets listed.

 

The first land we went to purchase actually felt through- due to hyper radical Christian preppers who befuddled the title by putting it in a “pure trust” (which doesn’t work to safeguard -from anyone- the property anyway, be forewarned). We got back to the search and opened it up to an area that for some reason we had deemed not worthy of our search. Early on people had said it was really rednecky. But, it’s not too rednecky for us… Not after living there for a couple of months, meeting the so-called rednecks and learning that most of them are actually really cool, generous, down to earth people with loads of information to learn from. Plus, barter culture is already in the mix around here. In fact, I have reason to believe it never ceased. Carry on wonderful hillbillie nation in your incredible trading culture! I am happy to join you.

 

Back to the land:

The 18 acres is slightly sloped (south facing) with 16 of the acres in mature forest (so gorgeous and peaceful in there! Definitely some good treees for TREE FORTS!!! ((Forever Dream Since Childhood))). Mixed conifers (Pine, cedar, etc); Deciduous (lots of varieties of Oak, maple, hickory, black walnut, persimmons, ironwood, cherry, dogwood, etc). There is incredible diversity. From what we’ve heard about the history of the land, it has changed hands many times over the last 30 years, but no one has done anything on it except grade a 14 ft road and add a bit of gravel here and there & they’ve cleared/bushhogged the same ~2 acre patch at the apex of the property. So this area has a lot of poision ivy, a few incredibly old and gorgeous oaks that were left, and general pioneer species. It was probably last done at least a few years back so it is overgrown a bit, but will for sure be the easiest place to begin putting in gardens, structures, and mobile fencing for animals like sheep, a few goats, etc.

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The western edge of the property is a 1/4 mile of a creek that is spring fed and which has its spring (hundreds of thousands of gallons of water/day– read more here about the other mind boggling springs in the area) origin in the nearby Caney Mountain Conservation Area. This protected place offers thousands of acres of hiking trails, CAVES, gorgeous views of the Ozarks and free camping for anyone coming through. Our entire watershed, in fact, is in an incredibly protected area, much of the Eastern edge being Mark Twain National Forest. And as we learned when we went to the annual Ozark Area Community Congress (incredible -and one of the first- bioregional congresses; created in the 70s I believe) gathering in October, many of the properties which back to the landers started caretaking in the 70s have been recently put into Land Trusts (I will probably write an article on this in the near future). That’s thousands of acres of land trusts, all within our watershed. I feel very good about that. Lots of gratitude!

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This is our watershed region. We are not far from the town of Dawt. A lot of Green Space, eh?! Much of it is conservation land.

We are also a few miles from Bryant Creek, which is a beautiful natural river, more for fishing, bird watching, canoeing, paddling and less mechanical forms of recreation. And less than 10 miles from the North Fork River which boasts incredible trout (rainbow & brown) fishing for flyfisher people (we went there and fished; it is a gorgeous place out of time) as well as (so we’ve heard) a large population of rafting tourists from St. Louis and Kansas City, et al. We already got commissioned by a local fly shop to make flies – on the to do list as we cuddle up for winter.

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Our spring. It comes out at a pretty good speed from beneath some rocks up a ways there, is edged by watercress, and continues to join the Caney Creek.

And just how will we cuddle up, you may be asking? 

Well, last year we paid around $4000 to live in an old two bedroom adobe in Taos, NM for a few months. This winter we’re buying a 5 year old 15 ft yurt (from Laurel Nest Yurts) in WV for that amount (complete with repurposed poplar barn wood floor, base, insulation,  and stove). We are so stoked!  Eventually this place will likely turn into a guest house/library/yoga/meditation space as we build the gazebo, sauna, and eventually the “main house”, which will probably be a straw/cob/local stone and wood combination.

All of this news I’m sharing brings seriously delicious joy to my heart. These desires have been burning for a quite a while inside of Ini and me. So so so thankful it is this stage of their unfolding .. where we can see some tangible results. Goddessa knows there is a lot of intention, visioning, traveling to others’ like-minded/hearted places going into this.

So, so thankful.

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Our western border of the Caney Creek; a clear, spring fed perennial wild water way! And yes, that incredible rock outcropping is present nearly the entire stretch of our western border. A cliff edge!

