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! permaculture bootcamp - learn permaculture through a little hard work

 
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Hi!

Did Clayton and Boon just grab the last spots or is there still room for one more?

Thanks!
 
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Duncan,

We count based on the number of people that are here, not the number of people that say they are en route.   So there are still two openings.

Further, one person that is here now is leaving tomorrow - Dustin stopped by for a month and I think he stayed a bit longer than a month.  He is headed out tomorrow morning.



 
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Just realized I don't have an address for Wheaton Labs. If someone could Email that to me it would be much appreciated.
 
paul wheaton
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Scott Sanders wrote:Just realized I don't have an address for Wheaton Labs. If someone could Email that to me it would be much appreciated.



Found it.  It was sent to you in november.   I just bumped it so you could get it fresh in your email.
 
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Do you have any openings left?
 
paul wheaton
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We have two openings for may 17.

 
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Hello Mr. Wheaton. I somehow found this site (I'm very rarely on the internet) and I've been reading through it and some similar things through the night.  I  want to say that I respect what you're doing very much.  To allow people an escape route from this absolutely insane way that most live. I like that you use the word roots, as there are some (like me) who are looking for just that. I  would love to be a part of something like that.  I would really like to learn more about building different types of homes, but for me the community aspect would be the reason. I already live like this,  similar,  in a very tiny primitive log cabin that I rebuilt,  it would have been easier to build from scratch but that wasn't an option.  I've lived this way or with less many times,  sometimes stealth in wilderness areas, sometimes renting a small patch on private land,  through a winter in an unheated rv with no functional appliances on a jobsite in north Dakota,  etc. My work history and hobbies have taught me to build or fix just about anything,  and I am the fixer for all that know me.  I spent my life working stupid long hours in things like oil, little bering sea boats, you get the idea. I'm a mule, I never stop working weather paid or just my projects which are many. I'm skilled in many ways, I can build,  work any material, run any equipment, make my own tools, work land, many more things. I'm good in the woods where I prefer  to spend my time, I can swing an axe, shovel, sledge, all day long. I have the mind of an engineer and an artist,  otherwise known as completely insane.  But I have stopped chasing money besides enough to get by and I can live on very little.  I know now that I can never live in burbs or share a wall, it was always torture but now I know can't go back. I also know and have spent time in that area in Montana and love it. My soul resides in the forests of the PNW. I have very simple wants and needs, 4 walls, a roof,  solitude when I need,  community when I don't,  access to wilderness.
Took me too long to figure that out. I also have a very important need to be in that area, I'm currently in the forest in Washington.  I'm losing my place and imagine I'll go live in my canvas tent a days hike in.

I just wanted to list a few reasons why this would be perfect for me and me for it, before I say that Unfortunately other reasons would keep me out of your place.  Smoking tobacco is my last vice, and one I don't know how to go without.  And I am disabled from several brain injuries.  So some days I  am not well and wouldn't be able to adhere to a schedule though I wish I could.  Other days I'm strong as ever.  

There IS a point to saying all this I promise.  Through my life I've met a lot of people just like me, those jobs attract a certain breed. They are usually loners, with a lot to offer, just not built for society as it is. There are many out there, And this is why I want to thank you for what you're doing.  It is my dream to create a similar place. And give these types a real home, and a place for recovery from addiction,  a real option for ex cons, etc. Because I know how powerful a sense of community or family,  lots of physical labor,  and creating something one can be proud of are.

So, thank you.  And if you know anyone in the area that would rent a spot to a salty old dog with brain damage and a serious smoking habit, to build a  simple place to live in and exchange lots of hard skilled work please do let me know.  We're all in this together. I'll check back later.
 
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Hello, i have sent the initial $$ to be involved with Boot camp. I sent an email with contact info to Paul at rich $ oil dot com. I'm currently in the Missoula area. Thanks.
 
paul wheaton
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William John wrote:Hello, i have sent the initial $$ to be involved with Boot camp. I sent an email with contact info to Paul at rich $ oil dot com. I'm currently in the Missoula area. Thanks.



Got it.

I sent you the questionnaire.  

 
paul wheaton
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I got some questions via email and since I want those sorts of questions to be in this thread, I thought I would answer them here.


How long do they have to be in bootcamp to get an acre to play with?

