Finally we have wonderful snow which reveals otherwise obfuscated animal pathways. It’s fun to amble around the Land, seeing, and sometimes guessing, what creature passed there before you. Then there is the coyote stalking the sheep! Not unexpected, but luckily observed before it could accomplish its mission.
The cold weather played a key role in our spur-of-the-moment community punch party on the porch of the farmhouse a few days after Thanksgiving. Jens dumped out a frozen rain barrel and it was 2" thick walls of ice with a solid top & a non-frozen bottom, so once inverted it was an ice-barrel filled with unfrozen water. We siphoned out the unfrozen water, rinsed the ice-barrel, moved it to the porch, went home for ingredients, invited everyone, and made ginger-ale, seltzer, and fruit punch in the barrel (lit from the side to show it off). Spontaneous community building!
We got together, too, to decorate Sandy’s Christmas tree and celebrate her birthday. We were surprised to be visited by Santa and his Elf!
According to Marcy, her baby will be born at dawn on the Winter Solstice. We support her in this intention and in having a baby who is easily birthed. Those of us not involved in the birth are planning a solstice celebration beginning and ending at the rock denoting the center of the Land. At 7:20 AM, we will place a rock in the spot where the first ray of sun touches the land. When the last sun ray departs, we will place a stone in the spot it left. After the morning sun-marking, our Community Life Committee will provide breakfast for all. When the sun sets, we will gather for a bonfire, singing, and potluck to close the day’s celebration and appreciation of our connection to the land and to each other.
Our fall retreat focused on our Intentions, newly rewritten to better reflect where we are now, ten years after they were first written (see the updated intentions on your left).
Here is a fun, interesting, and educational blog by one of our homeschooling students, Will: Creations and Reflections.
UPDATE: Though she did not arrive on the solstice, as requested, the expected baby did arrive on Jan. 2, 2014 in the morning. Daphne Ramona Snow is 8 lbs, 9 oz and 20 inches long. All are healthy and well!
(read earlier news
Who we are
We are currently a community of six member households and two families interested in membership, living close to the land on 135 acres of mixed woodland and pasture. We range in age from infant to 60s, with 14 adults and 13 children. We strive to live spirit-focused lives that are simple, sustainable, and joyful, benefitting from and enjoying our close connections with each other and the land. We don't all need to identify explicitly as Quaker. We welcome diversity of all sorts. (More about us)
Where we are
We are in the gorgeous Hudson Valley of upstate New York (2.5 hours from NYC/Boston, 10 minutes from our local Quaker Meeting), in the foothills of the Berkshires.
How we live
We are thriving in a range of green homes such as strawbale, slip and chip timberframe, stickbuilt, passive solar; many of us built our own. Many of us farm our land organically, raise chickens, sheep, and other livestock, and produce piles of pesto. We also support several local farms through CSA shares (that's Community Supported Agriculture). We use Quaker processes in our self-government, including consensus that seeks God's will, discernment, and the clearness process. We value equality, diversity of experience and viewpoints, and deep listening. We come together around five guiding intentions:
Our Five Intentions
We believe conscious culture creation in community can be a means to advance our intentions:
1. To live in worship, increasing our mindfulness, spiritual focus, and God-centeredness by intertwining our daily lives with others who share these intentions
2. To create a village setting that values and engages participation by people of all ages, expands our experience of family, and supports our expression in the world.
3. To create wealth that embodies integrity and Truth by carefully examining our engagement in the current economic order and stepping away from its destructive elements
4. To live in unity & harmony with the earth by considering the near and far environmental impact of our actions while striving for thrivability.
5. To include a good measure of joy, fun, creativity, and service in our lives
We believe that our communities' success in achieving these five intentions will be aided by memberships diverse in race, age, ethnicity, sexual preference, and economic situations, and therefore it is our aim to gather communities whose members are diverse in these ways as well as others.
If you have questions about QIV-C and would like to find out more or visit us, please e-mail qiv-c@qivp .org or call Spee Braun at 518-392-0891 (between 9 and 9 please).