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I woke up one day last week to this Sailboat of Dawn and it brought a beautiful feeling that reminded me to stay on track sailing toward my dreams.

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What is our biggest dream?

The Harn.  The work at the property is progressing with wood clearing and processing.  We had a little snafu with one woodpile.  It just didn’t look quite right after we’d stacked it. And as the weight of the pile sunk into the wet, thawing ground… it seemed to get worse.  Almost visibly changing before your eyes.

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As we took a break on the porch (minutes after the above photo was taken – Danny says I shouldn’t have leaned on it, but I swear I didn’t!) and prepared for leaving for Easter dinner with some friends… we heard the crash and knew immediately it was our woodpile.  It was a wreck!

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As remedy, we grabbed one of our newly scavenged pallets and re-stacked.  It was not fun having the do the work twice but it taught a valuable lesson on the importance of a good, level base and proper stacking.

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Our next pile looked much better.

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How do we hang onto our dreams?

We were recently talking with some friends who also are living a somewhat alternative lifestyle and we discussed how some people just can’t seem to cease criticizing.  Whether it’s family members, church folks, friends or general people you run across in town, everyone has an opinion.  And when you choose to live a life that is outside the mainstream, people often can’t comprehend and sometimes feel a need to explain to you why you are wrong.  It reminds me of the saying: “People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.”  Just because some people don’t comprehend your dream doesn’t mean it won’t come true.

We, and our friends, are watching our dreams unfold before us as we work towards them.  It may be in fits and starts, may take longer than we originally hoped, but materialize they do.  These dreams are nurtured with talking and drawing and doing, with imagining and believing and working.  We share our successes and advise against repeating our failures.  Actually, I like to refer to “failures” as “learning lessons”.  In each attempt, something new is learned, even if it does not bring the success or outcome originally intended.  Sometimes it brings an idea which never would have come.

Take, for example, our Rocket Mass Heater (RMH).  Last fall, we were disappointed that we didn’t get very far with our cob work (the mass surrounding the exhaust tubes).  We felt like we should have started the project earlier in the summer rather than waiting so late in the season.  But, what we realize this spring is that the exposed tubing heats the Harn pretty quickly once we fire the stove.  (We are losing a lot of heat through the chimney but it’s not the end of the world.)  Once all the mass is added, it will take much longer to heat our space because the mass soaks up the heat first.  Typically you don’t want to fire the RMH unless you have several days over which to enjoy it so a short weekend would make the fully massed RMH not as useful as is our partially completed RMH.  So we have learned that we will leave a portion of the tubing exposed for quicker heat up until such time as we are here on a more permanent basis.  (BTW, if you care to support a wonderful Kickstarter for an upcoming book on how to build your own RMH… click here https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/rmhbuildersguide/the-rocket-mass-heater-builders-guide?ref=nav_search to donate to our mentors’ {Ernie & Erica Wisner} project.  They are getting amazing feedback and we’ve been privy to some of the draft info.  These two are true masters and this will be a wonderful reference book for building an inexpensive heating system that also is gentle to our environment.  Even a $3 donation will be worth your while as I hear Ernie’s truffles are fantastic.)

So we ignore the naysayers, which is sometimes even us, to hang on to knowing we are progressing in the way that we are and believing this is the way it is intended.  Because it is the way it is.

Danny got me a wonderful gift reminder for Valentine’s Day and it’s come in quite handy over the last month or so as I’ve faced criticism.  It’s a card set based on The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz.  The Four Agreements are: 1) Be Impeccable In Your Word. 2) Don’t Take Things Personally. 3) Don’t Make Assumptions.  4) Always Do Your Best.  One of the most insightful cards I read recently was:

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It helped me remember that what others think of me is often not based on ME but THEM.  In turn, I must realize that what I think of others is not about THEM but ME.  It gives much food for thought.  And today’s card I read as I took a photo of this one was also quite timely:

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I feel like I’ve had to learn this one over and over again.

And what’s the big dream outside my span of control?

Bernie!!

Bernie is picking up momentum.  He’s won 5 of the last 6 states in a big way and the one he didn’t win, Arizona, had massive voting issues.  There’s no way of knowing what the difference would have been if people had been allowed to properly have their voices heard.  But it does reveal apparent efforts to have the voice of the people stifled.

Bernie Sketch

Bernie has a good chance of continuing his strong gains as most of the upcoming contests show him favored to win. (Sketch credit: http://www.deviantart.com/art/Bernie-Sanders-545088750)

Bernie Chances

I am keeping my hope for him alive as I believe Bernie is our best chance for a happy future and our only hope to beat Trump.  If you have resources and gumption, please donate to his campaign and help push him to victory.  https://go.berniesanders.com/page/content/contribute

 

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