Monday, 28 February 2011

Serious planning

So, it's March tomorrow and we are into some serious planning for our future life, but it's all so difficult. Why is something so simple that we want to do so bloody difficult? We are very lucky in that we both own property (well, part-own it with ex-partners and the bank!) and so we have capital we can invest in our plans - except - that we can't actually get at the capital without selling our home out from underneath ourselves without anywhere else to go! If it was just the 2 of us adults, I'd have no hesitation doing this, but there are all our children to consider, plus we need constant access to a workshop so we can be making the things which will form the basis of our future income. And so the whole thing gets more and more complicated, as we research more and more outlandish ways of getting our hands on the cash or of bridging the homeless gap. And all that is without the difficulty of trying to find a suitable plot of land of the right size and composition, in the right place, at a vaguely suitable price, and at the right time.

It would be easy to despair and just carry on with the same old jobs/mortgage/small house in a town grind as everything else just seems so hard, but we won't let go of this. There *must* be a way, we just need to find it. I won't be made to live in a way which feels increasingly alien to me when we could have our own land and live our own way.

We're planning a trip to a local(ish) Sustainability Centre to get some ideas and some practical inspiration in the near future, and in the meantime, the building of our first yurt continues apace. the crown/wheel is now pretty much finished and looking great. We have collected over half the poles we need, we have acquired an old-fashioned, heavy-duty, hand-cranked sewing machine for sewing the canvas, so I suppose we are making slow, small progress. Watch this space.

Friday, 4 February 2011

Up and Down

That is how I am at the moment. Now, I do tend to the volatile at the best of times, and usually February is not the best of times for me, but I have to say I'm rather more violently up and down at the moment than is usual even for me. I guess things have been changing so hugely and I've been clinging to a small wooden raft of sanity riding the heavy, storm-tossed seas of a completely and rapidly changing life. Given that circumstances have been so extraordinary, I have found within myself an emergency measure of optimism and a genuine sense of excitement and anticipation at the thought of our new life which has kept me going over one of the greyest and dullest winters I can remember recently.

But yesterday I felt so utterly down and defeated, and do you know what triggered that feeling? Something so utterly stupid that I was ashamed at myself for letting it get to me so much: the internet broke. It's not the first time this has happened and I'm sure it won't be the last time, but this time it did it half an hour before a friend came to take the children to the home ed group for me so I could have the rest of the day to do some much-needed work. I work online. Do you see where this is going? This was Thursday, the phone helpline assured me that there was nothing they could do to fix the fault right there (we'd already tried all the usual quick fixes) and that an engineer would speedily be with me... on Saturday. I nearly cried. Then I started swearing. Not at the call centre person, I hasten to add.

So I spent the whole day not being able to work, and not being able to do much else useful either due to a broken toe preventing me from walking very far. And do you know what? Five minutes before the children were due back, the bloody, sodding internet magically came back! And how stupid did I feel that I'd let such a trivial thing cast me down so much? Very stupid. And yet, could I manage to pull myself out of the Slough of Despond. No, I bloody well couldn't. So there you have it, a day in the life of my emotions. I have enough distance from them to be able to see how silly I'm being and yet can't seem to use that self-knowledge to fully change my state. Very frustrating. But hell, today is a new day, the internet is working, it's Friday, I still can't walk very far, but the determined optimism is back. Everything *will* work out OK. I hope anyone reading this is also having a better day.

Tuesday, 1 February 2011


So, Imbolc is nearly upon us and I finally saw my first snow-drops yesterday. I'm feeling very in tune with the time of year this year. So many things in my life have been in limbo, lying dormant over the the dark time between Samhain and now. But, now I can feel the new growth, new ideas, creativity and new life just waiting to burst out. It's pulsing, sap rising, just below the surface, and the flurry of action and activity is about to burst forth into bud, leaf and flower.

We attended a fine Imbolc ritual at Anderida on Sunday and I feel that Brigit's awen and Bardship were fully called into being and celebrated. It was fiercely cold on that hillside under the watchful gaze of the Long Man, and I had to hobble up the hill and then down again with much help from a staff and other people as I had stupidly and clumsily broken my big toe 3 days before. It was probably a silly idea to even try to do it, but it was just one of those things that I *had* to do. I needed to be with my tribe and celebrate the returning light and inspiration.

This year is not going to be an easy one. There are going to be many challenges, many practical difficulties, many steep learning curves, a lot of changes, and even at the end of all that, we may not get exactly what we want, but I know that we'll give it the absolute best shot we can, and that's what I'm holding on to. Whatever happens, things will be very different by the time we arrive at the next dark time. I'm excited by what lies ahead, and very much looking forward to seeing where we are by Samhain this year.

Blessings of Brigit to you all.