One month.  This continues to be your play space as long as you are in the bootcamp.  If you are going to be away for a week, then you can keep the play space.  But if you leave for longer, somebody else might take that acre as their playspace.  

Some boots do a LOT with the acre, and others not-so-much.  

If a person is planning on exercising the ant village option, and they are thinking that they want their playspace plot to be their ant village plot, then they would be wise to start off with an ant village plot.   On the other hand, if they are certain they will not exercise the ant village option, then they could choose any acre.   And, of course, a person could change their mind later if they want.   So maybe their playspace is in ant village, and later they choose a different plot.   As long as the new plot is available, that's fine.


How long do they have to be in bootcamp to have a year of rent paid?

It will probably be more than a year and the plot must be an ant village plot.

4 months in the bootcamp to get your initial ant village plot rent and deposit covered.


How long do they have to be in bootcamp to get Roots?

Deep roots is lifetime rent.  

2 years in the bootcamp.   (Less for hard work)



 
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Today we took a group photo. I enjoy working with these lovely folks
 
paul wheaton
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Josiah talks about being here for nine months:

 
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Hello there! I've sent the initial funds to be involved in the boot camp. I currently live in the Bay Area of CA and will be able to come to the Missoula area on Wednesday, July 1st.  I just discovered this forum by chance and it sounds like exactly what I have been looking for.  

I look forward to hearing from you and discussing this further.  

Cheers,
Terence
 
paul wheaton
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Hello Terence!

I received your monies and sent you the questionnaire.  It sounds like we will see you in a couple of weeks!
 
paul wheaton
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I recently saw that you have two spots available at boot camp is that still available?



Yup!


How soon are you looking to fill those?



The sooner the better!

 
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Hi Paul thank you for the quick response.
Learning and doing with a high level of proficiency and energy is my intention. I have also done quite a bit of hard work and weight lifting in my lifetime so far.
I'm interested in finding out more about how to contribute to food shares food growing house building auraria to pitch my tent and begin keeping bees.
I'm interested in making this my permanent lifestyle I've carried this desire for a very long time. I don't want to walk into this idealistically or with Rose colored glasses I know there's a lot of work involved and I'm looking forward to it. The comradery in community is also what I am looking for. Working toward a common goal that is a great example for the entire world. Sounds to me like I can come out as soon as practical.
PS I used to feed ant farms as a child.
 
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Just to clarify, there are still 2 openings at this time?
 
paul wheaton
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Kevin Mink wrote:Just to clarify, there are still 2 openings at this time?



Yup!  Fork over the hundred bucks and lets get you processed.
 
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Hi there, looking to spend time at Wheaton Labs.  Can you please elaborate on the free accommodations you do offer, show me with pictures.

Blessings,

Patricia Sambolinin
 
paul wheaton
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Right now, scott is staying in the red cabin:

https://permies.com/t/55002/permaculture-projects/Red-Cabin




Scotty (yes, a completely different Scott) is staying in the love shack:

https://permies.com/t/40/29134/permaculture-projects/porta-cabin-love-shack




Jennifer is in allerton abbey.  After a few months she and josiah became friendly and josiah is now there also:




Fred is in cooper cabin:

https://permies.com/t/40/33160/permaculture-projects/wofati-cooper-cabin




Orin and Clayton are in the bunk room in the fisher price house:

https://permies.com/t/54814/permaculture-projects/Fisher-Price-house




I think jonathan is tenting it.  We have lots of tent pads:

https://permies.com/t/55947/permaculture-projects/tenting-wheaton-labs




The tipi is currently open:

https://permies.com/t/120/29327/permaculture-projects/RMH-Tipi




And we have a couple more cabins that might need a bit of love before anybody wants to stay in them.  

First come, first serve.  And if something gets rented, the boot gets bumped.  Most spaces need to be kept "tour ready" 8am to 8pm - which is why some boots prefer a tent.  

Usually when a new boot arrives, they get a bunk in the bunkroom - or the boot can tent it (we even provide the tent).  But sometimes other arrangements can be made.  

 
paul wheaton
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Some of the guys visited some local fish



From Orin's bootcamp thread.
 
Kevin Mink
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If we pay now but aren't able to arrive til the end of July, do we have our spots secure or would we get bumped if others can arrive before we can?

