Back from a week working and playing in Dublin. Lots of play with great friends in way too many bars and restaurants. Gotta say, I love being there and I really love coming home to Ballinamore. Time to slow it all down and spend some time with a dear friend who is visiting from Oz.
While I was in Dublin I dropped in to Cultivate in Temple Bar. It’s been a few years since I had popped in and I think it’s really improved. The library of books alone are worth the visit. It’s a kind of one stop shop for anything on sustainable living. The shop has lots of interesting products including wooden computer keyboards. The free info pamphlets were also very useful – everything from suppliers of eco paints to bamboo flooring. Decided to join them as a member (4 euro a month) and offered them some free consulting time. They also run some fine looking courses.
I also bought (wasn’t I a busy woman?) the first edition of a new irish mag called ‘Sustainability’. Really well written and designed. I liked it so much I sent off for a subscription today. The mag is part of the work of the Sustainable Institute based in Westport, Co Mayo. And – yes folks – they do courses as well.
They run a 12 month fulltime course called ‘Practical Sustainability’ and a range of short courses that cover a lots of topics – permaculture; hemp/lime construction; DIY off grid electrical systems etc.
One of the pamphlets I picked up was from the Hollies Centre for Practical Sustainability. They’re based in Enniskeane, Co Cork and are running some really interesting looking courses. One that caught my eye was a 9 day course in September called ‘The Complete Handsculpted House Course’ run by the authors of the book with the same title. It’s all about cob house building.
And closer to home – the Living Architecture Centre in our Leitrim runs a course in sustainable house design and construction that runs over 4 Saturdays. The site is well worth a look as it is full of information. I emailed them and asked when the next course will be as I like to learn as locally as possible. Also, check out their econospace. It’s a sustainable small home (we’re talking 20sqm) that Peter built and requires no planning permission and about 10,000 euro. They are in the process of building a hemp/lime or cob house. The site has heaps of pictures and video.
I had also mentioned on this and my other blog that I wanted to learn carpentry. Got a text from a friend who had read one of them and said she has someone who would like to teach me.
I really love how a focused wishing attracts the info and people I need.
I decided that I will take this year to gather and learn heaps of stuff about sustainable design; growing things; and build up my own making skills. I’ll also keep an eye out for a wee piece of land to buy within 5 miles of Ballinamore. In 2008 I can have a go at designing and building my own home. A home that is small, sustainable, beautiful and full of the kind of feeling that makes any visitor feel relaxed and happy.
Home now and I hear there may be a fayre on Saturday in Ballinamore town. It’s run by Pucheen a local group of people who are interested in all aspects of sustainable living. Basically, on a Saturday every 6 weeks or so, they show some cool eco films on interesting topics in a small local pub and you can have a stall to sell produce and crafts. If it’s on I’d love to wander all the way down the street and say hi.
It’s been a good week. I’m pleased that I’m gathering more and more information that will ultimately enable me to make some very informed decisions about building a sustainable home.
We can all make a difference.
Take good care yourself.