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Thursday, May 29, 2014

Second trip to Terra Nova: setting up house

Back in Hollywood and it's been nearly two months since I posted. I have been swamped with preparing for and taking my trip back to Terra Nova. And thank goddess, I am even more in love with Ecuador now!

I invited several friends to come down to check out our new space +Rachel Carlson +Sean Hurdle  +Mary Campion +Joseph Bedford +Sophia McFoy  +Guy McPherson & his friend, +Pauline Schneider - not to mention the Harrell family of five, who are the first to be occupying the land.
So we had quite a group.

I offered to help Guy put together his Climate crisis/Economic collapse presentation while he was down there - so he could reach more international folks with his message & perhaps raise some donations to cover his expenses; and also a mini trial run of the grief technique he recently learned with Pauline. I spent several weeks creating flyers and promoting the weekend anywhere I could reach English speakers in Ecuador. Still, the turnout was small (mostly just friends and family), but the passion was high.

My primary purpose for going (and how I was able to justify the $2k expense) was to help get the (non spanish-speaking) family settled in, but also to shoot some footage of the land, for the crowd-funding campaign Pauline offered to help me with, on (Still working on this, but you will be the first to hear!)

We: purchased a refrigerator, a stove, several hammocks; repaired a plumbing leak.
Upcoming projects are:
Install a solar water pump, to supplement the electric & gas powered pumps we have;
Paint the water tank black, to raise the water temperature for showering & washing clothes & dishes;
Give the bathroom a fresh coat of paint;
Install a lip in the shower, to prevent water from running out into the rest of the bathroom;
Put screens in the bathroom window to keep the bats (and their guano) out;
Hang a mosquito curtain around the open-air kitchen, to keep out buggies at night;
Fill the old well, which is currently a hazard for people walking by it;
Get a bed for the guard tower, in case we get any AirBnB guests;
Prepare a massive organic garden, that can feed up to twelve souls (yeah, Ty!);
Install lights in the front gate & a sign reading "Terra Nova de Corazón;"
Move the kitties - India & China - from La Libertad to Manglaralto;
Cover the blue-roofed yoga loft with a thatched palm roof, to reduce internal air temperature, like so:

Getting there at the end of the rainy season, we were disappointed to learn that it had barely rained this year, so stuff was not as lush and green as I had foretold. The riverbed was completely dry! Thank goodness we have deep wells.
I'm not much of a picture taker, and am annoyed by the process of moving my photos from my phone to my blog or FB, so... (Please "like" us, if you haven't already)

Months ago, I mentioned that I am in the process of becoming a certified death midwife. Part 2 of the 3-part course, through Sacred Crossings is coming up in June:
PART I: Conscious Dying - Preparing for a Peaceful Transision
PART II: After-death care & preservation of the body
PART III: The Funeral Celebration

Anybody dying soon? Would you like to make use of my services? First death is on the house - after that, buy one, get one free. Jajajajaja! But seriously, if the idea of an alternative to toxic cremation or burial in offensively expensive, non-biodegradable caskets is appealing to you; if you want to spend about a grand on the process, rather than the cost of a new car; if you long for a time when death was faced and shared and celebrated in the home, with friends and family rather than being outsourced to the "funeral industry," then let's talk. I'm hoping to begin assisting Olivia as soon as I've completed my training, in the Fall.

I love you all.
How may I be of service to you?


  1. This is so wonderful, thank you so much for the update! Can't wait to hear more about the fund raiser... so impressed with the work you have done to date... Also very very interested in your death midwifery career and wondering if you'd be willing to share on this topic and perhaps write an article for my blog on it? I LOVE IT! Let me know if you would ever be willing -- it *needs* to be talked about in our society... it feels right to bring this up on my website... Thoughts? xoxoxo, Laura

    1. Hoping to launch the crowd-funding tomorrow. So many wonderful gifts we are offering!
      I'm new on the path to Death Midwifery. Probably better to defer to my mentors in hospice (Mary Mohs) & death midwifery (Olivia Bareham). Will introduce you via email...