Also, are we allowed to have a car? (I've seen rides mentioned as a way to make coin but not specifically that boots are okay to drive in and keep a car at the lab)
 
paul wheaton
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Most of the people here now, have a car here.  

To answer your question about spots:  I think you will be fine.  If we suddenly get 20 people all wanting in at the same time, then we would go to a waiting list sytem - and those that put their coin in first dibs on an opening.

But the key is that we have two spots open now.

 
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So I've poked around and find I'm becoming overwhelmed by all the things I am completely unaware of. I'm not put off by it, but now I have thoughts like, "Is this possible for me to do?" and, "Am I crazy for wanting to just dive right in, even though I know virtually nothing about permaculture?" I've been daydreaming about how soon I'd be able to join a boot camp (if I could go tomorrow I'd be fulfilling my need for instant gratification, but I'm too logical for that!). I read on another post where the poster wrote something like, "I don't know if I'm running away from something or toward something" and I instantly identified with that notion. I have some vacation time so I'm considering using that to go to boot camp and hopefully be able to decide if I'm just being impulsive  at the thought of completely changing everything, or if this is a kick start to finding what I feel I need to do to become the person, and live like I honestly think is what I want.
I wonder if I need to have a little more than just my common sense and inspired motivation to begin this adventure to give myself the best shot at making an educated decision or, if I should just throw logic out the window and "use the Force" and follow my feelings. Is it necessary, in order to be successful, to have at least had my own garden or compost pile, or is it enough that I really just want to learn as much as I can with an open mind and absorb whatever experience comes to me?
Has anyone else joined in there on a whim and it turned out to be the best decision of their lives? I'd love to hear your story, as much as those who might have had a less than favorable experience.
 
paul wheaton
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I think if you are coming out for just a week, and you haven't been doing physical activity all day, every day, you should expect to be a bit pooped at the end of the day.  But we know that is going to happen and we encourage you to go at your own pace.  I've heard from several people that all that washes away at the end of the second week.  

I think it is wise to try it for a week.  If nothing else to learn if our values a match for you.
 
paul wheaton
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After a few discussions here, we are going to update the pages to say that the minimum stay for the bootcamp is one week.  
 
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Wendy Dockweiler wrote:So I've poked around and find I'm becoming overwhelmed by all the things I am completely unaware of. I'm not put off by it, but now I have thoughts like, "Is this possible for me to do?" and, "Am I crazy for wanting to just dive right in, even though I know virtually nothing about permaculture?" I've been daydreaming about how soon I'd be able to join a boot camp (if I could go tomorrow I'd be fulfilling my need for instant gratification, but I'm too logical for that!). I read on another post where the poster wrote something like, "I don't know if I'm running away from something or toward something" and I instantly identified with that notion. I have some vacation time so I'm considering using that to go to boot camp and hopefully be able to decide if I'm just being impulsive  at the thought of completely changing everything, or if this is a kick start to finding what I feel I need to do to become the person, and live like I honestly think is what I want.
I wonder if I need to have a little more than just my common sense and inspired motivation to begin this adventure to give myself the best shot at making an educated decision or, if I should just throw logic out the window and "use the Force" and follow my feelings. Is it necessary, in order to be successful, to have at least had my own garden or compost pile, or is it enough that I really just want to learn as much as I can with an open mind and absorb whatever experience comes to me?
Has anyone else joined in there on a whim and it turned out to be the best decision of their lives? I'd love to hear your story, as much as those who might have had a less than favorable experience.



Current boot here. I'm a bit biased but I'm gonna say come on out. I got here two months ago with some theoretical knowledge of permaculture but having used a chainsaw a grand total of twice and never swung a hatchet. Now I'm chopping trees and doing roundwood timberframing with the rest of them (but slower and messier 😜). Part of the beauty of being here is there are experienced people who can show you to compost and garden and all the other things. I think sometimes people with no experience actually learn faster because they haven't had a chance to develop bad habits. Anyway, 'nough said. Come on out for a week and try it, worst case you can always just leave.