 

Moving-on-er

imageSuch an incredible time
After always being a moving-on-er
Staking the divining rod into soft
Fertile soil
Saying
This Place
I will always move-on
But now
A Place to stay
To play
To decorate
And dig sculpt grow
However I & the spirit of the land
Choose
After being an always moving honor
What an honor it is to have a Place
To Stay

photojourney A~gust twothousandfifteen *Ozarks

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In the Ozarks, there is plenty of water. Springs are especially !Magical! places full of wondrous entities invisible to the eye. And the water is delicious.

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There are a plethora of old buildings ready to come down with readily usable materials. Here is an old barn that Ini is salvaging from. It’s quite possible most of the tin roof for our tiny strawbale home will come from this effort.

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Aerial view of the property we’re most likely going to make a bid on this week. It’s mostly surrounded by forest (which we love), 100s of acres of which are inhabited by an ancient (70s) lesbian commune called DragonWagon. That’s Beaver Creek winding to the West. We have met the neighbors and while they are a slightly different brand of Crazy than we are (let me tell you my salvation story!), they seem to be generous, kind, and down-to-earth people (like most of the Missourians we’ve met!).

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And of course, la araña… weaving her web

everything vibrates out from the center
sacred language prevails

in the midst of our violent economies, going back to the earth, where we take care of ourselves as if we are the earth *which we are

…….

I believe this is the only way.

Saturn Return Transition

In the grander scheme of things, I’m in the midst of my Saturn Return which means I am transitioning into another level of “being me”, “taking responsibility”, “manifesting my purpose while here on earth.” Certainly it feels that way… Like the changes that are taking place have been a long time in the making. Like ‘baby-making’… It has been a gestation period of gathering skills, ideas, inner fortitude, connections, visions… until that alchemical combo is ready to Birth itself.

Now is the Perfect time. So… we’re moving! From Taos, NM where we’ve been homing since November, 2014 to the Ava, MO area — to look for land to buy in order to birth this incredibly creative, land-based, universally inspired Green Baby of the Goddess.

How many homesteads, ecovillages, farms, gardens, radical human habitations have I visited while gestating this baby within. (sigh) Oh So Many 🙂 And Ini, too. In terms of universal pairing, I think the Goddess Herself has done well attracting us two together… A true Match Made in Earth… And grateful for it.

Today is in fact our 2 year anniversary from when we decided to join forces in Creating What We Want to See in the World. Oh so much gratitude. Earth Match Resonance. And lately I’ve been learning from my mentor April about astrology, so going through my chart on another level and then seeing it next to Ini’s Chart. What, were we planned to be together? Haha; it is very Complementary. We are in opposition, after all, he having many signs in Pisces and planets in the 7-12th houses, and I being Virgo with 1-7 houses, mainly. It’s very interesting to look at our charts and go Oooooo that makes so much more sense!

So there is a lot to be grateful for as we transition forward. Of course I’m also scared- this is my edge after all. I am inviting Grace in as We step into the Unknown.

But what else can I We expect in our Saturn Return Transitions 🙂 It’s all good. 

In the yellow trailer!

In the Wild… When Lynx Visits…

About a year ago, I was living on the side of a mountain in North Carolina, close to Roan Mountain, if you’re familiar. Here is the unfolding medicine that came to me… Lynx Medicine bridging what is- with what has been and what is to come. It is now a year later and I am still very grateful for this dream.

White lynx

Last night was the first time the white lynx with fangs like from a deep sea creature appeared in my dream. It was my birthdy and erin and mom and I and someone else I can’t remember were driving along something that looked like fall creek parkway (close to the house with stilts). I spotted a beautiful flower I didn’t recognize and sceamed for erin to pull over. She pulled off a very steep incline and everyone was mad at me for asking her to do this (when there was an easier pull off just 5 feet more forward). I got distracted as I looked at this flower (which was something like a lobelia, but had more flower heads and was bushier) as there were more flowers and then suddenly an ascending stone pathway. As I walked up, there was a mastadon tooth, it was huge. i thought, there were mastadon around here?!? It looked like some archaeologists were working along this pathway. The pathway was mostly clear & made of large stepping stones. A river flowed underneath it and ther was forest to either side.

As I progressed I had the feeling or I knew that I was in a story written by a girl with dark brown hair who was a little younger than me. This is what she had discovered, also by accident, off of the side of the road. This is what I had discovered when I wasn’t even looking for a path, I just followed my desire for beauty and came upon this path. The big stone pathway was not really grown over- it has moss here and there, but it seemed really nice, as if prepared for royalty, or at least made with great skill & intent. I saw something else as I walked up the path, fascinated. Maybe it was more flowers. But then I was taken aback by what I saw next.

