Regular blog readers may have noticed a slowdown in posting lately. I’m burned out, due in part to adding the pipeline work to an already full plate of homesteading programming and family work this past spring and early summer. So I’m going to rest for awhile, try some different things and hopefully reclaim the joy and playfulness that nurtures sustainable sustainability work.
As part of the process, I’ve unsubscribed from many of the organizational e-newsletters whose events I’d been compiling for blog posting and newsletter distribution. Readers interested in staying up-to-date with these organizations are encouraged to subscribe to their newsletters directly:
- Centre County Buy Fresh Buy Local – E-Newsletter Subscription Link (see lower left corner) ESPECIALLY GOOD FOR KEEPING UP WITH FARMERS MARKETS – What’s farm-fresh and where and when to buy it.
- PA Women’s Agricultural Network – Join list by sending an email request
- Penn State Extension: Sustainable Agriculture Working Group – Join list by sending an email request
- Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture – E-Newsletter Subscription Link
- PASA Northcentral List-serve – Yahoo Group
- Friends & Farmers Cooperative on Facebook
- Boalsburg Farmers Market on Facebook
- Tait Farm – E-Newsletter Subscription Link (see lower right corner)
- Way Fruit Farm – E-Newsletter Subscription Link
- Penns Valley Conservation Association – Join list by sending an email request.
- Clearwater Conservancy – E-Newsletter Subscription Link
- Shaver’s Creek Environmental Center – E-Newsletter Subscription Link
- PSU Sustainability Coalition – Join list by sending an email request
- Good Food Neighborhood – Blog Subscription Link (see upper right corner)
At our Spring Creek Homesteading Fund board meeting today, Josh Lambert, Dana Stuchul and I voted on the hibernation plan and also changed the mission statement to reflect how our programs have evolved. Here’s the new mission:
“Spring Creek Homesteading Fund is a loose affiliation of Central PA homesteaders who help each other build personal and family homesteading skills and community self-sufficiency through sharing information, skills, time and labor.”
I’ll still be writing a monthly e-newsletter (distributed through Constant Contact), but it will provide limited information, mostly about the activities of people I’m in direct contact with. So…if you want to let the 300-some subscribers know what you’re doing and how they can get involved, you’ll need to email or call me (237-0996) directly. I won’t be posting regularly at the blog for awhile.
Homesteaders Handbook & Survey Results
As posted earlier, the Homesteaders’ Handbook is now available for free download as a PDF – chock full of information about the local food system in Central PA: Homesteader’s Handbook. Also useful – what Central PA homesteaders are interested in learning and doing, captured through a June 2013 SCHF survey.
Keller Street Community Garden at State College Friends Meeting House
I’ll continue to supervise the garden and coordinate community workdays until the end of the 2013 growing season in November. Over the winter, if not before, I’ll check in with Gary Fosmire at the Friends Meeting about how this first season went from their perspective and plan for next year.
Josh and I will host two small autumn potlucks at our house (September 14 and November 10) and then discontinue the potluck program, except for making the potluck supplies (washable plates, cutlery, napkins and tablecloths) available to anyone who wants borrow them for their own events. RSVP for the Sept. 14 and Nov. 10 potlucks at SignUpGenius.
Spring Creek Homesteading T-Shirts
Available for a $10 donation. We have brown, maroon and orange shirts in sizes small through extra large.
If you’re interested in teaching a workshop, starting a homesteading project support group/cooking club, or launching any other local food or local energy project and would like to pick my brain for information, networking contacts or whatever, please email or call me. I would LOVE to put my last few years of learning to work by connecting active folks with other active folks to help make good stuff happen.
With help from Brian Henderson and Jason Grottini at Envinity, I’m finishing a draft of proposed local legislation to create a local energy conservation revolving loan fund. Within the next couple of weeks I’ll send it to the State College Borough Council and Mayor to pursue if they’re interested, offering local leaders another tool to help equip our community for declining access to affordable energy supplies.
Writing and Publishing
I’m working on the letterpress printing project described earlier, very gradually building and equipping a bottlejack press to develop a mini-newspaper that will focus on sustainable local food, energy and democracy developments, for eventual distribution via Webster’s and the farmers’ markets. And (burnout-recovery-permitting), I’ll write columns for the Centre Daily Times and possibly get involved with Voices of Central PA as a copy editor and/or contributing writer.
Banking and Insurance
We’re maintaining our bank accounts and paying remaining bills over the next few months. We’re also maintaining our insurance coverage, to make it available to instructors who organize their own workshops but lack their own liability policy.
Networking and Background Info
Apart from networking support and providing background information to new campaigners, I won’t actively be working on the following programs for the next several months: reskilling workshops, PSU and SCASD Farm-to-Table/farmers cooperative/food hub campaigns; PSU College Farm project; Itinerant Farmhands project; the community kitchen project (except to safekeep the $300 raised in our fundraiser and put it toward a community kitchen program if another organization sets one up); WoodWorks (our workshop rental program) and mini-grants/microloans.