But yes as Paul said, if you're not a very active person the first few weeks will kick your butt, but I think most people adjust pretty quick
 
Josiah Kobernik
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Isn't it great to be overwhelmed by the complexity of integrating biological systems?
I think that it is extremely valuable to find oneself in the position where you can be a sponge, absorbing information and experiences whether you understand them fully or not. It really is the fastest way to learn.
What can be learned in the permaculture bootcamp is of consequence, no matter what your future path is.

Plus its fun :)
 
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Wendy Dockweiler wrote:... "I don't know if I'm running away from something or toward something" and I instantly identified with that notion. I have some vacation time so I'm considering using that to go to boot camp and hopefully be able to decide if I'm just being impulsive  at the thought of completely changing everything, or if this is a kick start to finding what I feel I need to do to become the person, and live like I honestly think is what I want.



I've learned that sometimes it is the social and other conditions around a person which is "the problem" and other times it is one's own self that is "the problem"....it is pretty easy to tell; if you have similar issues in a new place with strangers, that stuff is probably yours; if the issues disappear, that stuff belongs to the conditions you left behind.  Also consider a plant: some plants like certain conditions and are awesome under those conditions and under other conditions, the plant looks pretty sad.

As for what you want, it is possible to have conflicting desires which oppose each other. Sometimes conflicting desires are completely opposed to each other and sometimes there's just a little inner conflict. Sometimes it's just a matter of realizing we humans tend to look for conflict to be resolved and one already has every thing one wants. I think one has to prioritize one's values (or atleast one's wants and desires), in order to resolve such desire conflicts.


Wendy Dockweiler wrote:
I wonder if I need to have a little more than just my common sense and inspired motivation to begin this adventure to give myself the best shot at making an educated decision or, if I should just throw logic out the window and "use the Force" and follow my feelings. Is it necessary, in order to be successful, to have at least had my own garden or compost pile, or is it enough that I really just want to learn as much as I can with an open mind and absorb whatever experience comes to me?
Has anyone else joined in there on a whim and it turned out to be the best decision of their lives? I'd love to hear your story, as much as those who might have had a less than favorable experience.



I'm a little annoyed at Star Wars confusing the Force with feelings. In my opinion, feelings are part of the source energy for one's drive to action. Feelings are temporal and I guarantee you will feel differently in two weeks about any thing you're currently feeling (even if it is just a subtle change). The Force on the other hand, is referred to by some Native Americans as the Spirit that Moves Through All Things and some people claim they can access it or feel the information in it...this is not the same thing as feelings. End rant.

If you come with specific learning goals through doing/experience, after one month, you can work on your own selected acre in Ant Village. Working on an acre could mean natural building, water collection, wild food identification, annuals and perennials. Or you could come and just experience.  I recommend you do both: come with goals you want to accomplish on your own selected acre; and come to experience with an open mind how to live a completely different way. To experience without a direction could lead to nothing at all for you.

As for the best decision you can make and less favorable experiences, only you can determine this!  One way to know if it's a good idea is to listen to Paul's podcasts on Intentional Communities and his deviating from normal podcasts: these will help you see if your values/wants/desires are aligned with Paul's.

For example, if your value system includes toxic herbicides and you will never give them up even if you have other methods at your disposal, Wheaton Labs really isn't for you. If you find your values are the same as Paul's, then this place is an awesomely cool place to do all kinds of things!!!

The question, what kind of plant or animal am I and will the conditions at Wheaton Labs nurture me or make me spindly and weak?, might be useful.  A junk yard dog who is happy in the junk yard might not do so well here; a junk yard dog who wants a forest, fresh air, space to roam, wants a pristine environment might thrive here!

If all of this still doesn't help, then just come for a week or two  -then you'll know

 
Wendy Dockweiler
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Thanks for your sound advice, Orin.

Orin Raichart wrote:I've learned that sometimes it is the social and other conditions around a person which is "the problem" and other times it is one's own self that is "the problem"....it is pretty easy to tell; if you have similar issues in a new place with strangers, that stuff is probably yours; if the issues disappear, that stuff belongs to the conditions you left behind.  Also consider a plant: some plants like certain conditions and are awesome under those conditions and under other conditions, the plant looks pretty sad.