It was a white lynx (that is the name it had in the dream, though it wasn’t really like a lynx that I know in real life). It was completely snowy white and had long, thin teeth like a deep see fish, the one with the lure that is really scary. But I wasn’t really scared upon seeing it (I wasn’t afraid in this dream at all); I was enamored. It stood there at the top of the rock path, completely white & athletic-looking. Its tail was a feathered plume and I could tell it was upset.

No one had seen this white lynx before, save maybe the brown haired girl and i. no one ever really wandered off-path. People destroyed the forests & made room for their homes & sports complexes, but the relationship people used to have with the forests, one of intimacy, imagination, discovery, connection & respect, were no longer. This was the reason the white lynx was disturbed. But he (yes the feeling was that it was a male) was still so regal, honorable. His presence was very strong, but he was so bothered at the disrespect shown to the area. The fact that no one was really enamored with it, as they rightfully should be- it being such a magical place & all.

All of this & it was in my backyard all along. So much rich magic, just there off the path. The brown haired girl had written a book about this encounter; it was fantasy, and that’s how I was perceiving it (but it was also very very real; as if I were there).

As I said, it was my birthday in the dream. The dream also included a rad sex party at an amazing multi-floor sex parlor.. repleat with so many rooms, so much to explore. I went to a private room exploring from a guy from Calgary whose penis stretched to his chin (his main penis, he had another thin one with a fat hard top that attched like a sea polyp with a thin base). I bragged about this as I came downstairs to the other girls who were at the party. I felt great. It was my birthday and it felt very very special. I had fun. I felt free. My imagination was soaring. The dream overall feels like a rebirth of my imagination, perhaps. Like characters, symbols, subject matter for my book are coming to greet me. I feel grounded & magical, like magical possibilities exist outside my back door & as if I am magical, full of magical possibilities. That, if I am present & step off trail a bit, I will see the things I need to see to be inspired to write about. And so change the world….

It felt like I was in the amazon this morning as I awoke.

This makes me feel like I have dropped down. Like I can interpret the magic of my hometown now because of my way of seeing.

Full Moon Transformation: women’s animals

Full Moon Transformation…..

I grew up in a culture with a father and teachers- in a community that was frightened of women’s animals. By animal I mean the primal, ferocious, raw, screaming, clawing, chaotic aspect of the feminine. The feminine that will not be silenced, orderly, rule-following, and will stand sexy and powerful on her own. This is not to call all of these people out as bad or wrong- they are in a long line of patterned patriarchs who gain security through being around “safe” women. After all, a woman’s animal is ferocious, unpredictable- and that can be intimidating (and undermine current “way things are”).

But, and here’s the thing, we women (all of us really) need our animals. It’s our primal instinct, that part of us that defends our sense of worth, individuality and power until the end. Not power over others, yet power birthed from standing in a healthy sense of self: the power of being a beloved, worthwhile child of God. It can be said that a person who knows their power in this way can never be a slave of anyone or any thing. 

Ini and I have been fighting for days. It seems this full moon has brought even another layer out of the subconscious stew, revealing more and more growth, transformation, learning. Our animals have been beckoning each other. Claw, talon, tail whip, verbal slash- we’ve been “in it”. I am grateful for this heightening; I’ve come to fully know my animal. I have a deep feeling I’ve needed to let it out, to test it, to know if someone else whom I’ve put deep trust in cold hold it. And he can.

This type of relational transformation, this carving out and testing has helped to whole (heal) me. It’s given me more self possession. It shows me that perhaps I don’t have to let my animal out every time now that I know it’s there. Through this I’ve come to know my animal more, and like the person who knows their boundary and doesn’t need to scream it to be heard, I can speak it and so it is.

Culturally speaking, in the lineage of generations of patriarchy, we all need to bring in this ability to hold an empowered feminine. This is the work of people with male, female and whatever bodies, not solely of a feminist movement. Yes, it is scary, both on a personal and collective level to allow this level of animal in- but we must do it to move from a level of suppression (of creativity, individuality, universally empowered and free humanity) to one of full-life. 

This may be one of our greatest cultural taboos- the fear of strong women. Generations of patriarchy have indoctrinated and carefully trained women how to dance with power in subversive and behind-the-scenes ways. Women hold power, it’s just usually handed over on the surface- and they follow this route for their own safety and success. Yet for us to evolve in the necessary ways, straightforward demonstrations of feminine and masculine desire, attainment, sexuality/passion, and strong self-hood must come in- one animal at a time.