A simple life!!
Edited by AlliEarthMama - 8/12/11 at 6:44am
couldn't read and not respond.
i also live in canada and homestead on a lot of land with reuse/recycle/natural homebuilding, also going the permaculture sustainable route being off-grid and managing homeschooling of little ones. lots of canning, lots of berry-picking, and lots of fun!
we are already fully established (well, as much as we'll ever be ;-) ) and at max capacity. i just wanted to wish you all the luck on your own journey and know that there are plenty of like-minded people out there who would love to share your vision. i would, however, certainly be interested in maintaining a space on the internet community!
Do you live in North Bay right now? Are you aware of the climate up here? Not being set up properly in the winter in an off the grid living situation could be a life or death situation. And if you're concerned about living far away from earth polluting industries, you should be made aware that North Bay is only an hour and 1/2 away from Sudbury. Sudbury is a mining community that was ecologically destroyed by the chemicals that were spewed into the environment by the nickle mines. Its only been in recent years that trees have started growing again in Sudbury and surrounding area. Its not North Bay but its still pretty close.
I have lots of positive things to say about this city, including the fact there is a huge and successful natural parenting movement but most of the other positive aspects I could boast are irrelevant to an off the grid living situation. Like the new hospital and childrens center, the university and college, the military base, the schools... Anyway, have you thought about finding a location out west (BC) where the climate is a little less severe in the winter?
Oh wow I was just thinking about doing something like this! But I don't know about the vegan thing...I just read a book on ice fishing and I really want to give it a try. We could make the fish into pemmican and eat that and potatos in the winter months. I really want to learn more about this, let's start planning!
Thanks Munchkinmaker for your insights :) I have lived in North Bay on and off for my entire life...having also lived in North Africa, UK and most recently, the US. I still prefer this region as it was also where my ancestors first set up after coming from France many many years ago. Currently we are living on the US East Coast but have our hearts set on going back to Canada. North Bay is also home to some partially off-grid family members, their children and friends that have lived there their entire lives. I will contact the EPA and collect data on the environmental issues and polluting factors in the region.
In the grand scheme of things-I'd say COLD winters should be the last of our worries.We will utilize the summer months to grow and preserve in the fall. Heating our homes will be an issue of good design, hard labor and being well prepared but it is far less daunting then trying to find water to drink and feed our crops.
I have considered BC and Alberta....However, these regions are in "The Ring of Fire"...they have severe risk of mudslides,draught, Tsunami and are sitting on massive Volcanos. These areas are also very exposed to radiation fallout from the nuclear disasters in Japan. ALSO for my family, the cost of moving all our homesteading items to the West Coast from the East Coast will cost a fortune! BUT I must say it is very temperate and beautiful out that way. I had always wanted to live in the OKANAGAN VALLEY...very suited for an eco-community as well.
However...North Bay is our prefered region but the hope is to come together as a group and decide HOW, WHERE, WHEN we can move and start building. If I can't get a community of peoples together we will still continue with our plans of moving up North Spring 2012.
Lovingmommyhood...Financials are going to be a big topic for discussion. We will need to find acreage as a team and finance the land together. However the cost to build our homes will be the responsibility on each individual family. I trust we will all support eachother and offer free labor and expertise to get our community functioning and keep our fellow family's safe. We have many issues and ideas to go over. Right now my focus is on finding families who have a strong desire to re-connect with nature and live sustainably...but obviously we all must come with some sort of savings and means of making money as a whole. We will all have to work together to make it work.
Anon of Cleves-I love your energy!! AND my family eats fish...and would love to learn more about fishing and growing our own eggs. I think it admirable to not support factory farming and mass production of meat or fish.
Sorry, I too would be leary. You want to live in an unpolluted location yet are satisfied with being only 1 1/2 hours from a HUGE pollution disaster. You want to live vegan but are only now learning about wild edibles? Do you have experience in long term presevation methods for food? Do you have experience growing your food in this climate (short growing season)? Are you or your husband a small engine mechanic so there will be someone there to work on your generator? Do you know how to sharpen a chain saw? How will you make the money needed (to buy fuel for generator/chain saw/ect.)?
Oh, man. I understand everyone's concerns here, but way to crush a dream!
I'm definitely interested in living in a community like this, but DH and I are headed for PEI next spring, to start homesteading. Not much interested in another location, and certainly couldn't afford something out west.
So I'll say, good luck! Keep your dream alive, and keep looking for the people to share it with you!
I have removed several posts from this thread and issued warnings for posting behavior casting suspicion on a member. This topic is perfectly appropriate for our community and can continue. Concerns about it should be reported, not posted here as an accusation.
AlliEarthmama, please continue with your discussion.
I see that I made the cut but would still like to clarify my intentions. It is certainly not to crush a dream! I live in Alaska. We have many people coming up each year, many with the same types of dreams. It's sad and can be devestating when they are not prepared for the realities of sub arctic life. I have friends who right now who bought property that they can't even get to in order to START building because the trail is swampy permafrost. These are extremely capable and experienced people who have already been living off the grid here. Our growing season is 90 days. There are things that you just can not grow here such as corn. It requires darkness to produce and it is too light here all summer. I know you are not talking about the same area but there are things most northern climates have in common. Being handy is a must. Just this winter I had to learn how to replace my fuel oil tank filter, cut off a copper tubing end and replace a brass nut (that tore like play doe due to the cold). This is a fairly simple thing but until I did it, it was pretty intimidating, especially having a broken heater in -40F temps. Running a chainsaw is also very intimidating but if you don't have access to heating fuel, which is expensive, you will have to have at least one to cut enough wood to keep from freezing. What about firearms for protection against wild life and for hunting food? I know you are wanting to live a vegan lifestyle but will everyone who is interested in your community going to as well? I would love to have some discussion on this but please do not think I am being a naysayer. Just trying to help you brainstorm some of the issues that you will come across and need to work out.
I would look west of sudbury. Just east of Sault Ste. Marie an Old Order Mennonite community is thriving here. The land is fertile. It is a beautiful place to grow up (I should know). Just north of the sault is one of Canada's largest wind farms.
Really, there are lots of opportunities.
Wow, great idea, and I'm rooting for you! DH and I had dreamed of this as a young people contemplating what we wanted before having children. We now have our forever home in very rural Nova Scotia, and love the community our children are growing up in, so this wouldn't be for us, but I really wish you the best!
Not meaning to be dream crushing, as a disclaimer.
Allie, are you currently farming or working with a community, esp. one with a very limited growing season, in a cold climate? If not, a possibility to consider, while you are in the planning stages for your community, would be to apprentice yourselves to a like-minded community in order to gain experience. This might give you some really good, hands on experience, and allow you to put yourselves out there with practical experience in addition to exploring ideas through conversation. I think there are threads here that might cover this.
Please don't take questioning as folks being discouraging. This is real life in the country, and esp. w/regard to intentional communities. It's far better to have your ideas and plans challenged early on, than end up in over your heads and bankrupt.