I'm not perfect, of course, but I am willing to listen when a friend or family brings to my attention that I'm being an ass. I'm very self-aware and I can honestly say that the proverbial "straw that broke the camel's back" is the stress I've encountered in my environment. That's not to say one day I just woke up and thought, "Work sucks! I'm going to drop everything and go live off the land." It's that I've become a slave to what I have no control over, unless I do something to change that. I honestly think the ground I'm inhabiting has become infertile.

Orin Raichart wrote:As for what you want, it is possible to have conflicting desires which oppose each other. Sometimes conflicting desires are completely opposed to each other and sometimes there's just a little inner conflict. Sometimes it's just a matter of realizing we humans tend to look for conflict to be resolved and one already has every thing one wants. I think one has to prioritize one's values (or atleast one's wants and desires), in order to resolve such desire conflicts.


I have a good idea what I want; it's how I need to go about getting it that is troubling. I'm concerned about being able to attain what I want at all. I gather from what I've been reading, that one has a better chance of success if they have a passive residual income, and I do not currently have that. I know I don't really need to be concerned about this right now; I will be able to prioritize what I need to do once I go to boot camp.
 
Orin Raichart
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Wendy Dockweiler wrote:
... It's that I've become a slave to what I have no control over, unless I do something to change that. I honestly think the ground I'm inhabiting has become infertile.



Nicely expressed!  For myself, I noticed the lifestyle change after about two months, not because I'm obtuse but because it took a while for me to know I could trust the lifestyle here as viable....then I could relax and enjoy it

Wendy Dockweiler wrote:
I gather from what I've been reading, that one has a better chance of success if they have a passive residual income, and I do not currently have that. I know I don't really need to be concerned about this right now; I will be able to prioritize what I need to do once I go to boot camp.



Yep, it is financially easier for those with a passive residual income. My take on this is to make sure one makes time and space here every week or an hour every day immediately upon arrival as part of one's daily schedule. I've noticed those who wait until they are "stronger or adapted" to the work we do here are more likely not to make space for that time because it "cuts into their down time".

We look forward to having such a thoughtful person here....  See you when you make it here!
 
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Wendy,

Several of us here are interested in developing passive income streams or actively pursuing that; others pursue some kind of active but remote/internet-based ways of making money; others have seasonal jobs on the off-season and/or live off savings. Expenses are very low without housing and food costs, so it is easier than it would be in other places to cobble stuff together. There is also the BRK, although in the midst of the recent pandemic and its ensuing economic depredations, that pot has shrunk a bit. If you are totally broke (like, can't pay your cell phone bill or afford to put gas in your car to get to town once a month or so) you might be in trouble, but generally speaking, I think you will be fine without residual income streams to start with--to my knowledge, none of the current boots are able to support ourselves entirely with residual income.
 
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Addendum:

I do think that if you have debt, it will be very hard if not impossible to stay here long-term.
 
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I feel like a person can show up here with zero coin and be fine.  And then a if a book does the BRK, they will have a phone and buy things from time to time.   And if they do more stuff, then they have more.   And if they have several residual income streams - even more.  

And I think that it is possible that somebody in the bootcamp will choose to be the rental/event person - and make a professional level of income.  Or education director.  Or natural builder.  Or something I haven't thought of.  

I think there is a long list of ways to make money - and the easiest one is the BRK.   I do hope that the BRK grows to be triple what it is now - and maybe if people come here and get started, that during their stay here they will find ways to get the BRK to be triple before they harvest their first coin from it.
 
paul wheaton
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I got three questions via email today:


1. Is there laundry?



Yes.   We have one washer and one dryer.  We strongly discourage the use of the dryer.   I'm even thinking it might be wise to get rid of it.  


2. I've read through the what should I wear/bring and I'm mostly unsure of space. Should we bring as little as possible or is it okay to bring some books and a guitar? Things along those lines.



I think the books and guitar are fine.  Others bring books and guitars.



3. I read on one of the threads that tents are available. While we are hoping a cabin or the tipi is available when we arrive, if we have to stay in a tent for an event or for another reason, how big is it and will we need to bring camping gear to have just in case?



Most of our tents are 2 person tents.   I think we have one tent that is really huge - like a 3 room tent.

 
paul wheaton
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Some questions via email:

I know how to pull my weight I know how to learn and listen and I always try my very best to do what is expected of me and to do my very best. I'm not afraid of hard work and actually very good at it my body is conditioned to do that. My questions are revolving around will I be taught to grow foods in Montana with your group?



