Wednesday morning I jumped out of bed, quite excited to see the first snow of the year for our village. Preschool kept on our coats and hats to stand out in the flurries and sing a super fun song outdoors: “If all the snowflakes were candy bars and milkshakes, oh, what a snow that would be~ee. I’d stand outside with my mouth open wide, ah-ah-ah-ah-ah-ah-ah-ah-ah-ah. Oh, what a snow that would be~ee, oh, what a snow that would be.” Many a flake was caught on our tongues that morning!*
Katherine here with this week’s latest and greatest from your northeastern-most Missourian ecovillage, Dancing Rabbit. [Editor’s note: If you want to see a cute video of Katherine and preschooler Hazel singing the song mentioned above, accompanied by Ms. K herself on the banjolele, click here.]
The week got off to a spicy start as Chef Anthony Carron visited us once again, this time bringing his funny, smart, and charming fiancée, Hilary. (Who needs a marriage announcement when you’ve got friends at an ecovillage with their own column?!)
Anthony showed up at DR back in 2010 with an U-Haul full of kitchen appliances for the Milkweed Mercantile. Everything from strainers to whisk-ers, knives to a Hobart, Chef Anthony did us right by knowing what he was doing.
After a few years of awesome meals and getting Pizza Night off the ground, Anthony moved west, where he has been establishing a farm and growing his restaurant chain, 800 Degrees Pizza, across the globe. Apparently citizens of Australia, Japan, and Dubai love this particular Neapolitan pizza pie just as much as Rabbits and the local NEMO-ians (north east Missourians). Congrats on all your endeavors Anthony and Hilary! May your barnyard prosper with laying hens and dwindle in the number of predator attacks.
The weather for their visit was warm the first day, though became bitterly cold and rainy quick enough by day two. The grey and dreary persisted for days, yet could not dampen my spirits sitting by a warm fire in my tiny house. As I was reading a book in a new for me/old chair that I rescued and fixed up with a couple screws and some plywood, I thought, “Ah, this is the life”: once again, thankful for my surroundings and abundance. “…If all the raindrops were lemon-drops and gumdrops, oh, what a rain it would be.”
A few sprinkles never stopped any Rabbit from putting their best hop forward and that is exactly what we got when a few of our folks participated in the Climate March at Truman University in Kirksville, MO on Friday. After marching from the college to the town square and back again, small groups got together so that great minds could think alike and figure out what next steps to take in climate reform. Folks from another La Plata community, the Possibility Alliance, were also there, putting their heads together with local Edinans and college students whose hometowns span the country. Talk about a think tank! Collegians and communitarians unite!
The CCL (Citizens’ Climate Lobby) has really taken off here at the village, as Sharon, Dennis, Illly, and others call Congress, chat with Senator Sam Graves, and just plain raise awareness of increasing temperatures in the atmosphere. Activists are all around us and take many shapes, sizes, and colors. Some march, some sit, and some live lightly in an ecovillage. Have you ever asked yourself, how is it that you Act?
Fortunately our marchers were back in time for community dinner, where they were welcomed to a warm meal by good friends. I kept joking that I would write about this, so here it is: I was just tickled by the fact that every kitchen co-op that came to dinner that night (Ironweed, Sky Kitchen, and the Critters) all brought pasta and salad to eat!
Noonies (noodles, according to 6-year-old Althea) of every shape and consistency, al dente to gluten-free, made an appearance, next to some very handsome looking homegrown green beans and canned tomatoes. Thanks to Dan’s hoop house there was still fresh spinach to be had even after the dusting of snow. I know this may sound silly but it was very fun for me to see that, once again, great minds think alike. Bon appétit!
Rain for days eventually led to the sun emerging again in blue skies and the solar panels getting back to business. My power system is certainly happy to be full again, as are many others around town. Simple pleasures such as light fixtures were switched back on, and candles were blown out and put away, only to be saved for another dark day. I appreciate being more deliberate in my life and remaining off-grid in my home certainly has its ways of grounding me.
The first time I left the village after moving here in 2011, I remember sitting in the train station when the sun came out. “Power!” I thought. Then I laughed to myself because there are no solar panels on the train station to harness energy. What brings me joy is to know that we are getting there, my friends, we are getting there. “…If all the sunbeams were bubblegum and ice-cream, oh, what a sun that would be~ee. Oh, what a sun that would be!”
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Two important announcements:
It’s been five years since DR member Tamar Friedner died at age 32. To honor her birthday on Dec. 4th, her family has created a fund in her memory to support Dancing Rabbit’s nonprofit. If Tamar touched your life in some way, or if you are moved by her family’s generous offer, please consider contributing to this new fund. Her family will decide how the funds will be allocated, choosing to support things Tamar would have valued. You can send Dancing Rabbit a check (address below) or give online – please make sure to mention that your contribution is for the Tamar Friedner Memorial Fund. Thank you, on behalf of Tamar, her family, and all of us at Dancing Rabbit.
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Coming up this Wednesday is the simultaneous live-and-online Non-profit Name Change Town Hall Meeting. If you want to discuss the nine remaining candidates for our nonprofit branch’s new name, join us this Wednesday, Dec. 9th at 7pm CST! More info here.
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Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage is an intentional community and nonprofit outside Rutledge, in northeast Missouri, focused on demonstrating sustainable living possibilities. Find out more about us by visiting our website, reading our blog, or emailing us.