I think everybody is quite patient in answering questions and stuff.  And there is a LOT of horticultural discussion at the dinner table.  

Keep in mind a few important things for here:

    -  we are still doing a LOT of soil building right now

    -  we have a heavy focus on hugelkultur, polyculture and starting trees from seeds - so a bit different

    -  we are not intending to sell the food we grow - instead we want to feed the people here, including people here for events


Are you expecting any other monetary compensation for having me at your lab learning growing enjoying?



Nope.  


Could you give me more detail of what is expected of me when I arrive?



Community is more important than overall productivity.  So being supportive of others and being supportive of community.   It would be nice if you read the thorns book.  


I'm wondering should I buy dried goods to bring up should I come with a stash of canned goods will not be acceptable there at your place?



If you eat food that we do not provide, then yeah, you might want to bring some.  Just make sure it is organic or better.


anyway I'd like to outfit myself properly to be in Montana can you give me any suggestions I will of course look it up on YouTube to get some pointers.



You're from colorado - so it will be pretty much the same.


 
Martha Hernandez
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Way incoraging! Thank you Paul! can't wait! I love Colorado weather besides,  thank you also for breaking it down .Im looking forward to a new way of living in tune with nature on the Earth with minimal foot print.
Like coming home. I am very interested in honey bee keeping and very happy I can be doing that there. Looking forward!
I'm greatful to ya!
Martha

 
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Paul,  I've been chatting with Nicole on Wwoofusa and there were a couple questions she wasn't sure of so I'll ask you here. We were discussing coming Aug 2 -16 to get our feet wet ( myself and 13 yr old daughter). She mentioned the WWOOF week starting Aug 16 and that it might be better for us. Only issue with that would be my kiddo starts virtual school that week.  Is there a quiet space for her to do computer work with internet?  She wouldn't be able to help as much during the day.  Also, what are the sleeping arrangements for 2 and do they differ depending on wwoof vs bootcamp?

Sorry for any repeat questions. I tried to find them on the thread but there are so many. Is there a search button in each thread?  I can't seem to find it..

Thank you!
Jen
 
Jennifer Richardson
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Hi Jenny,

Have you read the bit in the FAQ about kids? Here it is:

We have had people with kids here and it has worked great.  And we have had people with kids here and it was a mess.  So I guess it thoroughly depends on you and your kids.

The first element to figure out:  With one person, there is 1 unit of work and 1 unit of resources consumed.   With a couple with three kids, there is one unit of work and 5 units of resources consumed.   We did have a lovely family of five here last year, and it worked great.  The deal they worked out was that they would provide all of the food for all five people.  The parents took really good care of the kids and the kids were super respectful.   It worked great.  

And we have had people that thought my house was "unsupervised child storage" and the children would destroy my house and the parents would say "yeah, kids do that - you should child proof your house."



So if we can work something out in this space so it is fair for everyone, we would love to have you both come out! (And we do have a library with internet access that is quiet most of the time).

Then the thing to figure out would be whether you would come during WWOOF week (which is limited only to that one week), or through the normal bootcamp program (which costs $100).
 
Jenny Jones
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Jennifer Richardson wrote:Hi Jenny,

Have you read the bit in the FAQ about kids? Here it is:

We have had people with kids here and it has worked great.  And we have had people with kids here and it was a mess.  So I guess it thoroughly depends on you and your kids.

The first element to figure out:  With one person, there is 1 unit of work and 1 unit of resources consumed.   With a couple with three kids, there is one unit of work and 5 units of resources consumed.   We did have a lovely family of five here last year, and it worked great.  The deal they worked out was that they would provide all of the food for all five people.  The parents took really good care of the kids and the kids were super respectful.   It worked great.  
yes I'm aware of that post!

And we have had people that thought my house was "unsupervised child storage" and the children would destroy my house and the parents would say "yeah, kids do that - you should child proof your house."



So if we can work something out in this space so it is fair for everyone, we would love to have you both come out! (And we do have a library with internet access that is quiet most of the time).

Then the thing to figure out would be whether you would come during WWOOF week (which is limited only to that one week), or through the normal bootcamp program (which costs $100).

 
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